Jun 17, 2021  
2013-2014 Catalog 
2013-2014 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Individual Graduate Program, Social Sciences Emphasis, M.A.

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Program Description

Contact: Mitch Ylarregui, Graduate Program Coordinator, mylarregui@ucmerced.edu

The graduate emphasis in Social Sciences offers individualized, research-based training in four tracks (described in detail below): economics, political science, public health, and sociology. Students are educated in a particular discipline, but have the opportunity to engage in interdisciplinary research and collaboration if they so desire.

The deadline for applications is January 15th. Normally applications are accepted for Fall semester only. Applicants are encouraged to contact SS faculty before applying as fit with existing research programs is integral for admission. Applicants must provide evidence of an undergraduate grade point average no lower than 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Additionally, GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose will be evaluated by the admissions committee as determinants of an applicant’s potential for success in graduate education. Foreign students from non-English speaking counties must also take the TOEFL and TSE exams. Students are admitted to SS to work toward a Ph.D. degree.

This track provides training in such applied microeconomic fields as environmental economics, political economy, industrial organization, public economics, labor economics, and economic history.

This track provides training in quantitative approaches to political science. Students select between two substantive tracks: political cognition and behavior (CAB) and political institutions and political economy (PIPE). In addition, all students are required to take a core methods sequence including research design, introductory regression, and advanced regression analysis as well as a research practicum. Exams are given following the first and third years of course work. The political science track will become a stand-alone PhD program in coming years pending CCGA and WASC approval.

The public health track offers doctoral training to students who hold a master’s degree in public health or a related field. 

The sociology track offers substantive training in social inequality (race/ethnicity, social class, gender and sexuality), political sociology and social movements, education, and immigration.  Students gain expertise in sociological theory and both quantitative and qualitative research methods.

Program Learning Outcomes

The Social Sciences graduate group has established the following program learning outcomes:

  1. A comprehensive, graduate-level understanding of processes, theories, and empirical regularities in the student’s chosen track.
  2. Competency with contemporary social science methods used to conduct rigorous social scientific research.
  3. Effective scientific communication skills, especially the ability to convey complex concepts and information in a clear and concise manner.
  4. The ability to initiate and conduct independent research that makes an original contribution to knowledge of a quality that can be published in a peer reviewed outlet.

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