PhD in Sociology

Admission Requirements

The department accepts only applicants who wish to be candidates for the PhD. Applicants are not admitted as candidates for the MA as a terminal degree. Applicants are considered on an individual basis. In addition to the Graduate College minimum requirements, applicants must meet the following program requirements:

  • Prior Degrees A master’s degree in sociology or equivalent is required. Prior work in social science and sociology is recommended.
  • Grade Point Average At least 3.00/4.00 (B average) for the final 60 semester (90 quarter) hours of undergraduate study, including all of the work taken in the quarter or semester in which the student began the final 60 semester hours of undergraduate study. A 3.50/4.00 cumulative grade point average for work completed beyond the baccalaureate is required.
  • Transcripts Required from all institutions where the applicant earned the last 60 semester (90 quarter) hours of study toward the baccalaureate degree and from all institutions where postbaccalaureate work has been done.
  • Tests Required The GRE is required.
  • Minimum English Competency Test Score
    • TOEFL The TOEFL score cannot be more than two years old. UIC’s Institutional Code is 1851; 550 (paper-based). The minimum TOEFL score accepted for admission is 80, with subscores of Reading 19, Listening 17, Speaking 20, and Writing 21 (iBT Internet-based), OR,
    • IELTS 6.5, with subscores of 6.0 for all four subscores, OR,
    • PTE-Academic 54, with subscores of Reading 51, Listening 47, Speaking 53, and Writing 56.
  • Letters of Recommendation Three letters of recommendation are required. Letters from former and/or current teachers able to comment specifically on the applicant’s academic achievement and ability are strongly preferred. At least two should be from professors at the university where the master’s degree was obtained.
  • Personal Statement Required.
  • Writing Sample Required.

Degree Requirements

Master of Arts

  • Minimum Semester Hours Required 37, depending on the student’s level of preparation.
  • Course Work Students may petition the director of graduate studies to apply up to 8 hours of comparable course work taken prior to admission toward the departmental requirements.
    Required Courses
    Sociological Statistics
    Intermediate Sociological Statistics
    Sociological Research Methods I
    Sociological Research Methods II
    Sociology of Inequality
    Classical Sociological Theory
    Contemporary Sociological Theory
    ProSeminar
    Select one of the following:
    Sociology of Childhood and Youth
    Seminar: Race, Ethnicity, and Gender a
    Gender
    Sociology of Race and Ethnicity
    Seminar: Social Institutions a
    Social Organization
    Global and Transnational Sociology
    Seminar: Political Sociology
    One 500-level course (approved by the director of graduate studies)
a

SOC 520 and SOC 540 may be repeated for credit if the topic is different for each registration. Students who elect to satisfy the degree requirements by taking these specialty seminars may either take both courses or repeat one of them.

  • Comprehensive Examination None.
  • Thesis, Project, or Course-Work-Only Options Course Work. Students must earn at least 4 hours in SOC 596.

Doctor of Philosphy

  • Minimum Semester Hours Required 24–40 hours of course work beyond the MA; 19–35 dissertation research hours. The minimum number of hours beyond the baccalaureate is 96.
  • Course Work Required Courses: MA in Sociology course requirements (37 hours depending on the student’s level of preparation). Students with an MA from another institution must satisfy UIC Sociology MA requirements. The graduate director will evaluate student’s prior preparation and performance in satisfying these requirements.
  • In addition to SOC 509 and SOC 593, students must complete three graduate seminars (4 credit hours each) beyond the two taken to satisfy the requirements of the MA. Students must take two courses from the following: SOC 515, SOC 524, SOC 525, SOC 547, SOC 549, SOC 565; and one additional course, which can either be a specialty seminar (SOC 520, SOC 540) or a course approved by the director of graduate studies. The course content of SOC 520 and SOC 540 varies from term to term.
Seminar
Seminar: Sociological Research Methods (may repeat for a maximum of 12 hours) a
Colloquium on College Teaching of Sociology
Select two courses from the following: a
Sociology of Childhood and Youth
Gender
Sociology of Race and Ethnicity (may not repeat) b
Social Organization (may not repeat) b
Global and Transnational Sociology
Seminar: Political Sociology
Select one of the following:
Specialty Seminar b
Seminar: Race, Ethnicity, and Gender (minimum of four hours)
Seminar: Social Institutions (minimum of four hours)
Course approved by the director of graduate studies
a

Students may not repeat any courses from this group (SOC 515, SOC 524, SOC 525, SOC 547, SOC 549, SOC 565) which they took as part of the UIC MA program. 

b

Course content of SOC 520 and SOC 540 varies from term to term. Students will receive credit for specialty seminars taken to meet the PhD requirement only if the topics are different from those previously taken.

  • Preliminary Examination Required. The examination is comprised of two parts: written examination in a major specialty area and an original research paper submitted for consideration for publication. Students must register for SOC 596 while completing their research paper.
  • Dissertation Proposal Defense Required.
  • Dissertation Required.

Interdepartmental Concentration in Gender and Women’s Studies

Students earning a graduate degree in this department may complement their courses by enrolling in a concentration in Gender and Women’s Studies after consulting with their graduate advisor. See Gender and Women’s Studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences section for more information.

Interdepartmental Concentration in Latin American and Latino Studies

Students earning a graduate degree in this department may complement their courses by enrolling in a concentration in Latin American and Latino Studies. See Latin American and Latino Studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences section for more information.

Interdepartmental Graduate Concentration in Survey Research Methodology

Students earning a graduate degree in this department may complement their courses by enrolling in a concentration in Survey Research Methodology. See Interdepartmental Graduate Concentration in Survey Research Methodology in the Graduate College section for more information.

Interdepartmental Graduate Concentration in Violence Studies

Students earning a graduate degree in this department may complement their courses by enrolling in a concentration in Violence Studies after consulting with their graduate advisor. See Violence Studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences section or the Jane Addams College of Social Work section for more information.

Interdepartmental Graduate Concentration in Women's Health

Students earning a graduate degree in this department may complement their courses by enrolling in a concentration in Gender and Women’s Studies after consulting with their graduate advisor. See Women's Health in the College of Nursing section for more information.