Frequently Asked Questions For Sociology Students
Q. What do sociology majors do for careers?
Many public or nonprofit agencies, governmental bureaus, and community programs hire applied sociologists, as do organizations that need people with skills in sociological methodology and social statistics. Often, sociology serves as a pre-professional background. Sociology is similar to other liberal arts degrees, such as philosophy and history, insofar as the skills you acquire are "transferrable" to many fields. People with bachelors degrees in history do not become historians, nor do sociology bachelors become sociologists without graduate training. However, our students go into a variety of fields because a liberal arts degree equips students to do research, write and read critically and analytically so they can be trained for any kind of work. Our students mostly work in human service agencies, but also go on to Masters in social work programs, law school, etc. One former student started her own business drawing upon her sociology courses in gerontology. Another former student became an investment advisor. Sociology majors generally leave with excellent people skills and presentation skills, which prepares them for any field of work.

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Q. Can I do an internship for Sociology credit?
Presently, students can get sociology credit for an internship only through our course,
Soc. 286: Internship, generally taught every spring. (For Fall 2014, see the information below for Career Services internships.) For Soc. 286, students are required to choose and arrange their own internships in a local, off-campus non-profit for the spring semester. Students are supervised independently through enrollment in this course. Sociology requires a rigorous scholarly component as well, participating in a once a week seminar, doing a sociological literature review, and writing a final research paper. The internship coordinators for the department are Professor Alice Fothergill and Professor Kathy Fox. For more information on Sociology internships, contact Kathy Fox.
Students who want an internship experience but do not need sociology credit might consider earning course credit through the Service-Learning office of Career Services. Contact Mary Barritt for more information (
Mary.Barritt@uvm.edu). Generally internships require 10-15 hours a week of service in the agency site for three hours of course credit. To find out which non-profit internships are available locally, consult the Career Services website.
Q. Does UVM offer a criminal justice degree?
No, but the sociology department offers the greatest range of courses related to criminal justice. For example, we offer courses on deviance & social control, the Sociology of Punishment, Criminal Justice, Crime, Juveniles in the court, and Corrections. One can certainly explore that interest and gain expertise within the sociology major.
Q. If I am a Psych major and have taken Psych 109 and 110 (their research methods courses), do I still have to take Soc. 100?
No, the Psych 109/110 sequence can substitute for our Soc. 100 methods requirement.  However, Psych 109-110 substitutes for Soc 100, but a student would still need four additional sociology credits, not three, and the sociology department offers no one-credit courses at this time.  The Psych sequence would substitute for Soc 100 for a minor selecting the Soc 100 option, but would not substitute for any of the new minor requirements; it does not substitute for Soc. 90.
Q. What do prerequisites mean to me?
Prerequisites for 100 and 200-level Sociology courses must be successfully completed before the start of the 200-level course in question. So, for example, you can be taking Soc. 101 in the spring semester and sign up for a 200-level seminar in the fall semester. But these are not co-requisites; you cannot fulfill the requirement by signing up for 100 or 101 at the same time as you sign up for a 200-level.