Psychology vs Sociology –The Similarities and Differences

Filed in Career, Education by on October 29, 2021 0 Comments

Psychology vs Sociology –The Similarities and Differences.

Psychology and Sociology are two fields of study that have always been in the same category. They are both social sciences, so it is understandable why they would be linked. However, there are subtle differences between psychology and sociology and how they work to understand behavior and society.

Psychology vs Sociology

 

Psychology was created by a doctor while Sociology was created by a philosopher. The research process for both disciplines is similar.

Psychology looks at individual behavior while Sociology looks at group behavior. Psychology focuses on mental health issues while sociology focuses on cultural norms.

Psychology Vs Sociology

Let’s get to see the similarities, differences and reasons for Psychology and Sociology.

Here we will define Psychology and Sociology and look at ways the are inter-related.

What is Psychology

Psychology is defined as the scientific study of behavior and mental processes.

It has its roots in philosophical thought dating back to Aristotle, but it wasn’t until 1879 that psychology was recognized as a separate field from philosophy with Wilhelm Wundt establishing the first experimental psychology laboratory.

Since then there have been many theories within psychological research such as:

  • Skinner’s behaviorism
  • Cognitive psychology
  • Psychoanalysis

What is Sociology?

Sociology was created by the French philosopher Auguste Comte who believed that society itself caused deviant behaviors. He also contributed to positivism and established sociology as a separate discipline from philosophy in 1838 with his book, “The Course in Positive Philosophy”.

Sociology looks at social institutions and how they influence behavior. Like psychology, sociology has evolved over the years to include many different perspectives:

  • Conflict theory
  • Functionalism
  • Postmodernism

Psychology vs Sociology Similarities

Similarities between Psychology and Sociology are that both study people in their society or group. Social institutions are also studied in both disciplines which is why they have many similarities.

Psychology vs Sociology Difference

There are several differences between psychology and sociology that separate them including the way that each discipline looks at behavior, their research process, what they study and how society influences individuals.

Reasons for Psychology Vs Sociology

The differences between psychology and sociology are that one looks at individual behavior while the other looks at group behavior. Psychology focuses on mental health issues, while sociology focus cultural norms. The research process is similar for both fields; however psychologists were originally philosophers who looked to understand why people behave in certain ways whereas sociologist look towards social institutions to explain their findings.

Career Paths in Psychology

For Psychology, the main option is clinical psychology. Clinical psychologists are trained in research and psychological testing to diagnose mental illness or disorder. They offer their expertise on how people behave for legal cases such as custody battles, personal injury claims and criminal behavior. Another career path in Psychology is industrial/organizational psychology which focuses on improving productivity at work by applying psychological principles to hiring, placement and training of employees.

Career Paths in Psychology for Sociology includes community psychology which focuses on the specific mental health issues within a certain group or culture such as poverty or racial discrimination. Community psychologists work with different groups to solve existing problems at their source rather than focusing only on symptoms. Another career path is social work which is the application of social science to promote human welfare and development.

Professionals in this field help individuals, families or communities solve problems such as abuse, homelessness and unemployment.

Job Outlook Psychology

Psychology has a very good job outlook with employment expected to grow faster than average for all occupations through 2018 according to CareerOneStop. Professional Psychology is an occupation within Psychology that has the best outlook with a growth rate of 30%.

Jobs for Psychology Graduates

There are many jobs available to someone who is trained in psychology. The following list includes some career possibilities:

  • Clinical psychologist
  • School psychologists
  • Industrial/Organizational Psychologist
  • Community and social services worker
  • Child, family and school social worker
  • Rehabilitation counselor
  • Substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselor

Jobs for Psychology Graduates in Sociology include:

  • Community Psychologist (15%)
  • Social Worker (19%)
  • Postsecondary Teacher (14 %)
  • Elementary School Teacher (12% )
  • Secondary School Teacher(11%)
  • Life, Physical Science & Social Science Teacher (11%)

Career Paths in Sociology

Sociology Careers include:

  • Market research analyst Social Worker (19%)
  • Postsecondary Teacher (14 %)
  • Elementary School Teacher(12% )
  • Secondary School Teacher (11%)
  • Life, Physical Science & Social Science Teacher (11%)
  • Rehabilitation Counselor (15%)
  • Community and social services worker Substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselor Careers for Sociology Graduates

According to CareerOneStop, employment of sociologist and market research analyst are expected to increase faster than average through 2018.

