Sociologists study human society and social behavior by examining the groups and social institutions that people form, as well as various social, religious, political, and business organizations. May study the behavior and interaction of groups, trace their origin and growth and analyze the influence of group activities on individual members.

  • Analyze and interpret data to increase the understanding of human social behavior.
  • Collect data about the attitudes, values, and behaviors of people in groups, using observation, interviews, and review of documents.
  • Prepare publications and reports containing research findings.
  • Plan and conduct research to develop and test theories about societal issues such as crime, group relations, poverty, and aging.
  • Teach sociology.
  • Develop, implement, and evaluate methods of data collection, such as questionnaires or interviews.
  • Present research findings at professional meetings.
  • Develop approaches to the solution of groups' problems, based on research findings in sociology and related disciplines.
  • Direct work of statistical clerks, statisticians, and others who compile and evaluate research data.
  • Observe group interactions and role affiliations to collect data, identify problems, evaluate progress, and determine the need for additional change.
  • Consult with and advise individuals such as administrators, social workers, and legislators regarding social issues and policies, as well as the implications of research findings.
  • Develop problem intervention procedures, using techniques such as interviews, consultations, role playing, and participant observation of group interactions.
  • Collaborate with research workers in other disciplines.
Work Context
  • Electronic Mail — 96% responded "Every day".
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 82% responded "A lot of freedom".
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 78% responded "A lot of freedom".
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 60% responded "Every day".
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 69% responded "Every day".
  • Level of Competition — 55% responded "Highly competitive".
  • Spend Time Sitting — 64% responded "More than half the time".
  • Read More
Work Activities
  • Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
  • Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
  • Read More
Detailed Work Activities
  • Present research results to others.
  • Prepare scientific or technical reports or presentations.
  • Conduct research on social issues.
  • Interpret research or operational data.
  • Conduct research on social issues.
  • Plan social sciences research.
  • Read More

Knowledge

Sociology and Anthropology
  • Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
English Language
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Education and Training
  • Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Read More

Skills

Reading Comprehension
  • Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Social Perceptiveness
  • Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Writing
  • Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active Listening
  • Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Read More

Abilities

Written Comprehension
  • The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Oral Expression
  • The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Oral Comprehension
  • The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Expression
  • The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Read More

Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.
They do well at jobs that need:
  • Achievement/Effort
  • Persistence
  • Initiative
  • Leadership
  • Cooperation
  • Concern for Others
  • Social Orientation
  • Self Control
Read More

Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Web page creation and editing software
  • Social media sites Hot Technology
  • Facebook Hot Technology
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver
  • Web editing software
Spreadsheet software
  • Microsoft Excel Hot Technology
Office suite software
  • Microsoft Office Hot Technology
Read More

Education

Doctoral Degree or
Master's Degree
usually needed

Get started on your career:

Job Outlook

New job opportunities are less likely in the future.
Salary
$86,110
$52,640
$143,020