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Sociology is the systematic and scientific study of social life, from peer groups to mass media to the global society. The Sociology Program at Sacred Heart University is value driven and the faculty provide a course of study that fosters awareness of social conflict and inequality while highlighting practices and structures that promote healthy self-development, cohesive family and community, and a fair and just society. 

Our students study the social nature of humans and the structure of our social world.  We encourage students to be mindful of social problems such as class inequality, ethnic conflict, family breakdown, and alienation and to think in terms of solutions. Students learn social theory and research methodologies to better comprehend major societal developments and to investigate them. They conduct program and policy assessments. During their senior year, students work closely with a faculty member as they conduct original research for their senior thesis. Our graduates find this training in applied sociology to be indispensable in their chosen careers, for example, as they promote education reform, reduce discrimination in the workplace, and counsel young adults.

In contrast to many Sociology programs, we have a single dedication to the bachelor's degree in sociology. This allows for a more coherent and focused course of study. Our curriculum is designed around the themes of social change and ethics.

The department also offers a minor and an associate's degree in Sociology.

Student Learning Outcomes of the Sociology Major

  1. Develop and apply a sociological imagination
  2. Analyze the causes and consequences of social inequality
  3. Analyze social/cultural diversity and complexity
  4. Evaluate and apply social theory
  5. Apply scientific methods in conducting research
  6. Design, conduct, and present an original sociological study

Student Testimonials

"The classes pushed me to dig a little deeper into myself.  It changed my perception on many issues in life."   

"The Sociology program challenges you as a person.  It makes you think of things or subjects in ways you never would or did."   

"Professors take an active interest in their students."

Latest News

Interdisciplinary Faculty Offer Interpretations of Pope’s ‘The Joy of Love’

June 1, 2016

FAIRFIELD, Conn.—An interdisciplinary panel of Sacred Heart University faculty members came together recently in the school’s Schine Auditorium to offer their respective interpretations of “The Joy of Love: Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation.” Pope Francis drafted the 256-page document following two synods (gatherings of bishops) at the Vatican, and it represents his reflections on those assemblies. His focus is on pastoral ministry—marriage, family, relationships and love.

Sociology Professor Participates in White House Summit on Working Families

July 2, 2014

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The call from the White House aide came on a Friday morning in June, and on the following Monday, Colleen Butler-Sweet was in Washington, D.C., at the invitation of The U.S. Department of Labor, attending the White House Summit on Working Families. An assistant professor of sociology at Sacred Heart University, Butler-Sweet’s road to Washington began at a conference in New York in mid-May. In many ways, though, it had started much earlier thanks to her professional focus on changing families and her specialized work in transracial adoption.

Prof Begins History Project with Irish American Immigrants

May 12, 2014

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Jerry Reid, professor of anthropology and sociology and associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Sacred Heart University, recently began an oral history project with students on the lives of Irish American immigrants. With the help of students from his “Ethnography of Ireland” class, Reid records student interviews with Irish-American immigrants using high-quality digital audio recorders. The recordings and transcripts will then be archived with the Connecticut Irish American Historical Society and, hopefully, at the University as well.