For those fascinated by people and the workings of the human mind, both psychology and sociology may be appealing career choices. After all, both fields are essentially the study of human beings. However, while these two field may be related, they are also vastly different in many ways. Choosing the right one for your educational and professional future comes down to knowing the difference between the two – and knowing which one appeals more to you!
Separating Psychology and Sociology – People vs. Culture
The biggest and most obvious difference between the study and practice of psychology and that of sociology is that while psychology examines the human mind and how it influences behavior and other aspects of life, sociology looks beyond the individual. The way we interact with others, affect those around us and are involved in our relationships, families, religion, race and culture all make appearances in the study of sociology; it is literally the “study of society”. For those who are interested in social interaction – or very much enjoy it, themselves – sociology can prove to be a fascinating field of study.
Weighing Your Options
The key component in your decision between psychology and sociology should be determining what you are more interested in and passionate about, between the two. Those who prefer to work alone or in small, intimate groups may prefer a career in psychology. The traditionally introverted have found great comfort in the psychologist’s chair, and have found that the career affords them a great opportunity to make a difference without the need for mass socialization, most of the time.
If you’re a social butterfly, though, sociology may be more to your liking. Does the way people interact with one another capture your interest? Do you enjoy learning about other cultures, and how the many cultures of the world create the global
dynamic we have today? This career is truly the best way to learn about all things social.
The Good News: Both Degrees Meet Current Needs
The best part about deciding between the study of psychology and sociology is that no matter which degree program you choose, it will fit your modern life. Online sociology degrees and psychology programs make it easier than ever to get into this fascinating field, even for nontraditional students. There’s no need to give up on your dream of becoming a renowned sociologist if you have scheduling issues, disabilities or familial obligations that keep you out of the classroom; more and more public and private universities are offering online sociology degree programs to fit the mold of the modern student.
Career-wise, both of these programs continue to be well-suited to the working world. More and more people seek the services of a psychologist every year in this fast-paced, stressful world we live in, and sociology has become a science more sought-after than ever in building interesting, thought-provoking entertainment and informational media. No matter which career path you choose, you can be sure there will be a place for you in today’s working world.