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Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work

Sociology at Kansas State University

Sociology at Kansas State University is a vibrant program focused on exploring the causes and consequences of pressing social issues. Our sixteen faculty members are active scholars across four main subject areas:

  • Community, Agriculture, Food, and Environment,
  • Criminology,
  • Politics and Development, and
  • Structural Inequalities and Culture.

Their research addresses publicly relevant topics such as rural farm ownership, the use of natural resources, population growth and decline, inequities in criminal sentencing and policing, mass incarceration, human trafficking, globalizing labor markets, immigration, political challenges in new democracies, gender inequities in the workforce, and the use of new technologies. The faculty also use a range of research methods, from advanced statistics to in-depth ethnography, and have conducted global research in such places as Russia, Ghana, Australia, Central America, and right here in Kansas! A list of their recent publications can be found here.

  

 

Undergraduate students benefit from a robust curriculum taught by experts in their fields. Sociology classes challenge students to actively engage and analyze the world around them through critical thinking, research, and writing, and thereby gain actionable skills suited for a wide array of professions. The department also offers a specialization in criminology for students interested in studying or working in fields related to crime, deviance, and criminal justice. With courses offered in the regular academic year, over summers, and online, our program provides tremendous flexibility for students of diverse needs and backgrounds. We also offer a rigorous internship program for students interested in gaining field experience. A sociology major is a great foundation for careers in law, public policy, social work, criminology, and international development, to name a few!

Graduate students at both the Master’s and Ph.D. level gain rigorous training in research and teaching. They gain crucial experience publishing alone and with faculty, as well as designing and teaching their own courses, to make them competitive for the academic labor market. Students interested in non-academic jobs will also find the skills developed within our programs invaluable. Our students enjoy a high quality of life in a beautiful and growing community: Manhattan, known colloquially as “The Little Apple,” is regularly ranked by Forbes Magazine as one of the best small places in the country for business and careers; Manhattan is ranked #3 in the country by the Princeton Review for "best quality of life" and Kansas State University is ranked #6 in the country by The Princeton Review for “happiest students.”

Click for Sociology Student Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate with a B.A. or B.S. degree in either the general or criminology option of sociology offered at Kansas State University should be able to meet the following learning outcomes:

Understanding Society stands as the bedrock of sociology, guiding study of the relationship between individuals and society. The sociology student will demonstrate proficiency in understanding society as follows:

  • Describe social facts
  • Define social problems
  • Identify links between social structure features and individual behavior
  • Illustrate historical connections to contemporary social issues
  • Compare cultural diversity within and among societies
  • Explain significance of socially constructed differences
  • Identify mechanisms and consequences of social inequality
  • Interpret social policy effectiveness

Analyzing Society marks the authority of sociology as a scientific discipline, producing a comprehensive body of knowledge regarding social order, control, and change. The sociology student will demonstrate proficiency in analyzing society as follows:

  • Identify distinct sociological theories and perspectives
  • Describe how theories emerge in specific social and historical conditions
  • Assess links among theories, concepts, and methods of research
  • Illustrate basic levels of research techniques
  • Discuss ethical issues in social science research
  • Assess credible sources of information
  • Judge evidence used to support an argument
  • Compare opposing viewpoints  
  • Propose solutions to problems

Communicating about Society provides a vital role in modern society, affording links between scientific and lay communities, between knowledge and policy, and among professional groups. The sociology student will demonstrate proficiency in communicating about society as follows:

  • Prepare a clear and focused account of a social event, issue, topic, or problem
  • Create written accounts integrating sociological concepts with empirical findings
  • Assemble (verbally or in writing) research results appropriate for a general audience
  • Produce output describing socially constructed differences to diverse populations

 

Students who graduate with an M.A. or Ph.D. in Sociology from Kansas State University should be able to meet the following learning outcomes:

M.A. Program

Demonstrate competency and understanding of sociological theory, research methods, and one area of specialization in the discipline.

Demonstrate the ability to apply sociological knowledge to produce scholarly and creative works, including research papers and theses.

Demonstrate an awareness of principles of integrity and ethical behavior that are central to the profession of sociology.

Ph.D. Program

Demonstrate competency and understanding of sociological theory, research methods, and two areas of specialization in the discipline.

Demonstrate the ability to apply sociological knowledge to produce scholarly and creative works, including research papers and dissertations.

Demonstrate an awareness of principles of integrity and ethical behavior that are central to the profession of sociology. 


RECOGNITION

Megan McCall was selected as one of the 2018 Distinguished Young Alumni recipients.  The award, established in 2012, recognizes Kansas State University graduates who are younger than 35 and are using the scholarship, leadership, and service experience they acquired at K-State to excel in their professions and contribute to their communities.  “They are great examples of K-Staters who learned how to be leaders through their college experiences. Those experiences molded who they are today and contribute to their successes both personally and professionally. McCall is a remote on-call Bridge coordinator with Rose Brooks Center’s Bridge Program in Kansas City. Rose Brooks Center is a leader in innovative domestic violence programs and support. Megan graduated from K-State in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in sociology/criminology and in 2011 with a master’s degree in sociology.