Great Sociology Research Topics

Sociology is a fascinating field of study. If you're taking a sociology class or interested in doing some independent research, this list can help you get started.

Sociology is the study of groups of people and their cultures, customs, practices. Because this topic is so broad, and our culture is always changing, the possibilities for writing and research are endless. With sociology, you can research just about anything, from Beyonce to Scientology.

This list will also guide you to make your own, original topic based on theoretical sociology. The top ten sociological subjects are listed below with plenty of ideas for your research.

The list is organized around 10 umbrella topics, each with its own set of mini-topics. These umbrella topics include:

  1. Race, Nationality, and Ethnicity
  2. Mass Media
  3. Sociology of Food
  4. Youth Cultures
  5. Sociology of Gender and Sexuality
  6. Social Movements
  7. Cults, Clans, and Communities
  8. Class Conflict and Inequalities
  9. Spirituality, Superstition, and Legends
  10. Consumerism
  11. The Family

1. The Sociology of Race, Nationality, and Ethnicity

Malcolm X
Malcolm X | Source

Race, nationality, and ethnicity are some of the most written about subjects in sociology. The classical sociologist Emile Durkheim discussed the effects of origin on a person and the solidarity that they feel with others from the same or similar origin. Sociologists like to study these bonds as well as the negative effects of difference.

The census data from your nation provides the raw materials for literally thousands of research papers. The following are some sociological topics on race, nationality, and ethnicity:


  • Racial Segregation in Cities
  • The Correlation between Class and Race
  • [insert race] and Education Levels
  • Interracial Marriage Then and Now
  • Racial Stereotypes and their Effects
  • Culture and Race: Is Environment More Important than Race?
  • Attitudes Toward Race and Police Brutality
  • Race Riots: What's the Cause of Racial Unrest?
  • Relationship Between Race and Class
  • Relationship Between Race and Educational Levels


  • Ethnicity and Race: What is the Difference/What is the Correlation?
  • How Ethnicity Affects Class
  • Multi-Ethnic Individuals and their Position in Society
  • Multicultural Society and the Dominant Culture
  • How the Italians, and Irish Became "White"


  • Patriotism in [insert country]
  • How [insert plural nationality] views [insert plural nationality]
  • Nationality and Pride: What Makes a Patriot?
  • Immigration and Assimilation
  • America: Melting Pot or Salad Bowl?

2. The Sociology of Mass Media and Social Media

We are what we watch.
We are what we watch. | Source

One of the most interesting topics of sociological research is the mass media. What we see on television, in magazines, and in theaters has an effect on us as members of society. There are endless topics to study in the media, but below is a list of topic ideas.

How ________ are Presented in the Media

  • [insert a race]
  • Young Women
  • Women
  • Men
  • Young Men
  • Children
  • Disabled Individuals
  • Celebrities [choose one]
  • The Mentally Challenged

The Media's Target and Portrayal for Profit

  • What Commercials Play at What Times During the Day? [Also, which channels do they play on?]
  • Who Consumes the Most [insert genre] Music?
  • Sexuality and Disney Movies
  • Romantic Comedies and Women
  • Gym, Tan, Laundry: A Study of Jersey Shore and its Viewers
  • Children's Television
  • Ratings and New Technologies: How Youth Watch Television

Social Media

  • Youth and Social Media
  • Social Media and Celebrity
  • Harassment and Bullying on Social Media
  • Social Networking in the New Millennium
  • Twitter vs. Facebook vs. Instagram: Who Uses Each and Why?
  • Does Social Media Make Us Lonely?
  • Does Social Media Promote Narcissism?

3. Sociology of Food and Eating

These are the foods we eat in Hawaii.
These are the foods we eat in Hawaii. | Source

Food culture is a very interesting topic to research not only in terms of how food is produced and distributed but also in terms of how it's consumed. Here are some possible research topics for those of you who want to learn more about how our food is grown, distributed, consumed.

