All areas of study

Whether improving national security, exploring issues of poverty, explaining human behavior or taking a critical look at international trade, research in the social sciences at Princeton strives to advance of knowledge of human society and address some of the largest societal problems of the 21st century.

Programs

  • African American Studies

    For students who wish to study the complex interplay between political, economic, and cultural forces shaping the historic achievements and struggles of African-descended people in the United States and their relationship to others around the world.

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  • African Studies

    The Certificate in African Studies provides opportunities to learn about the continent. The program offers classes in Africa's political, economic, and social history; built environments and urban geographies; ecology, genetic diversity, and epidemiological concerns. The program also offers classes in Africa's vibrant art scenes, past and present, where literature, music, and art have come to define a new post-colonial African cosmopolitanism.

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  • American Studies

    The Program aims to give students an understanding of American society -- its culture, its institutions, its intellectual traditions, and the relationships among its diverse people.  We encourage study and debate about America’s place in the world and the world in America, as well as what it means to grapple with the horizons and limits of its democratic aspirations.

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  • Anthropology

    The Department of Anthropology takes an interpretive approach to contemporary realities and to the social worlds that people create and inhabit. We are interested in the comparative study of cultures, their interplay and relation to the past.

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  • Cognitive Science

    Cognitive science is the study of how the mind works, drawing on research from psychology, philosophy, linguistics, neuroscience, and computer science. The interdisciplinary character of cognitive science reflects different levels of analysis of mental phenomena and their employment of a variety of methodologies appropriate to each level.

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  • Contemporary European Politics and Society

    The program encourages the interdisciplinary study of modern Europe, with a particular focus on politics, economics, and society in western and central Europe since World War I.

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  • Economics

    Princeton has one of the finest economics departments in the world. Economics is consistently one of the most popular undergraduate concentrations on campus and attracts a diverse group of students with a broad range of interests. The graduate program provides thorough training in both the techniques and applications of economic analysis. 

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  • Entrepreneurship

    The program aims to supplement undergraduates in their major departments with an understanding and practice in entrepreneurship.

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  • Ethnographic Studies

    Ethnography is hands-on learning about people in their communities, shaped by the recognition of cultural diversity both at home and abroad. Students of ethnography learn to recognize, read, and evaluate qualitative evidence, apply their insights to everyday life, and think critically about society across diverse cultural fields at their sites of study, service, and research. 

  • European Cultural Studies

    The program deepens students' understanding of European civilization and strengthens their command of cultural interpretation through interdisciplinary investigation. The program focuses on the ways in which European societies, past and present, order reality, make sense of life and communicate meaning across a range of disciplines and in a wide variety of media.

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  • Finance

    The undergraduate program focuses on the pricing of financial assets (including equities, bonds, currencies, and derivative securities), portfolio management and the evaluation of financial risks, banking and financial intermediation, the financing of corporations, corporate governance, financial-market and banking regulation, and many other topics.

    The graduate program places a strong emphasis on financial economics in addition to financial engineering and computational methods. Students will develop a solid understanding of the fundamental quantitative tools from computer science, economic theory, optimization, probability, and statistics, all of which are becoming increasingly vital in the financial industry.

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  • Gender and Sexuality Studies

    The undergraduate and graduate programs are dedicated to the study of gender and sexuality, as well as their intersections with race, class, ethnicity and disability, across cultures and global geographies both past and present. 

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  • Global Health and Health Policy

    The program enables undergraduates to study the determinants, consequences, and patterns of disease across societies, the role of medical technologies and interventions in health improvements, and the economic, political, and social factors that shape domestic and global public health policy.

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  • Health and Health Policy

    The graduate program trains graduate students for careers in health-related areas in the public and not-for-profit sectors. The program is designed for students with domestic and international health interests and provides both broad training in core topics in health and health policy as well as courses in specialized areas.

  • History

    The undergraduate program encourages students to gain further knowledge of the major developments in, and problems of, history, to do independent historical research and writing, and to develop an authoritative knowledge of one particular field of history.  

    The graduate program values an approach to scholarship grounded in the particular while retaining a sense of the whole. Students take a comprehensive a view of history with the goal of cultivating a far-reaching understanding of the past. Throughout their enrollment, students develop the necessary skills to conduct discipline-defining research.

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  • History and the Practice of Diplomacy

    The program offers undergraduate students the opportunity to pursue concentrated interdisciplinary study of history and diplomacy in concert with internships in the practice of diplomacy and related professions. 

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  • History of Science

    The graduate program aims to enhance students' enthusiasm for the subject while also training them for the joint professional responsibilities of teaching and research. The program treats science as an intellectual, cultural and social phenomenon, and provides students with special training and techniques not normally included in the education of professional historians while at the same time preparing them to teach and work in general history.

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  • Latin American Studies

    The undergraduate and graduate programs promote interdisciplinary study to inspire knowledge of and experience in Latin America.

