Social Sciences – Shorter University

Sheffield-Thompson Building on Rome campus

The common focus of the Social Sciences Department is the study of people: their individual and group behavior, their history and culture, and the social and institutional structures in which they live. The department adheres to the researcher-practitioner model, providing an understanding of the theories, research, and skills required for life after college as “world citizens.” Students who major in History, Political Science, Psychology, Human Services, and/or Criminal Justice will not only gain an incredible amount of knowledge, but will also learn to think critically, communicate effectively, understand the diversity of histories and cultures around the world, and engage their communities as responsible citizens.

Social Science Objectives

Student Learning Outcomes: Each program will have seven student learning outcomes.  Six will be common to all and one (Content Knowledge) will differentiate each program according to its specific discipline content. The common outcomes will be:

  1. Writing in the Major: Students will be able to communicate clearly and effectively in their major through academic, research-oriented writing.
  2. Oral Communication Skills: Students will be able to communicate clearly and effectively in their major through academic, research-oriented
  3. Research skills: Students will demonstrate knowledge and application of research skills including evaluation and interpretation of data.
  4. Critical thinking and problem solving: Students will demonstrate competency in critical thinking and problem solving related to issues within their discipline.
  5. Awareness of diversity and values: Students will be aware of and sensitive to human diversity and the values and beliefs that bind societies together and make them distinct from each other.
  6. Ethics and Civic Engagement. Students will demonstrate knowledge and application of principles of ethical and civic responsibility.
  7. The differentiated Content Knowledge outcomes are as follows:
    1. Criminal Justice: Students will demonstrate knowledge of criminological theories and the criminal justice system (police, courts, and corrections).
    2. History: Students will demonstrate an integrated knowledge of human, social, political, cultural and intellectual systems.
    3. Political Science: Students will demonstrate knowledge of political behavior, systems, and theories.
    4. Psychology: Students will demonstrate understanding of the theories and basic research issues of psychology.
    5. Human Services: Students will demonstrate integrated knowledge of the history and scope of human services, the skills and competencies of entry level human services practitioners, and the various human systems (individual, group, family, community).
    6. International Studies Minor: Students will demonstrate multicultural and global awareness and detailed knowledge of international issues of international significance.
    7. Pre-Law Minor: Students will demonstrate awareness and detailed knowledge of courts, legal issues, and processes through which law is developed within the American system of government.


We offer a wealth of internship opportunities with the local, state, and federal government as well as private organizations and museums. Recent graduates have held internships with, for example,

Pi Gamma Mu Society

International Honor Society in Social Sciences – Georgia Epsilon Chapter

Pi Gamma Mu induction ceremony 2015

The purpose of the Pi Gamma Mu honor society is to recognize excellence and scholarly achievement in the study of the social sciences. Pi Gamma Mu, the oldest honor society in the social sciences, was founded in 1924 and became an international honorary in 1980. Famous members of the society include Antarctic explorer Rear Admiral Richard Byrd, who served as the society’s president in 1928, and President Lyndon Baines Johnson, who joined as a student.

Our Georgia Epsilon Chapter was established in 1963 and is open to Shorter University students majoring in criminal justice, history, history education, human services, political science, psychology. Membership is also open to those students majoring in liberal arts and interdisciplinary studies whose main concentration is in one of those disciplines.  To be invited to join, students must attain a grade average of “B” or better and have taken 20 or more semester hours in the social sciences. In addition to honoring the achievements of its members, Pi Gamma Mu provides opportunities through service projects, publications, scholarships, and lectureship grants.

For More Information contact Dr. Jared Linebach, Chair of Social Science Department at 706-233-7294 or

Our Faculty

Members of the Social Sciences faculty consistently earn high praise from students for their depth of knowledge and engaging teaching styles. With graduate degrees from some of the finest programs in the country, our faculty provides Shorter students with a high-quality, well-rounded curriculum.

Dr. Jared Linebach
Chair of the Department of Social Sciences and Associate Professor of Criminal Justice
Dr. Elaine Barclay
Coordinator of Field Placement and Counselling Services, Assistant Professor of Human Services
Dr. Charles Carter
Associate Professor of History
Mr. Rick Crawford
Assistant Professor of Political Science
Dr. Gary Killam
Associate Professor of Criminal Justice
Dr. Terry Morris
Tenured Professor of History and Political Science
Mr. Leandro Olszanski
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Dr. Justin Pettegrew
Associate Professor of History
Mrs. Andrea Davis Stiles, EdM
Instructor of Psychology
Dr. Christine Szostak
Assistant Professor of Psychology