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Sociology & Justice Studies

What is Sociology?

Sociology is the systematic study of human behaviors and human society. It is probably the broadest and most diverse discipline in social science. Sociologists are interested in large-scale social processes such as globalization as well as everyday interactions between individuals.

Sociologists study a wide range of subject matters including family & marriage, race, immigration, gender, poverty & inequality, children & youth, aging, education, religion, crime & deviance, terrorism, sports, popular cultures, environment & technology, social movements & revolutions, and many, many more. Indeed, sociologists study pretty much anything people do, think or say. You can see the diversity of sociology as a discipline from the variety of courses we offer at Eastern Washington University, such as Crime & Society, Sociology of Children, Sociology of the Family, Sex and Gender, Power & Identity, Race & Ethnic Relations, Sociology of Politics, and Sociology of Revolutions.

Moreover, sociologists emphasize the careful gathering and analysis of evidence to enrich our understanding of the social world. We conduct our research using a variety of methods such as surveys, field research, focus groups, in-depth interviews, historical documents, census data, content analysis of media and other materials.

Sociology challenges our everyday, take-for-granted view of the social world. It offers powerful insights as to how broad social forces shape our own personal experiences and outcomes in our own lives.

Feel free to contact us if you would like to find out more about Sociology. Or you can take a class in sociology and see for yourself what insights sociology can offer about the social world we live in.

Sociology at EWU

Our mission is foster in all undergraduate students the capacity for critical inquiry and understanding of social justice through an integrated liberal arts program in sociology. We strive to provide a rigorous theoretical and research-oriented education to prepare our students for contributions to their communities and careers.

Some of our faculty's research areas include:

  • Crime & Deviance
  • Race and Ethnic Relations
  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology of Children
  • Sociology of Law
  • Sociology of Religion
  • Sociology of Revolutions

Criminal Justice at EWU

Criminal justice is an interdisciplinary program that provides students with a thorough understanding of the criminal justice system and its role in society. The program is used for placement in: law enforcement, corrections, the juvenile justice system and criminal justice investigation.

Within the bachelor of arts degree, the Department of Sociology and Justice Studies offers a program in Criminal Justice, blending career education and the liberal arts. Criminal Justice is an integrated major with required coursework in the core disciplines that provide the theoretical and methodological roots of contemporary criminological inquiry, as well as applied coursework in Criminal Justice. The program is designed to provide an academic foundation appropriate for an educated citizen, as well as particular specializations and certifications for career preparation.The Department of Sociology and Justice Studies believes that a university must educate broadly to enrich both career and life. Accordingly, students in the Criminal Justice program will complete social science foundation courses, as well as core disciplinary courses. In order to assist them as they move into a variety of career paths, students must also complete coursework in an approved area of specialization or an interdisciplinary certificate.All 300 and 400 level CRIM courses have a prerequisite of sophomore standing or above.

What are the degree options?

We offer both a major and a minor in Sociology at Eastern Washington University. For Criminal Justice majors, the major program has three specialty tracks: Law enforcement, pre-graduate criminology, and corrections. These enable a student to specialize in a more specific area of interest. Please view degree options for more information on our offerings.

What can I do with my degree?

Sociology

Because it is such a diverse discipline, Sociology can help prepare you for a broad spectrum of careers. Your knowledge in sociology can be applied in both public and private sectors in areas such as social services, non-profit organizations, community advocacy, business administration, public relations, marketing, education, criminal justice, and more.

Sociology majors receive a broad-based liberal arts education and acquire knowledge and skills sought by employers:

  • Understanding of cultural diversity, human relationships and complex social issues
  • Research skills - research design, data collection and analysis, synthesis of data and information
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively

You can find career resources for sociology majors at the American Sociological Association webpage.

Criminal Justice

The criminal justice major prepares students for a variety of fields. Specifically, students interested in law enforcement, criminology, and corrections will be well prepared by the three specialty tracks offered by our major.

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