10 Careers You Can Have With a Sociology Degree (And What They Earn!)

A Sociology Major studies the ways in which people interact and focus on trying to solve social problems and similar situations. It is a pretty good degree to have to have a wide-spread career field full of all kinds of different options.

What careers can you have with a Sociology degree?

  • Guidance Counselor ($56,170)
  • Human Resources Representative ($58,890)
  • Lawyer ($118,160)
  • Market Research Analyst ($63,230)
  • Media Planner ($48,103)
  • Public Relations Specialist ($45,368)
  • Social Worker ($47,980)
  • Journalism ($49,700)
  • Business Marketing ($145,620)
  • Life Coach ($49,000)

These and many other careers are great for those with Sociology degrees. Keep reading to learn more about these career choices!

#1 Guidance Counselor

A Guidance Counselor helps students to get through their educational careers. Guidance counselors do a number of things from strategizing an academic plan, resolve social problems in the school, and educate students on social issues.

In more detail, they help students plan out their classes and extra-curricular activities to most benefit the students career future, they help resolve issues between students and individual students’ problems, figure out way to better the social environment, educate students on social issues such as bullying, safe sex, abusing substances such as alcohol and drugs and alcohol, and much more.

My high school counselor (we will call her Ms. Smith) was amazing. She helped each student she was over to figure out exactly what classes would satisfy their credit requirements as fast as possible and even chose classes that would be the best for the careers we may have been thinking of going into.

Not only did Ms. Smith handle academic and planning purposes for careers, but she was also wonderful at handling all of the many social issues that popped up throughout the school years.

Guidance counselors are at any school. It doesn’t matter if it is Junior High, High School, College, or even a Continuation School. There are always guidance counselors to help you with whatever needs you may have and they are great at finding the best method to get the fastest and best outcome for any situation.

These counselors are a safe place in many schools for the students to go to. They help the students succeed in an academic perspective AND they help the students to succeed socially and emotionally. It is also a growing career field, which is good if you are looking to go into this career.

A Guidance Counselor makes an average of $56,170 per year.

#2 Human Resources Representative

Human Resources Representatives (HR Reps.) ultimately use their social skills to maintain social harmony in the workplace and analyzing candidates for jobs in their specific workplace. This is a job that can be applied in any workplace, which is great.

In more detail, HR Reps. have skills analyzing people, interviewing, decision-making, and conflict resolution. These skills can be applied to many situations such as employee conflict, hiring the best candidates for jobs around your workplace, solving problems and helping to decide on beneficial outcomes.

Think Toby from “The Office”! Actually… usually HR Reps. aren’t so disliked and so useless. How about Holly instead! She was great at handling conflict in the work environment, ensuring whoever came into the office to work was well qualified and well-fitted for their job, and overall helped to make the work environment a happy and positive environment to be in.

That is ultimately what HR Reps. do, except, of course, not so idealized as T.V. shows always seem to make things seem.

HR Reps. are what keep the work place a safe and happy environment for all employees to work in. They ensure that everyone is safe, happy, and not causing a ton of drama that might affect the environment in the workplace. Without them, the work place would be complete and utter chaos and drama.

A Human Resources Representative makes an average of $58,890 per year.

#3 Lawyer

A lawyer, as you may know, handles all kinds of legal cases in order to have the best legal outcome for their clients’ problems. Lawyers can be specific to any type of issue as well. These can be case types such as divorce, child custody, injury, adoption, criminal law, and many more that relate to Sociology.

In more detail, lawyers do a lot of research, writing, and developing an argument in their case’s favor. They gather as much information, facts, and evidence of all types to help figure out a way to help their client get what they are legally fighting for, or at least as close and reasonable to that outcome as possible.

They could be fighting for a number of things for their clients from child custody, divisions of assets, the separation between a legally married couple, compensation for inconveniences, and even arguing to lower or eliminate the sentencing of a criminal case.

Think of “Legally Blonde” with Reese Witherspoon. Maybe without all of the extra glitz and glam, of course, but Lawyers fight for what their client wants or for the best outcome. One of Elle Woods’ (Witherspoon) friends is wrongly accused of something. Elle’s internship is at the law office with the lawyer that happens to be put on this case.

She uses her great people skills and evidence collecting skills to prove that her friend was, in fact wrongly accused of her crime. This may not be the case for all lawyers of course, but lawyers fight for the rights, desires, and freedom of their clients.

Lawyers keep this world from unfairly seeking justice as individuals might see as fit and they help to argue towards a better life for their clients.

