2015-2016 Catalog 
    Jul 14, 2024  
2015-2016 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Sociology, MA

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The Department of Sociology offers a Master of Arts degree in Sociology. All course work for the MA degree can be taken on the Colorado Springs campus, although students may take appropriate and approved courses at the Denver or Boulder campuses. Admission to the MA program in Colorado Springs does not constitute admission to the graduate programs at Denver or Boulder.

Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate advanced critical thinking; write in a clear, logical manner, and clearly express sociological knowledge in verbal communication.
  • Gain in-depth knowledge of several substantive areas of sociology.
  • Show broad knowledge about global and local societies, social behavior and provide credible explanations of how and why social development has taken a particular direction.
  • Understand, analyze and assess social experience, both theoretically and practically.
  • Collect, analyze, and interpret sociological data effectively.
  • Understand social phenomena of deviance, globalization, social change, multiculturalism, structural inequality, and the intersections of race, gender and other forms of stratification. 

MA Application and Admission

The student is referred to The UCCS Graduate School  section of this catalog for a complete listing of all rules and regulations that apply to MA programs on this campus of the University of Colorado.

Regular Degree Admission Requirements

Students applying to the MA degree in Sociology must:

  • Have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, or have completed work equivalent for such a degree and equivalent to the degree given at this university
  • Have an undergraduate overall grade point average of at least 3.00*
  • Have adequate preparation to begin graduate study in sociology
  • Show promise for advanced study and research, as judged by the applicant’s previous scholastic record

*Applicants with lower GPA may be considered if they have strong Graduate Record Exam scores. The GRE is not required otherwise.

Application Process

Applications are submitted online at https://soa.prod.cu.edu/degreeprog/applyDEGREEPROG_CUSPG/login.action.

  • Submit three letters of recommendation from instructors or employers
  • Submit original transcripts from all undergraduate colleges attended.

Information may be obtained from Rosemary Kelbel, Graduate Program Coordinator, Department of Sociology, UCCS.

Admission as a Provisional Degree Student

An applicant who does not meet the minimum requirements for admission as a regular degree student may be admitted on a provisional basis. To convert to regular degree status the student may be required to complete courses to make up deficiencies and/or demonstrate the ability to successfully perform graduate work.

Guaranteed Admission Policy

This program is designed to offer outstanding students enrolled in their final semester at UCCS guaranteed and expedited admission to the Graduate School. For students who complete a major in Sociology at UCCS and achieve a minimum grade point average of 3.25 overall and a 3.33 in sociology, admission is guaranteed pending review of application by departmental faculty. For students meeting these requirements, the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) and letters of recommendation will be waived.

Fast -Track Admission for Former UCCS Students

The Fast-Track admission process is designed to offer a more efficient admission process to former undergraduate students that have graduated from the University of Colorado Colorado Springs with an undergraduate degree in sociology no more than four years prior to the time of application to a graduate program. While admission is not guaranteed, the requirements are the same as regular degree admission with the three letters of recommendation waived.

Accelerated BA/MA Program

The Accelerated Bachelor’s/Master’s degree program in Sociology offers highly-qualified UCCS Sociology majors the opportunity of pursuing the Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Sociology and Masters of Arts (MA) in Sociology concurrently. The main benefit of the program is that it allows for up to nine credit hours to be used for both the BA and MA. The program is designed to be a 5-year program for currently enrolled UCCS Sociology majors.

Financial Assistance

A limited number of graduate assistant-ships for new and continuing students are available from the Sociology Department. These are awarded on the basis of both need and merit in compensation for assisting with departmental programs of instruction and research. Contact the Sociology Office for application forms and deadlines. Additional support may be available from the Graduate School and Financial Aid office.

General Requirements

There are two options for completing the requirements for the degree:

Plan I-Thesis:

Complete a total of 24 hours of approved course work, including the required courses, plus an acceptable thesis for 6 hours of credit.

Plan II-Non-Thesis:

Complete a total of 30 hours of approved course work, including the required core sociology courses. Students are encouraged to develop individualized areas of concentration with their elective credits. Elective course work may include approved courses from other UCCS Graduate programs, for example the School of Public Affairs, Applied Geography and the College of Education.

Course Load Policy

To help ensure the success of graduate students, the UCCS Sociology Department requires students enroll in no more than ten credit hours per semester. Students who desire to take more than nine credit hours will need to meet with the Graduate Director for approval.


In graduate sociology courses, no grade lower than “B” in a course that meets a requirement for the master’s degree will count toward that degree. Candidates must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in their graduate courses or face departmental probation.  Required courses may only be taken twice.

According to the Policy and procedures of the Graduate School, coursework receiving a grade of less than “B-” may not be counted toward any graduate degree. A student who receive a grade below “B-” in a course may repeat that course once, upon approval of the program director, provided the course has not been previously applied toward a degree. The grade received in a repeated course will substitute for the original grade and only the latter grade will be used in calculating the Graduate Program grade point average required for graduation. However, all grades received will appear on the student’s transcript.

If a graduate student earns a grade of “C+” or lower, they are required to meet with the Graduate Director to write out an action plan. If a second grade of “C+” or lower is earned, it will be considered grounds for dismissal from the program.

Incomplete Grades

Incomplete grades of “I” will convert to “F” if the work is not completed within the one-year maximum period (no extensions are approved beyond the one-year time limit), according to University Policy.

Plagiarism Policy

According to the UCCS LAS Plagiarism Policy, plagiarism is the use of distinctive ideas or words belonging to another person, without adequately acknowledging that person’s contribution. If a graduate student is caught plagiarizing, on the first offense the professor has the discretion to either ask the student to rewrite the paper or automatically assign zero points for the assignment. On the second offense, the professor will automatically assign zero points for the assignment and report the student to the LAS Dean. A third offense of plagiarism will result in the student being expelled from the graduate sociology program.

Required Exams

All MA students must pass the Preliminary and Qualifying Exams and either a Thesis Defense or a Comprehensive Examination, as defined below.

The Preliminary Examination:
Students’ progress will be reviewed after completion of the first 6 hours of graduate level courses to ensure adequate qualifications to proceed in the program. Students will be notified of the results of this review process and appropriate recommendations for further progress will be included.

The Qualifying Examination:
After completing 18 graduate hours, including the required core sociology courses, students must prepare an Admission to Candidacy form, available from Rosemary Kelbel, Graduate Program Coordinator. The student’s academic record will be reviewed and a plan for either a thesis (Plan I) or course work (Plan II) must be approved to continue in the program. If problems are identified, appropriate steps will be specified in order to become a candidate for the degree.

Plan I: Thesis Defense

Upon completion of the master’s thesis and approval of the Chair of the thesis committee a defense is scheduled. The goal of the defense is to engage in a thorough discussion of the thesis project and implications for continued research in the thesis topic.


Plan II: Comprehensive Examination

The comprehensive examination is based on a discussion of the materials provided by the student in her/his graduate student portfolio. Portfolios should be turned in to the graduate program coordinator two weeks before the comprehensive examination. Portfolios are not returned to the student, but become part of the graduate archive in the sociology department.

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