• Degrees Offered: MA, PhD
  • Application Deadline: May 1 (or Dec. 15 for funding consideration)
  • Study Options: Thesis (MA), Dissertation (PhD)
  • Duration: 2 years (MA) or 4 years (PhD)
  • Entry Terms: Fall

The UNB Sociology Graduate Program offers full-time or part-time research-intensive degrees that equip graduates with the skills and knowledge necessary for advanced positions with private, public, and charitable employers. 

Both the Master of Arts (MA) and the Doctoral (PhD) programs place emphasis on developing strong social research techniques (both qualitative and quantitative methods), command of research design (methodology), and theoretical positioning (social theory).

The emphasis in the MA program is on developing students’ capacities to undertake social research that necessarily involve project design, critical thinking, fieldwork, professional writing, and high-level analysis. These skills are highly transferrable for a range of careers in the job market.

The emphasis in the PhD program is on students building upon their existing graduate qualifications so as to undertake advanced graduate research. PhD students are supported and guided in their studies in order to fully develop the skills, techniques, and knowledge necessary to graduate as an expert in their research area. Recent graduates from the program have moved on to positions in the provincial and federal government, private industry, charity groups, and into tenure-track academic positions.

The UNB Sociology Department usually has between 25-40 enrolled graduate students. This means UNB can offer all Sociology students a collegiate student environment, and personalized attention with faculty members. A warm and welcoming department with a high research output, UNB Sociology is an excellent choice for you and your future research.

Faculty and research areas

Andrea Bombak: Critically explores messaging and policy concerning the ‘obesity epidemic’ and the lived experience of weight stigma. 

Tia Dafnos: Policing, security and pacification; racialization and colonialism; resistance, protest and social movements.

Carmen Gill: Criminology, gender relations, families, violence in society, family violence, intimate partner violence, domestic homicide, justice system, police action/response, including assessment of risk, treatment program.

Neeru Gupta: Population health; applied quantitative health systems and policy research; epidemiology of chronic disease and injury; social determinants of health; health inequalities.

David Hofmann: Terrorism and political violence; radicalization towards violence; charismatic authority; leadership; criminal and illicit networks; right-wing extremism & political activism; cults & new religious movements; mixed methods; social network analysis.

Catherine Holtmann: Sociology of religion; gender; immigrants; domestic/intimate partner violence; mixed methods research; visual sociology.

Jacqueline Low: Health, health care and health policy; alternative and complementary therapy; chronic illness and disability; deviance and stigma management; sociology of the body; home care and home support; qualitative research methods; symbolic interactionist theory.

Nathan Kalman-Lamb: Classical and contemporary social theory; Marxisms, racial capitalism; sociology of sport; labor of sport; postcolonial/anti-racist critique of multiculturalism; social reproduction.

Luc Thériault: Social policy and third sector studies; healthcare policy; social economy organizations involved in the delivery of human services, including co-operatives.

Lucia Tramonte: Quantitative analysis; socio-economic segregation; family resources; physical & mental health; children’s outcomes; anxiety and depression; comparative education; school achievement; longitudinal data; cross-sectional data; multilevel modelling.

Chris Doran (nob doran): Parrhesian sociology, post-structural social theory, Feminist discourse/textual analysis, and historical sociology.

Dann Downes: D.I.Y. culture and handmade electronic musical technology and the role of intellectual property in the regulation of cultural industries and popular culture.

Joseph Galbo: Politics and culture, urban geography and ethnography, and film and communications. 

Beth Keyes: Neuropsychology and Special Education; specialized training in the specific area of Learning Disabilities and Inclusive Service Provision Models.

Tobin LeBlanc Haley: Community-engaged research, blending critical policy ethnography, archival research, and arts-informed approaches to make visible the impacts of Canadian social policy for people living at the intersection of disability, socio-economic poverty, and housing precarity, and to chart new opportunities for positive change.

June Madeley: Audience reception and media fandom.

Wade Nelson: Media, sport, celebrity, professional athletes, and promotional culture.

Eric Weissman: Homelessness, housing and social policy; community based critical and pragmatic ethnography, mental health and addictions.

Julia Woodhall-Melnik: Explores employment and housing as social determinants of physical and mental health, addiction and concurrent disorders.

Associations with research centres

Application requirements

  1. Masters applicants: Should hold an undergraduate major or honours degree in Sociology and a minimum GPA of 3.5 (B+). (It is possible for students with GPAs that just fall short of the minimum, or students with an undergraduate degree from a related social science discipline, to still be considered for entry to the program after completing a year of additional coursework. Please contact for more information.)

  2. PhD applicants: Require an MA in Sociology but may still be considered if from a related social science discipline and a minimum GPA of 3.7. (Please contact for more information.) 

  3. For all applicants: The application package must include: 
    • An up-to-date official academic transcript. For those applying for the December 15 deadline, an updated transcript with Fall grades must be submitted as soon as it becomes available at the completion of the semester. 
    • Three (3) letters of reference. At least two (2) of which, if not all, must be from academic referees.
    • A statement of interest (approximately 500-600 words long). This should outline your intended research area and why you have selected UNB. 
    • A writing sample. For MA applicants, usually a high-scoring undergraduate paper; for PhD applicants, usually a chapter from their MA thesis. 
    • A curriculum vitae.  
    • A completed online application.

  4. Applicants should contact relevant faculty members in the Sociology Department to ascertain their availability and their potential interest in becoming a supervisor.

  5. Applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit evidence of English language proficiency scores: IELTS band 7.5 overall (with minimum writing band of 7.5), TOEFL 102, or an accepted equivalent.


Funding for graduate students at UNB is primarily allocated through a competitive process and so is not guaranteed for every applicant. Students receiving funding from UNB can expect to receive around $15,500 per year for MA students and $19,500 per year for PhD students. This consists of a grant and a teaching assistantship. At both the MA and PhD level, Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada are eligible (and are required by the department) to apply for Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) funding. 

Contact us

Sylvia Whitaker
Graduate Program Assistant 

Tilley Hall, Room 20

Related: Sociology Department