Jul 21, 2024  
University of Alberta Calendar 2024-2025 
University of Alberta Calendar 2024-2025

Master of Arts (Sociology)

Program Requirements

Required courses (normally at the 500-level) depend on the area of specialization and the undergraduate background of the student.

The course-based MA program in sociology is an intensive year of study. Required coursework consists of 24 units, including core courses in classical and contemporary theory, research design, research methods and statistics, SOC 900  (research project Parts 1 and 2), and completion of the mandatory ethics training requirement.

The Department assigns, or students may select, a Supervisor who will direct their work over two terms of SOC 900  during the Fall and Winter Terms. The project includes a critical appraisal of the literature and formulation of a research topic in the subject area of interest. During the Winter Term, and concurrent with a course in research design (SOC 533 ), the topic is developed into a research project which demonstrates the student’s ability to work in a scholarly manner. The capping exercise consists of an oral examination in which the student successfully defends the research project (SOC 900 ).

Thesis MA programs require registration in a combination of coursework and thesis research comprising a minimum of 24 units, and completion of the mandatory ethics training requirement. For the thesis MA in sociology, coursework consists of at least 18 units, including core courses in theory, research design, methods and statistics.

For the thesis MA in demography, coursework consists of at least 18 units, including core courses in statistics, methods, theory, demographic analysis, and two of fertility, mortality, and migration. Candidates will be examined orally on their completed thesis.

The MA in criminal justice program is designed for students who are pursuing a career in one of the components of the criminal justice system. The program requires 24 units at the graduate-level, plus a project equivalent to 3 units, and completion of the mandatory ethics training requirement. Depending on the student’s background, two full-time field placements of four months each may be required. Coursework must include SOC 525  and an additional 9 units in criminology. Coursework in related disciplines is encouraged.

There is no language requirement for the MA degrees.

The minimum period of residence for the MA course-based degree in sociology is two four-month terms of full-time attendance at the University of Alberta. The other MA programs do not have a residence requirement.

Length of Program

The time required to complete an MA program will vary according to the previous education of the applicant and the nature of the research undertaken. Normally, the course-based MA degree will be completed in one academic year, the thesis MA (normally through full-time study) in four terms and the MA in criminal justice (normally through part-time study) within four years.