What Types of Skills Are Best for a Sociology Major?
Before you dive in and start surveying populations, there are some things you need to know about becoming a sociology major. Here are the most important skills you’ll need in order to be successful in this major.
Reading and writing skills
Sociology requires a great deal of reading. As part of your major, you’ll have to read both original texts as well as critiques of ideas from other academics and people in the space. To be successful as a sociology major, you’ll have to not just read these texts but annotate and understand them as well.
Additionally, sociology majors write plenty of reading responses, research papers and other reports, so you’ll need to have a clear and concise writing style to present your ideas.
Critical thinking skills
In sociology, you’ll be thinking and talking about complex problems that will require you to give serious critiques and arguments. Nothing in sociology should ever be taken at face value, so you’ll have to be sure to think critically in the classroom.
While your introductory sociology classes may be lecture-style, as you take more and more classes, you’ll be in smaller classroom settings where you’ll have to present your ideas to a group of peers.
The best sociology majors are those who come prepared for class, have thought about their ideas and arguments and can present them in a thoughtful and articulate manner. If you want to thrive in this major, strong communication skills are a must.
Having strong research skills is also critical for sociology majors. Since sociology requires you to survey populations by creating your own experiments, understanding how to structure an experiment and write up the results is a key factor in being able to succeed in this major.
Open-mindedness and patience
Sociology classes often discuss a number of emotionally charged topics, from racial discrimination to family planning. Regardless of where you go to school, you’re guaranteed to find someone in a sociology class whose argument you find disagreeable or even offensive.
Sociology majors need to be open-minded to the ideas of their peers to figure out what they came to those conclusions. But they also need to know when to pick their battles and the mediums through which to present their arguments.
Next, learn more about this college major such as What is a Sociology Major and is It Right for Me? and get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as Top 10 Things You Should Look For In An Internship.
Questions and Answers
see all FAQ
Is there a way to know if a potential manager will suck?
It's important to remember that a job interview is just as much as much about the company identifying if you're a good fit for them as it is about…
How do I convince my boss that I should be allowed to work from home sometimes?
Great question. I recently did this and it went pretty well. I sent an email to my boss outlining the value to me personally and to the company, if…
How do introverts approach networking?
Go with a close friend or a coworker who can help you start conversations. Be sure to go with someone that's understanding and will help you branch out.