Without lawyers, people wouldn’t be able to fight for what they want and would just receive whatever one person that is higher up may deem fit. It is a career that is looking for more practitioners.

A Lawyer makes an average of $118,160 per year.

#4 Market Research Analyst

Market Research Analysts, as you can imagine, analyze stuff. They analyze consumption of all kind of products and their marketing campaigns to figure out methods that sell certain products best.

More specifically, they keep track of consumption of goods, how they were advertised, who is buying the products/the focus group of consumers, and many more things. They use their knowledge of research, surveys, statistics, and data gathering and analyzing to determine how to best market products for mass consumption.

Market Research Analysts are the people who, with their vast knowledge of how people think and run, help companies to advertise and market their product and figure out how best sell it and how to modify it so they know how to sell more.

They are the people who help companies tempt us to buy everything in sight. It is totally evil, in my opinion, but who doesn’t love a good splurge occasionally. Am I right?

A Market Research Analyst makes an average of $63,230 per year.

#5 Media Planner

Media Planners are similar to Market Research Analysts, except these guys focus on specifically how best to advertise products to make them more enticing resulting in sales.

Specifically, Media Planners know how to catch a persons attention through advertisements and convince a consumer that they need the advertised product. These specialists have studied and know exactly how to make a person buy a product and convince them that their lives are incomplete without the advertised product.

They are hired specifically for this knowledge and are what helps any and all companies push their product.

Media Planners are the masterminds of the consumer world! They are the ones that make all of those mouth-watering fast food commercials that make you want to run to the closest Wendy’s or McDonald’s and buy the largest size of french fries they sell.

They are the people that make the commercials with the cool exercise equipment and convince you that you need to get off your butt, buy this cool exercise equipment, and get that summer body you have been dreaming of while eating pints of ice cream in front of the Food Network at 10:30 pm.

Media Planners are the masterminds of advertising in the best method possible. They know where to put advertisements where they will get the most consumer traffic and how to design an advertisement to sell the most product. They are the ultimate evil of people trying to not spend money, but totally wonderful for companies trying to push product.

A Media Planner makes an average of $48,103 per year.

#6 Public Relations Specialist

Public Relations (PR) Specialists are the people that contact and communicate with the media for their clients for whatever reason.

Explicitly, PR Specialists communicate with the media to get coverage, stories, and publicity for their client. They must use their studied interpersonal skills to convince the media to portray stories in the preferred way and convince the media to cover these stories for the necessary publicity for the client.

They must be able to clearly portray the desired ideas as well to avoid confusion and possible publicity disaster.

The specific skills necessary for this job are being able to understand their audience along with their desires and necessities. PR Specialists must have exceptional communication and writing skills to clearly communicate the desired idea needed to be portrayed and gain the support from the media on these ideas.

A great example of this job is career and their roles is expressed by the character Rosie DeLeon in the movie “Bye Bye, Birdie”. In this 1963 movie, Rosie comes up with a publicity stunt for the current Rock ‘n’ Roll heartthrob, Conrad Birdie. He will offer one last kiss to a young fan on the Ed Sullivan show.

She plots this plan to get loads of publicity for her client so that he will be able to increase his “business” and make more money etc. PR Specialists do exactly that for their clients.

They create enticing publicity schemes and advertisements in order to increase the business of their clients. It is a very necessary job and can be used by any business-related career.

PR Specialists are what give their clients loads of publicity, especially a positive reputation for the public. They are the people that entice the public to invest in the business and to be more enticed to purchase products again and again from those businesses and to continue spreading a positive and uplifting reputation about the business. They are the brain behind a businesses voice.

A Public Relations Specialist makes an average of $45,368 per year.

#7 Social Worker

Social workers are pretty cool. They use their studied interpersonal and communication skills to solve all kinds of problems for their clients that ultimately boil down to social justice.

Social workers solve a multitude of issues varying from working with the foster system, abuse situations, drug and alcoholic situations, unsafe mental health, and all kinds of other problems. They work to help the people of the community get to better situations in their lives that are safer for both them and others close to them.

Have you ever seen “The Blind Side” with Sandra Bullock? The main character, Michael Oher, was someone that had Social Workers as a significant factor in his life.

In the movie, we learn that his home situation when he was little was not safe due to many factors, such as drug and alcohol abuse, resulting in social workers taking him out of the unsafe situation and working on getting him into a healthy home environment.

His social worker saved him from an environment where he was exposed to a lot of dangers that were unhealthy for him to be near. This is ultimately what you would be doing, to an extent.

