Sociology Research TopicsThis list of more than 200 sociology research paper topics is both interesting and informative as it offers the student and researchers an insight into the rich legacy and development of the discipline of sociology while also providing the requisite reference information for advanced study and research into each topic. In this regard, there is a sufficient amount of information to support the rich sociological legacy of enabling students ample opportunity to learn while also providing important insights for those who enthusiastically embrace social activism as a part of the sociological enterprise. Increasingly, sociologists have engaged in exploring a wide range of topics, and this extensive activity is demonstrated through the large number of sociology research paper topics presented in the list below. Although there is certain to be some modest theoretical and methodological overlap between some of the topics, each topical article is developed to reflect the unique historical development of the topic, offers a general overview of the current state of knowledge, and provides suggestions for how the area of inquiry is destined to develop as we move well into the 21st century.

More Than 200 Sociology Research Topics

Sociology of Crime

  1. Capital Punishment
  2. Child Abuse
  3. Corporate Crime
  4. Criminal Justice System
  5. Cybercrime
  6. Domestic Violence
  7. Organized Crime
  8. Political Crime
  9. Race and Crime
  10. White-Collar Crime

Sociology of Deviance

  1. Academic Deviance
  2. Crime and Deviance
  3. Criminalization of Deviance
  4. Deviance
  5. Deviant Beliefs
  6. Deviant Careers
  7. Deviant Identity
  8. Medicalization of Deviance
  9. Positive Deviance
  10. Theories of Deviance

Sociology of Culture

  1. Culture
  2. Counterculture
  3. Cultural Capital
  4. Cultural Critique
  5. Cultural Feminism
  6. Cultural Imperialism
  7. Cultural Relativism
  8. Cultural Studies
  9. Culture Industries
  10. Culture Jamming
  11. Postmodern Culture
  12. Sociocultural Relativism
  13. Subculture

Sociology of Sports

  1. Sport and Globalization
  2. Sexuality and Sport
  3. Social Theory and Sport
  4. Sport
  5. Sport and Capitalism
  6. Sport and Culture
  7. Soccer


  1. Biodemography
  2. Demographic Transition Theory
  3. Demography
  4. Demography of Aging
  5. Family Demography
  6. Fertility and Public Policy
  7. Immigration Policy
  8. Population and Development
  9. Population and Gender
  10. Second Demographic Transition

Economic Sociology

  1. Brands and Branding
  2. Capitalism
  3. Conspicuous Consumption
  4. Division of Labor
  5. Economic Development
  6. Economic Sociology
  7. Moral Economy
  8. Sociology of Work
  9. Sustainable Consumption
  10. Transition Economies

Sociology of Family

  1. Family Diversity
  2. Family Poverty
  3. Family Structure
  4. Family Theory
  5. Fatherhood
  6. Gender, Work, and Family
  7. History of Family
  8. Lone-Parent Families
  9. Marriage
  10. Motherhood

Sociology of Gender

  1. Compulsory Heterosexuality
  2. Development and Gender
  3. Education and Gender
  4. Feminism
  5. Gender and the Body
  6. Gender Bias
  7. Gender Oppression
  8. Gender Role Ideology
  9. Homophobia
  10. Sex and Gender

Sociology of Globalization

  1. Global Cities
  2. Global Economy
  3. Global Income Inequality
  4. Global Justice
  5. Global Politics
  6. Globalization
  7. Glocalization
  8. International Migration
  9. Media and Globalization
  10. World Conflict

Medical Sociology

  1. Health and Culture
  2. Health and Medicine
  3. Life Course
  4. Medical Sociology
  5. Social Epidemiology
  6. Socialist Medicine
  7. Socioeconomic Status and Health
  8. Sociology of Aging
  9. Sociology of AIDS
  10. Women’s Health

Sociology of Organizations

  1. Bureaucratic Personality
  2. Institutional Theory
  3. Labor Market
  4. Labor Process
  5. Management
  6. Military Sociology
  7. Organization Theory
  8. Organizations as Social Structures
  9. Social Institutions of Capitalism
  10. Transnationalism

Political Sociology

  1. Authoritarianism
  2. Authority and Legitimacy
  3. Citizenship
  4. Conservatism
  5. Identity Politics
  6. Imperialism
  7. Political Sociology
  8. Sociology of Law
  9. State and Economy
  10. Welfare State

