Sociologists seek to better understand human behavior by looking at how external factors affect our lives. By examining how different parts of society fit together, those who study sociology develop an in depth understanding of people which makes their skill-sets applicable in a large variety of careers including urban planning, consulting, researching, or program management.

The Department of Sociology at Michigan State University works under the departmental theme of Global Transformations. People, culture, goods, markets, ideas, and capital are moving globally across national boundaries at ever increasing rates. Global processes are transforming individuals and societies, changing cities, the ways we communicate, health and longevity, environmental risks; and leading to new risks and opportunities such as new forms of work, patterns of family living, health care delivery, and ways to distribute food. Under the thematic rubric of Global Transformation, the Department of Sociology specializes in five areas that are the focus of its teaching and research programs: Community and Urban Sociology; Environmental Sociology; Family Sociology; the Sociology of Health and Medicine; and Migration.

Sociology has research, teaching and service that focus on the challenges of global understanding of social, political and cultural differences and how a global context accounts for social processes, change, and inequality both locally and abroad. This commitment to diversity is reflected in a diverse student body and faculty with specializations in North America, Africa, Eastern and Western Europe, Russia, Cuba, Taiwan, and Brazil.

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