Graduate study in the Department of Sociology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign prepares students for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). Our graduates gain skills and expertise that enable them to excel in a variety of different lines of work, including as faculty at research universities and liberal arts colleges and as researchers in public policy, government, and private industry. The Department has particular strengths in several areas, including: Race and Ethnicity, Crime, Law, and Society, Gender and Sexuality, Inequalities, Race/Class/Gender, Social Movements, Urban Studies, Transnational and Global Sociology, Environmental Sociology, and Demography, among others. 

We support our graduate students’ professional development in many ways. The department provides a series of workshops for students to support key professional activities: seeking outside grants, publishing scholarly research, developing skills in teaching, and navigating the job market. The department also has a professional development fund to assist with expenses such as those of attending academic conferences.

Most of our incoming PhD students receive a funding package of full tuition plus a stipend for living expenses for at least five years, contingent upon making satisfactory progress in the program. Funding is usually provided through fellowships, teaching assistantships, or research assistantships. Advanced students are also given opportunities to teach their own courses.

Our faculty are accomplished scholars who are committed teachers and researchers. Our department reaches out across the university, with connections to the Asian American Studies Department, the Latina/Latino Studies Department, the Gender and Women Studies Department, the Department of History, the College of Law, the Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory, the Center for African Studies, the Center for East Asian and Pacific Studies, the Center for Global Studies,  the Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center and the Center for South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.

Our students come from diverse personal and educational backgrounds and, like our faculty, from around the world. As part of our individualized approach to guiding students to become producers of knowledge, PhD students engage in lively discussion and debate with faculty and peers in small seminars where they engage critically with cutting-edge scholarship.

For general inquiries about the program, please contact For detailed inquiries, please contact the Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Ghassan Moussawi at

Interested in joining us? Apply today! The deadline to apply for Fall admissions is December 1st.

Please note that GRE scores are not required this year.

Program Requirements

Detailed information regarding course and student requirements for our program:

Application Procedures

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Illinois International

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Graduate College Application and Resources

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