Graduate students in the GW Department of Sociology gain the expertise and practical experience needed to pursue in-demand careers in social research, policy and related fields. Taught by our talented and experienced faculty, students develop a solid grounding in sociological theory and research methods. Our collegial community in the heart of Washington, D.C., offers unique access to internship and career opportunities at government agencies, advocacy organizations and think tanks.

The Master of Arts in Sociology degree promotes a deep understanding of social stratification and inequality, while the Master of Arts in Criminology degree offers a foundation in criminal procedure and forensic sciences to prepare students for a future in legal advocacy or corrections system research.


MA Sociology and MA Criminology Info Session: March 11

Join us online for an information session discussing the field of sociology and the GW Master of Arts in Sociology and Master of Arts in Criminology programs.

Register to Attend

Who We Are

Students discussing in a circle in professor Hillary Silver's class

In the George Washington University Department of Sociology, students analyze human social structures through classwork, research and practical workplace experience. Our undergraduate and graduate degree programs explore sociology’s many applications to the world around us, with options including sociological theory, criminal justice and our in-house Human Services and Social Justice Program.

Surrounded by the rich social laboratory of Washington, D.C., sociology students enjoy professional opportunities at institutions like the Department of Justice, the Supreme Court, the White House and a variety of social justice nonprofits. Under the guidance of faculty, students build the skills and networks they need for future careers as researchers, professors, child care workers, nonprofit leaders, criminal investigators, rehabilitation counselors and much more.


Prospective Students

Master's Highlights

The Capitol Building lit up at night

D.C. Location

Washington, D.C., is an ideal backdrop for sociological studies, with an array of government agencies, advocacy organizations and think tanks. Graduates of our MA programs are in high demand, and many find long-term jobs with organizations for which they interned.


Two women talking and writing on a white board

Field Research

All graduate students in the department must complete a field research course. As part of the course, students complete an observation component at a professional organization and learn to apply the logic of qualitative inquiry and techniques behind qualitative data collection.


Daina Eglitis standing at the front of a classroom lecturing

Experienced Faculty

Our talented faculty represent a wide range of interests within sociology and criminology, providing ample opportunities for mentorship, research advising, potential networking and publishing guidance.


"In my career as a survey statistician for the U.S. Census Bureau, I use the training I received from the Sociology Department's Research Methods and Data Analysis courses daily. Thanks to my coursework at GW, I have a foundation in the survey life cycle process and how to analyze data."

Amber Henderson
BA ’11, MA ’15