Social and Behavioral Sciences

Overview

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Overview

The Social and Behavioral Sciences major is an interdisciplinary program providing perspectives and critical analyses from Anthropology, Psychology, and Sociology to prepare students for the complexity of diverse local communities and the global world we live in. The major provides an excellent foundation for careers in social services, mental health, public health and public safety, early childhood care and education, law and public policy.  Designed to enhance understanding of the psychosocial and cultural influences shaping individual lives and social institutions, the curriculum interweaves interdisciplinary courses in liberal arts with foundational SBS courses and an extensive array of electives, including professional applications. 

With approximately 70 community partners in the local area, SBS embraces community engagement as a high-impact practice that fosters engagement in civic life and ethical citizenship.

The major provides tremendous flexibility to students who wish to design their own focal area, while also offering an array of predesigned pathways of specialization: Counseling, Early Childhood Studies, Public Health, and Community Response and Mental Health. In all of these areas, exploring the intersections of individual, social, and cultural influences deepens understanding and professional competencies. Students may also choose to integrate the SBS major with related minors or certificates, such as Leadership and Organizational Studies, Gerontology, or certification as an Early Childhood Teacher (Maine 081 endorsement) or Mental Health Rehabilitation Technician /Community (MHRT/C).

A critical component of the SBS degree program is the internship (LAC 447). With the assistance of their faculty advisor and the Internship Coordinator, students identify an organization that will enable them to evaluate potential career opportunities and develop workplace skills. Students also participate in a sequence of two 1.5-credit hour seminars where they learn aspects of career decision making and launching a successful career.

The SBS major provides accelerated pathways to graduate programs including the Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) program, the Master of Leadership Studies (MLS) program, and the Master of Public Health (MPH) program at USM.  Additional accelerated undergraduate-to-graduate programs are currently in development.

The general SBS degree is available fully online.  The concentrations are not available fully online; however a subset of courses from each concentration is offered in online format. For more information contact Admissions at admitusm@maine.edu or visit the Office of Undergraduate Admission for application information.