Overview of Arts & Social Sciences
Studying a social sciences’ qualification (generally known as arts degrees) such as history or sociology can open up a wide number of career paths including the media, politics, communications or research. Most courses in the social sciences combine theoretical studies with practical work placement in the industry.
Even though most employers prefer at least an undergraduate degree, the flexibility and multidisciplinary nature of a social sciences degree can give students the skills to perform a wide variety of jobs in all kinds of industries with only a diploma or short course.
Studying Social Sciences
The most common degrees in these faculties are the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Communications. Social sciences students can choose from a wide range of disciplines and can study history, literature, sociology and philosophy among others. Postgraduate degrees include the Masters of Arts and the Masters of Philosophy. Most university degrees take three to five years to complete.
Many institutions, such as TAFE, independent providers or universities, offer social sciences short courses. These are usually intensive practice-based courses conducted over periods from one day to six weeks.
These courses are aimed towards people already working in the industry looking to update their skills or for people pursuing a personal interest. Short courses in journalism, creative writing and history are available.
Learning languages are popular short courses and students can choose to learn French, Japanese, Chinese or Spanish at many institutions.
Due to the multicultural nature of the social sciences fields, most education institutions offer opportunities to spend some time overseas either as short-term exchanges or as an added degree, such as International Studies.
Social science courses are often taken via on-campus study, since social sciences qualifications benefit from interaction and discussion between students and lecturers. However, remote learning is possible and there are other study options available, as there is also a large emphasis on independent reading and study, with most courses allocating substantial amounts of supplementary reading material.
Careers in Social Sciences
Social sciences students have a range of career options available. Journalists, writers, politicians, historians, social workers, diplomats and interpreters can all benefit from the knowledge and analytical skills gained from a social sciences qualification. For those interested in media and entertainment, there is also the opportunity to be in the public eye.
Employers value experience, industry knowledge and reputation, all of which can be developed through a good industry placement and studies. Like many other professions, networking is very important. The contacts made during studies will likely prove invaluable for career choices.
Skills needed in Social Sciences
Most people in these professions have an interest in cultural and social interactions, people and language.
Studying social sciences helps develop communication, research and argumentative skills needed for most of the jobs in the social science fields.
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