Behavioral & Social Sciences

Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of the Behavioral and Social Sciences is to contribute to the University’s mission of promoting students’ intellectual growth, individual enrichment, skill development, and career preparations in the areas of criminal justice, sociology, social work, and psychology.

The Department

The Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences offers degrees in criminal justice, psychology, sociology, and social work.

Criminal Justice

The criminal justice major is designed to prepare students for entry-level positions in a variety of careers as well as to enable experienced persons to expand their knowledge and improve their skills.


A psychology degree qualifies a person to work in mental health care centers, child and family welfare agencies, law enforcement offices, industries (personnel work), various social work agencies, churches, and private consulting firms.

Social Work

The mission of the social work program at Southern Arkansas University is to graduate students from diverse backgrounds who will be well prepared to launch their careers as competent generalist practitioners as well as continue their education at the graduate level. The program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.


The sociology minor is intended to provide insights into the operation of human society and human social interaction and how that social context influences the lives of people, thus providing both an understanding of others as well as oneself. Students are prepared for occupational opportunities in human services, various federal, state, and local agencies as well as the private sector.

Public Administration

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) is designed to prepare individuals for positions of leadership in public service organizations. This program will provide a strong foundation in public policy, the organizational environment, the management of public service organizations, and the application of quantitative and qualitative analysis to decision making. The development of critical thinking skills and self motivation are key components of the MPA program.

Arkansas Archeological Survey

The SAU Research Station of the Arkansas Archeological Survey, a division of the University of Arkansas System, conducts research and public outreach for 11 counties in southwest Arkansas. We welcome students who want to learn about archeology to join us on digs and to participate in preserving and studying Arkansas’s past. Visit our web page for staff biographies, information about ongoing and past research projects, and volunteer opportunities.