The department’s primary educational goal is to train first-class sociology PhDs. The sociology graduate experience at Johns Hopkins is best characterized as a research apprenticeship – a careful blend of formal instruction, faculty-directed individual study, and supervised yet self-initiated research. The department’s small size and specific concentrations yield a personalized course of study and close relationships with faculty members and fellow graduate students. The social climate is informal, and the mix of students and faculty, all drawn from a wide variety of geographic and social backgrounds, constitutes a rewarding intellectual community.
Students must complete the program requirements, which include a core curriculum, elective courses, a research apprenticeship, a teaching assistantship, a residency, and a dissertation. While not required, students may choose a graduate concentration. The Program on Global Social Change concentration focuses on cross-national, comparative research, and log-term, world scale social change. Meanwhile, the Program on Social Inequality concentration focuses on the causes and consequences of social inequality, the social processes that sustain it, and how social policies can reduce it.
For students looking to acquire advanced statistical knowledge and applied research skills, the department also offers a joint program with the Whiting School of Engineering’s Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics. Graduates of the program will earn a PhD in sociology and an MA or MSE in applied mathematics and statistics.