Social Sciences & Humanities
“There is World to be Known”
Social science is a branch of science that is concerned with society and the relationship among individuals within a society. It tells us about the world beyond our immediate experience, and can help explain how our own society works – from the causes of unemployment, reasons leading to economic growth, to how and why people vote, and what makes them happy.
It provides vital information for governments and policymakers, local authorities, non-governmental organizations and educationists. Within Social Science, ‘Humanities’ are a branch of science that deal with heritage and the question of what makes us human. Humanities deal with law, history, ancient and modern languages, philosophy as well as religion.
Social Science also includes, among its various branches, some fields such as anthropology, archaeology, and linguistics. One of the major differences between the two is that humanities involve a more critical and analytical approach whereas social science deals with a more scientific approach.
1. Career Overview
The main career pathways in this domain include, Political Science, Linguistics, Sociology, Geography and History.
Some Career Options
- Political Scientist
Political scientists study political systems from different viewpoints, looking into their inception, growth, and functions. They study the way people organize their societies, whether neighborhoods, nations, or the world community. While most strive to discover the trends that shape our identity, their jobs vary greatly. For example, some survey the public about their political opinions; others use math to analyze election results.
- International Affairs
International affairs analysts are professionals who are interested in and have deep knowledge of international relations; especially of the interests their nation holds in different countries. They can specialize in various areas such as foreign affairs, including worldwide trade policy, international economics, foreign policy, domestic security, terrorism, regional governments and developing nations and international law.
- Political Journalist
Political reporters are responsible for gathering information surrounding current events in government and politics in order to write reports for news programs. Their efforts ensure that the general population can be aware of political and governmental current events. The job description includes researching background information pertaining to news stories in order to provide the most complete information to the public, checking reference materials, such as books, news files, or public records, to obtain relevant facts, gathering data relevant to elections, conduction opinion polls and interviewing politicians.
Some Career Options
Numerous careers can be pursued after a degree in sociology, although a Masters degree in a specific topic would help build your career. Some options are
- Criminal Justice– In corrections, rehabilitation, law enforcement, the justice system, parole system.
- Business and Industry– Advertising, Consumer and Market Research, Management of Non-profit organizations, Human Resources, Training and Human Development, Leadership Training.
- Research and Planning– Governmental and regional planning departments, research firms, evaluation research, public opinion research.
- Agencies-Social Services, Mental Health Services, Adoption, Child Care, Youth Services, Developmental Disability Services.
- Government– Social Science Analysis, Census Bureau and other federal agencies, Administration, Policy Analysis, Personnel, Homeland Security.
- Education– Public and Private Schools, Colleges and Universities, Administration, Alumni Relations, Placement Offices, Educational Research.
- Advocacy– Environmental, Child Welfare, National Policies, Victims Rights, Labor Rights, Community Organization.
- Communications– Technical Writing, Newspaper and Magazine Reporting, Public Relations.
Some Career Options
- Linguistics Specialist
Linguistic specialists study the meaning and evolution of words, sounds and languages. They perform a variety of language-based studies, experiments and trails. This might include tracing the history of a word or sound or searching for relationships between ancient, foreign and modern languages. They typically are employed by the government, colleges and universities or private companies to shed light on the complex nature of diction.
An archivist is a professional who assesses, collects, organizes, preserves, maintains control over, and provides access to records and archives determined to have long-term value. The records maintained by an archivist can be in the form of media such as photographs, video or sound recordings, as well as letters, documents, and /or electronic records. Archivists’ duties include acquiring and appraising new collections, arranging and describing records, providing reference service, and preserving materials.
A librarian works professionally in a library, and may hold a degree in librarianship. A modern librarian may deal with provision and maintenance of information in many formats, including: physical books; electronic resources; magazines; newspapers; audio and video recordings; maps; manuscripts; photographs and other graphic material.
