2021 Best Sociology Graduate Programs That Don’t Require GRE

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Sociology graduate programs that don’t require GRE scores are becoming more common.

Sociology Graduate Programs no gre

If you are interested in online masters sociology programs but would prefer not to take the GRE, there are many universities that might be a good match for you.

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Earning an online sociology masters degree can give you the opportunity to study social dynamics and how they affect individuals. This can help prepare you for careers in social services, academia, and community organizations.

Online Sociology Graduate Programs That Don’t Require the GRE

Online Sociology Graduate Programs

Sociology is the scientific study of human interactions and social behavior. The study of sociology can be applied to small groups, large communities, and formal organizations and institutions.

Learning about sociology can help you analyze and make sense of changing social movements in the world. It can also help you broaden your perspective and understand how characteristics such as race, gender, and socioeconomic status affect people’s relationships and opportunities.

In addition to teaching you how to apply scientific thought to social dynamics, earning your degree in sociology can help you develop soft skills, such as understanding other perspectives. These skills can be beneficial in the workplace, meaning sociology is a good major for many students.

Here are some common subjects that you may study while earning your MA in sociology online:

  • Business and organizational social dynamics
  • Social movements
  • Class structure and social stratification
  • Family dynamics
  • Race and gender
  • Urban studies
  • Social psychology

After completing your graduate degree in sociology, you could pursue a career as a sociologist, a survey researcher, a market research analyst, or a social and community service manager.

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Most sociologists possess at least a master’s degree. Sociologists often specialize in researching specific topics, such as education, health, crime, poverty, families, or race relations. They may work alongside other social scientists, such as economists and psychologists.

An increasing number of online graduate degree programs in sociology are accepting students with no GRE required. In other cases, you may be able to waive a GRE score requirement under certain circumstances, such as meeting a minimum undergraduate GPA requirement.

How Do I Get My GRE Waived for Admissions?

sociology gre admissions

Many universities that still require Graduate Record Examination scores for admissions are offering ways for prospective students to waive the requirement. This can usually be done by meeting other standards in lieu of the GRE.

Here are some common requirements schools might have for applicants who wish to waive the GRE:

  • A minimum undergraduate grade point average, usually between 2.8 and 3.0
  • Prior professional experience
  • Possession of another graduate degree

Grad schools that don’t require GRE scores, or those that allow applicants to waive GRE score requirements under certain circumstances, do not necessarily have low admissions standards. They may hold potential students to high standards based on other admissions criteria.

In some cases, a university may not generally require GRE scores, but specific departments or programs within the university may still have GRE requirements. You may want to carefully examine a university’s admissions requirements before applying.

Sociology Careers & Salaries

Sociology Careers & Salaries

A masters in sociology can help open the door to a variety of career opportunities. Sociologists commonly find employment doing research and development in the social sciences and humanities, state government, and educational services.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are the median annual salaries for some occupations that graduates of sociology programs often pursue.

Careers Annual Median Salaries
Human resources managers $121,220
Management analysts $87,660
Sociologists $86,110
Postsecondary teachers $80,790
Social and community service managers $69,600
Market research analysts $65,810
Human resources specialists $63,490
Public relations specialists $62,810
Survey researchers $59,870
Social workers $51,760

These are just some of the careers you may pursue with an MA in sociology. Some of the listed careers may require additional licensure, education, or work experience to obtain.

Sociology Master’s Curriculum & Courses

Sociology Master's Curriculum

Graduate programs in sociology typically cover classical and contemporary sociological theory and research methods. Here are examples of courses you might take while earning a master’s degree in sociology:

  • General Sociology: This course provides foundational knowledge about sociological theory.
  • Qualitative and Quantitative Research: This course covers how to conduct different types of research in the field of sociology.
  • Gender and Society: This class discusses the social and cultural roles of each sex.
  • Social Change and Development: In this course, you can study how cultures change over time.
  • Social Psychology: In this course, you can study how people’s thinking is influenced by interactions with others and internalized social norms.
  • Social Anthropology: This course involves the study of different cultures and how they organize themselves.
  • Rural Sociology: This class covers the social dynamics of people living in sparsely populated regions.
  • Urban Sociology: This class covers the social dynamics of people living in densely populated regions.
  • Sociology of Religion: In this course, you can study the structures and social dynamics of different religions.
  • Political Sociology: In this course, you can study the social dynamics of political movements and government.

