Last updated February 20, 2020
Next in my series on How to Fully Fund Your PhD, I provide a list of universities that offer full funding for a PhD in Sociology. Sociologists study human social relationships and institutions. A PhD in Sociology can support a wide range of career paths, including positions in academia, counseling, marketing, public relations, human resources and industrial relations.
“Full funding” is a financial aid package for full time students that includes tuition remission and an annual stipend or salary for the three to six-year duration of the student’s doctoral studies. Funding is typically offered in exchange for graduate teaching and research work that is complementary to your studies. Not all universities provide full funding to their doctoral students, which is why I recommend researching the financial aid offerings of all the potential PhD programs in your academic field, including small and lesser-known schools both in the U.S. and abroad.
You can also find several external fellowships in the ProFellow database for graduate and doctoral study, as well as dissertation research, field work, language study and summer work experience.
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Brown University, Department of Sociology (Providence, RI): The Graduate School currently provides five years of funding to students in good standing. Funding usually consists of a mix of fellowship, TA, and RA appointments.
Cornell University, Department of Sociology (Ithaca, NY): Cornell funding packages typically offer five years of support, covering all tuition and providing a stipend for living expenses (including during the summer). In recent years, the field has been able to support students beyond their fifth year, usually through grant-funded graduate research assistantships.
Harvard University, Department of Sociology (Cambridge, MA): For PhD students, Harvard awards full financial support for five years, typically for the first four years of study as well as the completion year.
New York University, Department of Sociology (New York, NY): The NYU Department of Sociology only accepts students whom we can fully fund for a minimum of five years. The funding generally covers full tuition, fees, student health insurance plus a fellowship stipend. In addition, students have the opportunity to teach. Teaching is separate from the funding package, and any teaching compensation is above and beyond the fellowship support.
Rice University, Department of Sociology (Houston, TX): Students accepted into the PhD program will be fully funded. In addition to tuition waivers, each student will receive a generous stipend. Some will be eligible for summer funding as well.
Stanford University, Department of Sociology (Stanford, CA): The department offers a standard package, consisting of a stipend and the payment of tuition and fees, to incoming students. Both domestic and international students are eligible for this standard package. Although the Department cannot formally guarantee support beyond the first year, it expects to continue to provide an additional four years of support to students making satisfactory academic progress. This assistance normally covers the full cost of tuition and an additional amount for living expenses during the academic year. The latter amount is usually in the form of a stipend, teaching assistantship, or research assistantship.
University of Chicago, Department of Sociology (Chicago, IL): The University of Chicago offers most doctoral students competitive funding packages, which cover tuition and student health insurance, as well as a stipend for living expenses and research support. These awards are typically for five years.
University of Toronto, Department of Sociology (Toronto, Canada): The Faculty of Arts and Science has instituted a funding guarantee that covers PhD students for four or five years (depending on whether the student enters directly from a BA, or completes an MA before entering the program). The guarantee is equal to tuition plus $17,500. The guarantee is met by a balance of three components: the U of T Fellowship, Teaching Assistantships, and Research Assistantships.
University of Washington, Department of Sociology (Seattle, WA): Automatic consideration for all applicants in both admission AND financial support. As a matter of departmental policy, admitted students are typically offered a multi-year funding package as part of their offer of admission. The vast majority of our students are funded throughout their time in graduate school, with a mix of teaching positions, research assistantships, and fellowships.
Vanderbilt University, Department of Sociology (Nashville, TN): All students admitted to the Ph.D. program are offered funding, which includes a 12-month stipend, a full tuition waiver, and student health insurance. If students continue to make good progress in the program, funding typically continues for five years. Outstanding applicants may also be eligible for departmental, College of Arts and Science, or University fellowships that supplement the standard stipend.
Yale University, Department of Sociology (New Haven, CT): All accepted students are fully funded for five years. In the first four years they receive full tuition and a living stipend and in the fifth or sixth year students are eligible for the dissertation write-up fellowship. In the third and fourth years students are required to serve as teaching fellows to receive their stipend.
Need some tips for the application process? See my article How To Get Into a Fully Funded PhD Program: Contacting Potential PhD Advisors.
Also, sign up to discover and bookmark more than 1300 professional and academic fellowships in the ProFellow database.
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