1. Education
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Sociology Career Spotlight: State Government Jobs

How A Sociology Degree Can Prepare You For A Career In A State Government


Three colleagues solving a problem
Musketeer/Digital Vision/Getty Images
State governments are great places for sociology graduates to seek employment. There are many state departments that have positions appropriate for sociologists, including departments of health, transportation, education, and corrections/criminal justice.

For instance, most or all state health departments need analysts. Healthcare analysts are great career options for sociologists who have a background or interest in health and statistics. These jobs often require knowledge and experience with statistical software programs like SPSS or SAS as well as analytic skills and statistical knowledge. The position could entail analyzing the efficacy of a WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) program, a children’s health program, or other health programs. Sociologists are also often good candidates for epidemiological positions with state health agencies, in which they look at epidemiological data for trends and outbreaks.

Sociologists who have knowledge and interests in deviance and crime are often good candidates for positions in state corrections departments. Options may include analyst positions as well as policy-making positions. Similarly, in state education departments, sociologists with an interest or background in education may be good candidates for positions that involve analyzing educational data and/or aiding in policy-making decisions.


Every state government job will have different qualifications, depending on the state, the state agency, and the position. Typically there are varying levels of similar positions, such as a healthcare analyst I, healthcare analyst II, and healthcare analyst III. Those fresh out of school might be more qualified for the lower positions while those with many years of experience might be more qualified for the higher positions.

Salary and Benefits

Every state government has a different salary scale and set of benefits that it offers its employees. It is best to check your local state government website for an idea of salaries and list of benefits.

One thing worth pointing out, however, is that state government jobs typically pay less than those in the private sector. An analyst in a state government agency, for instance, will likely earn less than an analyst doing similar work for a corporation. Also, state governments have set salary ranges for each position and those are usually posted directly on the job listings. There is typically less room for negotiation in these jobs compared to jobs in the private sector.

Search for state government jobs or other sociology careers in your area.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.