PhD Admissions

The application portal for Fall 2023 is scheduled to open in mid-October 2022, with an application deadline of January 15, 2023. If you have questions about our graduate program, please contact the Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Joshua Bloom (joshuabloom@pitt.edu). We are happy to talk with you.

Application Information 

Applicants to the graduate program in sociology at the University of Pittsburgh apply online. Your complete application for Fall term 2023 must be received by January 15.

In an effort to reduce financial barriers to attending graduate school, the Kenneth P. Dietrich Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offers application fee waivers. Please note that fee waivers are approved on a case-by-case basis and not all fee waiver requests will be granted.  All requests received will be reviewed and responded to within 48 hours during normal business hours: Monday - Friday 8:30a.m. to 5:00p.m. EST.  To be considered for a fee waiver, Please complete the following fee waiver survey for review: https://pitt.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cD38CmmjcOT3Tvw.

Application Requirements

The complete application materials include the following:

  • An application form
  • A non-refundable application fee of $75.
  • A statement of purpose that is 2-3 pages responds to the following questions (this is your opportunity to make your case to the admissions committee, so feel free to regard these questions flexibly):
    • Describe your relevant research and real-world experience.
    • What kind of career do you have in mind, and how will being a disciplined sociologist help you meet your goals?
    • Describe a research project you imagine developing in graduate school.
    • Describe any relevant previous training and proficiencies in the discipline.
    • What led you to apply to the PhD program in Sociology at the University of Pittsburgh?
  • A sample of written work (e.g., a senior thesis, term paper, or publication) that provides evidence of creative and critical thinking, quality of writing, and potential for engaging in independent research.
  • Three letters of recommendation intended to provide independent evaluation of each applicant's potential. Letters should come from former professors or others who can evaluate your intellectual and academic qualifications for graduate study. Reference writers will submit these forms and letters independently from the application using a link embedded in an e-mail they receive from the online application process.
  • Unofficial copy of transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions you have attended. If non-US citizens, please submit transcripts in the native language accompanied by notarized English translations. The University requires at least a 3.0. GPA. Note: official transcripts will need to be sent if admitted into the program. 

If you are having issues with any part of your on-line application for the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences please reach out to the GradCas Applicant Help center: https://help.liaisonedu.com/GradCAS_Applicant_Help_Center.  If you cannot find the answer to your question you can also contact them by phone 857-304-2086 or via email: gradcasinfo@liaisoncas.com.  For the quickest response it is best to contact them via chat on the Applicant Help center page.

English Proficiency Requirements

All non-U.S. citizens applying to the graduate program, except for those who have received degrees from a U.S. institution or from other English-speaking countries, must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or Duolingo English Test as part of their application to demonstrate a sufficient command of English to meet the requirements of their field. The minimum scores are 90 for TOEFL (with at least a score of 22 in all of the four sections of speaking, listening, reading, and writing), 7.0 for IELTS (with at least 6.5 in each of its four sections), and 110 for Duolingo.

The TOEFL is offered several times each year at sites in the United States and abroad. If not available locally, the annual schedules and other information about the TOEFL can be obtained online or by mail from:
Educational Testing Service (ETS)
TOEFL, Box 6151
Princeton, NJ 08541-6151 USA
(609) 771-7100

NOTE: TOEFL application booklets generally are available at U.S. colleges and universities and at U.S. consulates and U.S. Information Service offices abroad. Foreign students should check with these sources before writing to Princeton.

TOEFL Institution Code: 2927

IELTS official scores should be mailed to:
Graduate Administrator
University of Pittsburgh
2400 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
230 South Bouquet Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15260

Questions about the application process may be addressed to Director of Graduate Studies, Joshua Bloom.