Sociology is a fascinating and enlightening discipline of study that examines and discusses critical issues in our personal lives, communities, and the world. As a result, enrolling in free online courses in sociology may be suitable for you if all these are your concern.
Do you want to learn about human social behavior, patterns of social interactions, and culture in everyday life?
Do you want to understand the shared beliefs of a common culture and the social stability that can lead to significant transformation in entire societies?
Are you interested in how empirical research and critical analysis can be used to create a body of knowledge about social order and social change? If any of these describe you, a career in sociology may be a good fit for you.
Sociology is a lucrative and enjoyable field of study, which is why notable historical figures such as Martin Luther King Jr. and former U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski (Maryland) are sociology graduates.
Hence, if you’re curious about whether or not pursuing a career in sociology is a good idea and the best online certificate courses in sociology that are currently accessible, this piece is for you. In this article, we cover what sociology is, why studying it is beneficial, and the top free online certificate courses in sociology.
Let’s delve in!
What is Sociology?
Sociology is a field of social science that studies society, human social behavior, patterns of social interaction, and cultural aspects of daily life.
Generally, Sociology covers a wide range of subjects, including crime, religion, family, state, racial and social class divisions, shared cultural values, and societal stability to fast upheaval in entire societies. Hence, lt creates a corpus of knowledge on social order and change by employing a variety of empirical and analytical research methodologies.
Sociology is a fascinating and enlightening discipline of study that examines and discusses critical issues in our personal lives, communities, and the world. As a result, certificates in sociology are helpful for topics such as research and statistics, social psychology, and public policy.
Why Should You Have a Career in Sociology?
Typically, sociology is a broad subject that will provide you with the foundational information necessary to understand social issues such as social injustice, criminology and the criminal justice system, and a range of other social and professional situations. Some of the reasons why you should pursue a profession in sociology include:
1. Increased In Demand and Financial Reward
Generally, people pursue a profession for the demand and financial reward it may bring; therefore, you should assess the profession’s market and economic possibilities. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that demand for sociologists will expand by 9% from 2018 to 2028, which is faster than the national average. A sociologist also makes $55,300 per year, according to payscale.
2. It provides the opportunity to make a difference.
The opportunity to make a significant difference in the community is the most compelling reason to pursue a Sociology degree. Working in government, local community groups, or charities while studying sociology can help you make a positive difference in your community. In addition, you can consider a career as a youth worker or a family support officer, allowing you to directly impact people.
3. It will provide a broad understanding of various cultures.
A career in sociology may be a good fit for you if you want to learn more about how culture, power, and social behavior interact and shape society. A career in sociology may require you to travel to various locations, primarily if you work in a non-governmental organization.
4. You can gain transferable skills
An online or offline sociology degree will also help you develop your analytical, communication, interpersonal, organizational, problem-solving, and research skills. You will be required to use all of these skills in your work, which will help you solve practical problems in your daily work life. As a result, you can develop yourself while helping others and earning money.
Why Should You Enroll in a Sociology Course?
Sociology classes are typically filled with humor and historical facts, making them appealing. As a result, taking sociology classes is a good idea. The following are some of the reasons why you should take sociology classes:
1. A Wide Range of Career Options
Sociology degrees typically open doors to a wide range of job opportunities. This is because, it covers such a broad range of subjects, all of which provide you with various critical skills that can apply to multiple jobs.
Crime, culture, media, politics, and identity are just a few topics covered in the free online sociology courses we’ll share as you read. In addition, you can apply for jobs in various fields because you have such a diverse background.
2. Meeting New People and Obtaining Diverse Points of View
It’s not just about getting a job at the end of the university; it’s also about meeting new people. Sociology has long been a popular major among a diverse group of students. A sociology degree course will likely attract a more diverse group of students because it attracts people who are interested in understanding society through various lenses. As a result, having so many different life experiences in one place exposes you to a diverse range of viewpoints.
How Do You Become a Sociologist?
Here are the steps you should take if you want a career in sociology:
1. Complete a Bachelor’s Degree
Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in sociology, social statistics, research methodologies, and social theory is the first step toward becoming a sociologist. Candidates can also study anthropology, psychology, or political science, all of which deal with human behavior and overlap with sociology. The average undergraduate degree takes four years to complete.
2. Participate in an Internship Program
A field internship could help you improve your resume and job prospects. In addition, employers often prefer applicants who have a documented work history, and having this experience can help you advance in your sociology career. Nonprofit organizations, campaign offices, research offices, and schools offer internships.
