The Mason MA program is one of only a very few in the country that emphasizes public sociology. You will receive training in traditional sociological research methods and inquiry, with an eye toward questions of broad public relevance. You will be encouraged to consider the audiences for which you are writing, including policy makers, political activists, community groups and non-profits, and the general public. This is sociology in action.
Sociology faculty are sought after contributors to local and national media on a range of topics from high school proms to prison reform to the economic contributions of immigrant households. Many hold leadership positions in local, regional, and national professional associations and are working on research projects supported by the Corporation for National and Community Service, the National Science Foundation, and the State Department, among many others.
The faculty specialize in culture (including music, art, new media, and consumption); family, youth and aging; gender; globalization; immigration and migration; political economy, development and economic sociology; political sociology and social movements; race/ethnicity; religion; sociological theory; and urban sociology.
Students pursuing an MA in sociology may choose a specialization in either institutions and inequality, or the sociology of globalization. Under the larger framework of these specializations, students may pursue studies in a wide range of areas of sociological inquiry. In addition to the research component in sociology coursework, some students work on research projects conducted by department faculty or through Mason’s Center for Social Science Research . Our students range from recent graduates to mid-career professionals, and bring both local and international perspectives to the classroom.
Some of our graduates pursue a PhD in sociology and several have gone on to academic positions. Some work in higher education administration, marketing, and social services. Others find research positions in public policy at organizations such as the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, Mathematica Policy Research, the US Census Bureau, and Nielson. The Washington, D.C., area offers rich opportunities to pursue employment in all of these fields.