The Department of Sociology provides a distinct combination of critical scholarly analysis, hands-on fieldwork experience, service learning and leadership. Through active and collaborative learning, our students master advanced theory and research techniques and have opportunities to engage in the community and the world as active, self-reflective change agents.
While the department offers a range of methods, including historical, quantitative and comparative, we specialize in qualitative analysis. In addition to theory and methods, we focus on:
- Culture and Institutions
- Gender, Sexuality and Intersectionality
- Politics and Social Change
- Race, Migration, and Globalization
- Sociology of Health and Illness
We ask questions in all of these areas about the causes, consequences and processes of social inequality and social change.
Our faculty members and graduates—including more than 200 PhD recipients—have done innovative, often pathbreaking work in the discipline.
"Examining racial inequality in public schools during a pandemic"
Sociologist Derron Wallace saw an opportunity to use his expertise to make a difference.
"How diversity can blind us to society's underlying racism"
Sociologist Sarah Mayorga argues that even though well-intentioned, the pursuit of diversity can blind us to the underlying racism in society.
In addition to mastering sociology theory and methods, you'll focus on one of four areas: gender and family; institutions, culture and religion; health and illness; and politics and social change.
The department offers three graduate degree programs:
- A doctoral program that leads to a PhD in Sociology
- A joint doctoral program in Sociology and Social Policy with the Heller School for Social Policy and Management
- A joint master's program in Sociology and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies that leads to an MA in Sociology and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies