United States Masters in Sociology Programs
Masters in sociology programs prepare students for a variety of potential careers across diverse fields including business, education, law, public policy and social work. Students enrolled in Sociology Masters programs learn to analyze how social influences affect different individuals and groups, and the ways organizations and institutions affect the daily lives of those same people.
Why Earn a Masters in Sociology?
Students in a master's in sociology program will study the behavior of, and interaction among, groups, organizations, institutions and nations, and how they react to phenomena such as the spread of technology, crime, social movements and epidemics of illness.
Earning a master's or doctorate degree in sociology may be fundamental for higher education teaching and advanced research or applied careers. While a Doctorate in Philosophy (PhD) is the highest degree awarded in sociology, a master's in sociology degree, which takes from one to three years, may either be a step toward the PhD or an end degree in itself. Generally, it takes about 2 years to complete a masters program in sociology.
FUN FACT: Most sociology jobs require a master’s degree or PhD
Masters in Sociology Degree Programs Overview
Students have the option of pursuing an MA (Master of Arts) or an MS (Master of Science) in Sociology. Typical entry prerequisites include a Bachelor’s degree, letters of recommendation, and minimum GPA requirements.
Master's degree programs in sociology exist with both thesis and non-thesis tracks, as there are two types of sociology master’s degree programs: traditional programs and applied, clinical, and professional programs.
Traditional masters programs in sociology prepare students to enter a Ph.D. program. Applied, clinical, and professional masters programs prepare students to enter
the workplace, teaching them the necessary analytical skills to perform sociological research in a professional setting. Research sociologists are employed in nonprofits, government and businesses.
Choosing a Masters Program in Sociology: Online or On Campus?
Students can choose the learning format that works best for them, whether a campus-based program or a distance-learning option. You can filter your search based on your preference using the GradSchools.com settings. Most students who are interested in looking for a graduate school have a specific location in mind; use the city, state or country tabs to browse Sociology masters degree programs by area.
While it is possible to earn a sociology master's degree online, some online programs require an internship or other practical work experience; keep that in mind when you review the online programs and make sure to request more information from the school you are considering.
Some of the listings you might find may include MA Sociology, MA Social Sciences, Child and Family Law MSW/MJ Dual Degree, MA in Human Development, MA in Counseling and Human Development, and Child Protection MHS.
Masters in Sociology Potential Curriculum
All master's degree programs in sociology feature core training in classical and contemporary social theory, statistics and sociological research methods. This foundation prepares students to examine sociological questions in education, medicine and law.
Due to the broad scope of sociology, many master's degree programs feature concentrations in subareas such as social inequality, businesses and organizations, social psychology, social movements, globalization, urban sociology and politics. Other topics include social stratification, family structure, race and gender.
Sociology curricula vary between programs although commonly integrate training in quantitative analysis and research with topics such as traits of specific societies. Common topics may include:
- Class structures and strata
- Classical and contemporary social theory
- Community and economic sociology
- Education in urban contexts
- Inequality and the underclass
- Social movements
Specializations in a Sociology Degree
Some programs offer concentrations that allow students to narrow their focus towards eventual career goals. Due to the broad scope of sociology, many master's degree programs feature concentrations in subareas such as:
- Social inequality
- Businesses and organizations
- Social movements
- Urban sociology and politics
- Social stratification, family structure, race and gender
- Human Development
- Urban studies
- Social psychology
- Global studies
Potential Careers in Sociology
It is normal to ask yourself: “what can I do with a masters in sociology”,
as the field is broad in scope, and might have applications in a number of areas from business or nonprofit management, to education, law enforcement and social work. Possible job titles include:
- Behavioral Scientist
- Foundation Program Director
- International Health Director (Health Science Administration)
- Policy Analyst
- Research and Evaluation Manager
- Research Scientist
- Social Scientist
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment of sociologists is not projected to grow that much over the next few years, and there will be strong competition for jobs. Furthermore, they report “master’s degree holders will likely find positions in related fields, such as social services, education, healthcare, public policy, or other areas. Although these fields require the skills and concepts that sociologists learn as part of their education, workers should face less competition for positions not specifically labeled as ‘sociologists.’ ”[i]
Ready To Pursue a Masters in Sociology?
