While a lot of people might try to deter a student from getting a degree in sociology, the truth is that the study of human society is essential to the modern world and students have the power to tailor their education to make sure they are competitive in the job market. Sociology majors can find jobs in criminal justice, demography, journalism, human services such as counseling and social services, business, education, community relations, and more. The average salary for sociology majors is $47,000/year, but professionals in the private or government sector can often make up to $75,000/year. Finding the right sociology education program is essential to kicking off a great career. The more education a professional in this field has, the easier they will find a job. These days, people who don’t want to stop working a full time job or move to attend a college or university can attend a sociology program online. Online programs differ widely however and it’s important perspective students find the program with the best reputation and study options to fit their career plans best. Here’s what to look for in an online sociology program.
Perspective students should determine what level of education they wish to achieve and find a program which offers that study track. Options include certificates (2 semesters worth of classes), bachelor’s (4 years, 2 years for students with an associate’s degree already), or a master’s (2 years on top of a bachelor’s).
A big part of a sociology education is the quality of professors. Even in an online course, professors will regularly chat via video, forum, or email with students, answering questions, giving lectures on interesting sociology topics, and giving feedback on assignments and tests. Perspective students should find an online program that employs experienced and educated professors.
Traditional university programs are known for their career centers which offer students support finding jobs after graduation. The best online sociology programs will also have career support for students. These services may include helping students find internships or entry levels jobs after they are finished up with their online sociology degree program.
Below is a list of the top online sociology programs. The methodology used to rank these programs considered rigor of the courses, experience and education of the faculty, and student satisfaction based on surveys. Additionally, experts were consulted to determine the reputation of the online sociology programs across the country.
The Best Online Sociology Programs:
Appalachian State University offers a Graduate Certificate in Sociology. The Sociology program is completely online and comprises 18 semester hours; it is offered only for the summer semester. This postbaccalaureate certificate provides college-level teaching credentials to recipients holding a Master’s Degree. Masters usually seek this certificate for qualification to teach introductory and advanced sociology courses at colleges. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
Park University has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology online program. Completion of the degree requires 122 credit hours and a declared minor. Park University’s online Sociology classes have been approved multiple times by Quality Matters, the peer reviewed quality assurance program.
Cowley County Community College offers a well-considered online education that includes the Associate of Arts in Sociology and Psychology. The standard degree program comprises 62 credit hours of preparation for post-completion transfer to a four-year major.
Drury University has an excellent Sociology program, part of which is endorsed by the National Science Foundation. In 2006, Sociology seniors scored in the top 90 percent nationally on the Major Field Achievement Test. The undergraduate Sociology degree requires completion of 38 credit hours and an internship that improves understanding of policies, theory, and practice.
Navarro College has an Associate of Science in Sociology. The associate’s program is intended to prepare students for baccalaureate transfer to a senior college or university. Indeed, Navarro College has a full transfer agreement with Texas A&M University. The degree is offered online and on-campus, although it can be taken entirely online. Admission is available internationally, and program length varies.
Columbia College has well-rated online classes. From any internet-capable device, students can access discussions, chats, and grades in addition to all course materials. The Bachelor of Arts in Sociology program comprises 120 semester hours, a maximum of which 25 may be through transfer. This institution divides the academic year into five semesters of eight-week classes, allowing flexibility for both first-time students and continuing learners. Students can also pace themselves accordingly; they can choose to enroll in semesters continually or intermittently without penalty.
Community College of Denver offers online and hybrid classes through the Desire2Learn course management system; CCD is also a member of the CCC Online consortium of community colleges in Colorado. The fully online courses taken through CCC Online are transferable to any of the 13 member institutions as well as public state colleges. The Sociology classes herein are intended only to fulfill a general education requirement, and are taken mostly by associate degree seekers.
Georgia Military College is a public, independent junior college; the distance learning Arizona State University offers an online Bachelor’s degree in Sociology through the Psychology department. ASU’s online programs are taught by the same teachers and aides that teach the on-campus classes. The tuition is fairly high compared to other online degree programs at $442 per credit hour at 120 credit hours; that amounts to $53040 tuition for the university’s full program. Arizona State University’s Sociology degree is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, and the school accepts transfer credits from matching accredited institutions. However, ASU only accepts online students from the United States.
Arizona State University offers an online Bachelor’s degree in Sociology through the Psychology department. ASU’s online programs are taught by the same teachers and aides that teach the on-campus classes. The tuition is fairly high compared to other online degree programs at $442 per credit hour at 120 credit hours; that amounts to $53040 tuition for the university’s full program. Arizona State University’s Sociology degree is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, and the school accepts transfer credits from matching accredited institutions. However, ASU only accepts online students from the United States.
Southern New Hampshire University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology online. At the student’s discretion, the online program can be completely entirely online or in combination with on-campus attendance. High achieving online students are welcome in the Alpha Kappa Delta International Honor Society. Southern New Hampshire University is ranked one of the most affordable tuitions in the country.
