A graduate degree program in migration studies provides students with an in-depth understanding of how and why migration happens and the affect that it has on the migrant population as well as the locations to which they migrate. A degree program in this field could prepare students for a variety of careers in academia and research or in the government and public policy.
Graduate Programs in Migration Studies
Graduate programs in migration studies are not widely available in the United States, but there are some options for students who are interested in studying this field. There are a couple of master's degree programs that focus on migration, as well as a number of graduate-level certificates that that range from international migration to immigration studies. Below, we will look at a few courses that may be found in these programs.
Immigration Policy and Politics
Graduate programs in migration studies will generally include one or multiple courses related to the United States's policies regarding immigration and the politics that surrounds this issue. Students will learn how immigration policy has developed throughout history as well as how the present policy is applied today. The course will also focus on attitudes and feelings that the public has towards immigration and how this affects immigration policy and the way in which immigration is discussed in politics.
Research Methods in Migration Studies
Programs in migration studies will typically include a course in research methods that is designed to inform students on how to properly conduct research, with a specific focus on how to do so in the field of migration studies. This class will focus on both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Students will learn how to properly gather data through surveys, interviews, and sampling and then will learn how to compile their data, analyze it, and present their findings in a report or paper.
In this course, students will learn how migrants affect the labor market and economy in the United States, as well as how migrants function within the labor market. The course will cover labor policies and how they apply to both documented and undocumented workers and how these policies shape the lives of migrants who are working in the United States. It will also focus on employment as one of the major factors that determines migration numbers.
Displacement and Development in the Contemporary World
This course will focus on the factors that determine migration numbers in modern times. This includes covering both forced migration and the displacement of populations due to internal collapse or crises within their home countries, as well as voluntary migration of people who are seeking better opportunities elsewhere. It will also focus on how the international community is dealing with various humanitarian crises that typically cause mass migration.
Global Trends in International Migration
In this course, students will receive a broad overview of international migration today, including some of the most common causes of migration, the policies of various countries regarding migration and immigration, and how migration affects the global community as a whole. The course will cover international migration from a legal standpoint by looking at both domestic and international laws regarding migration. It will also cover how migration and other current topics, like environmental change, are connected.
Admission Requirements for Graduate Programs in Migration Studies
Due to the variance in graduate programs that are offered in migration studies, there is a large amount of variation in admission requirements to gain admittance into these programs. In general, however, students must possess a bachelor's degree before beginning a graduate program. Master's level programs often require students to submit GRE scores, in addition to transcripts, their bachelor's diploma, and an application form. Some programs will be more selective than others and may require additional information from students.
While they are not common, it is possible to find graduate programs that are focused in migration studies at the master's degree and graduate certificate level. Students can expect to take a number of both broad and in-depth courses covering pertinent topics in migration.