College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Sociology

Leadership in Faith Communities


Sociology can provide a useful course of study for those interested in future leadership positions in faith communities. Sociology is a science viewing ethical and moral issues through secular lenses. For students who are comfortable with this approach, sociology can provide a strong background for faith-oriented work.

Sociologists have been interested in religion and moral culture since the beginnings of the discipline. Early sociologists sought to understand the origins and consequences of moral cultures. Our courses on Beliefs, Norms, and Values (Soc 455), Sociology of Religion (Soc 341), Development of Social Theory (Soc 310), Social Deviance (Soc 360), and Criminology (Soc 361) will all provide students with a sociological view of how groups enforce moral values and the reasons that people follow group norms or disobey them.

The department also offers a range of courses that may be useful preparation for a counseling role. For example, our courses on family (Soc 351), social inequality (Soc 340), and aging and the life course (Soc 356) provide understanding of diverse life situations. Introduction to Social Psychology (Soc 350) teaches basic principles of human interaction.


Sociology Department, PO Box 644020, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-4020, Ph: 509-335-4595, Fax: 509-335-6419, Contact Us