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What is Sociology?

Sociology is a key discipline in the social sciences, and here at Ton Duc Thang University, it is the focus of a vibrant department with a long and illustrious history of teaching and scholarship. Sociologists often study problems with important public policy implications, but sociology itself is not primarily concerned with providing care for the needy or political ammunition for partisan debates.

Sociology was born of the desire to apply the analytic rigor of science to the humanistic concerns of the social world. Training in sociology thus stresses human empathy, and the highest standards of empirical inquiry. Our students receive instruction in both classical social theory—such as Marx, Weber, and Durkheim—and cutting-edge qualitative and quantitative methods. Students also learn how to apply both forms of analysis to real-world issues.

Preparing students for a variety of careers

It should come as no surprise that our concentrators find themselves well-prepared for a wide variety of “real world” occupations: As our alumni will attest, sociology is excellent training for careers in public administration, medicine and public health, advertising and marketing, politics and public policy, business and consulting, to name just a few.

Students interested in the social sciences often ask why they should concentrate in sociology instead of our sister departments (economics, government, psychology, anthropology, and history). These are foundational disciplines too but there are a variety of reasons to concentrate in sociology (or to pursue a secondary concentration): practically speaking, we are a relatively small department with a generous student-faculty ratio and a strong tradition of commitment to undergraduates. The sociology department is also an extremely diverse place (as you will discover by perusing our website and the research of both faculty members and graduate students). Finally, through course projects and senior theses we encourage students to conduct field based research, thereby bringing together theories of social interaction with their first hand experiences of the world in which we live.

Mastering multiple modes of inquiry

Our undergraduate program is also unique in its emphasis on mastering multiple modes of inquiry. Students get training in quantitative analysis, ethnography and in-depth interviewing, and comparative-historical analysis. The concentration also offers courses in the widest possible array of substantive topics, allowing students to create a customized curriculum suited to their particular interests. Some concentrators choose to focus their studies around a single topic—family and culture , for example, or Gender and inequality —while others prefer to sample a broad mix of topics - Urban Studies and Globalization or poverty and Environment. A quick look at our course offerings will show the large number of subjects and perspectives covered in our department. Our faculty includes among it the world’s foremost experts in areas such as poverty, immigration, race and ethnicity, corporate management, economics, crime, politics, intellectual and social history, work, gender, and culture. We host scholars with area expertise in many, if not most, of the major regions of the world.

Sociology crosses with many of our sister disciplines, but it is unusual in its concern with the interrelation of social forces studied in isolation elsewhere. Economics and politics are common concerns of sociologists, for example; the difference is that we tend to approach these issues as part of a complex whole rather than independent features of humanity—Sociology is concerned foremost with social interactions. Sociology’s breadth seems particularly valuable in our increasingly global, inter-dependent world.

What skills can be gained with a sociology degree?

Students who major in sociology learn to deal creatively with new and challenging problems, conducting research, developing analytical and critical thinking skills, and learning to communicate ideas effectively both orally and in writing. Because it is a such broad field of inquiry, sociology majors are equipped to enter a wide range of occupational areas, including corporations, government agencies, social service institutions, and law enforcement agencies. An undergraduate sociology major is also an excellent foundation for graduate study.

Conduct Research and Analyze Data: Sociology encompasses both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Quantitative methods are used in market research, and countless other applications and allow researchers to recognize trends and patterns and produce social statistics. Qualitative research skills provide an in depth understanding of interactions, communications, worksite practices, and social worlds.

Communicate Skillfully: Because a sociology major involves lots of reading, writing, and discussion, majors learn how to convey ideas effectively in writing, presentations, and everyday conferences and meetings.

Critical Thinking: Sociological inquiry involves learning to look beyond the surface of issues to discover the "why" and "how" of social order and structure. Sociology majors develop strong analytical skills and learn to solve problems and identify opportunities.

See Things from a Global Perspective: Sociologists learn about different cultures, groups, and societies. They examine both variation and universality across places and through history.

Prepare for Graduate School: An undergraduate major in sociology provides an excellent foundation for graduate study in a wide range of fields including law, business, social work, medicine, public health, public administration and, of course, sociology.

