The Department of Sociology is committed to high quality instruction, research, and service activities that contribute to the vision and mission of the University of West Georgia. The Department embraces academic freedom and is committed to fulfilling the core principles and objectives of a liberal arts education. In addition to research and instruction, the students and faculty of the department engage in a wide array of community-based projects that serve the residents of Carrollton and the surrounding region.

For more information, please see the Academic Catalog.

  • Overview
  • Cost
  • Courses
  • Faculty
  • Admissions
  • Dates
  • Objectives
  • Overview

    The MA program in Sociology is designed to prepare students for advanced graduate studies in the social sciences and for professional careers in a variety of settings including federal, state and local government agencies; not-for-profit organizations, community service groups; market research firms; and social service organizations. Coursework incorporates classical and contemporary theoretical perspectives, analysis of cutting edge empirical research, and training in quantitative and qualitative research methodologies. Students can take coursework and specialize in the following areas: community development, social inequality, social psychology, health, housing, environment, comparative sociology, and social movements.

    Program Location

    Carrollton Campus

    Method of Delivery

    Courses are 100% face-to-face.  Most courses are offered in the evenings.

    Accreditation

    The University of West Georgia is accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

    Credit and transfer

    Total semester hours required: 36
    Maximum Hours Transferable into program: 6
    A transfer credit evaluation will be completed by the UWG Transfer Team (transfer@westga.edu). Course application to a program is subject to review by the department.

  • Cost

    This program may be earned entirely face-to-face. However, depending on the courses chosen, a student may choose to take some partially or fully online courses.

    Save money

    UWG is often ranked as one of the most affordable accredited universities of its kind, regardless of the method of delivery chosen.

    Details

    • Total tuition costs and fees may vary, depending on the instructional method of the courses in which the student chooses to enroll.
    • The more courses a student takes in a single term, the more they will typically save in fees and total cost.
    • Face-to-face or partially online courses are charged at the general tuition rate and all mandatory campus fees, based on the student's residency (non-residents are charged at a higher rate).
    • Fully or entirely online courses are charged at the general tuition rate plus an eTuition rate BUT with fewer fees and no extra charges to non-Residents.
    • Together this means that GA residents pay about the same if they take all face-to-face or partially online courses as they do if they take only fully online courses exclusively; while non-residents save money by taking fully online courses.
    • One word of caution: If a student takes a combination of face-to-face and online courses in a single term, he/she will pay both all mandatory campus fees and the higher eTuition rate.
    • For cost information, as well as payment deadlines, see the Bursar's Office website

    There are a variety of financial assistance options for students, including scholarships and work study programs. Visit the Office of Financial Aid for more information.

  • Courses

    Coursework

    The core courses for the Master's program consist of nine hours in theory, research methodology and statistics.

    Students accepted into the program may choose either Plan I (Thesis) or Plan II (Comprehensive Exam). Under Plans I and II students must complete 21 hours of elective course work beyond the core requirements. Under Plan I students must also take three hours of Thesis Preparation (SOCI 6882), and three hours of thesis work (SOCI 6999). A thesis is required. Under Plan II students must also take six hours of Comprehensive Exam Preparation (SOCI 6782). A comprehensive exam is required.

    General

    • SOCI-5000 - Research Methodology

      An introduction to the logic and the procedures of quantitative and qualitative research methods. Focuses on research design, use of computer and statistical packages, data interpretation, the relation of research and theory, and the writing of scientific research reports.

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    • SOCI-5003 - Applied Statistics for Sociology

      Introduction to statistical methods used in the analysis of quantitative social science data. This course focuses on applying common statistical techniques to real-world problems. Students will also gain experience explaining statistical analyses to both technical and non-technical audiences. Instructor Permission required.

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    • SOCI-5053 - Sociological Theory

      Examines the contributions of major classical and contemporary sociological thinkers and schools of thought and the contexts in which they developed, with a special emphasis on applying their ideas to the analysis of various social issues. Course begins with selected classical thinkers but emphasis current perspectives and developments.

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    • SOCI-5103 - Women and Work

      A course designed to familiarize students with the history of women and work, the present role of women in the workplace, and current issues affecting working women; and to develop in student skills and strategies for dealing with issues related to women and work. Same as MGNT 5626.

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    • SOCI-5300 - Housing and Homelessness

      Sociological examination of the places in which we live, how we are housed, and what it is like to live without a place to call home. The focus is housing development in the United States throughout the twentieth century with special attention to its association with economic, gender, race, and family relations, along with public policy. Consideration is given to problems and controversies surrounding 'the American dream': segregation, overcrowding, affordability, urbanization/suburbanization, accessibility, and alternative housing. Special attention will be given to the problem of homelessness.

