Students with books

We offer both an MA and PhD in sociology. The MA can be applied in the workforce for career advancement or can be used to prepare for further graduate degrees. The doctoral degree is for students interested in research and teaching careers in colleges, universities, and various applied settings.

Many of our MA graduates are applying their skills in careers in government agencies, non-profit organizations, and private businesses, while many others have continued to PhD study. The PhD program helps students develop proficiency in both research and teaching, and develop specific expertise within one of two broad areas:

  • Social Inequalities (including topics in race/ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class) or
  • Social Institutions (including topics in politics, crime, health, work, education, organizations, science, and culture).

Both programs feature a solid foundation in sociological research methods, theory, and analytic skills. Our graduate programs are small enough for students to enjoy ready access to faculty and strong camaraderie with fellow students, but large enough to accommodate a wide range of sociological interests and a variety of methodological approaches. Our faculty includes innovative researchers and dynamic teachers who share deep commitments to advancing sociological knowledge and encouraging student success. We strive for excellence and diversity among our students and faculty.

Typically, applicants’ previous degree (the BA for MA applicants, or the MA for PhD applicants) is in sociology or a related field, but potential applicants whose backgrounds are in other disciplines are also welcome to contact us to discuss possibilities. We also permit BA holders to directly apply to our PhD program. Students who are interested in funding support (tuition and stipend, in the form of a teaching assistantship or fellowship) can indicate this in their application.

We accept students for fall admission only; for best consideration, applications should be received by January 10, but if space permits we continue to review applications until mid-April.

Explore more and reach out to us with questions!

Contact Us

Prospective Graduates

Questions regarding the application or the application process should be directed to the UWM Graduate School at or 414-229-6569.

Current Graduates

Questions about research opportunities, department funding opportunities, or issues specific to the discipline should be directed to John Roberts.

Graduate Programs

silhouettes of business people in groups
Master’sOn Campus
Program Details
Close crop of graduation robe
DoctoralOn Campus
Program Details

Ready to Apply?

Select the program that’s right for you, and you will find more instructions on how to apply and what to expect.

Graduate Student Resources

Hands over piggy bank and family cutout
The Department offers assistantships and limited scholarships for graduate students.
View Funding Options

Campus Resources

UWM offers a wide range of on-campus resources, such as academic support and mental health resources. Students also find community within our student centers.

Photo of UWM Campus from above looking south, with downtown Milwaukee in background.