Combine diverse research with classical theory 

Waterloo’s Sociology Department provides a supportive, friendly, and intellectually vibrant environment to cultivate a sociological analysis of the most pressing issues confronting societies today.

Students in Sociology gain a strong understanding of social, political, economic, and cultural relations through sociological theory and methods, critical analysis, and interdisciplinary research training. Our programs offer courses and research expertise in law, crime, and security; social inequalities and public policy; migration and transnationalism; governance studies; and culture and education.

Our graduates have gone on to hold coveted positions in policy development, law, research analysis, and academia. Notable places of employment include Employment and Social Development Canada, the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, and at post-secondary institutions across the country.

The Department of Sociology and Legal Studies offers three distinct graduate programs: 

  • A Master of Arts in Social and Legal Studies 
  • A Master of Arts in Sociology 
  • A Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology 

Funding, co-op, and access to awards and scholarships are available in each graduate program. 

Ashley Ryan

"When I was applying to the University of Waterloo for my undergraduate degree, I did so because it was one of the top schools in the country. I liked the campus environment and I loved the emphasis on leadership and innovation. I decided to stay at Waterloo for my graduate studies because of the great working relationship I have with my supervisor, the different opportunities available on campus, and the social roots I had established”

- Ashley Ryan, PhD Recipient, Class of 2023

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Would you like to know more about our programs? 

Quinn Smith
Coordinator & Advisor, Graduate Studies
519-888-4567 x41953

  • Admissions
  • Program information
  • Funding

Owen Gallupe
Associate Chair for Graduate Studies
519-888-4567 x 43361

  • Research guidance
  • Supervisor queries
  • Learning outcomes

Notice for international applicants: Due to funding restrictions, the Faculty of Arts is currently limiting the number of international students we can admit. If you are an international applicant, please contact the Associate Chair for Graduate Studies prior to applying.