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Prospective Students

Here are three reasons we think you should consider our program:

1)      Our program features four research specialization areas: Crime, Law, and Deviance; Inequality, Diversity, and Equity; Social Psychology and Group Processes; and Sociology of Religion.  Within these specialization areas our department’s faculty conducts research on a diverse range of topics, including policing, violence against women, neighborhood dynamics, health and demography, media, and religion. Furthermore, our faculty represents the full-range of methodological approaches, ranging from administrative data analysis to survey research to experimental social psychology to ethnography. All of this means that you will benefit from our broad foundation of knowledge and skills, and you will have many options when it comes to your own research interests.

2)      While we have much to offer, our department and program is not overwhelmingly large. With a student faculty ratio of 2:1, there is enough faculty to offer a broad range of courses and mentoring opportunities, but at the same time, you will benefit from close training and collaboration with our accessible faculty 

3)      Although there is much to love about the state of West Virginia, it is also no secret that the State and the Appalachian region face many social and economic challenges. As a land-grant institution and the state’s flagship research university, West Virginia University is closely involved in efforts to address these challenges. As sociologists, our department’s faculty and graduate students have an important role to play in those efforts. While pursuing your PhD in our department, your studies and research can benefit from and provide benefits to a geographic area where sociological research is needed. 

University and Program

West Virginia University is a Carnegie Classified R1 institution and maintains a commitment to engaging in research at the highest level. We are located in Morgantown, West Virginia, which is about 75 miles south from Pittsburgh, three hours West of Washington D.C. and 6 hours south of New York City. Morgantown is known for its numerous outdoor recreation activities and welcoming community.