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    • SOCI-5323 - Cultural and Racial Minorities

      Comparative study of racial and ethnic groups in America. The disciplinary base of this approach is sociological, but observations and interpretations from different perspectives will be examined. Special attention will be given to the nature of prejudice, discrimination, and inequality as related to historical, cultural and structural patterns in American society. Topics include: ethnocentrism and racism; interracial violence; theories of prejudice and discrimination; immigration and immigrant experiences; the origins and nature of racial/ethnic stratification; ideologies and programs to assist or resist change. African American experiences are emphasized and contrasted with those of other racial/ethnic groups.

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    • SOCI-5373 - Visual Sociology

      A qualitative research course focusing on the interpretation and analysis of photographic and other static images as a means for studying and critiquing social life. Student photographic projects a major component of course work. Technical photographic skills not necessary. Course combines ethnographic research and critical sociology to develop visual literacy skills.

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    • SOCI-5445 - Sociology of Childhood

      This course will examine the influence of societal structure in the socialization of children and the sociological theoretical framework for the study of childhood. Students will be introduced to the complexity and the diversity of sociological issues related to children, this includes family, parenting, school and other socialization issues.

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    • SOCI-5503 - Individual and Society

      A study of the social character of individual experience. Comparative sociohistorical and cultural analyses of the social nature of psychological phenomena and human meanings as they are constructed by individuals in the process of interaction. Comparisons of classic and modern sociological theories on communicative actions, social organization, and the language-mediated nature of human consciousness and sociality. Application of these sociological models to selected social issues and problems.

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    • SOCI-5543 - Deviant and Alternative Behavior

      Analysis and evaluation of sociological conceptions and research on deviant and unconventional thought and action. Focuses on contemporary, multicultural society.

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    • SOCI-5803 - Environmental Sociology

      Studies how societal practices and organization produce varying types of ecological degradation. Analyzes various forms of environmental activism. Analyzes selected cases and issues as well as a critical examination and comparison of various sociological viewpoints themselves. Considers global problems and everyday situations with a focus on modernity as risk society.

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    • SOCI-5981 - Directed Readings

      Title and description of the type of independent study to be offered will be specified on the variable credit form students must complete before being permitted to register for this class. Transcripts carry different nomenclature to indicate the topic taught.

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    • SOCI-6000 - Orientation

      The goal of this course is to equip incoming graduate students with the necessary tools to successfully complete the program. Topics to be addressed include course requirements, professional development, plan of study and thesis preparation.

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    • SOCI-6013 - Social Research

      Social research examines the process of sociological research, with a specific focus upon designing and conducting quantitative research and writing empirical research reports. Students will learn how to evaluate quantitative research published in academic journals, and spend some time discussing the procedural stages for completing a thesis or a position paper.

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    • SOCI-6015 - Managing Data

      This course teaches students to build and manage databases using SPSS. An emphasis is placed on working with large national data sets that are available through the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research database. Advanced data analysis techniques will also be examined.

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    • SOCI-6182 - Special Seminars

      Title and description of the instruction to be offered will be specified on a variable credit form. The variable credit form must be completed before a student will be allowed to register for this course. Transcript entries carry different nomenclature to correspond with material taught. May be repeated on different content at least two times for credit.

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    • SOCI-6255 - Delinquency, Family, and the Community

      This course will examine juvenile crime within a larger social context, exploring the positive and negative contributions of the individual, the family, peer, schools, and the larger community. Intervention strategies will be assessed, and a model will be presented for a community action that can reduce/prevent juvenile crime.

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    • SOCI-6280 - Seminar in Social Justice

      This course offers an opportunity to explore a number of areas, which may be defined within the broad heading of justice. It takes a realistic and critical look at the legal, social, psychological, and political effects the 'justice system' on people and their cities. Students will be asked to analyze these effects from the perspective of what is 'just' or 'unjust' - and what we can do about it.

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    • SOCI-6305 - Advanced Sociological Theory

      Highlights theory as applied practice. Selected aspects of postmodernist, Frankfurt School critical theory, critical and conflict sociology, and feminist theories are used to analyze and critique selected contemporary issues (e.g., identity, body, media, ethics, aging, law, gender, art, etc) as well as selected issues within the discipline of sociology itself.

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    • SOCI-6363 - Sociology of the Family

      This course will concentrate upon the theories and critically analyze the research that is of interest to scholars in the area of family studies. Contemporary issues facing the American family will be explored.

