Build better communities with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology
With a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Marymount University, students develop valuable skills that serve as a foundation for working with communities around the world as they approach ongoing equity, inclusion, and social justice challenges. In-demand, transferable skills — including critical reasoning, data collection and analysis, and cultural awareness — prepare students for jobs in a range of sociology-related initiatives in advocacy, community development, public administration, social service delivery, or urban planning.
Sociology coursework at Marymount focuses on contemporary social issues related to immigration, cultural diversity, gender and racial inequalities, and community development. While studying with us, you will gain an understanding of the full range of social dynamics impacting the lives of people, groups, and societies — from micro-level interactions between anonymous individuals on the street to macro-level processes between countries, like globalization. If you are inspired to develop the knowledge and tools to successfully pursue social justice and make a difference in the world, then you are well suited for Marymount’s bachelor’s degree in Sociology.
- Global perspective and study abroad
Most courses in the Sociology program take a global perspective. For example, in some courses Marymount students can interact with students and professors from other countries (globally networked learning). In past years, we have partnered with universities in the Netherlands, Mexico, and Egypt. In addition, we regularly offer short-term study abroad opportunities through the Global Classroom Series and Short-Term Summer Programs. Recent courses traveled to Colombia, Cuba, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Puerto Rico.
- 3+3 pathway to a law degree
Marymount has partnered with The Catholic University of America’s Columbus School of Law to offer eligible Sociology students direct admission after successfully completing 3 years of undergraduate study. While in their first year of law school, students will simultaneously meet requirements for their final year at Marymount. This enables 3+3 students to achieve their bachelor’s degree and their Juris Doctor (J.D.) in only 6 years.
- Maximize your expertise with a dual major
With careful planning, you can easily complete 2 majors within the 120 credits required for graduation. Talk with your advisor to see how Sociology can partner with other social science programs like Criminal Justice, Economics, Politics, or Psychology.
- Coursework applying sociological knowledge and skills
- Career-focused mentoring
- Small class sizes
- Innovative teaching practices
- Opportunities for applied research
- Completed application submitted through the Marymount Application or Common App
- High school transcripts
- Letter(s) of recommendation (optional)
- Personal essay (optional, although highly encouraged)
- A résumé may be provided should an applicant have any gaps in enrollment
- Non-native English speakers must meet our English Language Proficiency Requirement
- Students or former students of schools outside the U.S. may be considered international applicants, regardless of citizenship or immigration status, and be subject to additional international admissions requirements
Internships and other Opportunities
Sociology students gain practical work experience by completing a semester-long internship. Internship placement locations include:
Program Curriculum Snapshot
SOC 222: Race & Ethnic Diversity
What does it mean to say that race is a social construction? In this course, we take a critical look at ourselves and consider how notions of race have influenced our opinions, attitudes, and modes of engagement with those who are ‘different’ from us. Sociological concepts like racial formation and intersectionality are examined through academic research, as well as creative sources, to gain understanding of the dynamics of race and ethnicity in everyday life.
SOC 251: Working for Justice, Working for Change
So you want to make a difference? But where to begin? This course examines a range of organized efforts to promote social justice and social welfare in contemporary society. The course identifies and surveys the major approaches to social change work, including direct service provision, policy advocacy, and popular organizing and mobilization.
SOC 395: Cities in the 21st Century
How do we build cities so that those living there thrive? Large global cities, like Washington, D.C., serve as seats of power, capitals of enterprise, and leisure destinations for millions. The multiple functions of a city like Washington, D.C., are a reflection of the interplay between planning priorities and input from community voices, which can impact the way a city is experienced by those who live, work, and play in local neighborhoods.
Career and Salary Possibilities
Through rigorous coursework and internship experiences, our students can move directly into the workforce as they find positions in government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and private-sector firms. Undergraduate training in sociology prepares students for multiple career paths, including roles in:
- Social service agencies
- Immigration policy analysis
- Community development
- NGOs, including those working internationally
- Labor relations
- Nonprofit organizations
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average salary for residents of Maryland, Virginia, or the District of Columbia with a bachelor’s degree in sociology is $67,711. One typical occupation for our graduates is as managers of social and community services agencies. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects rapid growth for jobs in this occupation in the coming decade (12%) and a median income of $74,000 per year.
Meet Our Faculty
Welcome to Marymount’s School of Social and Behavioral Sciences! We are a community of scholars, educators, and learners who seek to share knowledge so that we can all work together to build a meaningful future and make a difference. Consider this your invitation to explore and connect with us as we ask important questions and create new knowledge and information that will prepare you for your ongoing journey. I welcome you to this page as you learn more about the exciting opportunities that await you!
The School of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) is rooted in the mission of Marymount University, which compels us all to continually be intellectually curious, to work in service of others, and to keep a global perspective as we live throughout the world. SBS brings together disciplines that often share modes of inquiry, a commitment to experiential educational approaches, and a desire to serve society through helping students learn how to learn, how to apply unfolding knowledge and theory in tackling real-world problems, and live meaningful lives in an ever-changing global context. This is an exciting time!
We offer undergraduate programs in Communication, Criminal Justice, Psychology, and Sociology. At the graduate level, we have degrees within the fields of Criminal Justice and Forensic & Legal Psychology. I encourage you to explore the many degree options that we offer.
Our faculty exemplify excellence as teacher-scholars who are not only experts in their fields, but also passionate educators who embrace the learning experience and strive to ensure that all students learn and grow. They bring countless years of experience into the classroom to guide and create learning. Our faculty and staff have advised, nurtured, and inspired students over many decades, and we are very proud of our alumni who have gone on to have successful lives and careers around the globe.
Come visit us to see and feel the vitality and to experience the dynamic learning process that happens each and every day. We invite you to ask questions about our programs and see what a difference Marymount University can make for your future.
Kimberly Meltzer, Ph.D.
Director, School of Social and Behavioral Sciences
“One of the most important things I learned from the Sociology program at Marymount University was how to gather systematic information to gain insight on what needs to change. Taking that extra step to challenge the status quo and become a powerful force to resolve society’s issues. These lessons are actively used in my current line of work as a community organizer for a nonprofit organization. Due to what I learned at Marymount, I can tap deeply into the community’s concerns and aspirations, observe how they manage crises, and organize them to work together against structural issues. I am still gathering world experience and broadening my perspective, but the Sociology program at Marymount University provided me with a solid foundation and encouraged me to take that extra step.” – Justin Gomez, Class of 2022, Community Organizer at the Asian American Pacific Islander Civic Engagement (ACE) Collaborative in Alexandria, VA