The mission of our programs is to prepare students to ask and answer scientific questions that nobody has even thought of yet. Our graduates need to be able to learn new scientific information from primary sources, formulate and ask smart scientific questions, interpret the answers nature gives to those questions, and communicate the results to others in effective ways.
Sociology is the scientific study of human behavior in groups. Sociology classes equip you to critically analyze how the social world is organized, sustained, and transformed and to explore issues of individual agency, power, and inequality. Majors can do internships, research, mentored advanced projects, off-campus study, and conference presentations.
Political science analyzes the political world, and students prepare for work in a wide array of careers as well as rich, productive lives as citizens. You structure a major marked by breadth and depth, and you complement it with courses from across the curriculum. Yet you move well beyond the classroom, with internships, research projects, and off-campus study. Majors look forward to careers in many different fields – like politics and policy (both domestic and international), law, journalism, business and teaching – or graduate study in a variety of disciplines.
Grinnell welcomes scholar-athletes of all majors — and especially if you’re interested in teaching, coaching, or youth activities —to join our physical education program in intramurals, indoor recreation and outdoor recreation.
Historians develop, challenge, and revise narratives and interpretations of human events to understand both past developments and their implications for the present. Through close analysis of primary sources, students learn to frame historical questions, pursue independent research, and present their ideas clearly and persuasively. The history major prepares students for a broad range of careers, and our graduates have become professionals in fields including business, education, historic preservation, information science, journalism, law, and public service.
Through the licensure program in the Education Department, students interested in teaching can earn a license for grades 5-12 in English, the social sciences, the natural sciences, math, and world languages. Students can also earn an endorsement in ESOL teaching. The program guides you through a series of courses that culminate in a semester of student teaching. Course work, independent study, and Mentored Advanced Projects also provide opportunities for students to explore career options such as education policy, research, or school administration.
Economics is the study of how society uses its scarce resources. The goal of the department is to promote an understanding of economic aspects of society and to develop each student's ability to reason about economic issues - that is, to provide a basis for intelligent, responsible participation in modern society. The major is comprised of eight, four credit Economics classes with accompanying course work in History and Mathematics. View more information about the major.
Anthropology is a holistic study of humankind that encompasses archaeology, socio-cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, and biological anthropology. It is highly interdisciplinary, drawing on the sciences, humanities, and social studies. Students have opportunities to conduct fieldwork in any of the subfields. For majors, this can comprise a senior thesis. Grinnell’s anthropology major prepares students for graduate school as well as careers domestically and internationally in such fields as museology, regional planning, journalism, business, social services, and more.