The mission of the Department of Social Sciences is to conduct innovative social science research and teach skills to empower our students to contribute to a better society. We seek to explore and reveal how society, politics, and culture shape human lives, attitudes, and actions. We strive to make our students more effective and valuable as citizens, scholars, and professionals through teaching the skills of social analysis, public administration, research, writing, and social action.
The Department of Social Sciences equips students to exercise political and social responsibility at the local, state, national, and international levels. Our programs prepare undergraduates for advanced study in graduate and professional school in a variety fields, including a five-year BA-to-MPA (Master of Public Administration) two-in-one degree program, and careers in all levels of government, public administration, international relations, human services, and the private sector.
The BA in Criminal Justice teaches core criminal justice concepts and theories that help students to analyze and understand criminal behavior and various structures within the criminal justice system. Students gain skills that help them in their careers including decision making, analytics, research strategies, and interacting with and understanding people. Our faculty are dedicated to student learning and innovative teaching both in the classroom and through community involvement. The Criminal Justice Program also has a long tradition of supporting vibrant student organizations and encouraging student involvement in research.
The BA in Health, Society, and Policy focuses on the human and policy side of health and illness. This degree will train students to recognize the many social and cultural determinants of health, and to apply knowledge of human behavior and the social environment to evaluate and understand the risks and challenges to health for diverse populations. Students in the program will study the individual's relationship to the communities they belong to, by completing courses about health, health care, and illness in diverse social and cultural contexts. Students will acquire skills in writing, communication, and analysis that are critical to their future careers in health fields.
Political science is the study of government and public policy and the political behavior of individuals and groups. Political science uses both humanistic and scientific perspectives and skills to examine the United States, all countries and regions of the world, and international relations. Political science majors acquire skills in writing, communications, and analysis that are critical to a liberal arts education. A liberal arts education prepares students to think independently, with tolerance for others and concern for current affairs.
Sociology is the scientific study of society and human behavior. We examine how our social structure—that is the organization of our society and factors such as race and gender—operate to influence group behavior and individual choices. Sociologists highlight the importance of problem solving and using reliable data in decision making so our students at Augusta University gain desirable skills including data analyses, statistical reasoning and empathetic understanding. Students can complete a sociology major online or face-to-face or a by taking a combination at Augusta University.
Social work is a career committed to improving the lives of all people. It can be working with individuals in a variety of settings, or on a broader level to impact increased quality of life for all people through advocacy. Augusta University offers a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree in social work that is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. The distinction of the Augusta University Social Work Program comes in small interactive courses with individual mentoring taught by social workers with considerable practice experience. The Social Work program is designed to prepare students for generalist social work practice upon graduation. Coursework also prepares students with the groundwork to pursue and succeed in an MSW graduate program or other graduate or professional program.
The MPA is the degree of choice for professionals working in government and the nonprofit sector. Why? Because it gives students practical skills in working with others to address the complex problems facing our government and our society.
The program seeks to expose military members, future decision makers and analysts, and students considering a PhD to the security challenges inherent in a rapidly changing world. Our program has a special emphasis on the causes and effects of interstate and intrastate conflict, the sources of terrorism, terrorism and counterterrorism strategies, and security issues that affect national, regional, and global security.
The Department of Social Sciences offers a variety of minors in many of the disciplines listed above, as well as in Gerontology; Nonprofit Management; and International Studies. We also offer certificates in Cultural Diversity in Healthcare; Cyber Crime; and European Union Studies, as well as post-baccalaureate certificates in Nonprofit Leadership, and Urban Planning and Community Development.