Why FSU is a Great Place to Pursue a PhD
The PhD program in sociology at Florida State is an excellent choice for those who wish to become trained scholars in any of our areas of concentration--demography, health and aging, inequality & social justice, and social psychology--and for those who desire to become excellent college instructors. Most of our students pursue both: in-depth training in both scholarly research and in teaching, and they go on to excel at both. Student research is promoted through extensive methods training, opportunities to collaborate with faculty, and coursework (e.g., Research Practicum, Advanced Research Seminars). Teaching excellence is facilitated through summer training courses, the FSU Program for Instructional Excellence, and faculty-supervised independent instruction. Last, but certainly not least, FSU is a great choice to pursue a PhD because the department has a long-standing tradition of scholarly respect and balance. We strive to value the hard work everyone does in the department, regardless of approach or topic, resulting in a congenial environment that is the envy of many of our peers at other institutions. If your research interests resemble those of the faculty, and you seek to be an excellent instructor or communicator, and you value collegiality, then you should definitely consider pursuing your doctorate in sociology at FSU.
Wide-Ranging Research Opportunities
Florida State sociology professors are (or are quickly becoming) national experts in their research areas, as demonstrated through career awards, leadership in professional associations, extensive federal support for research, publications in leading sociology journals, and appearances in popular media. Student involvement and collaboration are integral elements of our collective pursuit of research excellence. Almost every faculty member is actively working with students on research papers, and most PhD students have one or more publications coauthored with a faculty member when they graduate. In recent years, FSU sociologists obtained more federal grants funds than any other department in the College of Social Sciences, funds that directly support graduate students as research assistants and coauthors. These research activities contribute to our graduate studentsí high rate of garnering publications, research awards, fellowships and ultimately, high-quality jobs.
A Tradition of Teaching Excellence
FSU sociologists have received an impressive number of university teaching and advising awards -- 13 University Teaching Awards have gone to sociology faculty (8 to current faculty), more than any other department in the College of Social Sciences. We also publish papers on, and win awards for, creative pedagogy. The sociology department is especially proud of the many graduate students who have won university awards for instructional excellence. Students who graduate from the PhD program leave with a well-developed teaching portfolio built up over the course of pursuing their graduate degree through training workshops, summer courses, experience teaching online courses, and independent instruction with faculty supervision. This commitment to teaching supports the high quality of instruction demonstrated by graduates of the FSU sociology program -- quality that is widely recognized by the departments that employ them.
Commitment to Diversity
The Sociology Department is committed to diversity in the student body, and we encourage minority applicants. Many FSU sociologists and graduate students conduct research on race and ethnic issues, as our recent publications show. Our goal of diversity is aided by University resources (e.g., McKnight Fellowships).