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NMSU’s Online Sociology Program Ranked Among Top 10 Nationwide

Darren Phillips, NMSU

  New Mexico State University’s distance education bachelor’s degree in sociology was ranked 10th in the nation for 2015-16 by TheBestSchools.org, an independent organization that focuses its ranking system on quality of programs, types of courses provided and faculty strength as well as school awards, rankings and reputation.

“I am pleased to see our sociology program recognized for its efforts in online education,” said Christa Slaton, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “The option to enroll in a quality online degree program allows students who have jobs and family demands the flexibility to pursue their educational goals.”

NMSU was listed on among the top 10 on TheBestSchools.org’s top 25 list for online sociology undergraduate programs behind schools such as Arizona State University, University of Colorado Denver and Oregon State University.

“One of the areas that we have increased our focus on over the past few years involves the border. We are in a unique position here at NMSU, in southern New Mexico that is unlike nearly all Sociology programs, i.e., we are on the border,” said David LoConto, sociology professor and department head in the College of Arts and Sciences. 

“Most of the faculty members are doing work on social issues that reflect life on the border or in the desert Southwest. So a student who lives in Toronto, Canada will take courses, not only on the basics of Sociology, such as social theory, methods, statistics, deviance, the family, etc., but they also will have an opportunity to take courses that reflect a part of the world that is so politically relevant. And they are taking these courses from faculty members who are living in that place of study. We are here.” 

NMSU’s distance education bachelor’s program in sociology has grown since it began in 2003 and now serves approximately 120 majors. 

“Evaluations from the students of the faculty and the classes have been overwhelmingly positive,” LoConto said. “We have great sociologists at NMSU, and it is evident in the quality of teaching that is done both in the classroom and online.

“I am always impressed when online students come for commencement and they will arrive early in the week and come visit the department. It is important for them to get to meet in person the professors they've come to appreciate through distance education.”

Information from NMSU