MA in Sociology of Education

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about our M.A. Program

About the Academic Program

About Visiting Campus, Information Sessions, and Getting More Information

About Admissions

About Tuition, Financial Aid, and Graduate Housing


About the Academic Program

How long does it take to complete the MA program?

The program can be completed in three semesters if you are enrolled full-time. Part-time enrollment is permitted and will, of course, take longer.

Is this program accredited?

This MA program, like all academic programs at NYU, is approved by New York State. There is no accreditation body relevant to this program so accreditation is not available or required.

How many students are enrolled in the MA program?

Our program is small and selective with approximately 25 full- and part-time students.

Can I transfer credits from other institutions and have them count towards the required number of credits for this program, waive any course requirements, or get credit for past coursework?

No course requirements may be waived. However, up to six credits of transfer credit may be applied toward the MA degree, provided they meet certain requirements. To receive approval for transfer credits, after you are matriculated, you must contact your academic adviser and submit a syllabus and transcript for review.  Occasionally, with adviser approval, students may substitute a course for which they have previously done substantial work in that subject area with a more advanced course.

Can I substitute courses for required coursework?

No, all required core courses are considered essential to the program and may not be replaced.  They are offered frequently enough to allow students to complete their requirements within 3 semesters of full-time study (fall and spring).  There are some additional options available for the research methods courses, although at minimum, one course must be statistics or quantitative and this requirement may not be waived. 

Can I work full time and still take classes?

Yes, you may work full time and still take classes although some flexibility with hours of work will be necessary to fit in a few of the classes, which may be offered only during the day.

Must I complete an MA thesis?  Is there an alternative final project?

Yes, all students must undertake and complete a master's thesis. This is an important component of the Sociology of Education master's curriculum. Our faculty work closely with each student from the beginning of their studies to help them identify their thesis topic and guide their course selection to support their thesis research. The process of researching and writing the thesis builds skills and expertise for both professional work and advanced doctoral study.

Does the program provide opportunities for internships or other types of hands-on experience?

You can participate in an internship, although one is not required. Because most of our classes are offered in the late afternoons and evenings, an internship is most likely to fit student schedules during the mornings and during the summer.

Are all courses offered each semester?

Not all courses will be offered each semester; however, courses are scheduled such that full-time students will be able to complete the program within three semesters.

Do you offer online courses?

We do not currently or plan to offer courses online.

Do you offer summer courses?

We do not offer exclusively summer graduate programs, but some of our courses are occasionally offered in summer. With careful planning in conjunction with their adviser, students could fulfill certain program requirements during the summers.

Do any summer abroad courses relate directly to this program?

Steinhardt offers several short-term study abroad programs in education that may interest you, in both the January term/Spring Break and Summer.  Past programs our students participated in include:

Do you offer job placement assistance after graduation?

NYU's Wasserman Career Center provides assistance to all graduate students and alumni from NYU Steinhardt.


About Visiting Campus, Information Sessions, and Getting More Information

When can I attend an Open House?

Open House is hosted in the fall semester of each year.  Please see our website for more information about the Information Session and class visits, as well as how to RSVP.

I cannot attend the on campus information session.  How can I find out more?

We recommend you attend our online Information Session, where you will be able to hear about the program from faculty and advisers, and connect with current students.  To RSVP, please visit the website.  If you can't attend, you can also be sent a link to watch a recording of the session.

I am planning to visit campus soon, can I meet with someone to discuss my interest in the program?

We highly recommend students attend Open House, where you can meet faculty, advisers, and current students in the program, as well as attend a class.  If you are unable to align your plans with Open House, please send us an email to at least three weeks prior to your visit to request an appointment with an adviser.

We encourage students to also contact the NYU Gould Welcome Center to arrange for a campus tour, and watch the recorded Information Session prior to their visit to have many of their questions about the program answered.

Can you mail an information packet on the program to my home address?

We do not send materials via mail. Detailed information about the MA degree can be found on this web site, including course requirements and faculty biographies. After reviewing the website, if you have additional questions, please email us.

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About Admissions

What is the deadline for applying to the MA program in Sociology of Education?

We accept applications from students interested in either full- or part-time study for entry in the Fall only.  The application deadline is February 1.

What are the qualifications for admissions?

Successful applicants present a strong academic record from an accredited college or university; a major or prior academic work in sociology or a related field, such as education, politics, psychology, anthropology, or ethnic studies; strong writing and analytical skills; and interest in or prior work or volunteer experience with schools and/or youth programs.

Are there different admissions requirements for international students?

Applicants whose first language is not English are required to take one of the following English proficiency exams: TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic. See more information on English proficiency testing.

