Graduate Program in Sociology
The admissions deadline is DECEMBER 15
For the most comprehensive information on the
graduate program in Sociology view the
View the "Graduate Guide" website for info on grad student life in Charlottesville.
A distinguished feature of our program is that students have unusually close contact with an intellectually lively, diverse faculty. Course requirements ensure competence in social theory and research methods, as well as broad exposure to the key concerns of the discipline. Students may also opt for a limited number of independent study courses under the direction of individual faculty members. Learning is not limited to the classroom: students gain valuable experience as research and teaching assistants, from colloquia featuring distinguished scholars from other universities, and from their own informal study groups.
The curriculum is designed to promote students' ability to think broadly and theoretically, to research creatively with sophisticated skills, and to critically understand substantive developments within sub-fields of the discipline. In short, students are encouraged to become active contributors of sociological knowledge. To this end, the curriculum involves a combination of required courses and ample opportunity for students to pursue their particular interests through course work, individual study, and research. The Department stresses the value of students becoming broadly educated scholars rather than narrow specialists. This broad base allows graduates to pursue diverse interests throughout their career.
Courses are often complemented with independent study under the supervision of a faculty member. Independent studies are often designed to help students develop ideas for their research. Of course, much of students' intellectual development comes through the process of conducting their own research.
As much as graduate study involves individual effort, it is also a richly communal experience. Graduate students learn from each other in small seminars, and because all students have a common grounding in the required "core" courses, intellectual exchange emerges readily. A Colloquium series also builds intellectual community: faculty and students come together to hear talks from esteemed scholars and enjoy a reception afterward. Conversations on scholarly and other matters extend outside the classroom, often in graduate student offices, and the nearby "Corner" restaurants.
The Graduate Student Association organizes presentations on many topics of academic and professional interest to students. For instance, at a brown bag lunch faculty members have passed on "tricks of the trade" in getting published, and students on the job market have tried out their "job talk" before a student audience. Graduate students actively serve on departmental committees and are represented in departmental meetings. And more informally, the communal side of graduate student life is fostered by the many social and cultural activities at the University, intramural sports, departmental functions and the remarkable cooperation that students extend to each other.
NOTE: We do not offer a self-standing Masters program. Students entering without a prior M.A. may earn an M.A. en route to the Ph.D.
A student wishing to visit the UVA Sociology Department should submit a statement specifying the desired time period of the visit and explaining why she or he wishes to come, a transcript, relevant test scores if available (e.g. GRE, TOEFL), and a writing sample to the Graduate Admissions Committee. The faculty member wishing to sponsor the student should also submit a short statement explaining why he or she believes the student and the department would both benefit from the student's visit. The admissions committee will then conduct a brief review of these materials and make a recommendation to the chair. Contact the Graduate Administrative Assistant with further questions.