Demography is the scientific study of human populations, and the best demography schools train students to research and analyze issues related to immigration, fertility, health and mortality. A multidisciplinary degree, demography is often considered a specialty area within sociology departments; however, a limited number of institutions offer standalone degree programs in the field. The most prominent demography degree programs feature challenging academic and research opportunities with a strong global perspective.
University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania offers a doctoral degree in demography. The 2013 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranks the program fourth in the nation. Students studying demography at this ivy league institution have access to exceptional research and training resources such as the Population Studies Center and the Population Aging Research Center. Students interested in focusing their research in demography on issues related to health, aging or international population research will benefit immensely from these centers conveniently located on campus.
University of California-Berkeley
Currently, the University of California-Berkeley offers two degree program in demography, a Master of Arts and a Ph.D. The University of California-Berkeley secures the seventh spot on U.S. News & World Report's 2013 rankings list. The university offers various enrichment activities that support classroom instruction such as the Demography Brown Bag Series Seminar and the Bay Area Population Colloquium. Berkeley is also home to two innovative research centers, the Center on the Economics and Demography of Aging and Berkeley Population Center.
Florida State University
Florida State University provides students with the opportunity to study for a Master of Science degree in demography. The 33 credit-hour multidisciplinary program places heavy emphasis on research and demographic theory. The graduate degree in demography is the only program of its kind in Florida and one of the few in the United States. Additionally, the university also offers a joint degree program in planning and demography. The 2014 edition of U.S. News & World Report lists Florida State University as among the top 100 schools in the national universities category.
Bowling Green State University
Through the Department of Sociology at Bowling Green University in Ohio, students can earn a Master of Arts in applied demography, Master of Arts in demography and a Ph.D. in sociology with a concentration in demography. The National Research Council ranked the doctoral program among the 20 most elite programs in the country in 2010. Graduate degree candidates receive the opportunity to sharpen their research skills and collaborate with faculty on various research projects at the Center for Family and Demographic Research and the National Center for Family & Marriage Research.
Cassandra Ifie is a librarian living in Richmond, Va. She has also been a writer since 2008. Ifie received her Master of Library Science degree from Texas Woman's University and earned a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Rust College.