Exact course titles and requirements may vary at different universities. Some universities may also require you to complete a thesis or participate in a practicum. While you are in the process of choosing a school, you may want to consider whether you want to complete a thesis.

Graduate Programs Admissions

Graduate Programs Admissions

Here are some common admissions requirements for graduate programs in sociology:

  • GRE scores (Only some schools require them, and many offer waivers to qualified students.)
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university with a minimum number of credit hours completed in sociology or other social sciences
  • Application describing your education and work experience
  • Undergraduate transcripts showing minimum GPA requirement
  • Personal statement describing your career goals or reasons for studying sociology

Admission requirements vary from school to school. If you have any questions about requirements, it can be beneficial to contact the school’s admissions office.

Accreditation

Sociology Graduate Programs no gre accreditation

There are many independent agencies that review colleges and universities to ensure that their academic programs meet certain standards of quality. One of the standards universities can work toward to demonstrate their reliability is regional accreditation.

Having regional accreditation is a sign that a school is trustworthy and meets educational standards. A university’s regional accreditation status can affect whether you qualify for federal financial aid and whether your credits will transfer if you choose to change schools.

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Some sociology programs have programmatic accreditation from the Commission on the Accreditation of Programs in Applied and Clinical Sociology as well. For more information about regional accreditation, please visit the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Sociology Graduate Programs no gre financial aid

A graduate degree can be costly. If you would like to pursue a graduate degree but are wondering how you will pay for it, you may want to look into financial aid opportunities.

There are many different forms of financial assistance available for graduate students, including those enrolled in online degree programs. You may qualify for state and federal financial aid, or your university may have grants, scholarships, or work-study programs available.

Many universities list the financial aid opportunities they offer students on their websites. To apply for federal financial aid, please fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

What Is the GRE?

Sociology Graduate Programs gre

The Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is a standardized test that is a common admissions requirement to attend many graduate degree programs, including some sociology programs.

The test is designed to measure the verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing skills that you have acquired throughout your education. The questions are intended to reflect the types of critical thinking that would be useful to you while earning a graduate degree. The test typically takes about 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete.

What Is a Bad GRE Score?

university admissions requirements bad gre

Different universities have different admissions requirements, so a score that might be considered a bad score at one university might not be considered bad at another.

Average GRE scores include a score of 150 on verbal reasoning, a score of 152 to 153 on quantitative reasoning, and a score of 3.5 on analytical writing. Achieving these scores would put you at the 50th percentile as compared to other test takers.

What you personally choose to consider a good score will likely depend on where you wish to attend school and on that university’s particular admissions requirements.

Is GRE Required for Masters?

GRE Required for Masters

The GRE is not necessarily required to earn a master’s degree. Some universities do require applicants to submit GRE scores, but there are an increasing number of no GRE masters programs online.

Some schools that ask for GRE scores may allow students to waive the requirement under certain circumstances, such as meeting a minimum GPA requirement.

In some cases, you may be able to gain acceptance on probationary status without GRE scores. If you would prefer not to take the GRE, there are many possible options for earning your master’s degree from graduate programs with no GRE required.

What Can I Do with a Masters in Sociology?

Sociology is a broad field with many potential applications. With a master’s degree in sociology, you could pursue work as a sociologist who conducts research projects on society and human social behavior.

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Sociologists often work in research and development, state government, or educational services. Knowledge of sociology may also be applied at a corporation in human resources or marketing. Before pursuing your master’s degree in sociology, you may want to decide which specific career path you most want to follow.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Masters in Sociology Online?

How long it takes to earn your degree depends on the length of the program. Sociology masters programs usually require about 36 credit hours of coursework. This can usually be completed in as little as 1 year if you take classes full time, including during the summer.

Of course, you may take more time to complete your degree if you choose to take classes part time. If the program requires completion of a thesis, this also might take more time. Fortunately, online sociology degree programs usually provide flexible scheduling options so that you can choose a pace that is practical for you.

Is a Graduate Degree in Sociology Worth it?

