Graduate Program Overview

 Welcome to the PhD program in Sociology at Louisiana State University

Sociology plays an increasingly important role in our individual lives and in the societies and organizations within which we work and live. People with a doctorate in sociology apply the skills they acquire during their PhD program to a wide range of careers. A common career path for LSU sociology PhD alumni involves a position on the faculty of a college or university that focuses on research, teaching, or both. Increasingly, however, many LSU sociology PhD alumni are pursuing non-academic careers conducting or supporting collaborative research and policy development in government agencies, non-profit organizations, and in private industries.
Each year, US institutions award about 650 to 700 doctorates in sociology and our program at LSU awards about 7-9 doctorates per year.  Our PhD alumni are pursuing academic and nonacademic professional careers in the United States and around the world. Most attain professorial positions in US colleges and universities. Others have pursued careers in research institutions, governmental agencies, and private industries.
Our faculty have strong expertise in a wide range of areas of sociological inquiry that remain in high demand: social inequality, social capital, criminology, environmental sociology, health, family, science and technology studies, and more. Our faculty are also methodologically diverse employing a variety of quantitative (e.g., spatial analysis, social network analysis, survey, and longitudinal modeling), qualitative (e.g., participant observation, ethnography, video ethnography), and increasingly popular mixed-methods approaches.
Our doctoral program takes an average of 5 years to complete, and our PhD students play a critical role in the success of our overall program. Our PhD students collaborate with research faculty on scholarly research projects and publications and assist faculty and instructors in teaching our core undergraduate sociology courses. Our advanced doctoral students gain valuable teaching experience as instructors of record in our expanding undergraduate program.
We typically have about 50 doctoral students in our program who come from across the United States (currently, we have students from Louisiana, California, Florida, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Texas) and from numerous other countries (currently from Bangladesh, Cameroon, China, Ghana, India, Pakistan, South Korea, Sri Lanka, and Trinidad & Tobago). Typical doctoral "cohorts" consist of 6-13 students, with most funded through graduate assistantships that include 9-month stipend of $23,000 or higher, and many others receive internal and external fellowships.

The Sociology Graduate Student Association (SGSA) is our student organization that seeks to provide sociology graduate students with enhanced scholarship and fellowship experiences at LSU.
To learn more about our doctoral program, please contact Mark Schafer, Director of Graduate Studies.