Choosing a Degree Type

Certificate, Training, and Pre-Doctoral Programs
The programs we have highlighted on this site have a variety of degree and non-degree programs available. Generally, we have reflected the nomenclature used by the programs themselves to describe their offerings. A Certificate Program, therefore, may be a stand alone program (as with the Graduate Certificate in Demography at The University of Albany) or it may be tied to a graduate level degree program (such as the Certificate Program in Demography at the CUNY Institute for Demographic Research). Training Programs are offered at many schools. These programs are similar to the Certificate Programs but don't come with a certificate or degree. Most of these programs are open to all graduate students and some are even available for pre-doctoral students and non-academic professionals. The Pre-Doctoral Programs are training programs exclusively available to incoming Ph.D. students at each school. These programs provide doctoral candidates with training in various elements of population studies and can also help students make connections with campus faculty already engaged in demographic research. 

Masters Degree and Minor Programs
Masters programs in Demography are available at a number of the programs we have featured on this site. Some of these degrees are offered as a stand-alone degree while others, like the Dual-Degree Demography Program at Penn State are only offered in conjunction with another degree. A Bachelors Degree is required for admission to a Masters program. A small number of the programs offer a Minor in Demography for students at the Masters level. 

Doctoral (Ph.D.) Programs and Minors with a Ph.D.
The majority of degree programs currently offered in Demography and Population Studies are at the doctoral level. Doctoral programs do not necessarily require that applicants have a Masters degree but they do generally expect to see research experience. Some Ph.D. programs, such as the Program in Population Studies at Princeton, allow Ph.D. applicants to choose to apply to the program directly or to pursue a specialization in Demography as part of their doctoral studies in another department such as Economics, Sociology, or Politics. Other programs, like that of Penn State, are only offered as a Dual-Degree after a student has been admitted to another doctoral program. Minors with a Ph.D. are also available at some of the schools. 

Fellowships, Post-Docs, and Postdoctoral Fellowships
Programs referred to on this site are largely fellowships for current doctoral students. Many of these fellowships include financial benefits. An example of this kind of fellowship can be seen at the City University of New York, where fellowship recipients are awarded full tuition, fees, and a five-year stipend.  Other fellowships are available to postdoctoral candidates. You will frequently hear these positions referred to as "post-docs," a term which refers to both post-doctoral research and post-doctoral fellowship positions. We have combined these types of opportunities under the umbrella term "post-doctoral." These positions are available to individuals who have recently completed a doctoral degree, most frequently a Ph.D. Post-doc positions are a common way to develop skills and prepare for a tenure-track position. Fellowships need not be in precisely the field of one's Ph.D. itself but should be aligned with the nature of one's research. Dr. Holly Donahue Singh is an excellent example of this. Currently a Post-doctoral Fellow at the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research: Population Studies Center, Dr. Singh earned both her Ph.D. and Masters degrees in Anthropology.