Online PhD in Sociology/Social Science Programs

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by scun10, Jan 21, 2016.

  1. scun10

    scun10 New Member

    Hi there,

    I've spent the morning emailing local schools about traditional PhD programs in Sociology, however, I'm drawn to find out more about online programs because maximum flexibility would be helpful as a co-parent of two school aged-children.

    It seems that the PhD in Sociology isn't offered online by very many institutions, but I did find a few. I want to use the program for self-enrichment and to teach at the college level. I am wondering if anyone knows much about any of these or other similar programs and, also, if you believe that a traditional college would "look down" on these institutions as they are the most prominently known for offering only virtual degrees.

    Thanks in advance for your ideas and thoughts.
  2. StefanM

    StefanM New Member

    Sociology isn't exactly a high-demand field (partially explaining the lack of DL options), but I think most traditional schools would highly prefer candidates with degrees from traditional PhD programs (residential, etc.) from well-known, highly-ranked institutions.

    With the online option, you miss on two fronts---1) The program is non-traditional, and 2) The program is not going to be highly-ranked.

    Furthermore, full-time residential programs tend to be more conducive to producing research, as a student can collaborate with on-campus professors on research projects, can often have an easier time traveling to conferences (and, ideally, to present papers).

    I would highly suggest avoiding a DL option in this field, even if available.
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    I don't like telling people to give up their goals. I think that as long as you understand the situation you'd be entering it's OK to feel positive about such programs. You've said that you've discovered a few programs already so I'm not going to repeat the search that you've already done. If you want to list the programs you've found there might be one or two that we know of that you haven't discovered yet. Sometimes, when resources are scarce people are willing to do things that they might not do otherwise. In this regards I'm talking about going outside the US for your degree. You'll find many more choices in the UK, Australia and South Africa. Here's an example:

    Sociology Distance Learning PhD — University of Leicester
  4. scun10

    scun10 New Member

    Thanks so much for your replies. I do understand that local, traditional options would be preferable. I live in a fairly rural area, however, and have access to only a couple schools which would provide a reasonable commute time (given my parenting obligations) and one of them is very competitive. I will likely apply there, but if I do not get accepted, I am trying to weigh the value of other options.

    The University of Leicester you mentioned is helpful. And from a quick read, it seems that it has a pretty positive reputation globally and it also does offer some on-site courses/opportunities to have face-to-face time mixed in. However, I honestly know nothing about it and how it might be perceived by American employers (colleges and universities, in this case). Does anyone know anything about the University of Leicester and it's accreditation/how it would be perceived in the U.S.?
  5. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    The British accreditation system is not like the US system but without going into all the details it's safe to say that Leicester is a fully accredited university. As for perception, that's another matter because, as we know, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Personally, I'd prefer a degree from a second tier British school than a fourth tier US school but that's me. I think you can discover, with very little effort, that there are people with degrees from the University of Leicester teaching/working all over the UK and the world.
  6. pogini

    pogini New Member

    Did you ever apply to or enter the Leicester sociology PhD program?
  7. jfosj

    jfosj Member

    The University of Leicester is one of the top 15 universities in the UK and is easily ranked between 150 and 250 globally any given year. It is one of the universities that invest heavily in research and, at least outside the US, it has great reputation. In Academic circles, the Leicester is a highly respected university with many of its alumni holding teaching positions at universities around the world including Dartmouth, Oxford, Etc.
  8. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    The first part of that is debatable. The second part is not.

    Groucho Marx once quipped, "I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member." I'll make an exception for Leicester, and I'm really proud to hold a doctorate from there. It is the most obscure accomplishment in an obscure career!
  9. pogini

    pogini New Member

    They don't accept ANY transfer credits from previous universities, even from an R1 in the US. I timed out as an ABD in Sociology and I am trying to finish up without having to start over. :(
  10. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    Have you tried contacting your original school to see if you can finish with them? The worst they can do is say no.
  11. pogini

    pogini New Member

    Yes and they said the worst. I am past my final extension and no one in the department knows me anymore and I'm not paying for classes, so working with me on a dissertation was not high on anyone's list of priorities. I need to find somewhere, somehow to finish this degree and I am having a really hard time. I have looked in the UK and Canada also, but no luck. Are there any ABD completion programs left anywhere that would consider someone from sociology?

Share This Page