The Master of Social Sciences degree is designed for graduate students who need to study two or more subjects within the social sciences field to earn a master’s degree. Although most students are public school teachers, candidates in other occupations may apply. The degree is intended for students concluding their graduate education at the master’s level.
The program is directed by a coordinator appointed by the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. This coordinator supervises the policies that guide the program and coordinates admission, assignment of advisors with the social science departments, and the selection of a committee to administer the terminal written examination.
To earn the Master of Social Sciences degree, you must complete a minimum of 50 quarter hours in a minimum of 10 graduate courses in two or more of the social science disciplines.
Major and minor fields and auxiliary areas are chosen from history, political science, economics, sociology-anthropology, and geography. Other subject fields such as psychology and social work that relate to your academic interest may be approved as minor or auxiliary fields.
Courses and credit are distributed as follows:
- A major of five to seven courses equalling a minimum of 20 graduate credit hours.
- A single minor, a minor and an auxiliary area, or two auxiliary areas. A minor consists of three to five courses for a minimum of 12 graduate credit hours. An auxiliary area consists of two courses for a minimum of 8 graduate credit hours.
- Optional electives. One or two courses, for a maximum of 10 graduate credit hours, can be taken in other social science, science, or humanities areas if they relate to your academic program in the judgment of the coordinator.
- Graduate survey requirement. You must complete one graduate survey course in your discipline designed to present a comprehensive survey of recent scholarship in that field.
- Master’s essay option. You can choose to write a master’s research essay on a topic approved and directed by a graduate faculty member of your major field. The essay, taken for five hours of master’s thesis credit, will count as one course in the major and as one of the 10 required courses.
- Terminal examination. Upon completion of your studies, you must pass a written examination designed and conducted by your examining committee. In composing this examination, the committee is guided by your program of courses and research so that the examination will be reasonable in scope.
You must have a bachelor’s degree and at least one year of employment experience that is relevant to one or more social science disciplines. You should have an undergraduate GPA of 2.75 for unconditional admission. If your undergraduate GPA is below 2.75, you are encouraged to apply but may be admitted conditionally or denied admission.
No more than 12 quarter hours in a maximum of three graduate courses passed with a grade of B or better can be accepted for this program from other colleges or universities. Credit earned in other Ohio University programs which, in the judgment of the coordinator, is appropriate for this program may be applied toward completion of the degree.