Current students can find information here about relevant policies, PhD requirements, specialty areas, specialty area exams, courses, and the graduate faculty.


PhD Program Requirements

The general requirements of the Ph.D. consists of 40 credits of coursework, 3 credits of Masters level research, a Second-Year Research Paper, the passing of one specialty exam, 12 credits of Dissertation research, and a Dissertation.

Specialty Areas

The sociology doctoral program is a focused program of study in which students not only receive training in theory, methodology, and statistics, but also develop in‐depth knowledge in two specialty areas. Through comprehensive exams, students are required to demonstrate knowledge in two of the broad specialty areas listed below. These overarching specialty areas incorporate many of the research foci of our faculty.

Specialty Area Examinations

Currently, students must sit for exams in one of the department's five identified specialty areas.


Information about courses in the PhD program.

Important Forms

Find forms related to various stages in the program.

Graduate Office Feedback Form

The Graduate Office continually strives to improve the services it provides to our graduate students. We welcome your feedback on things we could do better, things we are already doing well, or additional services you would find helpful. Feedback is anonymous.

link to the graduate office feedback form

Department of Sociology Graduate Student Mentoring Policy

Vibrant and intellectually dynamic relationships between graduate students and faculty mentors lie at the heart of graduate education. Successful mentoring is based on the principles of honesty, integrity, collegiality, mutual respect, responsibility, and accountability; in other words, trust. Outstanding faculty mentors are critical to graduate education and to creating a successful graduate student experience. Graduate student mentoring is an essential and central element of the job of all graduate faculty members at a research university. Consistent with this understanding, the Department of Sociology has established a Graduate Student Mentoring Policy, which can be downloaded here.

Departmental Graduate Student Grievance Process

The Departmental Graduate Student Grievance Process was adopted at the February 10, 2021, Departmental Meeting. Developed by the Equity & Justice Committee, the process provides both informal and formal mechanisms for graduate students to report behavior that "is discriminatory, unethical, unjust, uncivil, or otherwise creates a hostile learning or working environment." The process is not punitive, but is informed by transformative and restorative justice approaches.

You can download a PDF of the process here.


Graduate Grievance Form

Departmental Expectations for Graduate Assistants and GA Supervisors

In February 2024, the department revised the expectations for relationships between GAs and their supervisors. You can view the expectations here.

current students at the 2013 ASA Conference