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Sociology and Human Services

Are you interested in a people-oriented career? Would you like to discover more about your own society – what problems it faces and what you can do about them? Will you pursue a profession such as the ministry, law, journalism, business, or medicine – a profession in which a deeper understanding of our society would enhance your ability to do your job? Or maybe you are interested in Christian mission work in a foreign land, or mission work here in the US – perhaps in a large urban area. Or perhaps you'd like to help people by working with children, families, or the needy. If so, then read on! You may find what you are looking for in Carson-Newman’s Sociology Department.

The Sociology Department, located in the Chambliss Building, has three full-time faculty members and approximately 50 student majors. We offer three majors: General Sociology, Cross-cultural Sociology, and Human Services (aka social work).


General Sociology provides a broad understanding of society: what great thinkers have said about it, how to study it, how it has changed, where it is going. It is an excellent secondary field for those of you whose main interest lies in a profession such as law, journalism, or the ministry. A background in General Sociology can complement your primary field by providing you with a deeper appreciation of the social issues that will frequently confront you in your profession.

Courses include: Social Problems, Criminology, Sociology of Religion, Environmental Sociology, Social Research Methods, Social Theory, Statistics, Social Psychology.


Cross-Cultural Sociology provides an understanding not only of our own society, but also of other societies. We live in an increasingly interdependent "global village" in which a knowledge of the beliefs, customs, and lifestyles of people in other nations will be essential. In fact, you don't even need to travel to another country to find people of diverse cultural backgrounds. Go to any large American city and you will find numerous national and racial groups with a great diversity of languages, religions, and customs. Cross-Cultural Sociology will prepare you to live and work in this kind of environment. This is especially important for those of you who intend to do foreign or urban mission work after graduation. Gaining an appreciation of the culture of these people will enable you to understand them and to better meet their physical and spiritual needs.

Courses include: Cultural Anthropology, Sociology of Community, American Minority Groups, Urban Sociology, People & Problems of the Third World, Sociology of Religion, Social Research Methods, Social Theory, Cross-cultural Field Experience.


“I want to help people.” If this statement captures your feelings about a future career, then you should seriously consider the field of social work. The Human Services major prepares you for a career in social work by teaching you the skills and techniques necessary to serve needy or at-risk people in a variety of settings. These include: criminal justice, drug and alcohol rehab, health care, family services, schools, adoption agencies, and homeless shelters.

Courses include: Intro to Human Services, Social Research Methods, Social Welfare Policy, Family Violence, Human Services Field Experience, Human Service Practice.

NOTE:Each of these three majors is a 30 credit hour major, meaning that you will have room in your four-year schedule for plenty of electives and/or a second major or minors.

The Sociology Department also offers Sociology and Human Services minors (18 credit hours).

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