3. Obtain a Master’s Degree
Once you’ve completed your bachelor’s degree, you can pursue a master’s degree. A master’s program prepares students for a Ph.D. and is the appropriate educational path for people who desire to undertake independent research. The requirements and focus of master’s programs vary, but most programs include a core set of foundational courses and a thesis or independent research project.
4. Enroll for a Ph.D. Program
A doctorate may be required for candidates who want to work in academia as a lecturer or researcher. A Ph.D. program typically focuses on sociological theories and research methodologies and familiarizes students with influential sociologists and theorists’ work. After completing coursework and demonstrating their knowledge in an exam, students write a dissertation. A Ph.D. typically takes three to four years to complete.
5. Obtain Accreditation
Adding certification to your resume can certainly help you advance in your career. There are two levels of certification offered by the Association for Applied and Clinical Sociology:
Certification as a Sociological Practitioner: This certification is given to candidates who have demonstrated their ability as sociological practitioners.
Certification as clinical Sociologist: Sociologists who have used sociological perspectives and analysis to effect positive social change are given the title of Certified Clinical Sociologist.
Both certifications require a master’s or doctoral degree and a portfolio detailing their practice background, current practice, ethical viewpoint, and recommendations from people who know them as practitioners.
Since you’ve understood what sociology is all about and why you should pursue a career in sociology, let’s look at the best free online certificate courses in sociology.
Top Ten Free Online Courses In Sociology In 2022
Below are the free best online courses in sociology:
1. Classical Sociological Theory
Classical Sociological Theory is our top choice for the best free online courses in sociology. This Massive Open Online Course from the University of Amsterdam will provide you with an overview of the most important classical sociological readings from the 18th to the 20th centuries.
Eight sessions will focus on well-known social scientists such as Karl Marx, Max Weber, and Emile Durkheim throughout the course. Participants will be encouraged to delve deeper into the complex texts and become acquainted with classic sociological themes still relevant today.
Subject: Classical Sociological Theory
Duration: 13 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced
2. Children’s Human Rights: An Interdisciplinary Introduction
An interdisciplinary approach guides the student through various critical issues concerning children’s rights, drawing on contributions from a wide range of academic disciplines such as law, psychology, sociology, history, educational and health sciences, economics, and anthropology.
As a result, this free online sociology course covers the most important aspects of children’s human rights and the roles of key actors in international organizations working in this field.
Furthermore, a significant component of the course will be a presentation of global and regional norms on children’s rights and the corresponding international and regional judicial and quasi-judicial authorities responsible for ensuring their implementation. The University of Geneva developed the course.
Subject: Children’s Human Rights
Duration: 11 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced
3. Philosophy, Science and Religion: Science and Philosophy
Philosophy, science, and religion are three of the most critical ways of thinking about the world and our place in it. Is it intellectually responsible to “pick sides” and identify with one of these approaches while dismissing the others? Or do they mutually support or complement each other?
For example, it’s critical to understand what distinguishes these ways of thinking about the world. In this free online sociology course, you will examine what some of today’s significant intellectuals in philosophy, science, and religion are doing to gain clarity.
The course, provided by the University of Edinburgh, will examine four subjects, the first of which is, Are science and religion in conflict? Do scientific assertions represent absolute truths? Neuroscience and Free Will, Creationism and Evolutionary Biology—Scientific or Pseudoscience? In addition, each of the topics is presented by a guest lecturer.
Subject: Science and Philosophy
Duration: 15 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced
4. Research Design: Inquiry and Discovery
Research Design is also one of our top picks among free online courses in sociology, and the University of North Texas offers it. Finally, the main goal of this course is to concentrate on appropriate questions and how to answer them, as this is critical for making informed decisions as a leader in any business or your life in general.
The course covers broad topics such as: the foundations of human curiosity, development of questions, connections between questions and approaches to data collection design, variable measurement, sampling, the differences between experimental and non-experimental methods, data analysis, reporting, and the ethics of inquiry projects using social science techniques.
Subject: Research Design
Duration: 9 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced
5. Cultural Impact of Housing Displacement Gentrification
This is yet another one-of-a-kind course on the list of the best free certificates sociology courses. Now, Gentrification is a term used to describe how wealthier people move into a neighborhood, displacing poorer people whose rising rents and housing prices have priced out. It is frequently linked to white people’s displacement of black people. However, the effects of gentrification are never neutral; they look and feel different.
