Sociologists

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About the Job

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.

It is also Called

  • Behavioral Scientist
  • Career Analyst
  • Clinical Sociologist
  • Criminologist
  • Disability Statistics Assistant
  • Family Sociologist
  • Foundation Program Director
  • International Health Director (Health Science Administration)
  • Medical Sociologist
  • Penologist

What They Do

  • Develop problem intervention procedures, utilizing techniques such as interviews, consultations, role playing, and participant observation of group interactions.
  • Observe group interactions and role affiliations to collect data, identify problems, evaluate progress, and determine the need for additional change.
  • Develop approaches to the solution of groups' problems, based on research findings in sociology and related disciplines.
  • Collaborate with research workers in other disciplines.
  • 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.
  • Direct work of statistical clerks, statisticians, and others who compile and evaluate research data.
  • Teach sociology.
  • Develop, implement, and evaluate methods of data collection, such as questionnaires or interviews.
  • Collect data about the attitudes, values, and behaviors of people in groups, using observation, interviews, and review of documents.
  • Plan and conduct research to develop and test theories about societal issues such as crime, group relations, poverty, and aging.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: IAS.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Investigative interests, but also prefer Artistic and Social environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Achievement, but also value Independence and Recognition in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • 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.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • 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.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • 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.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Education Required

Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

LMI Region

Wages

In 2013, the average annual wage in United States was $78,120 with most people making between $39,790 and $127,590

Outlook

0.00%
avg. annual growth

During 2010, this occupation employed approximately 4,000 people in United States. It is projected that there will be 4,000 employed in 2020.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 1,000 replacement openings for approximately 1,000 total annual openings.