Some Career Options
Hydrologists are involved in the monitoring, management and protection of water and water resources in commercial, environmental and academic settings. They ensure the effective flow of water through channels and pipes for the engineering and control of water provision. Their work contributes to the efficient planning, development and sustainable use of natural and domestic water resources, ensuring water is used and preserved in the most cost-effective manner.
- Environmental Scientist
Environmental scientists and specialists use their knowledge of the natural sciences to protect the environment and human health. They may clean up polluted areas, advise policy makers, or work with industry to reduce waste. They analyze samples of air, water, and other substances to identify and assess threats to people and the environment.
A cartographer is involved with the scientific, technological and artistic aspects of developing and producing maps. Cartographers present complex information as diagrams, charts and spreadsheets, as well as in the form of conventional maps.
A meteorologist is a scientist who studies weather; and may, like a weather presenter engage in weather forecasting, or may solely conduct research. They study the causes of particular weather conditions using information obtained from the land, sea and upper atmosphere. They also study the impact of weather on the environment and conduct research into weather patterns, climate change and models of weather prediction
Pursuing a major or an honors degree in history is a very enriching experience since it enables one to study as well as research on major cultural, social, economic and political events that occurred in the past. A bachelor’s or undergraduate degree helps students gain some junior roles, for instance administrative assistant, management trainee and research assistant in a museum, educational institution or government department.
Opportunities broaden dramatically if one has a Master’s or a doctorate degree.
A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is concerned with events preceding written history, the individual is a historian of prehistory. Apart from working for museums or national archives historian can also work at auction houses, where their in depth knowledge of history and value of ancient objects makes them invaluable.
Some specializations include Numismatists, professionals who analyze the coins recovered from archaeological ruins and Epigraphists, who are also involved in study of inscriptions but they specialize in inscription on various materials like stone, metal plaques, walls of cave, walls of ancient temples, and monuments other than coin.
Archaeologists examine ancient sites and objects to learn about the past. They may specialize in particular geographical areas, historical periods or types of object, such as pottery, coins or bones. The job profile includes deep understanding of history, cultural significance of objects as well as social behavior prevalent in different cultures and eras. It also includes curating, maintenance and preservation of historical objects, artifacts and materials.
Another option for those interested in History is teaching. With a Masters in the subject and after clearing the NET you can apply for a teaching position in universities. If you wish to teach school/high-school students, a BA B.Ed in History will qualify you for the same.
Some Career Options
- Clinical Psychologist
A clinical psychologist’s primary task is the assessment and treatment of mental health issues, including emotional or social disorders. A clinical psychologist’s job responsibilities may also include development and supervision of mental health programs.
- Child Psychologist
Child psychologists help children with mental and behavioral disorders, as well as those who have experienced traumatic events. These professionals observe a child’s interactions and behavior patterns in order to interpret and assess why a child acts the way he or she does. These psychologists are uniquely equipped to deal with childhood-specific issues of emotional development and substance abuse.
Criminologists review criminal acts and assess a patterns in actions, demographics and behaviors. They may also report to a crime scene or an autopsy to determine whether a criminal falls into a specific category based on the nature of the crime and analyze criminal patterns based on biographical, social and psychological factors to aid law enforcement in assessing potential criminals.
2. Academic Steps
The candidate should have passed Senior Secondary School Examination (10 +2) of CBSE or any other examination considered equivalent to pursue a Bachelors degree in Social Sciences and Humanities.
- Entrance Exams
The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras conducts entrance exams for Humanities and Social Science (HSSE).
- Exam Pattern
English (25% marks)
This section tests the candidate’s ability to understand and use English. The questions are related to reading skills, grammar and vocabulary.
Analytical and Quantitative Ability (25% marks)
This section tests the candidate’s analytical skills and quantitative abilities.
