Welcome to the Sociology Department

Are you a “people watcher” and curious about human behavior? If you enjoy finding out how and why people do the things they do, you will enjoy sociology.

Sociologists theorize and use systematic observations and analysis to study people interacting in social groups, to make their behavior understandable. Sociologists also change the world and make a difference through sociological practice.

The Department of Sociology offers students a broad liberal arts education and encourages them to think critically about the social world. We provide excellent preparation for a wide variety of careers, in areas such as (but not limited to) human services, counseling, administration and planning, probation and corrections, community organizing, teaching, and research. The department also prepares students for graduate studies in sociology, social work, and other fields, and professional studies such as law school.

We welcome you to explore what our department has to offer!

About Sociology
More about the Department of Sociology: We offer five degree programs.

Faculty and Staff
Faculty members and staff of the Department of Sociology.

Mid-Atlantic Research and Training Institute for Community and Behavioral Health (MARTI)
MARTI is a consortium of academic and professional experts in the field of alcohol abuse treatment, domestic violence intervention, and related mental health issues.

Engaged Sociology
IUP Sociology blog that highlights the work of our students and faculty.

Support IUP Sociology Students

When you make a gift in support of our department, you invest in the world's next generation of leaders. Scholarships and program support create the best possible student experience.

Support Our Students


Shinberg Presents on Structural Ableism

Associate Professor Diane Shinberg presented "Toward More Inclusive Structural Intersectionality: Contextual Measurement of Structural Ableism" at the American Sociological Association's 118th annual meeting in Philadelphia, PA, on August 19, 2023.

Sociology and Economics Students Selected for Inaugural Justice Research Fellowship Program

Two students, Angelique Alcantara (Dept. of Economics) and Owen Zablocki (Dept. of Sociology), have been selected from a pool of exemplary nominees to be the inaugural Justice Research Fellows at the IUP Administration and Leadership Studies Research and Training Center.

Sociology Faculty Publish on Compassion Fatigue

Christian Vaccaro, Melissa Swauger, and Alex Heckert, along with Shayna Morrison (Kent State University), recently published the paper “Sociological conceptualizations of compassion fatigue: Expanding our understanding” in the journal Sociology Compass. 

Shinberg Presents on Disability and Opioids

Diane Shinberg, associate professor of Sociology, presented “At the Intersection of Disabilities and Opioid Use Disorders: Patterns of Protection and Susceptibility” at the American Sociological Association’s annual meeting. The paper addresses the social patterning of misuse and use disorders across different disability groups.

Start Smart Workshop 2020

Start Smart is an interactive workshop designed to give women the skills they need to earn fair compensation. No admission is charged. Learn how to negotiate your highest possible salary at this workshop on Saturday, February 8.