There is an important connection between the words social and science. Science is defined by its commitment to systematic observation and the systematic knowledge gained from that observation. In the Lewis College of Human Sciences at Illinois Tech, those of us in the Department of Social Sciences take the principles, methods, and goals of scientific inquiry and apply them to group-level, human endeavor. Social scientists conduct basic research into fundamental processes, concepts, and interactions. We also conduct applied research where we use theories, methods and findings to consciously inform and evaluate group-level decisions and practices.
Illinois Tech's social sciences faculty draw from diverse backgrounds of study and life experience to inform both our basic and our applied work. We enjoy finding ways to incorporate talented and motivated undergraduates into our research and to engage undergraduates in lively and compelling classroom interactions. Our work complements much of the other research and interests found here at Illinois Tech and results in frequent collaborations with colleagues in other departments. Social Sciences faculty members have also been teaching in the Lewis College of Human Sciences faculty-led summer study abroad program in Japan and Scotland, and regularly offer courses and give talks at universities and other institutions across the U.S. and abroad.
Illinois Tech's Department of Social Sciences offers three undergraduate degrees: 1) a Bachelor of Science in Social and Economic Development Policy, 2) a Bachelor of Science in Global Studies, and 3) a Bachelor of Science in Science, Technology and Society. The department offers minors in political science, sociology, public policy, urban studies, and global studies, and participates with other Illinois Tech departments in offering interdisciplinary minors in science and technology studies; law and society; policy and ethics; technology and human affairs; and urban affairs.
Our department also offers a pair of accelerated degree programs: a B.S./J.D. program with IIT's Chicago-Kent College of Law that can be completed in six years and a B.S./M.P.A. program with IIT Stuart School of Business that can be completed in five years.
Our faculty are engaged in an exciting range of research on science, technology, and the environment; designed objects and the built environment; urban affairs; international migration; American and comparative politics; and policy analysis. In addition, they have obtained a number of grants and fellowships, including awards from the American Political Science Association, the East Asia Institute, the European Union, the Fulbright Scholar Program, the German Marshall Fund, the Guggenheim Foundation, the International Studies Association, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Social Science Research Council and various government agencies.
Our majors get special treatment and develop close relationships with their major advisor, instructors, and career counselor. We encourage our students to find the questions and modes of inquiry that fascinate them. We can even customize programs of study to suit an individual's interests. We work hand-in-hand to help students find the internships, externships, and jobs that will provide them with a real advantage in the post-graduate marketplace.
Careers and Outcomes
Our students receive the rigorous, multidisciplinary training they will need to embark on a wide range of fulfilling careers in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. Whether seeking careers in management consulting, marketing, survey and design research, higher education, sustainable development, urban planning, social work, diplomatic services, local, state or federal government, our students benefit from the solid preparation our courses provide. Our majors also give students excellent preparation for law school and advanced degrees in many of the social and applied sciences. In addition, our degree programs complement the more technical courses of study offered at Illinois Tech, making them good choices for students wishing to pursue a dual degree.