Jessica Tollette, Academic Director of the Bachelor in Behavior and Social Sciences, tells us about this bachelor’s program, the topics it covers, and job prospects for students who graduate with this degree.

We sat down with Jessica Tollette, Academic Director of the program, to find out more about the field, the types of courses in the program, and the career opportunities for graduates.

What is Behavior and Social Sciences?

Behavior and Social Sciences combines ideas from different social science disciplines like economics, psychology, sociology, and anthropology, to think about why people make certain decisions, and to be able to pull different levers to influence and change certain behaviors and decision-making patterns.

One of the commonalities between the new degree in Behavior and Social Sciences and the new degree in Data and Business Analytics is that they have the first year together. And from the Behavioral Sciences side, some people are really excited about people, but they don’t understand that critical to understanding people is being able to work with the numbers, and understanding the data behind the human behavior that we’re actually studying.

So this joint first year gives them a unique opportunity to have a diverse learning environment as well as provide them with a rigorous methodological tool kit to study, analyze, and influence human behavior.

 What’s your advice for students thinking about this program?

My advice for students who are interested in the program is to come with an open mind. It’s a new program and so psychology is fundamental to the study of human behavior, but it’s not the only aspect of studying human behavior.

We’ll also be learning from disciplines like sociology, economics, political science, anthropology, and much more. So being excited about learning from these other disciplines as well is also important.

What kind of work can program graduates find?

I could see our IE University‘s students working in the field of behavior design and consumer experience, I can see our students working for the government, for example growth in “nudge” units which use behavioral science to help influence behaviors.

I think the diversity of courses that our students will be taking can provide them with a wide range of career trajectories.