The field of general social science comprises numerous theoretical approaches to analyzing society, its institutions, and the relationship between people and the various organizations in which they are involved. General social science is comprehensive, so students in this field may focus their energy on any number of subjects that involve people and society. Mass communications, economics, political science, and psychology are just a few professional fields that students of general social science might explore.
In Bachelor of Social Science programs, students gain fundamental knowledge on how to question and explain the laws and concepts by which these institutions perform. This interdisciplinary study attracts a diversity of students with varying academic interests.
Why a Bachelor's Degree?
A bachelor’s degree in general social sciences is appealing to students because of its flexibility and assortment of subjects involved in the major. At the junior and senior level, students can begin creating their own concentration by taking courses in geography, political science, and gender studies. The major allows students to gather a diverse knowledge and skill set that they can later apply in various roles and institutions.
Online programs in this major are particularly advantageous for students who seek a bachelor’s degree and need a program with as much flexibility as possible.
Additionally, the general social sciences major can be of value to students who simply want a broad educational background in order to be more competitive on the job market. Moreover, the degree provides a solid foundation for students who discover they want to specialize in teaching, psychology, or social work; however, multiple degrees or certificates will be necessary for these specializations.
Inside a Social Science Bachelor's Degree Program
It most instances students take four years to earn their bachelor degree. This is not always the case, however. Some universities give students the option to take an accelerated course of studies so that they can finish in three years. Program duration may be different for students who have fulfilled bachelor’s degree credits from a community college or earned AP credits. Furthermore, an online degree may take more or less time depending on how much time the student can devote to coursework.
General social science undergraduate program curricula differ considerably given the interdisciplinary nature of the major. Course topics may include health, political science, human development, sociology, anthropology and/or economics. General social science programs may allow (or in some cases, require) students to take courses in at least three academic departments with subjects related to social science — anthropology, education and communications, for example.
Online programs marginally differ from offline programs in terms of curriculum. Rather than real-world projects, students of online programs may collaborate with students through email and virtual classroom discussions.
What's Next for Social Science Bachelor’s Degree Holders?
When a student graduates with a bachelor’s degree in general social science, they open themselves up to a wide range of employment opportunities. Degree holders find work in assorted professions within private and public sectors. Appropriate professions are not limited to: administration, education, law, social work and human resources. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) reports that the median annual salary for survey researchers in 2014 was $49,760. The median salary for human resources specialists that year was $57,420. The job outlook for both occupations is positive, as both professions are growing at a rate faster than that of all other occupations.
Likewise, one who earns a social science degree can go practically any direction with their career if they decide to pursue further education. They may be favorable candidates for master’s and doctoral degree programs in media psychology, social science, clinical psychology, or social work; others choose to attend law school.