Career opportunities

Based on national surveys of job placement, recent sociology graduates have received jobs of the following type:

Business: Actuary, administrative assistant, advertising officer, computer analyst, data entry manager, human resource manager, insurance agent, journalist, labor relations officer, market analyst, merchandiser/purchaser, production manager, project manager, public relations officer, publishing officer, quality control manager, real estate agent, sales manager, sales representative,…

Government: Affirmative action worker, community affairs officer, environmental planner and researcher, foreign affairs service officer, human resource officer, human rights officer, personnel coordinator, planning officer, project manager, public health service worker, researcher, urban/regional planner,…

Research: Census officer/analyst, consumer researcher, data analyst, demographer/population analyst, market researcher, social research specialist, survey researcher, systems analyst,…

Teaching: Academic evaluator, academic administrator, college placement worker, public health educator, public school teachers, school admissions officer, undergraduate and graduate educator and researcher

Community Affairs: Career counselor, case worker, child development technician, community development officer, community organizer, cultural and environmental resource management officer, forensic analysis specialist, fund raising director, homeless/housing worker, housing coordinator, hospital administrator, legal representative, occupational counselor, public administrator, public health administrator, public health outreach worker, rehabilitation program worker, resident planning aide, rural health outreach worker, social assistance advocate, youth outreach worker.

Program structure

The training program is designed based on the Sociological Training Program of some world's 100 ranked universities, aiming to provide students with interdisciplinary knowledge. Through interactive exercises, presentation, essays, scientific research and scientific seminars, students in the sociology are taught the knowledge and skills to know how to solve creatively new and challenging social problems; developing critical analytical and critical thinking skills, and know how to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing. Sociology is a broad field of investigation science, so students are equipped with the knowledge of sociology (urban sociology, rural sociology, labor sociology, sociology education, socio-cultural studies, sociology of education, gender studies, family sociology, etc.) to enter a range of occupations, including positions in research institutes/ universities, corporations, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, and social services, etc. Knowledge of the bachelor of sociology is also a Basic foundation for learners to access the master's and doctoral programs in sociology.

A. General Education Courses:

  • Maxist-Leninism (5 Cr.)
  • Ho Chi Minh Thought (2 Cr.)
  • Histoty of Vietnamese Communist Party (3 Cr.)
  • Logicology (2 Cr.)
  • Introduction to Economy (2 Cr.)
  • Introduction to Legislation (2 Cr.)
  • English: English 1, English 2, English 3 (15 Cr.)
  • Note: Students do not gain entry The English Language Program must be supplemented with additional English language modules, including Pre-Intermediate English 1, 2, 3. Students must meet the required English language standards
  • Fundamentals of Informatics 1&2 (4 Cr.)

B. Professional education

B.1. Basic Knowledge Courses:

  • Social Statistics (3 Cr.)
  • Introduction to Psychology (3 Cr.)
  • Culture in the Contemporary World (2 Cr.)
  • Environment and Society (2 Cr.)
  • Sociology (4 Cr.)
  • Anthropology in the Human Condition (3 Cr.)

B.2. Sociology Knowledge

B.2.1. General Knowledge Courses:

  • Social Thought and Social Theory (3 Cr.)
  • Contemporary Sociological Theory (3 Cr.)
  • Quantitative Research Methods (3 Cr.)
  • Data Analysis in social sciences (3 Cr.)
  • Qualitative Inquiry (2 Cr.)
  • Qualitative Data Analysis (2 Cr.)
  • Informatics in Social Studies (3 Cr.)

B.2.2. Specialized Knowledge Courses:

  • Mandatory Courses
  • Urban Sociology (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Economy (3 Cr.)
  • Rural Sociology (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Family (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Education (3 Cr.)
  • Mass media & Culture (3 Cr.)
  • Social Policy and Social Planning (3 Cr.)
  • Internship
  • Sociology of Popular Culture (3 Cr.)
  • Gender Studies (3 Cr.)
  • Critical Thinking of Society (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Tourism (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Crime (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Migration (3 Cr.)
  • Sociology of Work (3 Cr.)
  • Medical Sociology (3 Cr.)

Elective Courses

  • Modernization and Social Changes (2 Cr.)
  • Welfare and social justice (2 Cr.)
  • Market and Society (2 Cr.)
  • Principles of Marketing (3 Cr.)
  • Human Resource Management (3 Cr.)

B.2.2.1. Graduation Internship (4 Cr.)

B.2.2.2. Graduation

  • Graduation Thesis (4 Cr.)
  • Social Development Project Design and Evaluation (4 Cr.)