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    • SOCI-6613 - Qualitative Research

      An in-depth exploration of the logic, approaches, techniques, and issues in qualitative sociological research. Qualitative program evaluation and activist research are considered along with basic research.

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    • SOCI-6623 - Inequality in Society

      An examination of inequality within the American society. A focus will be placed upon classical and contemporary social theories and the various dimensions and consequences of stratification.

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    • SOCI-6660 - Institutional Ethnography

      Examination of institutional ethnography, a way of exploring the particular and generalized social relations that shape people's everyday experiences.

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    • SOCI-6700 - Social Movements, Protest and Change

      The history of social change from the classical perspective to contemporary theories. Collective behavior and social movement theory will be explored. Attention will be given to who participates in movements, movement strategies and tactics, and movement outcomes. Several movements from American History will be explored including the civil rights movement, the women's movement, the worker's movement, the gay and lesbian movement, and the environmental movement.

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    • SOCI-6782 - Comprehensive Exam Preparation

      Directed study of sociological readings leading to the comprehensive exam. Students should enroll in this course t same semester that the comprehensive exam will be taken.

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    • SOCI-6803 - Seminar in Social Psychology

      To explore the sociological relevance of selected areas within social psychology such as group dynamics, leadership, collective behavior and symbolic interaction.

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    • SOCI-6882 - Thesis Preparation

      Directed individual guidance in the steps leading to the completion of a thesis research proposal and the beginning of thesis research. Areas covered may include selection of a topic, literature review, formation of research questions, selecting research methods, protection of human subjects.

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    • SOCI-6983 - Continuing Research

      Must be taken by those who are finishing course work to remove an incomplete while not enrolled for other courses or those who are not enrolled for thesis hours but are completing thesis or position paper.

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  • Faculty
  • Admissions

    Guidelines for Admittance

    • All graduate applicants must complete the online Graduate Application. A one-time application fee of $40 is required.
    • Applicants should also review the Graduate Studies Website for individual program specific requirements and tasks that must be completed prior to admission. See Graduate Studies Application Process.
    • International applicants are subject to additional requirements and application deadlines. See Procedures for International Students.
    • Official transcripts from a regionally or nationally accredited institution are required and should be sent directly to the UWG Admissions Office.

    Program Specific Admittance Guidelines

    • Official GRE scores
    • Applicants must have at minimum a 2.5 cumulative undergraduate GPA  (the department will waive the GRE for UWG alumni who have an overall GPA of 3.2 and a GPA of 3.5 in Sociology-see below for details)
    • Three letters of recommendation from individuals knowledgeable of your professional and academic abilities. A candidate should have at least 2 academic references, preferably from faculty with whom the candidate has studied. It is further advisable that the candidate does not choose a family member or a neighbor for the third letter of recommendation. 
    • A 750-word intellectual biography. Within this intellectual biography the candidate may want to comment upon:
      • When and where the candidate’s interest in Sociology developed
      • How the field of Sociology was incorporated into the candidate’s undergraduate coursework
      • How the field of Sociology has been incorporated into the candidate’s current professional work or will be incorporated into the candidate’s future career goals
      • Theoretical or methodological interests of the candidate
      • The candidate’s plans or ideas for original research
      • A faculty member that the candidate is interested in studying with

    The Department of Sociology does not require a minimum GRE score and considers the quality of an application in its entirety.  However, applicants who have taken 21 upper division hours in Sociology at the University of West Georgia, six of which must be from required courses, and who meet the GPA requirements listed above do not have to take the GRE to be considered for regular admission. All applicants will be admitted on a competitive basis and thus simply completing the application does not guarantee admission.

    Application Deadlines

    Specific Graduate Admissions Deadlines are available via the Graduate School

    Posted deadline includes Application, app fee, and all supplemental items/documents.

    See The Scoop for more specific deadlines.

    Admission Process Checklist

    One exception: If you will not ever be traveling to a UWG campus or site, you may apply for an Immunization Exemption. Contact the Immunization Clerk with your request.

    Contact

    Dr. Celeste Lee
    celestel@westga.edu
    678-839-6325

  • Dates

    Specific dates for Admissions (Undergraduate Only), Financial Aid, Fee Payment, Registration, Start/End of Term Dates, Final Exams, etc. are available in THE SCOOP.

    Specific Graduate Admissions Deadlines are available via the Graduate School

  • Objectives
    • Understand and apply sociological theories.
    • Understand and apply qualitative research methodologies.
    • Understand and apply quantitative resesarch methodologies.