Society and the consequences of human behavior

Sociology at BHSU

The Sociology major at Black Hills State University focuses on the study of social life, social change, and the social causes and consequences of human behavior. Students in the program gain social awareness and critical thinking skills that will benefit them in their professional and personal lives.

The benefits of gaining this degree from BHSU include:

  • Personal access to professors who have a wealth of experiences in the field

  • Interesting courses that study sociological theories and apply them to the outside world

  • Opportunities for travel to regional and national conferences to present your own research

  • Numerous campus organizations

  • Meaningful internships in the community

Prospective Sociology Majors

As a Sociology major, you will earn a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Sociology. Within the Sociology degree, there are three emphasis areas. You are required to specialize in Culture & Society, Law & Justice, or Social Resiliency. This is also a major that requires a minor. The most common minors for Sociology are Psychology and American Indian Studies, but minors vary depending on the interests of the student. You may also declare a double major in the same degree (B.S.) if you choose. It is a requirement to take at least 42 credits in the field of Sociology.

A student writing in a notebook.

Future Careers

There are a wide range of job outcomes and future opportunities for Sociology graduates. Some graduates are attending law school or graduate school. Others are working as community organizers, advocating for the rights of children and the developmentally challenged, serving in for profit and non-profit organizations, and a variety of other careers.

A degree can lead to employment opportunities in the following areas:

  • Criminal Justice- In corrections, rehabilitation, law enforcement, the justice system, parole system.

  • Business and Industry- Advertising, Consumer and Market Research, Management of Non-profit organizations, Human Resources, Training and Human Development, Leadership Training.

  • Research and Planning- Governmental and regional planning departments, research firms, evaluation research, public opinion research.

  • Agencies-Social Services, Mental Health Services, Adoption, Child Care, Youth Services, Developmental Disability Services.

  • Government- Social Science Analysis, Census Bureau and other federal agencies, Administration, Policy Analysis, Personnel, Homeland Security.

  • Education- Public and Private Schools, Colleges and Universities, Administration, Alumni Relations, Placement Offices, Educational Research.

  • Advocacy- Environmental, Child Welfare, National Policies, Victims Rights, Labor Rights, Community Organization.

  • Communications- Technical Writing, Newspaper and Magazine Reporting, Public Relations.

Dr. Laura Colmenero-Chilberg

Dr. Laura Colmenero-Chilberg

"A background in sociology benefits relationships in all parts of our lives including family and community relationships. We are all members of social groups, and understanding how they function helps improve our ability to successfully and effectively participate in all areas of our lives."


International Travel

Our majors have been supportive of international travel to both Botswana and the Philippines, and we have plans to take students to London to investigate the topic of social stratification.


As one of our Sociology majors, you will recognize the importance of real life experience, and regularly investigate and participate in local region internships. Other BHSU Sociology graduates who have taken an internship have a 100% job placement rate!

Quotes From Alumni

"Always keep your ears, eyes, and mind open to everything. Completing this program will be a great experience and you do not want to miss anything!" -Student Shanda Preble
"Don’t always act on your initial reaction. Try and take your own feelings and ideas out of the equation and look at it from all points of view before reacting. There are many different ideas in the world. Also, do not be afraid of the professors, as they are really helpful and fun to talk to!" -Student Katie Ness

Contact Info

Laura Colmenero-Chilberg, P.H.D
Phone: 605-642-6365

Behavioral Sciences
Black Hills State University
1200 University St.
Spearfish, SD, USA 57799