How Food is Made:

  • Where Does Food Come From? Meats, Vegetables, and More
  • How Does [insert fast food place] Make their Food?
  • Food Laws and Regulations
  • Which Companies Supply Food to the US?
  • The Use of Pesticides in Farms
  • Monsanto Seeds
  • The Seed Bank
  • Farmers Markets and The "Slow Food" Movement
  • The Rise of "Organic" Farming

How Food is Distributed:

  • Import-Export Practices around the World
  • Food Packaging Messages
  • The Locations of Fast Food Chains in Relation to Low-Income Areas
  • The Geographical Difference in Food Distribution: Class Inequality

How Food is Consumed:

  • The Difference in Serving Sizes Over Time
  • Do you Know What's In Your Food? A Study of Nutritional Facts and Food Education
  • Where Do People Eat?
  • Family Dinners and the Modern Day
  • [Insert Country/State/City] Food Culture
  • Are We What We Eat? A Study on Obesity
  • Child Obesity
  • Has Technology Changed the Way We Eat?
  • Vegetarians, Vegans, and Others with Personal Food Regulations
  • How the Media Advertises Food
  • Attitudes Toward GMOs
  • How Eating Habits Change Over Time

4. The Sociology of Youth Culture Today

Punk is a youth subculture that many have written about.
Punk is a youth subculture that many have written about. | Source

Youth culture is another fascinating sociological topic. Young people belong to many subcultures, which they illustrate in their attitude, clothing, music, and more. Studying these cultures allows us to understand how our world works--particularly the media due to the fact that the majority of American media consumers are between the ages of 14 and 21.

  • Hip Hop Culture in the 80's, 90's and 2000s
  • Punk: Anarchy, Rebellion, and Revolution
  • Extreme Sports Culture: Surf, Skate, and Snow
  • How Adolescents are Affected by the Media
  • "Emo" Culture: The Self-Destructive Teen
  • Mean Girls: A Study of Competition between Young Women
  • Jock Culture
  • At-Risk Youth and Deviant Behavior
  • Messages Promoted in [insert genre here] Music
  • Masculinity and Femininity in High School
  • Cliques and Outcasts: A Study of a High School Social Structure
  • Bullying
  • Cyber Bullying
  • Maturity and the Media: Are Teens Pressured to Mature as Fast as their Favorite Stars?
  • Sex and Adolescents

5. The Sociology of Gender and Sexuality

Genderless People
Genderless People | Source

The gender divide has been one of the most important subjects that sociologists study because it exists in every culture around the world. Men and women have always been opposites in society, which has contributed to numerous inequalities. The following is a list of sociological research topics on gender.

  • Gender Inequality on the Job
  • Gendered Occupations: Nurses and Contractors
  • Women in the Workplace
  • Transgendered Individuals
  • Homosexuality and How it is Portrayed in the Media
  • "Coming Out": Feared or Loved
  • The Gender Bias: How Men and Women are Treated Differently in Law, Media, and Social Interactions
  • Anorexia and Women
  • Gender Stereotypes in [media/workplace/region]
  • The Feminist Revolution
  • Women's Rights and Movements
  • The White (Man's) House

Are gender studies interesting to you?

  • Yes
  • No
  • No, I have learned about them so much already
See results without voting

6. The Sociology of Social Movements

Cairo Demonstration Against the Government.
Cairo Demonstration Against the Government. | Source

Studying social movements and revolutions can illuminate how communities that share the same beliefs and goals form. Social movements are always happening, which makes them current as well as historical, so choosing a topic is easy!

To study a movement, just choose a movement or a group of people that are being oppressed. In addition to studying the movement itself, you can also choose to research its oppression, formation, accomplishments (or downfall), or its impact on larger society. Here are some movements to get you started:

  • The Civil Rights
  • Feminism (Suffragettes)
  • Occupy Wall Street
  • Animal Rights
  • The French Revolution
  • Nazism
  • Prohibition
  • The Tea Party
  • Disability Rights
  • Gay Rights (Gay Marriage)
  • Fair Trade
  • Human Rights
  • Anti-Nuclear Movement
  • American Indian Movement
  • #BlackLivesMatter
  • Anti-Psychiatry
  • Anti-Vaccination

Intro to Social Movements

7. The Sociology of Cults, Clans, and Communities

"2008 anti-scientology protest, Austin, TX 21"
"2008 anti-scientology protest, Austin, TX 21" | Source

7. Cults, Clans and Communities

People in society want to be a part of a group that shares their same beliefs. Sometimes these groups become so united that they are destructive, whereas some of the groups create solidarity, community, and fellowship. The following is a list of religions, cults, and other groups that share similar beliefs and can be studied.