As a Social Worker, you would be helping people to be able to get themselves in better life situations so that they can live a happier, safer, less life-threatening or threatened lifestyles. You are the person that helps the less fortunate, whether the misfortune is self-inflicted or not, to find and make a better life for themselves.

Now, not every social worker is going to work specificallly with kids. Social workers work with adults as well. They help people to get themselves in better life situations and to help make communities safer to live in.

A Social Worker makes an average of $47,980 per year.

#8 Journalism

Journalists’ basic job is to conduct research and collect information to present in different media platforms as stories or articles for the public or certain audiences to read.

Journalists use quite a lot of skills learned from a Sociology degree. These skills consist of but aren’t limited to, empathizing with people, interviewing people for information, investigation, portraying information in such a way that the people will receive a clear message being expressed, and communicating with the media to get these stories and research published.

“How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days,” a hilarious romantic comedy with Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson, is a fun example of journalism. In the movie, Andie Anderson is a journalist at Composure Magazine who is challenged to write an article on how to lose a guy in ten days, hence the title of the movie.

She is set up with Benjamin Barry, an advertising executive challenged to make a girl fall in love with him in ten days, and the movie goes through Andie’s personal “research” process with Benjamin and his struggle to keep her with him throughout the movie.

Though that may be an overexaggerated example of a journalist’s researching process, that is ultimately what journalist’s do. They put themselves as close to their situation of study in order to conduct their best research and have an interpersonal experience to write their articles in the most empathetic and relatable fashion possible to create a familiarity with their audience.

This familiarity helps readers to be more receptive to expressed messages and controversial topics.

A Journalist makes an average of $49,700 per year.

#9 Business Marketing

Business marketers basically just work to advertise for their companies in the best ways possible to entice customers to consume their product or services. They help to create advertisements whether its a billboard, brochure or even an ad on Facebook.

To be more descriptive, a business marketer uses their amazing skills of empathy, persuasion, communication, and much more to appeal to consumers through a multitude of platforms and methods to get them to buy the product being sold. They work on advertisements, promotions, and plan programs that will end up arousing customers’ curiosity in a product being sold.

They are the ones that work with the Media Planners and other similar jobs to produce those enticing McDonald’s commercials that make us break out diets.

Those mouth-watering commercials that should be considered inhumane for their enticing goodness that make us hop in our cars to drive to the nearest Wendy’s for a frosty, even if it is 20 minutes away.

A Business Marketer makes an average of $145,620 per year.

#10 Life Coach

A life coach is someone that helps you to work on better running your life in whatever aspects need help with or even all. They help people to better their lives as a whole and find more of something they are looking for in life.

Life coaches, to put it in more detail, are like therapist that instead of treating your mental state, they help you to improve how you run your life to have the best outcomes. They work with clients to set goals and make detailed plans about how their client can get to that goal or goals.

After they go over their client’s life plan and detailed step process to get there, they work with the client to keep motivating them to push towards their goals and achieve them to the best of their abilities.

Think of the character Aubrey Posen from Pitch Perfect 2. In the movie, after graduating college, she opened up a company retreat to help teach people how to better run their companies and to help teach co-workers and teams how to better work together.

She was a type of life coach. Her work was more focused on teams and groups of people, but it has the same idea as an individual life coach would have.

She had clients come to her to help seek knowledge about how they can better run aspects of their lives. In this case, she would have them come on a retreat to her camp where they would learn all of these valuable skills.

They would come to her and spend time working with her through both discussion and interactive activities that would build the qualities that needed to be worked on so that they could leave with a better grasp on their lives and how to run it.

her clients, at the end of their coaching experience, would leave with the knowledge of how to run their businesses more efficiently, make better decisions in their field of work, and be more connected with their co-workers and able to better work together to be a more efficient team.

Life coaches do just this. They help people to find ways to better run their lifes and come to make better decisions and recieve better conclusions with their lives.

Life coaches are the ultimate cheering squad and motivators to help us get where we want in life! Who wouldn’t want their own personal cheerleader that pushes them to go the extra mile, am I right?

A Life Coach makes an average of $49,000 per year.

Related Questions:

How much money can you make with a Sociology degree? As you get out of school with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology, you can make about $35,000 per year starting out. With a Master’s degree, you can make about $45,731 per year or more. Ultimately, it depends on what specific career field you go into and how far up the chain you get.

Can you be a counselor with a degree in Sociology? Usually, professional counselors have a degree in Psychology, but counselors can come from numerous educational backgrounds. The main skills necessary for a counselor job are interpersonal skills and empathy. You will need to make sure you meet the professional qualifications before getting the job, however.