Sociology Jobs by Industry Most sociology jobs are found in education or government. Some of the best job outlooks for this field will be in healthcare, social assistance, business services, and local government. Careers Outlook Sociology – According to the U.S Department of Labor, employment of sociology graduates is expected to increase by 19% through 2018 which is faster than average for all occupations.

Best Schools to Obtain Psychology Degrees

Here are the best schools to obtain a Psychology Degree in the United States, Canada and Europe.

Stanford University:

Stanford University is great when it comes to obtaining a Psychology degree because of the Curriculum they offer. Stanford University offers unique courses such as:

  • Social Psychology and Politics
  • Moral Reasoning

University of California Berkeley:

The curriculum at the University of California is great for those who want to obtain a Ph.D in psychology. It is also good for someone looking for an undergraduate degree because they offer many different areas you can specialize in such as:

  • Applied Psychology
  • Clinical Phychology

Carleton University:

Carleton is great for all Phd students in the field of psychology. Most of their courses are offered online which makes it easier to fit your education around work or family responsibilities. Some areas you can specialize in here are:

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Social Psychology

University of Toronto: When it comes to Phd degrees, the University of Toronto is one on top. It has expanded its curriculum beyond what you would expect from a Phd program in psychology and offers more areas for specialization such as Behavioral Neuroscience which isn’t offered by many other universities. Some classes they offer are:

King’s College London:

The Phd program at King’s is a great opportunity for students who are looking to study in Europe. It has many different areas of specialization such as – Social and Community Psychiatry

University of Montreal:

The Phd programs here are very broad so if you want to go into more than one area of psychology then this is the Phd for you. Some areas they offer are:

  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Neuropsychology and Cognitive Science

University College London:

UCL also has some very unique classes which aren’t offered at other Phd programs in Canada or US, such as Biopsychology with Neural Network Models.

Best Schools to Obtain a Sociology Degree

When it comes to studying Sociology, there are some schools that are really outstanding. Some have them have been listed below. Here are the best schools to obtain a Sociology Degree in the United States, Canada and Europe.

Columbia University

Columbia University Stands Out Amazingly as one of the Sociology Degree offering Institution. Columbia University has some unique classes such as:

  • Sociology of Culture
  • Gender, Sex and Society

University of California Berkeley:

The curriculum at the University of California is great for those who want to obtain a Ph.D in sociology. It is also good for someone looking for an undergraduate degree because they offer many different areas you can specialize in such as:

  • Sociology
  • Criminology

University of Toronto:

When it comes to Phd degrees, the University of Toronto is one on top. It has expanded its curriculum beyond what you would expect from a Phd program in sociology and offers more areas for specialization such as Social Inequality which isn’t offered by many other universities. Some classes they offer are:

  • Sociology of Education
  • Criminology and Criminal Justice

King’s College London:

The Phd program at King’s is a great opportunity for students who are looking to study in Europe. It has many different areas of specialization such as European Integration, Social Stratification or Demographic Change.

University of Montreal:

The Phd programs here are very broad so if you want to go into more than one area of sociology then this is the Phd for you. Some areas they offer are –

  • Sociology of Education
  • International Migration and Ethnic Relations

Carleton University:

Carleton is great for all Phd students in the field of sociology. Most of their courses are offered online which makes it easier to fit your education around work or family responsibilities. Some areas you can specialize in here are: –  Criminology and Criminal Justice

University College London:

UCL also has some very unique classes which aren’t offered at other Phd programs in the US, Canada or Europe such as Biopsychology with Neural Network Models.

Conclusion on Psychology vs Sociology:

In conclusion, we have seen the similarities, difference and reasons for Psychology vs Sociology. Sociology is a great field of study and provides many opportunities for future careers. Psychology also has so much to offer but seems like more people are interested in it than Sociology, which could be the reason why there aren’t as many jobs available in that area compared with other fields such as social sciences. Did you find this article valuable? Please share and leave a comment behind.

 

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