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Department Mission

The missions of the Department of Sociology at Kent State University parallel those of the university itself in terms of offering instruction, conducting research and providing service. The Department offers instruction at the associate, bachelors, masters and doctoral degree levels. For undergraduates, we provide courses meeting liberal education, diversity, minor and major requirements. For sociology majors we teach the application of social science theory, methodology, and empirical findings to gain an understanding of social structure and processes. Undergraduate students are prepared for a wide variety of occupations and careers.

We believe that teaching the fundamentals of research, stimulating the use of scholarly methods and critical thinking, and encouraging individual scholarship links our undergraduate and graduate programs to the benefit of all students. We provide a bridge between humanistic and scientific perspectives.

At the graduate level, the chief focus of the Department is on health and social behavior, anchored by a strong medical sociology component. This focus is complemented by emphases in social psychology and social inequality. We prepare professional sociologists as well as other professionals who benefit from social science training. Further support is provided by the joint doctoral program with the Department of Sociology at the University of Akron and its emphases upon medical sociology, family, deviance, and public policy evaluation.

Our Department serves as a resource to the newly formed cluster in Health Sciences by providing the basis for systematic consideration and study of the social and cultural aspects of health practices, problems, and policies. These include: health behaviors, social and cultural causes and sequelae of physical and mental disease and illness, health organizations and professions, comparative health systems, and comparative sociopolitical contexts of public health.

Our research and service programs draw upon and feed back into the above-mentioned emphases.