     

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  • Latino Studies

    The undergraduate program traverses the arts, humanities and social sciences, seeking to provide students with a broad understanding of the emergence, transformation and consolidation of Latinos as a pan-ethnic group and to appreciate the range of Hispanic imprints on American society and culture.

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  • Politics

    Undergraduates study is focused in four areas: American politics, comparative politics, international relations and political theory. There also is a strong concentration of courses in the area of quantitative analysis, political economy, and strategy in politics.

    The graduate program is designed to offer broad professional training in political science and to enable students to specialize in any of the main subfields of political science (American politics, comparative politics, international politics and political theory), as well as public law and formal and quantitative analysis.

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  • Population Studies

    The graduate program draws on substantive and methodological specializations in the social, mathematical and biological sciences. Building on its historical strengths in signature fields such as demographic methods, fertility, health and mortality, the program embraces prominent fields in population studies, such as international migration and development, children, youth and families, as well as various aspects of social and economic inequality. In addition, researchers are involved in new fields of inquiry such as epigenetics, biodemography, social epidemiology and web-based experimentation.

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  • Public Policy (Woodrow Wilson School)

    The Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs offers a multidisciplinary liberal arts major for undergraduates who desire to be engaged in public service and become leaders in the world of public and international affairs. The curriculum is founded on courses relevant to the study of policymaking, policy analysis and policy evaluation. Students take courses in economics, politics, and either psychology or sociology.

    The graduate program offers a distinctive educational approach that strikes a careful balance between theory and practice. Graduate students spend time developing analytical skills and acquiring a substantive knowledge about the world's most important domestic and international issues. The two-year curriculum leads to the degree of Master in Public Affairs. Students can earn a dual degree in public affairs and law after four years of study in the Woodrow Wilson School and a collaborating law school. WWS also has a graduate program leading to a Doctor of Philosophy in public and international affairs, as well as a one-year Master in Public Policy for mid-career professionals.

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  • Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies

    The undergraduate program draws on the humanities, history and social sciences to study of Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia. Students develop expertise in a core language of Eurasia and a scholarly grounding in the study of the region.

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  • Science, Technology and Environmental Policy

    The graduate program develops a deep understanding of current scientific, technological and environmental issues and potential local, national and international policy responses through a systematic introduction to the field of policy analysis. The Program provides interdisciplinary training that facilitates communication between technical experts and policy makers. 

  • Social Policy

    The graduate program addresses some of the most pressing problems in the U.S. and around the world where inequality generates conflict, poverty and prejudice, diminishes political participation, and reduces opportunities for social mobility. Students learn using the most rigorous tools of social science to bear on these important questions.

  • Sociology

    The undergraduate program offers students a cutting-edge approach to the study of the social dimensions of politics, economics, history, psychology and demography. Students engage in cross-disciplinary thinking in addition to a thorough grounding in a single field. Both quantitative and qualitative approaches to social science are utilized by our students and faculty.

    The graduate program is oriented toward the foundations of sociological analysis, including sociological theory, research methods and social statistics, and making significant contributions to the sociological literature.

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  • South Asian Studies

    The undergraduate program offers students the methodological and theoretical tools to study the political, economic, social, religious, literary and cultural institutions of the region with particular focus on the modern history of India and Pakistan. Students take a four-term sequence of language instruction in Hindi, Urdu and Sanskrit.

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  • Teacher Preparation

    The program combines coursework, seminars, laboratory experience, field work and practice teaching to become fully prepared and certified to teach successfully at the middle and secondary levels. Participants can earn certification in art, English, mathematics, music, the sciences, social studies and world languages. The program is approved by the New Jersey Department of Education and by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

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  • Technology and Society

    The undergraduate program is targeted to students, both engineers/scientists and humanists/social-scientists, who are interested in exploring the intersection of society and technology. Programs of study are offered under information technology and energy tracks.

  • Urban Policy and Planning

    The graduate program is grounded in the interdisciplinary and comparative study of cities and urban problems in both advanced industrialized and developing countries. The certificate in Urban Policy emphasizes the social, economic and political dimensions of urban problems. It is designed to prepare students for careers in urban policy analysis and development in international agencies, national, state and local governments, think tanks and nonprofit organizations. The certificate in Urban Policy and Planning builds on this scholarly foundation and adds a focus on physical planning.

  • Urban Studies

    The undergraduate program offers an interdisciplinary framework for the study of cities, metropolitan regions, and urban and suburban landscapes.

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  • Values and Public Life

    The undergraduate program focuses on modes of inquiry into important ethical issues in public life. The program helps students develop competence in pursuing such inquiries generally and supports them in applying these intellectual skills to the advanced analysis of one or more related topics. Students will be equipped to bring informed discussion of values into the public sphere and to integrate a critical value perspective into their future studies and pursuits.