United States Sociology Graduate Schools & Programs
Sociology graduate schools offer students the chance to pursue advanced study of communities of all shapes and sizes. They use scientific research and quantitative analysis to try and understand more about human relationships, cultures, and societies all around the world. Sociology graduate school programs might touch on a wide range of related subject areas, including business, psychology, anthropology, and political science. And by studying in a graduate school program, you’d not only have the chance to learn in a convenient location, but also one tied to your community, with the unique local perspective to potentially better understand your own home.
Why Consider Sociology Graduate Schools?
As a student in a sociology graduate school program, you might not just have access to campus resources—though that’s certainly a valuable perk. You might also get to study in a program with a local perspective. That’s because a local campus is anchored in its community, with faculty who live and work there every day. Campus programs may also have connections with local organizations, creating potential opportunities for fieldwork or networking.
Studying on campus also means that you could do so with the personal support of your teachers, advisors, and peers. You could meet face to face and discuss your challenges, lean on their expertise, and take advantage of the facilities and resources at the department’s disposal.
All that, and you might find sociology graduate programs in a convenient location from home or work. Some campus programs even offer some online learning options and flexible scheduling, making it easier to fit your courses into your life.
Types of Sociology Graduate Schools
Sociology graduate schools offer programs at different levels, ranging from masters to doctorate. Within each level, individual programs typically fall into one of two
- Research Scholarship: These types of programs emphasize research methodologies and practice. They aim not only to foster a solid background in sociology theory and research, but also the skills to perform original research. They may look toward positions in academia, including teaching sociology at the university level.
- Practitioner-Oriented: Rather than focusing primarily on academia, these types of programs aim to help students apply sociology expertise in the field. While research may still be an important component, programs like this might focus on how to apply research findings constructively, or to use those skills to analyze real-life scenarios.
Bear in mind as you search that some sociology graduate programs may not align to the two descriptions above. Additionally, some schools might use different terminology to describe these ideas. What’s important is to think about your goals as a student and professional, and examine how those goals align with a potential graduate school’s sociology program.
Masters in Sociology Programs
Sociology masters schools tend to focus on understanding and applying sociology research, while establishing a firm grounding in sociology theory and practice. Some programs may ask students have some professional experience, in addition to a related bachelors degree. However, that’s not always the case. Other masters schools may be designed for students who are new to sociology and want help getting started. Masters programs often culminate in a final project requirement, usually along the lines of a thesis or research-focused capstone.
Sociology PhD Programs
Sociology doctorate schools focus on advanced sociology research and topical issues. In addition to coursework, students may be expected to perform original research as part of their dissertation or capstone requirements, contributing to the larger body of knowledge in the sociology field as a whole. Applicants may need a masters in sociology or a related field. Some programs may also ask for demonstration of previous research and/or professional experience.
Sociology Graduate Certificate Schools
Sociology graduate certificate programs may be offered at a variety of graduate schools, at both the masters and post-masters level. These programs tend to require fewer courses overall compared to degree programs. As such, some programs may be focused on a single topic of concern within sociology. For example, one might study family structures, disability policy, human migration, or gender in society. The topics vary by school and program. Reach out to the schools you’re considering for more information on the options available and how that impacts the curriculum.
Human Development Schools
Human development is a concentration within sociology and brings together neuroscience, psychology, and sociology to examine the relationship between people and society as they age. Programs may touch on how people interact with families, peers, and their communities at different ages. They may also examine the perception of age within different communities, and policy issues as they relate to people at different stages of life. Human development programs may be offered by graduate schools at the masters and doctorate level. Graduate certificate programs may also be available.
Find Sociology Graduate Schools
If you’re ready to begin applying to sociology graduate programs, start your search right here! Use the menu to select your preferred degree level or concentration. Then read more about those programs, and review the matching sponsored program listings. Click on the name of a program to find out more about it and to request information. You could even get in touch, schedule a campus visit, or start your application!
- Chicago, ILChicago, IL
Loyola University Chicago
The School of Law at Loyola offers the Master of Jurisprudence (M.J.) degree to professionals working in the field of child welfare who do not want to practice law but who seek a deeper understanding of the laws affecting children and families.
- Chicago, IL
- Chestnut Hill, MAChestnut Hill, MA
Aging and the Life Course; Environmental Sociology; Family and Carework; Gender; Global and Transnational Sociology; and Race...
- Wilmington, NCWilmington, NC
University of North Carolina Wilmington
Our program is designed for students who combine a passion for public service with the desire to develop the skills necessary to address contemporary social problems and issues.
- Merced, CAMerced, CA
University of California - Merced
UC Merced offers world class graduate training in Sociology, with nationally recognized faculty studying topics at the cutting edge of the discipline. ...
- Atlanta, GAAtlanta, GA
Georgia State University
The Department of Sociology offers the Master of Arts (M.A.) degree program and the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree program, providing students with both a broad exposure to the discipline of sociology as well as in-depth study in special areas of e...
- Atlanta, GA
- Baltimore, MDBaltimore, MD
Johns Hopkins University
The department's graduate program is oriented toward the training of Ph.D.'s insociology. The M.A. degree is granted to students successfully completing eightcourses, including requirements in Social Theory and Basic Methods. Thisdegree is granted as pa...
- Baltimore, MD
- Washington, DCWashington, DC
The Master of Arts degree in Sociology at American University emphasizes sociological theory, social research, and the following areas of concentratio...
- Salt Lake City, UTSalt Lake City, UT
University of Utah
Our graduate program focuses on the quantitative analysis of the global processes that shape the economic, social, environmental, political and cultur...
- Edinburg, TXEdinburg, TX
University of Texas-Pan American
Master of Science in Sociology...
- Hayward, CAHayward, CA
California State University, East Bay
- Kansas City, MOKansas City, MO
University of Missouri - Kansas City
- Arcata, CAArcata, CA
Humboldt State University
A two-year full-time interdisciplinary graduate program focused on the diverse relationships between environment and community.
- Arcata, CA
- Santa Cruz, CASanta Cruz, CA
University of California - Santa Cruz
- Des Moines, IADes Moines, IA
This program is especially designed for human resources and personnel professionals in business, industry and other private and public sector organiza...
- Hackettstown, NJHackettstown, NJ
Designed to meet the needs of the public and private sectors to enhance their leadership and management skills.
- Blacksburg, VABlacksburg, VA
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
The Sociology Department offers programmatic concentrations in Work and Technology, and Differentiation and Social Inequality.