Dr. Linhart offers advice for studies in sociology

laurie1-copySociology is becoming a rapidly growing field in our society. Many people seek it as either a major or a minor as they begin to plot their course for their future careers. I had a chance to speak to one of our professors here at DMACC, Dr. Laurie J. Linhart, who teaches a variety of sociology courses on campus. She has been an instructor for 22 years at the college level, and has volunteered to teach sociology in a women’s prison. She has also presented at many conferences, and has led a very successful career in sociology.

She gave me a brief description of what a sociology degree is: “As a degree, typically students are taught a broad overview in Sociology as an intro during their bachelor’s degree, and as they progress into more difficult classes, the coursework expands into research.”

A student looking to major in a bachelor’s in sociology can expect to write a capstone project at the end of their four years. The project identifies the research subject, and the student will have to utilize all that they have learned in their four years of classes in order to conduct their research to complete a successful paper.

Students with a bachelor’s in sociology can typically find many different job and career opportunities, such as law enforcement or human resources, but many students go onto either law or graduate school, others may even become instructors of Sociology themselves. Most of the students that choose to move onto higher education after their bachelor’s seek out a Masters of Social Work, or Applied Sociology. These students go into the field of social work and therapy.

Dr. Linhart used her education to successfully conduct, produce, and publish research, as well as be selected for many other opportunities. Dr. Linhart’s advice is to achieve higher education after the undergraduate level. She said that students who are looking to go into sociology should have certain traits in order to be successful in their endeavors. Some of these traits include being curious and skeptical, to enjoy reading, critical thinking, and researching, to be charismatic and engaging, and to also be understanding of others. Writing skills are important to have as a tool in the field of Sociology, as well as public speaking skills, organizational skills, and creativity.

Dr. Linhart also explained other courses that students should expect to take along with sociology course. She listed statistics, English, psychology, philosophy, ethics, and even history. Students looking to go into sociobiology (a new field in sociology), should expect to take classes such as human biology. Dr. Linhart also stated that “Sociology courses will give advantages in other aspects of your lives.”

At the conclusion of our interview, Dr. Linhart offered a few words of encouragement to those seeking the field of sociology: “Sociology is never not relevant in our society and daily lives.”

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