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Faculty in the Department of Sociology and Social Work are actively engaged in a wide variety of research. During the past decade department members have been awarded nearly a million dollars in research grants from the Lilly Endowment, Michigan Department of Education, the Aspen Institute, the Reformed Church in America, and several other funding agencies. Majors are encouraged to collaborate with faculty on research and to participate in the presentation and publication of their findings.

Students have open access to state-of-the-art research equipment. The department is located in Van Zoeren Hall. The Frost Center for Social Science Research is located in the Anderson Werkman Financial Center. In addition to a large electronic library of social science data, the department has access to a computer assisted telephone interviewing system (CATI), quantitative and qualitative data analysis software packages, an optical scanner, and a local area network of computers for student use.

General topics of collaborative faculty-student research have included:

  • gender differences in educational attainment
  • organizational changes in religious denominations
  • growth of Third World urbanization and inequality
  • post-traumatic stress and violence
  • funding of non-profit organizations
  • attitudinal surveys of Reformed Church seminarians, clergy, and laity
  • development of grassroots social movements
  • issues related to rural family life
  • teaching strategies
  • the social construction of motherhood
  • nonprofit organizations in Romania
  • recruitment and retention of athletes in MIAA
  • community health
  • violence exposure and coping
  • women's health

For more information about research opportunities contact Professor Deborah Sturtevant, Chair, Department of Sociology and Social Work.

David Blystra attends the National Conference on Undergraduate Reearch at Weber College in Utah - 2012

Hope College Undergraduate Research Celebration - April 2012


Amway Grand Plaza Research Presentation - June 2013


Samantha Hartman at the National Council on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) in Lexington, KY
Spring 2014


2015 CUR 2015 CUR Hope Undergraduate Research Celebration 2015, Joy Hartman, Samantha Hartman, and Dr. Deborah Sturtevant



National Association of Christian Social Workers Annual Convention 2015 at the Amway Grand Plaza.

Dr. Dennis Feaster and Dr. Deborah Sturtevant attended with students Terah Ryan, Allison Middleton, and Samantha Klokkert.