Ellsworth Community College provides an Associate in Arts with an emphasis in Sociology that can be completed online. This degree program comprises 64 credit hours. This institution is part of the Iowa Valley Community College District group; Ellsworth’s Associate in Arts degrees transfer completely to any university in the group such as Iowa State University, and University of Northern Iowa.
Salt Lake Community College offers an Associate of Science in Sociology. The degree can be completed entirely online, although enrollment varies. The two-year plan comprises a minimum of 121 credit hours. Final exams usually mandate on-campus attendance.
California Baptist University offers both minor and major in Sociology. The Bachelor of Arts in Sociology comprises 44 units, and students are encouraged to pursue complementary minors such as Psychology or Christian Behavioral Science. Alternatively, students may easily double major in Psychology and Sociology. For an additional 12 units, students can earn certificates in particular concentrations such as Counseling Ministry, Religion and Behavior, Diversity, Anthropology, and Cognitive Psychology.
Kennesaw State University’s Bachelor of Science degree can be earned entirely online. This degree program of 123 credit hours is provided through KSU’s Web Learner program; all interaction is done online, but online classes are synchronous with on-campus classes. Students registered through KSU Web Learner get special access to classes that are otherwise closed; the Sociology department requires that students be senior level to be allowed entry into closed classes listed in the current catalog.
Iowa Western Community College has an Associate of Arts in Sociology. The 64 credit hours degree contains some classes online, although the general Associate of Arts degree can be earned entirely online. Iowa Western Community College is a member of the Iowa Community College Online Compendium which offers all online and hybrid courses through the eCollege web portal; classes available to all or single colleges are listed on the same eCollege portal.
Front Range Community College offers online courses toward an Associate of Arts in Sociology. The Associate degree program is 60 credit hours that are guaranteed to be transferrable to Colorado four-year universities. The program can be completely done online, and is designed for students intending to continue toward a baccalaureate program at a four-year institution.
South Texas College has several degree programs online, including an Associate of Arts in Sociology. Sociology graduates typically enter the human resources, human services, or government organizations. They also transfer credits to a four-year university’s baccalaureate program. STC is a regionally accredited, public, nonprofit school.
Saint Leo University’s Bachelor of Arts in Sociology can be accessed online. The 120 hour degree program includes a student-led research project, as well as internships at relevant facilities or the university’s own Office of Institutional Research. The online programs are available to national, international and military students.
Fayetteville State University offers the opportunity to complete a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology online. The Sociology program has 45 credit hours in Sociology added to the prerequisite 45 credit hours in college core curriculum. FSU does not post freshman and sophomore classes online. The junior and senior levels can be completed online without needing to attend on-campus classes.
Holyoke Community College’s Sociology department includes an Associate of Arts in Arts and Science with a Sociology Option. This degree is a 60 credit hour program that can be up to 80 percent online. Some of the classes are completely online in varying availabilities, while others are hybrid mixtures of face-to-face time and online participation. Not all classes are offered online.
University of Colorado offers all required Sociology classes for the Bachelor of Arts degree online. Class sizes are kept as low as traditional on-campus classes to maintain closer interaction with faculty and students. While quizzes and tests are issued weekly, class access is available around the clock.
Brandman University aims programs at working adult students needing to complete degrees; BU only accepts undergraduate students with a minimum of 12 Bachelor’s degree credits from another accredited institution. The Bachelor of Arts in Sociology online program is 120 credit hours.
Fort Hays State University has six Sociology programs; they are a Bachelor of Arts degree of 124 credits, and five Undergraduate Certificates of 12 credits in Sociology of Medicine and Aging, Social Entrepreneurship, Life Stages and Transitions, Grant Proposal Writing and Proposal Evaluation, and Cultural Anthropology and Globalization. The programs are 100 percent online and open to students outside of the USA. The Bachelor of Arts in Sociology program here was highly rated for affordability on GetEducated.com’s “Best Online Bachelors in Psychology and Human Services” list. Fort Hays State University also placed sixth on U.S.News & World Report’s ranks for best investments in higher education.
Marshalltown Community College provides an Associate in Arts with an emphasis in Sociology that can be completed online. This degree program comprises 64 credit hours. This institution is part of the Iowa Valley Community College District group; Marshalltown’s Associate in Arts degrees transfer completely to four-year universities such as Iowa State University, University of Northern Iowa, and University of Iowa.
Lansing Community College has on online degree program for an Associate in Arts in Sociology. This institution’s online department uses the Desire2Learn course management system. The 60 credit hour Associate in Arts degree program is designed for students planning to transfer to a four-year university for a Bachelor’s degree; Lansing Community College’s Associate degree programs comply with MACRAO, a transfer agreement between two-year and four-year colleges in Michigan.
California State University offers an online degree completion option that accommodates part-time students with other life obligations; students must have already completed general education credits before entering the online program. The CSU Fullerton campus has a Bachelor of Art in Sociology open to distance learners in the United States and other countries. The program is entirely online and schedules two courses per semester.