Master of Arts in Sociology
The Master of Arts in Sociology provides critical analysis and knowledge about social changes in contemporary society and related processes of globalization with a focus on equity and social justice. This critical perspective enables students to develop an awareness of the unequal and unjust consequences of these processes in both local and global contexts as well as examine modalities of resistance and change. The program offers an emphasis on social theory, research methods as well as professionalization in the field.
In order to be admitted to the master's program, a student must meet the general admission requirements of the university. Applicants are expected to have an honours BA with a major in sociology or an equivalent degree. An average of B+ in the final year of full-time study or equivalent is usually required, along with a cumulative average of at least B+ in all sociology courses. Applications are reviewed by the Graduate Program Committee, which considers all prior university grades, a statement of research interests, a writing sample, and letters of reference.
Proficiency in English usage, both written and oral, is essential to pursue graduate studies at Laurier. Applicants whose language of instruction during the undergraduate degree was other than English must furnish evidence of proficiency in English, prior to admission.
Students must develop their programs in consultation with the graduate officer. The graduate officer must approve the student's program in all cases. All students will be initially admitted to the course-based option. Students will complete three of the four required courses by the end of the Fall term (the Professionalisation course will span the Fall and Winter term). The required courses are the following:
SY600 - Theory and Practice
SY601 - Advanced Qualitative Research
SY602 - Advanced Quantitative Research
SY603 - Professionalisation
Students who will complete their degree requirements through the course-based option must complete four electives in the Winter and Spring terms.
In cases in which a) a student has demonstrated the academic capacity for original independent research and b) the student's interests are aligned with the expertise of a faculty member available to support them, that student may transition to the MRP option with the support of a faculty supervisor and the graduate coordinator. The MRP option will require the completion of two elective courses (Winter term) and the Major Research Paper (Spring term). Arrangements to transition to the MRP option must be made by November 15th.
With the approval of the graduate officer, two of the elective courses may be taken from a master's program of another department at Wilfrid Laurier University. In addition to this, students may also arrange to take one of their courses as a directed studies course under the supervision of an individual professor.
The normal sequence of registration is illustrated in the following table:
|Fall Term||Winter Term||Spring Term|
SY600 - Theory and Practice
SY695 - Major Research Paper
Grades for all courses will be assigned in accordance with the Course Requirements specified in the WLU Graduate Calendar.
Major Research Paper
The Major Research Paper is considered to be similar to a thesis in quality of work, but less than a thesis in scope. Students will complete a paper in which they engage in original research on an approved topic. Typically papers will be between 50 and 60 pages in length, excluding the bibliography.