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Steps Toward Earning a Master's Degree in Sociology

Each of the following steps are sequential and mandatory.  The following sections detail each step.

  1. Apply for Admission to the University

    • Transcripts and GRE to University Admissions
    • Letters of recommendation, personal statement, copy of transcript and writing sample to Department.
  2. Read the Graduate Bulletin and Consult Departmental Graduate Adviser

    • Register for appropriate classes in accordance with these consultations
  3. Attain Classified Graduate Standing (if admitted conditionally)

    • Complete requirements and inform Adviser to change status 
  4. Submit an Official Program of Study

    • After half your courses are complete and before you Advance to Candidacy
    • You must do this through the Graduate Adviser
    • You must decide whether you are doing Plan A Thesis or Plan B Comp Exam (CE) option.
  5. Attain Advancement to Candidacy

    • Choose a thesis topic OR Comp Exam field of study
    • Choose a chair
    • Develop a proposal (Thesis) OR Reading List (CE)
    • Have the Thesis Proposal Approval Form (.pdf) OR CE Agreement Form (.pdf) signed by chair and second committee member
    • Submit signed Proposal Approval Form or signed CE Agreement Form to Graduate Adviser to be advanced to candidacy
  6. Apply for IRB Clearance if you are using human subjects or certain databases (check w/ IRB)

  7. Submit a Thesis Committee Form to Grad Division (if doing Plan A)

    • You must be Advanced to Candidacy
    • You must have proof of IRB submission
    • Grad Division will then give you the code to register for 799A
  8. Register for 799A (step 7 must be complete) if in Plan A or register for 797 (independent study) in Plan B

  9. Conduct study and write thesis OR write essay and take written exam portion of CE by deadline

    • If this takes more than one semester must register in 799B for each semester until completed for thesis OR continue with independent studies for CE
    • Expect to write multiple drafts of thesis or comp exam essay
  10. Thesis defense OR oral exam for CE

    • Once chair has given preliminary approval and other members have reviewed the thesis you may schedule the defense OR all oral exams for CE’s are done near the end of the semester according to schedule distributed by Grad Adviser each semester.
  11. Submit thesis to thesis reviewer OR chair must submit CE Results to Grad Adviser to Report to Grad Division

    • Make sure thesis formatting is correct and check deadlines each semester (Plan A)
  12. File an Application for Graduation

    • Must be done by deadline  listed in academic calendar (usually third week of the semester)
    • Must re-do if not finished in semester expected
    • If you have filed your thesis at the very end of a semester and it is not approved, you must re-file for graduation the following semester but do not need to pay registration or tuition fees.

Graduate Advising

Dr. Enrico Marcelli
Office: NH-219
Phone: (619) 594-5459
Email: [email protected]