  • Moonies
  • Christians
  • Catholics
  • Ku Klux Klan
  • Nazis
  • Hindu
  • Buddhist
  • Charles Manson
  • Judaism
  • Antoinism
  • Scientologists
  • Montana Doomsday Religious Cult - "Church Universal and Triumphant"
  • Scientology
  • Heaven's Gate
  • Branch Davidians
  • The People's Temple (Jim Jones)
  • Aum Shinrikyo (Japanese cult responsible for 1995 sarin gas attack on Tokyo subway)

Sects in the City

8. The Sociology of Class Conflict and Inequality


Classes are treated differently in every society. Because the inequalities are so deeply embedded in our society, it is difficult to eliminate them. Geographically, classes are segregated, which further complicates the pursuit for equality. Here are some topics to study:

  • Class and Geographical Segregation
  • Ghettos and Gated Communities
  • Food in Rich and Poor Areas
  • Schools in Low-Income Neighborhoods
  • Taxes and Wages
  • The Effects of the Ghetto on Youth
  • The "Ghetto" Cycle: A Study of Recidivism and No Opportunities
  • Wealth and Race
  • City Funding and District Zones
  • The Geography of Upward Mobility
  • The "Culture of Poverty"
  • The Relationship Between Poverty and Education
  • Class and Parenting Styles
  • The Welfare State
  • Class and Contentment: Does Money Buy Happiness?

9. The Sociology of Spirituality, Superstition, and Folklore

Vittra, a mythical humanlike creature of northern Sweden
Vittra, a mythical humanlike creature of northern Sweden | Source

One of my favorite topics to write about is ancient Hawaiian culture. The ancient Hawaiians had many myths and legends as do numerous other cultures. Sociological studies about myths and legends illustrate the purposes of these legends. Below are some interesting cultures and legends to get you started.

  • Leprechauns
  • Dolphins and the Amazon
  • Pele, the Hawaiian Fire Goddess
  • Viking Legends
  • Egyptian Legends (Tombs, Afterlife, and Tut)
  • Biblical Events
  • Pandora's Box
  • Mayan Culture
  • Lochness Monster
  • The Legend of the Three Sisters
  • Big Foot
  • Alien Abductions

Superstitions in Japan

10. The Sociology of Consumerism


Research about commodities can be done with little field work and mostly with available data online and in books. You could choose a number fo things to write about including the following:

  • Vinyl Records or Music in other forms
  • Currency/Gold/Rare Gems and Minerals (Inflation, Deflation)
  • Art
  • Artifacts (Rare or Other)
  • Antiquities
  • Technology
  • Oil
  • Food
  • Entertainment
  • Celebrity
  • Fashion Accessories
  • Toys
  • Services/Wages

The Sociology of Value


11. Sociology of the Family


The family is another fascinating topic for sociologists. Not only does everyone have a family, but one's family is often an incredibly important influence on one's life, for better or worse! Since our view of what a family is and should be is constantly changing, there's always something new to research. Here are a few topics to get you started:

  • Unconventional Family Structures
  • Influence of Parents on Child Behavior
  • Long-Term Effects of Child Abuse
  • Cross-Racial Adoption
  • Effects of Divorce on the Family
  • Single Parenting
  • Family Differences Across Race and Ethnic Groups
  • Teenage Mothers

More by this Author

Comments 51 comments

kallini2010 profile image

kallini2010 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

It just seemed to me - sociology is about everything. But I agree with you - we live in society; therefore, it is necessary and interesting to know what our societies all about, how they operate... Sociology of food was something new to me...

Thank you for suggesting topics, sometimes it is hard to come up with, well, things, to write about...

I came across an interesting picture on FB today

black/African kids sitting in a circle, all feet together making a perfect circle of feet, almost like a flower and the following text attached to the photo:

"Today i read a story about an anthropologist who proposed a game to the kids in an African tribe. He put a basket full of fruit near a tree and told the kids that who ever got there first won the sweet fruits. When he told them to run they all took each others hands and ran together, then sat together enjoying their treats. When he asked them why they had run like that as one could have had all the fruits for himself they said: UBUNTU, how can one of us be happy if all the other ones are sad?

UBUNTU in the Xhosa culture (where my husband is from:) means: "I am because we are"


I have posted the link for the photo, but I am not sure if it is accessible for you.

I really liked, though, the picture and

"I am because we are"

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Kallini, Thank you for reading and commenting. I loved that photo; it really shows the true meaning of solidarity. Thank you for sharing!