Additionally, international students who are offered admission will be required to take the English Proficiency Exam at NYU's American Language Institute (ALI) prior to their arrival at NYU.  Full-time enrollment in the program is conditional upon the results of the ALI examination. Detailed Special Instructions for International Applicants are available in the Graduate Admissions Guide.

Is the GRE required?

No, the GRE is not required for the MA program.

What is the GPA requirement?

Successful candidates for admission will demonstrate a strong record of academic achievement. Students with anomalies in their academic records should consider addressing this in their personal statement. 

What are the TOEFL requirements for international students?

Although we do not have a required TOEFL score, successful applicants score 100 or above on the Internet-based test or 600 or above on the paper-based test.

I do not have a background in education or sociology - am I still eligible to apply to this program?

Yes, absolutely. The program imparts methodological and theoretical knowledge, and gives students the opportunity to gain specialized knowledge in their area of interest. Undergraduates from a variety of backgrounds and majors are encouraged to apply.

Are you looking for students with life experience or for those who have recently completed an undergraduate degree?

We welcome students from both types of background. Typically, our students have spent at least a year working full time after college before they begin our program, but this is not always the case.

Do I need to submit letters of recommendation?

Yes, please submit two letters from professors or former employers from the last five years. At least one, but preferably both letters should be from professors or others who can speak to your academic strengths, to your potential to undertake rigorous academic work at an advanced level, if possible, to your interests in education and sociology.

How do I apply?

The online application is available on the Steinhardt Office of Graduate Admissions website.

What supplementary materials are required in the application?

Two letters of recommendation and a personal statement on why you want to study the sociology of education.

Students also are required to submit a writing sample. Please submit a course paper or its equivalent - of not more than 20 pages - that you feel demonstrates your writing and analytic abilities. The sample does not need to display a knowledge of sociology or sociology of education.

Is an interview required for admission?

No, an interview is not required (or offered) for admission.

Where do I send supplementary materials, such as letters of recommendation and transcripts?

Letters of recommendation and scanned transcripts are submitted through the online application.  If you have questions about the online application, please contact Graduate Admissions directly.

If absolutely necessary, other materials can be sent directly to the admissions office, with the required cover sheet:

Office of Graduate Admissions
NYU Steinhardt
82 Washington Square East, 3rd Floor
New York, NY 10003-6680

Can I have the application fee waived?

Application fee waivers are available in some circumstances. The NYU Steinhardt Office of Graduate Admissions handles fee waiver requests. Please review the Policy on Application Fee Waivers to determine how to properly request a fee waiver.

When will I receive a decision from NYU?

Decisions are typically emailed out from Graduate Admissions beginning in late March and early April for Fall applications. If you have not received a response within this time frame, please contact the Graduate Admissions Office directly at (212) 998-5030 or .


About Tuition, Financial Aid, and Graduate Housing

What is the cost of tuition for this program?

Students may complete the 36-credit program on a full- or part-time basis. Tuition and fees are posted on the Graduate Admissions web site on a per-credit basis and for typical full-time and part-time programs of study for the current or upcoming academic year. Expect tuition and fees to increase annually by 3-6%. You'll also find estimated expenses for housing, books and supplies, transportation, and health insurance. The Graduate Admissions site offers detailed information on applying for scholarships and other forms of financial aid.

Are scholarships available?

Yes. Information on scholarships is listed on the Steinhardt Graduate Admissions website under financial aid . All applicants who are interested in being considered for school-based scholarships must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by going to and submitting it electronically to NYU.  Detailed instructions can be found on the Graduate Admissions financial aid web pages.

The deadline for submitting the form to NYU is February 1 for the Fall term.  Please note that the earliest time you can access the form is January 1.

Do you offer scholarships for part-time students?

NYU Steinhardt is committed to assisting graduate applicants in the process of financing their education. One way we do this is by offering partial tuition scholarships (such as the Centennial Scholarship for new part-time master's students) based on merit and financial need.  Other forms of aid, such as loans, college work-study, and student employment can help part-time students complete their advanced degrees. For more information, visit the Steinhardt financial aid website .

Is funding available for international students?

NYU Steinhardt encourages international applicants to investigate scholarship support offered by their home country to support their studies at NYU. Master's applicants who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and eligible for federal financial aid may receive consideration for school-based financial aid. Non-U.S. citizens may be eligible for non-NYU sources of funding. More information may be found online .

What kind of housing do you provide?

On-campus housing at NYU is limited. Most graduate students live off-campus. Graduate Admissions serves as the liaison office to NYU Housing and can respond to general questions about graduate student housing and the application process.