As a result, this course will teach you about the origins of the term gentrification and how it has evolved since its first use in the 1960s. Also, you’ll learn about various theoretical change processes. Then, you’ll apply theoretical and conceptual skills to a series of international case studies to understand what’s going on.
Subject: Cultural impact of housing displacement gentrification
Duration: 17 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced.
6. Quantitative Methods
In the behavioral and social sciences, learn the fundamentals of sound scientific methodology. Fundamental scientific principles, some science history and philosophy, study designs, measurement, sampling, and ethics will all be covered in this course.
The course is similar to introductory quantitative research methodologies in the social sciences course at a university level, but it strongly emphasizes research integrity. In addition, the program will include sociology, politics, education, communication sciences, and psychology examples. The University of Amsterdam runs the program.
Subject: Quantitative Methods
Duration: 30 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced
Relativism is an old philosophical concept that has resurfaced several times in the history of philosophy. Hence, methodology in anthropology and sociology, critical theory, and literary studies have been influenced by it, and now, it has expanded beyond the confines of that discipline.
While relativism is often praised for its apparent tolerance of diversity, it has far-reaching implications for how we think about reality, the possibility of knowledge in both factual and moral domains, and the application of double standards.
In this course offered by the University of California, students will examine the concept of relativism, its role in modern society, and how to apply it. You will be able to recognize how epistemic relativism can be used in this course.
Duration: 11 Hours
Start Date: Self-Paced
8. Geographical Information Systems: Part 1
If you study or work in land management or the analysis of geographically dispersed items, such as land-use planning, biology, public health, ecology, or energy, this course is for you! The lectures introduce GIS that requires no prior knowledge and are built with free, open-source tools like QGIS.
If you follow this introduction to GIS, you will quickly gain the basic knowledge required to develop spatial databases and create high-quality maps and cartographic representations. This first section of the course will focus on geodata digitization and storage. The second section of this course will focus on spatial analysis and geodata representation approaches.
Subject: Geographical Information Systems: Part 1
Duration: 20 Hours
Start Date: Self
9. Social and Economic Networks: Models and Analysis
Why do specific patterns emerge in networks, and how do network structures influence diffusion, learning, and other behaviors? This course will use models and techniques from economics, sociology, math, physics, statistics, and computer science to solve these problems.
Typically, the course starts with a practical introduction to social and economic networks, followed by a review of the terminology used to characterize and measure networks. Following that, we’ll look at various network formation models, including random network models, strategic formation models, and some hybrids. You will then go over multiple models for how networks influence behavior, such as contagion, diffusion, learning, and peer influences. Stanford University provides the course.
Subject: Social and Economic Networks
Duration: 30 Hours
Start Date: Self
10. The Addicted Brain
The Addicted Brain is the final course on our list of the best free online courses in sociology. This Emory University course will educate you on drug addiction and other bad habits. In addition, you will understand what happens in the brain and how this can help us deal with and overcome addiction. Finally, other topics, such as government policies and human susceptibility to drug use, will be covered.
Subject: The Addicted Brain
Duration: 22 Hours
Start Date: Self
Because sociology is concerned with society, human behavior, patterns of social interactions, and culture, a career in sociology has proven to be both enjoyable and lucrative over the years. Sociology includes research and statistics, social psychology, linguistics, disease and health sociology, global populations, archeology, data analysis, and anthropology.
Hence, if you’re interested in learning about human social behavior, the way of life, and the social stability that can lead to significant transformation in entire societies, enrolling in any of the free online courses in sociology that we’ve outlined will give you a headstart toward building a career in the field.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Top Free Online Courses In Sociology
According to payscale.com, a sociological graduate earns an average of $56,000 per year, according to payscale.com. However, your salary will be determined by the terms of your job and your experience in the field.
Sociologists can work in various settings, including research institutes, criminal justice agencies, public health and welfare organizations, private businesses, law firms, international agencies, medical centers, educational institutions, advertising firms, survey and polling organizations, and others.
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
Community development worker
Further education teacher
Higher education lecturer
To become a socialist, you must first complete an undergraduate degree, an internship, a master’s degree, and a Ph.D. program.
en.m.wikipedia.org – What is Sociology?
bcu.ac.uk – Why Study a Sociology Degree?
indeed.com – How to Become a Sociologist?
coursera.org – Free Online Courses In Sociology
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