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Department of Sociology

College of Social Sciences and Public Policy

Get More Than A Degree Applied Masters Degree Pursue PhD in Sociology

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PhD in Sociology

The Department of Sociology at Florida State University offers graduate programs leading to the Master of Arts, Master of Science, and the Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Our primary goal is to enable students to become scholars with the breadth and depth required for independent and significant research. Although our main emphasis is on research, students also obtain the necessary skills and experience to teach at institutions of higher learning (from liberal arts colleges to major research universities), and to fill positions in business, non-profit organizations, and government agencies.

Program Areas

  • Demography
  • Health and Aging
  • Inequalities and Social Justice


Master’s Degree - A minimum of 34 semester hours is required, with a minimum of 21 hours on a letter-grade basis in graduate level courses in the Department of Sociology. Students must satisfactorily complete a number of core courses in theory and research methods/statistics and have their master’s research paper approved by their supervisory committee. Students are encouraged to spread their elective courses over the major areas in our department. The degree usually is completed in two years.

PhD Degree - Formal admission to the doctoral program requires the approval of the Graduate Admissions and Financial Aid Committee and Graduate Director. Students with Master’s degrees normally enter the doctoral program after they have completed the departmental core requirements and after their previous graduate work has been evaluated and approved by the faculty. A student officially becomes a candidate for the PhD degree upon successful passage of the major area preliminary exam. Students must complete core courses and program area courses; a written examination in their major program area; teaching of an undergraduate course; and doctoral dissertation. The integrated Master’s/PhD degree is designed to be completed in five years.

Admissions Requirements

The program is available to students of all majors who have passed with a grade of C or better in a 3-hour college-level course in social statistics and who qualify on the other admissions criteria:

  • A minimum of a 3.0 grade point average for the last 2 years (60 hours) of baccalaureate study.
  • A total of approximately 300 on the combined verbal and quantitative portions of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
  • A 2-3 page statement explaining your reasons for pursuing graduate study in sociology at Florida State University and reporting your personal, professional and career goals. In your statement, identify one or more FSU sociology faculty with whom you would like to work and explain your reasons.
  • An electronic copy of a sample of written work -- a published paper, MA thesis, or on undergraduate coursework paper that is sole-authored.
  • Three letters of recommendation from college faculty/instructors regarding your potential to complete a rigorous program of graduate education.
  • An electronic copy of all transcripts, undergraduate and graduate, reflecting any academic work you have undertaken. (electronic copies to our Department can be unofficial, but OFFICIAL transcripts are required for FSU Graduate Admissions Office).
  • International students whose native language is not English must complete the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a minimum score of 550 (213 computer-based, 80 internet-base).

Application Process

  • Download Form B/Personal Information Sheet (PDF Form)
  • Apply for admission online at the Admissions Office website.
  • Upload writing samples, references, transcripts, and test scores electronically to the admissions application. The Admissions Office requires OFFICIAL copies of all transcripts.
  • Once you have applied, the Online Status Check (OSC) will allow you to check on the receipt of transcripts and test scores, as well as checking the current status of your University application. (Please be aware that the Admissions office processes thousands of applications each semester, and it takes time for files to be updated, especially around deadlines).


Applications must be received by December 15 to be considered for a university fellowship and by January 31 to be considered for funding from the Department (as a teaching assistant or research assistant).

Financial Aid

Office of Financial Aid
Florida State University
Tallahassee, Florida 32306-2430

Office of Graduate Studies
Florida State University
Tallahassee, Florida 32306-1410


Tuition and fee schedules are posted on the Controller's Office website. Tuition is adjusted each fall, depending upon state approved tuition rates. Please note that these schedules are for estimation purposes only, and do not necessarily reflect the intricacies of each individual student's schedule. Information about additional fees can be found here.

If you are looking for the Office of Financial Aid's cost of attendance estimates, they can be found here. Additionally, an estimated net price calculator can be found here.