The Doctor of Philosophy Program

The areas of specialization offered in the Ph.D. program include:

  • Criminology
  • Community, Agriculture, Food, and Environment
  • Politics and Development
  • Social Inequalities

All students take core courses in sociological theory and research methods. Graduates are prepared for academic careers in teaching and research and careers in applied social research.


Students must:

  • Complete a minimum of 30 credit hours of Ph.D. course work beyond the Master’s degree (33 credit hours of regular course work is required if Master’s degree awarded from another institution) and
  • Complete 30 hours of dissertation research.

The coursework must include 15 hours of core curriculum (6 hrs. theory and 9 hrs. methods) and 18 hours of electives. Upon finishing their coursework, students must take two preliminary examinations.

A typical doctoral study takes five years (four if the master’s degree is from the same program), depending on the nature of the dissertation research.

For details, see the Sociology Graduate Handbook (pdf).