Graduate Studies

Welcome Graduate Students

Mike Lacy – Director of Graduate Studies

The graduate program in Sociology at Colorado State University focuses on social change. Our faculty members carry out ,theoretical, applied and policy research nationally and internationally on the causes and consequences of social change on individuals, communities and nations of the world.

The department’s applied and policy foci become increasingly important given global transformations now occurring across nation-state boundaries. With that orientation as a background, our graduate program provides students with competence in theory and methodology along with the development of expertise in one or more areas of specialization.

Our faculty members conduct research and train graduate students in a wide variety of areas including environment and natural resources, agriculture and food, criminology and deviance, community, sociology of disasters, environmental governance, fair trade, and race-ethnicity and gender. The Department also supports three research centers (Center for Disaster and Risk Analysis, Center for Fair and Alternative Trade, and Center for the Study of Crime and Justice). Our graduate program prepares students for careers in academia and the public and private sectors.

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Degree Requirements


MA in Sociology

The M.A. can be earned a Plan A or a Plan B degree . The Plan A degree includes a thesis and is designed for students who anticipate the possibility of further graduate study. The Plan B degree is designed for students who do not intend to obtain a Ph.D., and it involves more coursework, and the substitution of a practicum and a professional paper for the thesis. The requirements are:

1) B.A. background coursework:

Completion of SOC210, SOC301 or SOC302, and SOC311 (Courses waived if equivalents previously taken.) Also, students who have less than 12 semester credits of undergraduate sociology will be expected to make up this deficiency with appropriate coursework).
2) M.A. coursework to include 30 semester credits beyond the bachelor’s degree for the Plan A, or 36 for the Plan B, at least 24 of which must be done at Colorado State. Courses must be distributed as follows:

  • Core required courses: SOC500, SOC502, SOC 503, SOC510, and SOC511
  • 9 additional credits of sociology at the 300 level or above.
  • Additional credits from sociology or other disciplines to meet the total of 30 or 36 credits.
  • A maximum of 5 thesis credits may be applied to the 30 credits.

PhD in Sociology

1) B.A. and M.A. background coursework.

Completion of SOC210, SOC301 or SOC302, SOC311, SOC502, SOC602, SOC510, and SOC511. (Courses waived if equivalents taken at the B.A. and M.A. level ).
2) 42 credits of work beyond the M.A., at least 32 of which must be done at Colorado State, distributed as follows:

  • 16 credits of required core courses in methods and theory.
  • 9 hours or more from within the Department at the 500 level or above, excluding SOC695, SOC696, SOC795, and SOC797.
  • 12 hours from inside or outside the Department at the 500 level are required; 300 or 400 level courses allowed if approved by the student’s advisory committee.
  • 5 credit hours of dissertation research.

3) Written comprehensive examinations in theory, methods, and social change required.
Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs

Certification in Women’s Studies

The Political Economy Graduate Interdisciplinary Studies Program (Certificate)

Need additional information. Contact Mike Lacy, Director of Graduate Studies

Colorado State University