DeborahNeyens profile image

DeborahNeyens 4 years ago from Iowa

I was a sociology minor in college and still find it a fascinating topic today. I think that's why I like reality shows like "Survivor" - they're kind of like sociology experiments. Thanks for the good list of topics.

melbel profile image

melbel 4 years ago from New Buffalo, Michigan

OMG! This is so fabulous! Sociology is so fascinating to me. You've got me wanting to write hubs on all these topics (or at least go to the library and pick up gobs of books to read up on these topics.)

Could you write a hub like this about linguistics? :P

Edit: I'm bookmarking this hub. For realz.

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thanks, Mel! I can definitely make one on linguistics and am thinking about adding more sources to the list so people know where to start their research. Thank you so much! I would love it if you made some hubs out of these (and would love to link to them). Let me know if you do that. Thanks again!

Phil Plasma profile image

Phil Plasma 4 years ago from Montreal, Quebec

This is an extremely impressive list of topics. Indeed, many of them are very interesting. You've done a fabulous job of putting it all together, voted up and interesting.

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thank you, Phil! I'm so glad you found them to be interesting.

Global-Chica profile image

Global-Chica 4 years ago from New York, NY

I absolutely loved this hub, Brittany! I find sociology really fascinating, especially superstitions, social movements, food ethnicity, and mass media...I guess I'm interested in most topics you mentioned and I love how you gave examples of each. You also got me wanting to write hubs about some of these topics - that would be so interesting to research!

Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 4 years ago from USA

What a great list of topics! Sociology always interested me as well. I am bookmarking this hub, and voting up.

Kamalraj Devkota 4 years ago

I found this topic quite informative to those who have just started to ponder over the issues for carrying research. Here, I just say "Wonderful".

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thank you so much!

Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

Brittany, this is such an interesting hub - so detailed! You may well have given lots of other hubbers some inspiration for what to write about next :o)

Of sociological subjects - I am most interested in culture in society; I am fascinated by the role of art & culture on all of us....maybe you've inspired me to get writing.

Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 4 years ago from USA

Brittany, I have included this hub in my favorites for the month. Congratulations! Not only are they great topics for when we need something to write about, they would be interesting reads to see different people's take on the same subject.

Cyndi10 profile image

Cyndi10 4 years ago from Georgia

Hi Brittany, this was a great article. I majored in Sociology in school and you are so correct, it can give you so many topics to write about. I'm glad Millionaire included you link in his article.

@ Kallini, I love the story you shared. Wonderful! I'll try to access the photo.

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Josh, Thank you so much! I also love culture and society (obviously) and am glad that this list may inspire you to write! Thanks again.

Millionaire Tips, THANK YOU for putting me in your hub. You have such an excellent format in that hub; I really appreciate my spot in it with the quote. Much aloha.

Cyndi, thank you too! I majored in soc too and still think it is one of the most versatile majors--you can go into so many fields. Thanks again for your comment.

Danette Watt profile image

Danette Watt 4 years ago from Illinois

I always enjoyed sociology subjects and have done studies on the women's movement and media studies. (mass comm major, women's studies minor). In fact, I found out that Princeton, U of MI and a few other universities are offering FREE online classes and one is Intro to Sociology. Even though I've taken it before, I signed up for it again - sort of a refresher course, I guess.

Lots of interesting topics here, like someone said, I'd like to go to the library and get all sorts of books to read about them but know I won't have the time.

Voted up and interesting.

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thank you, Danette. I would love to take a FREE soc class! What a great opportunity. Thanks again and for leaving a comment.

Danette Watt profile image

Danette Watt 4 years ago from Illinois

You can check it out here

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Wow, Danette! Thank you. It looks amazing! I am going to see if any of the classes are in my area and line up with my busy schedule.

Danette Watt profile image

Danette Watt 4 years ago from Illinois

They're all online - free, no papers to write, no books to buy. As I understand it, if you complete the course and participate in the discussions, etc you get a certificate at the end. This one is 12 weeks, others are shorter, most of them seem to be more science/math oriented but there are several of the "soft" sciences & humanities offered too.

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Wow! I want to do the computer science classes! Thank you so much again.

prairieprincess profile image

prairieprincess 4 years ago from Canada

Brittany, this is fascinating! I love reading about sociology and this is such an amazing list of topics that I want to study them and consider writing about some. Absolutely brilliant and I am sharing!

JT Walters profile image

JT Walters 4 years ago from Florida


Another really informative and professional hub. I would like to see a sociology paper on the contrats between current morrays and past morrays. I would think that would be fascinating.



brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thank you, JT! I think I need to add a section for morays, because they are definitely a big part of sociology. Thanks again!

