What is the Average Cost for a Degree in Sociology?

Before enrolling in a sociology program and working on your degree, you should take a look at the overall average cost for a degree in sociology. Sociology is a field of study that focuses on the relationships between people, how different cultural groups act and society as a whole. You might use your degree to work in a public health facility, as a government worker or even as a social worker. The cost of your program often depends on where you live and whether you attend a public or private college.

What Courses Will You Take?

Most sociology bachelor’s programs include 120 credits or more of select classes. Around 50 of the credits that you take are from the general education courses required by the school, which may include classes in health sciences, social sciences, math, statistics, research, communications and English composition. The remaining courses will come from both your sociology requirements and the minor(s) you select. You might take an introduction to sociology class before taking classes on social theory, research methods in sociology, American culture, race relations and abuse identification.

Public vs. Private Colleges

The total amount you’ll pay for a sociology program often depends on whether you attend a public or private university. Private colleges receive little to no funding from the government and rely more on support from current students and alumni, which is why those colleges charge so much in tuition. U.S. News & World Report puts the average cost of a private college at more than $38,000 a year and the average cost of a public college at around $17,000 a year. Many colleges also charge separate in-state and nonresident tuition rates. If you move to a different state for college, you’ll pay even more.

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Best Top 10 Online Sociology Degree Programs

Living On or Off Campus

When looking at the average cost for a degree in sociology, you also need to look at the cost difference between living on and off campus. Those who live with their parents face less costs each year because they only need to pay for transportation to the campus on days they have classes or meetings with other students. Those living on-campus are responsible for living in a residence hall, which can cost $2,000 to more than $5,000 a semester. Most colleges also require that those living in a dorm room also purchase a meal plan that can cost more than $2,000 a semester.

Additional Costs

As you compare sociology programs, don’t focus solely on costs. Many schools have financial aid plans in place that can cover a large portion of your costs, and some schools offer scholarships for those with more financial need that can cover almost all your costs. You’ll usually face fees when you first register for class, a fee for using the campus activity center and for using other on-campus resources. Before making your final decision, fill out and submit the FAFSA to see the amount of financial aid and the type of aid that each college will give you.

It can take $100,000 or more to earn a bachelor’s in sociology today, but you’re not responsible for paying all those costs yourself. Financial aid programs and scholarships can cover most of your costs. The average cost for a degree in sociology usually depends on where you go, where you live and whether you pick a public or private college.