Students who are interested in studying economic sociology may want to consider enrolling in a graduate degree in this field. This article will outline the economic sociology degree available to students, what types of courses and requirements students must fulfill in order to graduate, and what prerequisites are necessary to gain admission into these programs.
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Information About Economic Sociology Graduate Programs
Generally, students who would like to study economic sociology can do so by finding a more general sociology doctoral program or a related Ph.D. that offers a concentration area or area of interest in economic sociology, as there are no standalone programs in this field. Students can focus their studies on economic sociology through the coursework that they take, the faculty members they work with, and through the topic they select for their doctoral dissertation. Below, we will look at five courses that students may take in an economic sociology graduate program.
Graduate programs focused on economic sociology will likely require students to take one or multiple courses that either cover economic sociology broadly or specific aspects of economic sociology. In a course like this, students will be exposed to how sociological thinking and theory can be applied to economic principles, including a critique of various economic theories. Students will learn about classical topics in economics and study how sociologists may offer alternative explanations for these economic phenomena.
Research Methods in Sociology
Ph.D. students in economic sociology programs will also likely be required to take a course that covers different research methods that are commonly used in the field of sociology. In such a course, students will learn about how various social phenomena can be formally studied using scientific research methods. The course may make use of various statistical programs to study topics like regression analysis, as well as different ways of using technology to display information and graphs.
Sociology of States, Markets, and Economic Institutions
Economic sociology programs may also include a course that applies sociological thinking to understanding states, financial markets, and various economic institutions. In this course, students may study various theories that explain the function and value of institutions, like from the perspective of neoclassical or institutionalist thought, as well as the relationship between states and the institutions themselves. In addition, students could learn about topics like state-market relations, democratization, globalization, and social movements.
A course in social stratification is another commonly found course in Ph.D. programs in economic sociology. Social stratification focuses on the presence of inequality in society, which may be studied from the perspective of class, gender, or race, among other factors. The course may focus on different models that are used to measure different types of economic and social achievement in society, as well as provide students with a theoretical foundation in how and why social inequality exists.
Sociology of Public Health, Healthcare, and Medicine
These programs also commonly include coursework that focuses on the sociology of healthcare and overall population health. In such a course, students will likely learn about why disparities exist in terms of access to healthcare across different subgroups of the population, various social and economic factors that influence population health, and how healthcare is delivered to people. In addition, this course may include a component in which solutions to some healthcare problems are discussed and analyzed.
Admission Standards for Economic Sociology Graduate Programs
Generally, these programs do not require that applicants have a bachelor's degree in sociology, though some programs may specify that previous coursework is necessary, like in statistics. Undergraduate degree grade requirements may also vary from school to school, but some sociology departments require a minimum GPA of 3.0. Prospective students can expect to submit common application documents such as undergraduate transcripts, letters of recommendation, a personal statement, resume or CV, a completed application form, and results from the GRE examination. Ph.D. programs may also require students to submit a writing sample to assess an applicant's academic and research writing potential.
In summary, students who would like to study economic sociology can do so by enrolling in a sociology Ph.D. program that has relevant coursework and faculty members working within the research field of economic sociology.