Sociology of Race and Ethnicity

  1. Affirmative Action
  2. Ethnic Enclaves
  3. Ethnic Groups
  4. Indigenous Peoples
  5. Nationalism
  6. Prejudice
  7. Racial and Ethnic Conflict
  8. Segregation
  9. Tolerance
  10. Whiteness

Sociology of Religion

  1. Belief
  2. Buddhism
  3. Civil Religion
  4. Islam
  5. Judaism
  6. Orthodoxy
  7. Ritual
  8. Secularization
  9. Sociology of Religion
  10. Theology

Sociology of Science

  1. Eugenics
  2. Experiment
  3. Fact, Theory, and Hypothesis
  4. Human Genome
  5. Matthew Effect
  6. Induction and Observation in Science
  7. Science
  8. Scientific Revolution
  9. Scientific Knowledge
  10. Technology, Science, and Culture

Social Movements

  1. Animal Rights Movement
  2. Anti-War and Peace Movements
  3. Civil Rights Movement
  4. Environmental Movements
  5. Gay and Lesbian Movement
  6. Indigenous Movements
  7. Social Movement Theory
  8. Social Movements
  9. Student Movements
  10. Women’s Movements

Social Problems

  1. Abortion as a Social Problem
  2. Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse
  3. Death Penalty as a Social Problem
  4. Disability as a Social Problem
  5. Gambling as a Social Problem
  6. Genetic Engineering as a Social Problem
  7. Globalization and Global Justice
  8. Race and the Criminal Justice System
  9. Unemployment as a Social Problem
  10. Welfare Dependency

Social Stratification

  1. Bourgeoisie and Proletariat
  2. Class Conflict
  3. Educational Inequality
  4. Gender and Stratification
  5. Leisure Class
  6. Race/Ethnicity and Stratification
  7. Status Attainment
  8. Theories of Stratification and Inequality
  9. Urban Poverty
  10. Wealth Inequality

Social Theory

  1. Actor-Network Theory
  2. Attribution Theory
  3. Cognitive Dissonance Theory
  4. Conflict Theory
  5. Critical Theory
  6. Deterrence Theory
  7. Game Theory
  8. Expectation States Theory
  9. Feminist Standpoint Theory
  10. Grounded Theory
  11. Identity Theory
  12. Labeling Theory
  13. Queer Theory
  14. Rational Choice Theories
  15. Role Theory
  16. Social Exchange Theory
  17. Social Learning Theory
  18. Social Network Theory
  19. Structural Functional Theory
  20. System Theories

Urban Sociology

  1. Built Environment
  2. Urban Ecology
  3. Urban Policy
  4. Urban Political Economy
  5. Urban Poverty
  6. Urban Renewal
  7. Urban Revolution
  8. Urban Space
  9. Urban Tourism
  10. Urbanization

Since its inception through the early decades of the 20th century, the discipline of sociology was essentially monolithic in perspective, representing a rather narrow range of topics in social problems areas. Early sociologists were essentially generalists, and during the first 100 years of disciplinary activity, the literature of sociology expanded only incrementally. By mid-20th century, however, there was a sufficiently large body of sociological literature on which to draw and a much broader and energized sociological curiosity as to foster some degree of specialization.

With its new focus on theories of the middle range, sociological inquiry developed into a multifaceted perspective, representing a variety of specialty topics and an expanded literature in which a proliferation of knowledge is documented. Sociologists thus developed an expansive array of specialty knowledge that represents the variety of research and theoretical activity within the discipline. Now, in the 21st century, the success of the past century requires a comprehensive survey and assessment of the many specialty topics in sociology that is essential for organizing this vast information. Each research paper linked from this list of topics provides a comprehensive research on one of these specialty topics. This list of sociology research topics also represents a thorough inquiry into the state of knowledge and scholarly thinking in each of these specialty areas by offering authoritative insightful papers on the various subfields in sociology, provide an assessment of contemporary knowledge, and brief projections of anticipated future theoretical development and research activity in particular topic.

For more than 100 years, sociological research has covered a vast terrain of topics, theoretical perspectives, and methodologies that run the range of mainstream topics of interest, emerging new ideas, as well as topics considered to be peripheral to the discipline but nevertheless draw heavily on sociological literature for their framework. The work sociologists engage in is both pure and applied, and depending on time and space and shifts in the dominant orientation of the body politic, the substance of this work is more or less significant. The discipline of sociology and its researchers are subject to the changing needs of the society that we attempt to better understand. Sociologists have been from the beginning social activists and social policy analysts. These interests and foci continue in the present and will undoubtedly continue throughout the 21st century.


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