General Studies (in four parts – 50% marks)
(1) Indian Economy (2) Indian Society and Culture (3) World Affairs (4) Environment and Ecology
- High Education
After perusing a degree in social science and humanities, students can take up various postgraduate courses in the field of their interest and pursue specializations, such as Master of Sustainability and Climate Policy, Master of Architecture, Master of International Relations and National Security, Master of Human Rights or a Masters in Gender Studies’ to name a few. Institutions are equally competing in delivering these specializations to the students. Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) does not specify any stream but graduation as eligibility for its Common Aptitude Test (CAT). TISS though different modes offer more than 70 odd masters programs in Social Sciences and allied field, which are open all graduates.
Social Science & Humanities graduates are sought after by many employers because of their personal transferable skills rather than the specific skills that they have gained during their degree course. Many of the skills that are gained on a humanities degree are highly sought after in almost every job. These skills include the ability to write well in a variety of styles, to organize your work and meet tight deadlines, to convey meaning precisely, to summarize, argue and debate, to research, select, analyze, organize and present information. The advent of globalization has altered the scope and practice for Social Sciences and Humanities. Fast growing markets, mushrooming media houses and increased importance for higher education and research have brought the Social Sciences and Humanities which were once thought as secondary disciplines to the front. The raising professions of marketing, media, entertainment, research and administration are laying red carpet for students of these disciplines.
The demand created by market economy has raised the prominence of disciplines such as Economics, Commerce, Management, Literature, Fashion Technology, Law, Communication, Fine Arts, English and Foreign Languages. Now, the experts and professionals from these subject areas also commanding great respect and high salaries in the job market; and competing with counterparts in science and technology on the entrepreneurship front.
In India, a psychologist earns between Rs. 60,000 to Rs. 1,200,000 depending on specialty, location and popularity. In a private hospital, a fresh clinical psychologist with an MPhil degree can draw about Rs. 30,000 a month. An archaeologist can expect a starting salary in the range of Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000 per month whereas experienced and qualified professionals can demand salary packages ranging from 5 lakhs per annum to around 8 lakhs per annum. A hydrologist usually gets a salary of Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 to start with. After gaining some on the job experience one can earn as good as Rs 40,000 per month and more. If they go for mass media channels and research work, they may even earn anywhere near Rs 1 lakh per assignment. An environmental scientist can earn a starting salary between Rs. 12000 and 20,000 per month, which can go up to 35000 per month. Meteorologists may get a starting salary of Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 a month and can earn about Rs 35,000 a month after some on job experience. An anthropologist gets an average starting salary of Rs 25,0000 per month whereas experienced and qualified professionals can demand a salary package of Rs 5 lakhs per annum for beginners to around Rs. 8 lakh per annum for those in senior positions.
4. Information on Colleges
Given Below are some of the more reputed colleges in India (not in rank or order)
Note: This is not an exhaustive list.
- Symbiosis International University,Pune
- Lady Shri Ram College (LSR) for Women, New Delhi
- St. Stephen’s College, New Delhi
- St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai
- Jyoti Nivas College Autonomous, Bangalore
- Ramjas College, Delhi
- Miranda House, New Delhi
- Elphinstone College, Mumbai
- Christ College, Bangalore
- Hindu College, New Delhi
- Russell Square International College, Mumbai
- St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata,
- Tata Institute of Social Sciences,Mumbai
Funding and Scholarships
Given Below are some organizations offering scholarships
Note: This is not an exhaustive list.
- The Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation
- Sir Dorabji Tata Trust
- Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan
5. International Focus
Given Below are some of the more reputed colleges outside of India (not in rank or order).
Note: This is not an exhaustive list
- Stanford University
- University of Oxford
- Australian National University
- University of Chicago
- University of Toronto
- Princeton University
- University of Cambridge
- Harvard University
- University College London (UCL)
- Yale University
- University of British Columbia
6. Top Companies
- Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
- Advanced Land and Water Inc.
- North Shore Counseling and Wellness
- Biosis Research Pvt. Ltd.
- The Goldsmiths’ Company
- Clarion County
- Lion Bridge
- India Meteorological Department
- Arc Geosystems
- Archaeological Survey of India
- Integrated Language Solutions