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thank you, prairie. If you write any, post the link here so I can link to your article. Thanks again!

JT Walters profile image

JT Walters 4 years ago from Florida

A hub on HP morays would be a great article!!


brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

That would be an interesting read! Thanks, JT.

JT Walters profile image

JT Walters 4 years ago from Florida

Forgive me for making such a bold suggestion but I feel only you could do the topic I will await eagerly for your publication.

:) JT

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Aw, thanks JT! I would, but I am part of the apprenticeship program, which requires that I don't publish any hubs that are about HP. That's why I have stopped making the "My Favorite Hubs this Week" hubs. It would be such a great hub to write, though. Thanks again!

stacey 4 years ago

This was so much helpful thank u

Swinter12 profile image

Swinter12 4 years ago from Earth

Sociology incorporates much more than I originally thought; it really is a vast science.

So, thanks for delineating what sociology is all about. I'm definitely going to look into several of these topics.

norah 4 years ago

this was a fabulous thought from you. you have really elaborated the scope of sociology at length.

irene 4 years ago

thank you so much for the list. I do teach sociology of education. I landed on this list because i wanted to organise an exhibition for my students. it has given a variety of what they can creatively present. thank you. keep it up.

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thank you, Irene! I am so glad this could help your students It's so nice that you took the time to comment. It's reasons like this that I write these articles. Mahalo nui loa!

smasemaFarf 3 years ago

Hi there little ones.

Pleasant website. Have a nice morning!

nida 3 years ago

i want a good topic of sociology for presentation, please tell me which topic is good for presntation......?

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 3 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

A lot of the ones listed above are good topics for a presentation. I once watched a presentation about family dinners that was interesting. Good luck!

JT Walters profile image

JT Walters 3 years ago from Florida

Hi Brittany,

It has been a while. I see you are still informing the masses. Just wanted to drop by and suggest the voting habits v charitable contributions of independents would be an excellent sociology project especially since the independent vote seems to always be the most important demographic in any presidential election!

Have a wonderful Sunday.


brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 3 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Thanks, JT! Those are great topics! I hope you have a wonderful day also! I haven't been writing much lately, but do pop in once in a while. Thanks for stopping by. :)

grmc13 3 years ago

How does the U.S. compare to Japan on indicators related to family well-being and stability

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 3 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

Great topic, grmc! Here's a link to a book about the study of family stability and differences between cultures:

Google Scholar is a great place to find material about this. I would also search sociological journals for more info. Good luck!

yanna 3 years ago

. im a sociology student .. im still finding a convenient topic for my THESIS .. thanks for the suggeted topic that listed .. It gave me an idea ..

Rebecca Furtado profile image

Rebecca Furtado 3 years ago from Anderson, Indiana

Socialogy just another great way to see the world through the eyes of a social science. When you combine these studies with anthropology, political science, etc.. you get a rounded view of the world and much closer to some degree of objective truth..or maybe not , I sure the degree in which are world view is colored by our circumstance is a whole other area of study..

Deep Dutta. HARHI COLLEGE. 3 years ago

Thank you so much for the list.

johan smulders 3 years ago

Recently taught Social Psychology at the African Christian College in Swaziland and really enjoyed teaching it because of how practical it is.

hikmat wazir 2 years ago

its really really great ...i m the student of sociology final year from peshawar university pakistan...before to see that i have no idea about research but now i have so many great meterial ideas topics and cleare the way of research.....tnx a lot

KH 2 years ago

This is amazing. I am going to write my Sociology Honours thesis in 2015, and this has given me a fantastic head-start for ideas and inspiration for topics. Thank you!!!

brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 2 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Author

KH, thank you so much! I'm glad I could help! My was a sociology major myself. Good luck and feel free to contact me with any questions or survey requests.

rperson 2 years ago

Thank You So Much :-D

Primel 2 years ago

This is so awesome, I'm due to write a research report this year and hopefully this will help me narrow my topic down. So much interests me so guess i should put my thinking cap on. AWESOME JOB!!!!

Mandy Lee 26 profile image

Mandy Lee 26 2 years ago from St. Pete, FL

Very insightful article; I enjoy the study of sociology so much. The study of mass media is probably the most interesting to me, as it deals with the psychology of popular belief, desires and motivations.

Thanks for the article!

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