The master's degree program in Sociology emphasizes in-depth study of sociological theory, quantitative and qualitative research methods, and statistical analysis, while also offering advanced seminars in substantive areas in sociology as a foundation for graduate students' original research projects.
Every student writes a master's thesis as the capstone requirement of the program. Students are prepared to enter Ph.D. programs or embark upon a career where they will use the knowledge, advanced research skills, and enhanced writing, critical thinking, and oral communication abilities gained in the master's degree program.
Point of Pride
The Sociology master’s program is at the gold standard level as described by the American Sociological Association, requiring extensive training in research methodologies and theory. Our program remains the only sociology program at a public university in Illinois requiring a master’s thesis of all students.
University Admission Requirements
A student applying to a master's program must:
- have earned a four-year bachelor's degree or its equivalent from a college or university that is accredited by the appropriate regional accrediting association, or do so within one academic year
- present official transcripts from each college or university other than Illinois State at which graduate, undergraduate, or non-degree credit was earned. Transcripts can be emailed from the university to Admissions@IllinoisState.edu or mailed in a sealed envelope to: Office of Admissions, 201 Hovey Hall, Campus Box 2200, Normal, IL 61790-2200
International students can learn more about specific application requirements by visiting the Office of Admissions.
Additional Program Admission Requirements
A student applying to this program must:
- have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for either the last 60 hours of your undergraduate coursework or any previous work in a master's program
- submit official GRE Scores (use institutional code 1319)
- submit a current resume
- submit a statement of purpose describing why you are seeking admittance into the program (2 pages)
- submit an academic writing sample (at least 5 pages)
- submit names and email addresses of three references for letters of recommendation within the online application.
- Fall (August) Term — March 1
- Spring (January) Term — October 15
- Spring (January) Term — October 1 for International students
The University provides graduate assistantships as a means of financial support. They are intended as a way to facilitate a student's progress to degree while providing important professional development.
To be eligible for an assistantship a student must, generally,
- be admitted unconditionally as a degree-seeking student into a graduate academic program, or have a minimum of 120 undergraduate hours if in an integrated degree program
- be in good-standing
- be enrolled full-time (typically at least 9 credit hours during the fall or spring semesters, or at least 6 hours during the summer session).
Graduate assistants receive
- monthly wages paid in the form of either a stipend or an hourly wage
- a waiver for 100% of tuition during a semester of appointment
- a waiver for up to 12 credit hours of tuition for the summer term immediately following a fall or spring appointment
See Student Accounts for information on tuition and fees. Funding for graduate students is available from several different sources. Students who have been admitted from continuous states including Iowa, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, and Wisconsin will receive in-state tuition.