Graduate Degree in Sociology

Yes, a graduate degree in sociology is worth it for many students. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of sociologists is projected to grow about 4% through 2029. Because sociology has such broad applications, you could also seek other kinds of jobs. You could pursue a corporate job or a job at a nonprofit organization.

On a personal level, earning a graduate degree in sociology might provide you with an opportunity to think about possible solutions for systemic and societal problems. It may also give you the chance to discuss these topics with likeminded people.

Universities Offering Online Masters in Sociology Degree Programs Without GRE Requirements

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University campus

Arizona State University offers an online Master of Arts in Sociology program. Classes are 7.5 weeks long. To graduate, students must complete 30 credit hours, including 3 capstone projects. Those interested in the program must have a GPA of 3.0 from a bachelor’s program and must submit a resume and 2 letters of recommendation.

ASU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Grand Canyon University

Grand Canyon University campus

Grand Canyon University offers an online program for a Master of Science in Sociology with a specialization in Education.

Students must complete 34 credit hours through online courses that are 8 weeks long. A maximum of 12 qualifying credits can be transferred into the program. Applicants must either have a minimum GPA of 2.6 or a graduate degree from another institution.

Grand Canyon University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Morehead State University

Morehead State University campus

Morehead State University offers a Master of Arts in Sociology program that can be completed online.

Students may add a concentration in Criminology or Chemical Dependency with the option to complete a thesis or not. To graduate, students must complete 30 credit hours. Applicants must have a GPA of 2.75 and submit a personal statement.

Morehead State University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University campus

New Mexico State University offers online and on-campus programs for a Master of Arts in Sociology. Both programs require 36 credit hours, and students can transfer in up to 9 qualifying credit hours. To be eligible for the program, applicants must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher and 3 letters of recommendation.

NMSU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

Sam Houston State University

Sam Houston State University campus

Sam Houston State University offers a Master of Arts in Sociology. To graduate, students must complete 37 credit hours and either a thesis or a capstone project. Those interested in the program must submit a letter of intent and 2 letters of recommendation and must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Sam Houston State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

South Dakota State University

South Dakota State University campus

South Dakota State University offers a Master of Science in Sociology with a concentration in Community Development. Students may choose to complete a thesis or a research paper or focus solely on coursework. Each track requires 36 credit hours to graduate. Applicants must submit 2 letters of recommendation.

South Dakota State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Texas A and M University

Texas A & M University - Commerce campus

Texas A&M University offers an online Master of Science in Sociology program. The program, which can typically be completed in 2 years, requires 30 credit hours and does not offer a thesis option. Applicants must submit a letter of recommendation and a statement of purpose.

Texas A&M University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Texas Woman’s University

Texas Womans University campus

Texas Woman’s University offers an online Master of Science in Sociology program. To graduate, students must complete 30 credit hours. Both a thesis and a non-thesis track are available. To be eligible for the program, applicants must have an undergraduate degree with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Texas Woman’s University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Alabama – Birmingham

University of Alabama Birmingham campus

The University of Alabama—Birmingham offers a Master of Arts in Sociology. The program is offered online and does not require the completion of a thesis. To graduate, students must complete 30 credit hours. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0 or professional experience with letters of recommendation.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Virginia Commonwealth University

Virginia Commonwealth University campus

Virginia Commonwealth University offers a Master of Science in Sociology. The program can be completed online. To graduate, students must complete 36 credit hours and a final project or dissertation. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher and 3 letters of recommendation.

VCU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Getting Your Sociology Master’s Degree Online

Sociology Master's Degree Online

If you are interested in pursuing a master’s degree in sociology, there are a wide variety of programs available to meet your needs. Earning your degree online could enable you to go to school without having to commute or relocate. There are now many ways to apply to graduate school without taking the GRE, which may make applying easier.

A degree in sociology may be right for you if you are passionate about studying human society and relationships. Maybe today is the day to take the next step in your education and career. You can start your journey today by looking for accredited sociology masters programs online!

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Amy Wilson
WRITTEN BY
Amy Wilson
While attending the University of Georgia, Amy enrolled in both on-campus and online courses giving her the opportunity to explore the pros and cons of each course delivery system. Amy's research is focused on making education more accessible to everyone and how different education methodologies can affect student outcomes.