Careers of Sociology Majors
A major in sociology is the gateway to many different careers. A recent study illustrates this well. The study followed up students who had majored in sociology and asked what they were doing at age thirty.
Professional Careers: The largest proportion (35%) became professionals. Most had moved into careers related to the social sciences: lawyers, social workers and social work administrators, personnel and labor relations managers and specialists, planners and policy analysts for local, state and federal governments, teachers at the university, college, secondary, and elementary school levels, and health occupations (physician, nurse, and so on). Other professional occupations included: accountant, computer analyst, chemical technician, electrical engineer, psychologist in private practice, airline pilot, physical therapist, chiropractor, counselor, statistician, industrial engineer, pharmacist, photographer, journalist, and several members of the clergy.
Management: The second largest group contained nearly 25 percent of the men and women. Many in this group reported managerial and administrative careers in different levels of government, school administration, and in a wide range of private sector firms (banking, insurance, real estate, business services, agribusiness, manufacturing, brokerage and investment, wholesale trade, hotel management, private foundations, lobbying organizations, hospitals, and colleges).
Craft and Other Service Occupations: A smaller number (15%) pursued less traditional careers for sociology majors. Examples included a plumber, a self-employed carpenter, an FBI agent, several police officers and detectives, an assembly line supervisor, several government inspectors, a compositor, and an airline flight attendant.
Other: The remainder followed varied paths. A few were still enrolled in higher education; some were raising a family and not in the labor force; some had returned to school after working and others were in clerical, operative and laborer occupations (bookkeeper, bank teller, insurance estimator, welder, fisherman, lumber worker, and gardener, and animal caretaker).
Pre-Professional Course Concentrations
Several career-lines require education beyond the undergraduate degree. A major in sociology can be an effective stepping-stone on your way to a professional career. Business, law, medical, and other professional schools do not look for narrow specialists; they are more interested in applicants with a broad education and proven abilities to think analytically. If you aspire to a professional career, we will work with you and the advisors in your pre-professional area to design a program that meets your needs. Here are some ideas about how to put together a pre-professional education at Duke using sociology courses.
Pre-Law: Deviance, Law and Criminal Justice
|220||120||Causes of Crime|
|222||122||Punishment and Treatment of Deviants|
Pre-Medicine: Human Development, Health and Aging
|217||117||Childhood in Social Perspective|
|260||169||Psychosocial Aspects of Human Development|
|262||161||Adulthood and Aging|
|263||163||Aging and Health|
|264||Death and Dying|
|349||149||Sexuality and Society|
|350||150||The Changing American Family|
|361||US Health Disparities|
|371||171||Comparative Health Care Systems|
Pre-Business: Markets and Management
|160||160||Advertising and Sociology|
|226||The Challenges of Development|
|229||Gender, Work, and Organization|
|342D||142||Organizations and Global Competitiveness|
|344||144||Organizations and Their Environments|
|345||145||Nation, Regions, and the Global Economy|
|355||155||Organizations and Management|
|358||158||Markets and Marketing|
|359||159||The Sociology of Entrepreneurship|