WPI is internationally renowned as a distinguished engineering school, but we know the world needs professionals who understand the social impacts of technology while remaining literate in both approaches. Our strong social science department prepares students to be social scientists who understand the wide-ranging influence technology has on an incredibly diverse and always changing human world that is full of social challenges.

Renowned faculty in the Social Science & Policy Studies (SSPS) Department offer students chances to make connections between society and technology through research and project work. Many students double major in a technical field and a social science field, finding each complementary to the other.

Our faculty encourages students to pursue the direction that appeals to them most. In our research-intensive environment, we teach students how to design and implement public policies, the reasons why economic policies are not a one-size-fits-all solution, or how and why human beings interact with technology in varied ways.

society

Keeping Ahead of Cybersecurity

As cybersecurity threats increase, social scientists need to stay one step ahead. At WPI, our technical and social fluency merge for a world-class education with faculty who are internationally respected for their cybersecurity expertise. Students learn the technical savvy to protect against threats and study the human behavior that makes cybersecurity such a complex issue.

BS/MS Option

The Social Science & Policy Studies Department offers outstanding students the opportunity to earn a BS/MS degree in an accelerated time. The undergraduate degree is in any major and then is combined with a System Dynamics MS or SDIM MS degree program. Interested students are encouraged to apply during junior year.

Life of a Scientist

Psychology double major Rebecca Burns '17 and economics professor Michael Radzicki and are among more than a dozen members of the WPI scientific community who shared what being a scientist means to them. 

Career Outlook

Graduates of the department leave with the broad range of technical, scientific, and social science skills that lead to careers in many industries including business, psychology, industry, environmental, law, education, policy, or cybersecurity.

72%

of students complete at least one project off campus

(2016-17)
#2

 highest paid liberal arts graduates in the nation

NerdScholar (2014)
72

countries are represented by undergraduate population

(2015-16)
91%

of full-time faculty have a PhD or terminal degree