The Department of Sociology emphasizes both theoretical creativity and substantive empirical research on important social issues. It encourages a range of analytic perspectives and maintains strength in both quantitative and qualitative methods. The graduate program complements research on the contemporary United States (including New York City) with international and historical studies. Among its areas of strength are gender studies; social inequality; crime, law, and deviance; organizations and economy; political sociology; social movements; urban sociology; race and ethnicity; culture; sociology of education; and theory.
In addition to formal course work, the department offers students a chance to participate in collaborative research projects through its apprenticeship program. This gives students an early research experience and leads NYU faculty and students to publish an unusually high number of coauthored papers. Students also have access to the department’s extensive computer resources. The department also maintains strong links to NYU in Berlin, to the London School of Economics (via the NYLON program), and to the Brookings Institution. Interested students can apply to spend part of their graduate career in any of these venues.
In addition to two department wide colloquia (the Puck series and the seminars offered by the Center for Advanced Social Science Research), the NYU Department of Sociology organizes six continuing public research workshops, where faculty and students present and criticize each other’s works in progress, encouraging professional collaboration and exchange. These workshops are
- Politics, Power, and Protest;
- Gender and Inequality;
- Crime, Law, and Deviance;
- Political Economy; and
- Culture, Institutions, and Social Change
The department frequently cosponsors speakers and panels with other units, such as the Wagner School of Public Affairs, as well as an array of academic meetings, including an annual conference run entirely by graduate students themselves at which faculty play the role of discussants.
To prepare students interested in careers as college and university teachers, the department offers training in the teaching of sociology. This includes a teaching practicum and a graduated program of practical experience in which students work as teaching assistants with increasing levels of responsibility. It also includes graduate student representation on a wide range of departmental committees, including those devoted to faculty hiring.