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.
- Be able to demonstrate advanced critical thinking.
- Be able to demonstrate the ability to write in a clear, logical manner.
- Be able to demonstrate the ability to clearly express sociological knowledge in verbal communication.
- Be able to understand, analyze, and assess social experience and behavior, using the core theoretical perspectives in sociology.
- Be able to collect, analyze, and interpret sociological data effectively.
- Be able to understand key social phenomena of deviance, globalization, social change, multiculturalism, structural inequity, and the intersection of race, gender, and other forms of stratification.
- Gain in-depth knowledge of a substantive area of sociology.
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.
For Sociology-specific information, including policies on admissions, grades, course load, and plagiarism, and departmental financial assistance, please see the Sociology department’s graduate program webpage at http://www.uccs.edu/soc/graduate.html.
Information may also be obtained from Rosemary Kelbel, Graduate Program Coordinator, Department of Sociology, UCCS.
All MA students must pass the Preliminary and Qualifying Exams, and either a Thesis Defense or a Comprehensive Examination, depending on their chosen MA Plan.
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 and the Diploma Card, available on the UCCS Graduate School’s website at http://www.uccs.edu/graduateschool/current-students/graduating-this-semester.html. 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.
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.
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 Exam
Beginning in fall 2020, all students accepted into the Sociology MA program but not in the Dual MPA/MA Sociology program and who choose not to complete a thesis will be required to take the comprehensive examination to complete the program. Students taking the comprehensive examination will follow these five steps:
On or before the first day of classes of the semester that a student plans to complete the degree, they must submit their intent to graduate along with their transcripts. They must also submit the four content areas that they plan to be tested on to the Graduate Director. The student should also carefully review the guide to taking the Sociology Comprehensive Exam.
At the first Department meeting of the semester, the department will select a committee of three graduate faculty members who will review the exams.
On Monday of week 5 of the semester, questions will be dispersed to the students. The student will write one 4 - 5 page response to one question from each of their four content areas
They will have three weeks to complete the essays (due Monday of Week 8). Essays must be submitted as a single Word document through Canvas and run through “Turn it in”.
By Monday of week 10 the committee will evaluate the essays and the Graduate Program Director will notify students that their exam was either approved or declined. If the work is approved, then the student will advance to graduation pending successful completion of all other requirements for the degree. If the committee declines to pass the work, the student will have an additional two weeks (due Monday week 12) to revise and resubmit the exam in Canvas based on feedback from the committee. In the case of serious and extraordinary circumstance beyond the student’s control, the student may petition the Graduate Director to retake the comprehensive examination in the following semester instead of revising their exam that semester. Retake means the student will begin at step 1 and receive new questions from their chosen content areas.
A. After the second attempt, the committee members may require a discussion of their essays with the student.
B. If the student does not pass on the second attempt, the faculty have grounds to expel the student from the program.
C. The committee members will remain anonymous throughout the examination unless the student has been invited to meet with the committee.