Faculty of Social Sciences

Founded in 1964, the Faculty of Social Sciences was one of the first three faculties of Chiang Mai University. Since then, it has expanded substantially in terms of its teaching, research, community services and other academic activities. At present, the faculty has 34 faculty members, approximately half of whom hold a doctorate degree.

Degree Programs

The faculty offers a wide range of more than 200 undergraduate and graduate courses under various programs with an annual enrollment of around 1,100 students; more than three-quarters of whom are undergraduates. Undergraduate students are required to complete at least 138 semester hours. In most of the programs, students are allowed to take courses in other disciplines outside the faculty as electives or minor subjects. Graduate students must complete at least 36-42 semester hours depending on the programs in which they are enrolled.

Department of Sociology and Anthropology

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology offers a bachelor degree in Sociology and Anthropology under four different programs of study: sociology, anthropology, social work and social development, depending on students' choice of their specialized field. Courses provided emphasize social organization, social relation, ethnicity, culture, rural development, social work, social planning and development, and social research and methodology. Apart from the undergraduate program, the department also offers a master's program in Social Development and a doctoral program in Social Science.

Department of Geography

The Department of Geography offers an undergraduate program in Geography. Teaching is divided into three clusters which include cartography, aerial photography, GIS and remote sensing, human geography and physical geography. The first cluster deals with techniques for analyses and applications of geographical data. The second cluster focuses on the interaction between man and the environment. The third cluster concentrates on physical aspects of the natural environment. Currently, the department offers two master's programs (Geography and Geoinformatics) and offers a doctoral program in Social Science (Geography).

Regional Center for Social Science and Sustainable Development (RCSD)

The Regional Center for Social Science and Sustainable Development was created in 1998 with an endowment from the Ford Foundation. It aims to act as a center for the development of social science in countries located in the Mekong subregion. The main activities currently undertaken by RCSD include running of the international master's program in Social Science and Sustainable Development, non-degree training programs, research and setting of a data base project. In the year 2001, RCSD offers a Ph.D. program in Social Science. RCSD programs have drawn students not only from several Asian countries including Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, China and Japan, but also from western countries such as USA, Canada, Germany and Australia. The center has also become a focal point for networking and collaboration within international scholars in social science around the world.

Sustainable Land Use and Natural Resource Management Academic Center (SLUSE)

SLUSE Academic Center is Chiang Mai University's operating unit of Thailand Universities Cooperation for Environment and Development-Sustainable Land Use and Natural Resource Management (TUCED-SLUSE) comprising Kasetsart, Chiang Mai, and Maejo Universities and Royal Forest Department (RFD), and funded by Danish International Development Assistance (DANIDA). SLUSE program applies problem-orientation and interdisciplinary to understand and solve problems of development and environment at community/sub-watershed up to national and regional levels. The program includes interdisciplinary graduate programs (M.S., and Ph.D. in the near future), problem-oriented research employing integration of social and applied natural scientific knowledge and methodologies, short course training, and networking of local national and international stakeholders for learning process enhancement.

Asian Studies Center

The Asian Studies Center is currently operating as a program affiliated to the Faculty. It has engaged in research, information collection and teaching in Asian studies. The Center offers a master's program in Regional Studies in coordination with four other Faculties within Chiang Mai University (Economics, Education, Humanities and Fine Arts). It has also been active in academic collaboration with scholars in countries within the Mekong subregion and Japan. In the near future the center will be offering a B.A. degree program in Thai Studies to both Thai students and Chinese students from Yunnan Normal University.

Academic Facilities

In order to facilitate teaching, research and academic activities, the Faculty has strengthened its library facilities. The Faculty library has collections of approximately 43,000 textbooks, around 13,000 of which are in English. The collections also include more than 300 Thai and international current periodicals. All library holdings are cataloged electronically on a system that is accessible to users in all other libraries on campus and is linked to a variety of remote databases.
The faculty has a computer center with four computer rooms and more than 70 terminals for use by students. Its computing facilities are connected to the University's central computing facility and can support research on an extensive scale. All students are eligible to use the computing facilities, which also offer access to the Internet.