Department of Sociology

Welcome to the Department of Sociology

The Sociology department at Unisa dates back to 1946. From its inception in 1873 until 1946, the University of South Africa was an examinations body, and did not engage in teaching of its own. This changed in 1946, when it was decided that the University would henceforth engage in distance education as well. Soon after that the first Sociology lecturer was appointed. He was Jacobus A. Van der Walt. Mr. Van der Walt joined 9 other lecturers. 

They constituted the total lecturing corps of Unisa at that stage. In 1955 he became the first Professor to be appointed in the Department of Sociology. Other milestones in the department' s history include the creation of the Social Work and Criminology departments toward the end of the 1950' s when they seceded from the Sociology department, and the appointment of the first female professor at Unisa in the person of Prof. Anna F. Steyn in Sociology in 1966. 

The Department of Sociology is committed to

  • locating Sociology centrally in academic and societal discourses; and
  • facilitating relevant and empowering learning experiences.

Last modified: 2023/08/07