Division of Social Sciences
To inquire about this program:
Michelle Ronda | 212-774-4843 | E-mail
The mission of the Sociology Department is to foster creative and rigorous research on the world’s most pervasive social phenomena. Through the cultivation of the sociological imagination, students achieve an understanding of the complex forces that shape the world and develop the skills to analyze and, ultimately, to change that world.
Sociology is one of the core majors of the social sciences. It is organized around the study of the complex forces that influence human behavior in modern societies. As a field of study it emerged in the 19th and 20th centuries as part of an effort to identify the underlying dynamics of urbanized industrial societies. From this period into the decades following World War II, when Sociology boomed as a field, its areas of inquiry ranged from social control, deviance and crime to the nature of social change, inequality, the economy, and religion. Today, Sociology furthers research in these areas, but also explores race and ethnicity, sexuality and gender, science and technology, as well as culture and art.
At Marymount Manhattan, the Sociology department is built upon the discipline’s two pillars: theory and research. In the classroom, students are exposed to a variety of theoretical approaches as well as a range of qualitative and quantitative research skills. While this is the core of our curriculum, there is more. Outside of the classroom, the rich diversity of New York City serves as our laboratory of research- the unique hallmark of our program. Doing research in the city, students develop rigorous skills for critical analysis that are invaluable to any effort to effect change in the world. On this, we pride ourselves.
The MMC Advantage
The Sociology major offers a carefully crafted sequence of courses that take students on a journey from basic concepts to advanced critical analysis. The program places particular importance on exposing students to a variety of theoretical approaches that may be used in professional settings as well to acquire the empirical research skills for understanding the methodology by which social science data is gathered and analyzed.
Learning Goals for the Major in Sociology
Students who graduate with a major in sociology should be able to do the following:
Why Study Sociology?
- Demonstrate ability to analyze human behavior from a sociological perspective understanding the influence of social and cultural forces and the interplay of biography and history.
- Analyze social situations utilizing the different theoretical perspectives implicit in the sociological imagination including functionalism, conflict theory, symbolic
interactionism, postmodernism and psychoanalytic theory.
- Design valid and reliable research consistent with scientific methodology while at the same time recognizing the limits of science for studying human behavior. (Our department values and will accept many forms of social knowledge production. However, we will demand competence in the methods of science as to make them competitive in the field of sociology)
- Be critical readers of qualitative and quantitative research articles in the field.
- Recognize that their understanding of human relations and interactions gives them a unique and valuable perspective that can be used in many career settings.
The study of sociology affords students a better understanding of the complex socioeconomic and cultural dynamics that shape individual, community, national and global behaviors. This understanding prepares students for their political and social responsibilities as members of civil society.
Social Work Minor
The Minor in Social Work is based on systems theory and informed by a strengths perspective. Through a series of courses and a required internship experience, students develop professional values, knowledge and skills. Courses are designed to expose students to various perspectives on the social, political, economic and personal factors involved in the construction of human problems. In addition, courses direct students to think critically about their communities and to act powerfully as civic agents within them. Ultimately, this training forges successful providers of human services.
Students majoring in Sociology have gone onto successful careers in journalism, urban planning, survey research, human resources, business, law, criminal justice, marketing research, social work and nonprofit administration. Graduates of the program have also entered academically competitive programs at the Masters and Ph.D. levels.
Jillian Green ’08
Jillian is currently a Master’s student at Seton Hall University’s Whitehead School of Diplomacy and International Relations. Jillian interned for a United Nations facet in Geneva in summer ’09 through the Duke University Geneva Program on Global Policy and Governance. Jillian applied through the Humanitarian Assistance and Human Rights portion of the program and intends to work at IPEC (International Program on the Elimination of Child Labor), a program of the International Labor Organization.
Rebecca Steckler ‘09
Rebecca began a Master’s program in Sociology at the University of Texas at San Antonio in the fall of 2010.
By taking Sociology courses at the upper-level, majors as well as non-majors can explore a number of topics of contemporary importance. These topics include anthropology, gender and sexuality studies, social and cultural change, criminal justice, the impact of diversity, social stratification, urban problems, the links between biological and cultural evolution and the impact of science and technology on society. These and other courses are available to students specializing in areas such as psychology and pre-med to enrich their understanding of the social and cultural factors impacting mental and physical well-being.