November 2011 Issue • Volume 39 • Issue 8

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Participate in New NSF-Funded Survey of Sociology Majors

The ASA Research Department will be sending a request to current chairs and undergraduate directors who were among the 100 departments participated in the 2005 longitudinal survey for senior sociology majors, "What Can I Do with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology?" by mid-November. The National Science Foundation has provided ASA with a new grant to survey the class of 2012. As with the 2005 survey, the purpose of this new longitudinal survey of the class of 2012, titled Social Capital, Organizational Context, and the Job Market, is to learn about senior majors’ reasons for choosing sociology, the skills and concepts they learned, their satisfaction with their sociology programs, and their plans for the future. Sociology Departments used prior survey results to recruit majors, update their curriculum, and assess their programs.

The new survey will include questions about job search strategies. The results of these questions should overcome a lack of understanding about how sociology majors search for and secure jobs, choose graduate schools, as well as the social connections that help them in this process. The lack of this type of information can result in sociology departments losing majors to more vocationally-oriented programs even though students are excited by the sociological concepts that they learned as part of the major. The National Science Foundation supports ASA in gathering this information.

Departments will be asked to provide a list of their senior majors along with accompanying email addresses. The study has IRB approval (see the Research Department web page for the IRB approval and for a draft version of the survey at http://www.asanet.org/research/bacc_survey/
bachelorsandbeyond.cfm
).

Along with the sample survey, we asked for volunteer departments. More than 140 additional departments volunteered to participate, demonstrating the value of the survey.  

If you have any questions, contact Roberta Spalter-Roth at spalter-roth@asanet.org.  

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