If you are interested in studying society and societal behavior, start reviewing Masters degree programs in Sociology to find the one that resonates with your goals and interests
Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/sociologists.htm | onetonline.org/link/summary/19-3041.00
- Cincinnati, OHCincinnati, OH
University of Cincinnati
The Master of Arts degree in Sociology is designed for students who are preparing for a doctoral program and for students for whom the master's is the final degree. Training for the master's centers around the "core" of the field, with special attention...
- Springfield, ILSpringfield, IL
University of Illinois - Springfield
- Hatfield, United KingdomHatfield, United Kingdom
University of Hertfordshire
The MA Politics, MA Social Policy and MA Sociology are designed for those people who wish to continuetheir educational career immediately after obtaining a good class of honours on graduation or who wish to return to higher education at postgraduate lev...
- London, United KingdomLondon, United Kingdom
University College London
This MA offers students the opportunity to develop an understanding of the diverse societies of both the South American continent and the Caribbean from a multidisciplinary and comparative perspective, encompassing not only the Spanish and Portuguese-sp...
- University, MSUniversity, MS
University of Mississippi
- Boston, MABoston, MA
Graduate Studies in Sociology at Northeastern University The Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Northeastern University offers MA and PhD degrees in sociology within a flexible program attractive to students interested in both academic and...
- Quebec, QCQuebec, QC
- Kingston Upon Thames, United KingdomKingston Upon Thames, United Kingdom
Critically analyze, question, interpret and evaluate the effectiveness of interprofessional practice when working with children.
- Baton Rouge, LABaton Rouge, LA
Louisiana State University
The MA Program requires two years of graduate study and is expected to lead onward to the PhD. Appropriate background for entry to the master's program includes courses in sociological theory, research methods, and statistics plus nine additional hours...
- Bowling Green, KYBowling Green, KY
Western Kentucky University
Western Kentucky University offers a broad spectrum of graduate education, scholarly activity andprofessional service within many academic departments...
- New York City, NYNew York City, NY
City College of New York, The
Sociology is the study of social life, social change, and the social causes and consequences of human behavior.
- Reading, United KingdomReading, United Kingdom
University of Reading
The course, available full-time over one year and part-time over two years, consists of the following four units: Theory and Philosophy of Social Scie...
- Troy, NYTroy, NY
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
One of the first universities to offer both graduate and undergraduate degrees in STS, Rensselaer now has 16 tenured and tenure-track faculty members. Most faculty and student research aims to clarify humanity's technosocial problems and prospects. We...
- Leeds, United KingdomLeeds, United Kingdom
University of Leeds
- Leicester, United KingdomLeicester, United Kingdom
De Montfort University
The Master project is aimed at helping produce a new generation of managers in tune with the modern world of sport in its many aspects: economic, lega...
- Leicester, United Kingdom
- Winnipeg, MBWinnipeg, MB
University of Manitoba
The Department of Sociology provides specialized training in the core areas of the discipline (sociological methods and theoretical inquiry), as well as a number of substantive areas: Criminology and social justice Culture and social relations Popu...
- Omaha, NEOmaha, NE
University of Nebraska at Omaha
- Greensboro, NCGreensboro, NC
North Carolina A&T State University
- Long Beach, CALong Beach, CA
California State University, Long Beach
The primary aim of the Applied Sociology MA program is to prepare graduates for positions in a variety of community organization...
- Dayton, TNDayton, TN
Oxford Graduate School
OGS offers a doctoral program in Religion/Society studies designed to teach social scientific research focused on the family, community, and the religious community or a combination of these areas. The institution is non-sectarian and seeks to teach the...
- Columbia, KYColumbia, KY
Lindsey Wilson College
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction program requires a minimum of 30 credit hours.
- Newcastle Upon Tyne, United KingdomNewcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom
This programme is designed for graduates and professionals who wish to enhance their knowledge of the range of sociological work, while also developing a high level of research skills. It provides students with the knowledge and understanding, skills an...
- Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom