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Sociologist

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What Does it Take to Be a Sociologist?

Career Description 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.

Sociologist Responsibilities

  • 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.
  • Plan and conduct research to develop and test theories about societal issues such as crime, group relations, poverty, and aging.
  • Observe group interactions and role affiliations to collect data, identify problems, evaluate progress, and determine the need for additional change.
  • Collaborate with research workers in other disciplines.
  • Analyze and interpret data to increase the understanding of human social behavior.
  • Develop problem intervention procedures, using techniques such as interviews, consultations, role playing, and participant observation of group interactions.

Things a Sociologist Should Know How to Do

When polled, Sociologists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

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.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Types of Sociologist

  • Policy Advisor
  • Evaluation Manager
  • Urban Sociologist
  • Sociologist
  • Research Center Director

Sociologist Job Outlook

In the United States, there were 3,500 jobs for Sociologist in 2016. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Sociologist. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 300 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Sociologist are Florida, Wisconsin, and New York. Watch out if you plan on working in Oregon, Illinois, or Pennsylvania. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Sociologists Salary

The typical yearly salary for Sociologists is somewhere between $46,170 and $140,430.

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Sociologists who work in Pennsylvania, California, or Massachusetts, make the highest salaries.

How much do Sociologists make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
California $98,560
Florida $78,490
Illinois $86,280
Maryland $74,540
Massachusetts $111,020
Michigan $88,180
New Jersey $106,470
New York $75,800
North Carolina $95,260
Ohio $67,230
Pennsylvania $121,470
South Dakota $43,080
Utah $72,570
Washington $74,130
Wisconsin $80,270

Tools & Technologies Used by Sociologists

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Sociologists:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Data entry software
  • Email software
  • Data visualization software
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Microsoft Project
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop
  • SAS
  • Facebook
  • Microsoft Publisher
  • IBM SPSS Statistics
  • R

How to Become a Sociologist

Individuals working as a Sociologist have obtained the following education levels:

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How Long Does it Take to Become a Sociologist?

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Where do Sociologists Work?

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Sociologists work in the following industries:

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References:

Image Credit: Kontos via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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