A full account of degree requirements and procedures is contained in the Sociology departmental handbook.
PhD candidates must earn 30 credits in addition to the 30 credits and MA Examination taken in the Sociology MA program, for a total of 60 credits. Transfer students who already have an MA in sociology (or its equivalent) from another institution may be assigned credit for all or part of their previous graduate studies up to a maximum of 30 credits. Incoming students who already have an MA in Sociology from another institution are still required to take and pass the Sociology department's MA examination.
To earn the PhD in Sociology, a student must complete 30 credits beyond the MA, including:
- One sociological methods course besides Logic of Inquiry
- Four departmental seminars or proseminars
- Electives up to the total of 60 credits, of which no more than 12 credits may be for courses from other NSSR departments or other divisions of The New School that are not cross-listed with Sociology
PhD Field Statements Exam
By the end of students' tenth semester in the program (or four semesters after the last course was taken, whichever comes first), students must pass the PhD comprehensive exam, also known as the Field Statements Exam. This examination consists of two requirements:
- Two written field statements (with bibliographies)
- One oral examination based on the field statements
Before being advanced to candidacy for the PhD, students must submit a dissertation proposal for evaluation in an oral exam conducted by a dissertation committee. Students must pass the PhD comprehensive exam (Field Statements Exam), complete 60 credits, and successfully defend their dissertation proposal. The final dissertation must be submitted, approved, and defended orally before a committee consisting of four members.
Foreign Language Requirement
All PhD candidates must demonstrate reading knowledge in a foreign language appropriate to their dissertation topic by passing a language examination administered by the department.
Students can use elective courses toward completing one of the university’s graduate minors. These structured pathways of study immerse master's and doctoral students in disciplines outside their primary field and expose them to alternative modes of research and practice. Completed graduate minors are officially recorded on students' transcripts.
With the permission of the department chair, the Master of Philosophy degree will be conferred upon a registered student who has satisfactorily fulfilled all the requirements of the department for the PhD except the dissertation and dissertation proposal defense. Registered students in satisfactory academic standing who have fulfilled the requirements for the MPhil can petition for the degree and receive it en route to the PhD or take it as a terminal degree. Students cannot be re-admitted or re-enrolled for the purpose of receiving the MPhil.