A political science professor chats with a student before class
Lewis College of Science and Letters

Social Sciences

Students and faculty in the Department of Social Sciences take the principles, methods, and goals of scientific inquiry and apply them to group-level, human endeavor.

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Social scientists conduct basic research into fundamental processes, concepts, and interactions. We also conduct applied research where we use theories, methods, and findings to consciously inform and evaluate group-level decisions and practices. Our faculty are engaged in an exciting range of research on science, technology, and the environment; designed objects and the built environment; urban affairs; international migration; American and comparative politics; and policy analysis.

Our majors get special treatment and develop close relationships with their academic advisers, professors, and career counselors. We encourage our students to find the questions and modes of inquiry that fascinate them. We can even customize programs of study to suit an individual’s interests. We work hand-in-hand to help students find the internships, externships, and jobs that will provide them with a real advantage in the post-graduate marketplace.

Our students receive the rigorous, multidisciplinary training they will need to embark on a wide range of fulfilling careers in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Whether seeking careers in management consulting, marketing, survey and design research, higher education, sustainable development, urban planning, social work, diplomatic services, local, or state or federal government, our students benefit from the solid preparation our courses provide. Our majors also give students excellent preparation for law school and advanced degrees in many of the social and applied sciences. In addition, our degree programs complement the more technical courses of study offered at Illinois Tech, making them good choices for students wishing to pursue a dual degree.

Humans play a major role in shaping the implementation of every technical solution that is developed and applied. In our weekly Great Problems, Great Minds Seminar Series, we bring in the world's great minds to speak on the great problems facing society to discuss potential solutions and the interaction of people with potential technical solutions.

Olurotimi “Timi” Akindele

Dedicated to Public Service

Alumnus Olurotimi “Timi” Akindele (PS ’15) is applying his social sciences education in the career he is building in the federal government.

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Shaping a Future in Public Interest Law

For alumna Erin Monforti (CECD ’19), a major in social and economic development policy was the perfect match for her plans to pursue public interest law.

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GDP and the Average Worker

Jonathan Rosenberg, professor of political science and chair of the Department of Social Sciences, discusses the benefits and costs associated with gross domestic product.

Improving the City He Loves

As a first-generation college student at Illinois Tech, Allan Huang (CECD ’18) knew the challenges that can come with immigrating to a new country—his parents did it.

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Featured Faculty

The faculty of the Department of Social Sciences are experts in wide-ranging focus areas within the fields of political science, social sciences, and sociology.

Jeffrey Terry
Professor of Physics Professor of Materials Science and Engineering
Yuri Mansury
Associate Professor of Social Science Associate Chair of Social Sciences
Hao Huang
Associate Professor of Social Sciences
Daniel Bliss
Associate Professor of Political Science Undergraduate Program Director
Patrick Ireland
Professor of Political Science
Chris Himes
Professor of Sociology and Demography
Ullica Segerstrale
Professor of Sociology
Jonathan Rosenberg
Professor of Political Science
Matthew Shapiro
Professor of Political Science Affiliate Professor, Stuart School of Business

“The idea of studying a social science discipline in a technology school was really interesting to me. So far, I’ve especially learned a lot from my IPRO class. People involved in building businesses and creating revolutionary technology came to class and gave us real insight about how they are shaping the world. Those kinds of experiences showed me what real education feels like and what it can lead us to imagine and do.”

—Maraki Zigshaw Tihtina (Social and Economic Development Policy 4th Year)

Maraki Zigshaw Tihtina

“I love the small class sizes at Illinois Tech. I always feel like my teachers have the time and willingness to support me. The Social Sciences department is full of great teachers who have supported me in developing my writing skills and have helped me succeed in my classes. I really feel like I receive individualized support and recognition for my successes and effort.”

Ursula Hersh, CECD ’22

Ursula Hersh

“Illinois Tech provides a very practical approach to education that many other graduates lack. I felt well versed in problems outside my field , working with students in other disciplines, and knowing how to start and manage a project independently. My policy degree specifically contained many hard skills I did not see in my peers. Courses like IPRO (which I did four of!) provided a perfect example of the working world where members of different disciplines self-manage to achieve a project or goal.”

Brian Gomez, CECD ’18

Brian Gomez

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Office Location

Department of Social Sciences
Siegel Hall
3301 South Dearborn, Suite 116
Chicago, IL 60616