Sociology at UM


"Sociology is the study of social life, social change, and the social causes and consequences of human behavior. Sociologists investigate the structure of groups, organizations, and societies, and how people interact within these contexts. Since human behavior is shaped by social factors, the subject matter of Sociology ranges from the intimate family to the hostile mob; from organized crime to religious cults; from the divisions of race, gender and social class to the shared beliefs of a common culture” (American Sociological Association 2002:1).

The University of Montana Sociology program includes a broad range of topics and issues, while allowing an in-depth focus in three contextual areas: Criminology, Inequality and Social Justice, and Rural and Evironmental Change. Our faculty brings diverse theoretical perspectives to their courses and employs a wide range of methodological strategies in their research and teaching. Faculty and student interests range from social issues facing local communities and the Northern Rocky Mountain region, to national questions about the impact of legislation on poverty programs or the causes of criminal behavior, to global concerns such as climate change, and worldwide structures of inequality. We offer both an undergraduate Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology (with the opportunity for an emphasis in one of our three option areas), or the only Master of Arts degree in Sociology in the state of Montana.

Students majoring in Sociology may be seeking a liberal arts education with Sociology as the academic basis; they may prepare for employment using their education immediately upon graduation, or they may wish to pursue advanced studies at the graduate level. Sociology majors are often found working in community organizations, in social service organizations, for the government or the justice system, for research organizations, in business and industry, or in education.

Please browse through the links on this site to learn more about our department, faculty, students, and staff. If you are interested in studying in one of our degree programs and you have additional questions, or you would like to make an appointment to visit with the Department Chair, the Undergraduate Advising Coordinator, the Director of Graduate Studies, or other faculty members, please contact us. Those interested in graduate studies should visit the Graduate School web site for application materials and additional information.