About the Department


Sociology is relatively one of the young social science disciplines emerged in the first half of the 19th century. As the natural world is governed by natural laws, the social world is also governed by different social laws, which need systematic analysis. Sociology is the science that deals with social groups, their internal forms or modes of organization that tends to maintain or change these forms of organization and relations between groups.

It is the study of human interaction and interrelation, their conditions and consequences, and is a special social science concentrating on inter-human behavior, on processes of associations and dissociation, in its broadest sense may be said to be the study of interaction arising from the association of Human beings.

Hence, the subject matter of sociology can be derived as – Sociology is the study of society, the science of social life, the study of social relationships, the study of human behavior in groups, the study of forms of social relationships, and the study of a social action. It also studies the different social structures and social institutions, and Sociology is the study of social groups or social organization of human beings.

Sociology has the level of inquiry at persona, group of individuals and humanity (society) about the behaviors of interaction and interrelation for given social gain.

The undergraduate program of Sociology was commenced in 1998 E.C (2005/2006) at Jimma University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (currently College of Social Sciences and Humanities) by the name of Sociology and Social Administration. The program was initiated in response to the rising needs for skilled and competent professionals in the endeavor to improve socio-economic conditions of the country.

Latter, it was realized that the nomenclature of the program—“Sociology and Social Administration” which was a direct replica from Addis Ababa University, was found less appropriate since only a few courses related to Social Administration were included in the curriculum. Moreover, a composite degree of Sociology and Social Work was thought to be more appropriate so as to equip graduates with both strong societal knowledge and culturally informed intervention skills. The revision was made to integrate the theoretical knowledge from the field of Sociology with the practices from Social Work.  Consequently, the department revised its curriculum in March 2007 and renamed it as “Sociology and Social Work”.

After Six years of teaching, research and community services under the named program nomenclature; informed of the ongoing changes, the market demand as well as the evidences from needs assessment along with feedbacks from key stakeholders, in the year 2013 the undergraduate program has once again went through program revision.

In this manner, the program—BA in Sociology and Social Work, was divided into two autonomous disciplines; “BA in Sociology” and “Bachelor of Social Work”. Accordingly, as of 2014/15 academic calendar, the Department of Sociology and the School of Social Work admit student’s by their own right.

Starting from 2013/14, our department has launched to admit students in postgraduate programs of MA in Social Anthropology and MA in Sociology and Social Policy in regular, evening, weekend and summer programs. In the year 2015/16, the department of sociology has expanded the PG programs by adding two more programs: MA in Sociology and Family Studies and MA in Development Anthropology and Indigenous Knowledge.

Social Anthropology in BA Degree launched to be offered under the department of Sociology in 2017/2018. Currently, the Department of Social Anthropology established as an independent Department starting from 2018/19.

At this time, all the postgraduate programs of the Department of Sociology are available at regular, weekend, evening and summer; while BA in Sociology is offered in regular and distance modalities.

 The vision
Our vision is to see a social world in which all human beings are equally treated without discrimination, without stereotypes, and with social justice. For this purpose, the department would desire to see itself as one of the best social science disciplines in the country.

The Mission

The mission of Sociology is directly serving people in need and making social institutions more responsive to human beings to bring social change and social development.

The Philosophy
Improvising individuals to pursue their personal or group aspirations in society has paramount importance for social change and transformations, the department strongly believe that “we can get many hands to works as there will apparently survive many mouths to feed.” Our Principles
•Equality of opportunity
•Social justice and
•equitable distribution of all privileges for our students to exercise it in the world of work indeed, as for as these values can not be in competed in the societal structure, social betterment will be an “ideal type”

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology is therefore expected to accomplish the following specific objectives: –

•Prove the students with an increased Sociological understanding of groups, institutions, communities and societies;

•Enable the student to think critically and communicate effectively in the field of Sociology;

•Provide the trainees with the ethical issues in and the codes of ethics in Sociology so that they can apply it in the world of work;

•Equip the students with necessary research and Sociological practices knowledge so that they can effectively employ it to solve societal problems; and

•Provide the trainees with the skills and qualifications needed to obtain employment opportunities different social institutions related and human service organizations

•To equip student with different sociological skills and knowledge supported by sociological practices in solving the social problems of the country who can prove the potential with country’s reality.

Status and Features

As per this aim, the department of sociology and social work appeared to revitalize the current poverty reduction dreams of the country. Currently, the department can enroll both undergraduate and postgraduate students in regular classes and continuing programs. The program being run currently under the department is here below: