Photo of UChicago students and faculty engaged in a discussion

The UChicago MA is an increasingly important credential in a wide number of professional and academic fields. Have a look at the detailed summaries of our professional career outcomes and our recent PhD placements.

Each year:

  • About one-third of our graduates go on to work in private industry, especially consulting, management, and research-oriented positions.
  • About one-third go on to work in the non-profit world, including government, educational administration, think tanks, and social service organizations.
  • About one-third apply successfully for PhD programs in the social sciences, professional, and interdisciplinary fields.

PhD Placement

MAPSS students who do well in coursework and write a well-received MA thesis are well-situated to go on to PhD study. The MAPSS academic staff work closely with our graduates to identify the right doctoral programs, review and strengthen your applications, and help you negotiate your final decisions. 

MAPSS students are best positioned to apply for PhD programs the year after they graduate MAPSS, as a completed MA thesis is typically a cornerstone of a successful PhD application. MAPSS alumni typically find that MAPSS has prepared them to complete their PhD requirements expeditiously, and so the “gap” year does not overall reduce their time to complete the PhD. Some MAPSS students go on to study in UChicago PhD programs, but in many cases the student’s research agenda, developed over the course of their MA study, turns out to be a better fit for faculty and departments elsewhere. For that reason, some of our best students pursue their doctoral work at other highly ranked institutions.

In most years, we average 10 MAPSS alumni admitted to UChicago PhD programs. There are currently 80 MAPSS graduates in various stages of PhD study in the Social Sciences Division at UChicago.

See our PhD placements.

Professional Support

MAPSS has its own full-time Director of Career Services in charge of career advising, recruitment, and alumni networking. Our Career Services team offer workshops to train students in effective networking, interviewing, and resume and cover letter writing. They also run experience-based programs in which students can explore different career paths through internships and externships.

A week does not pass without notices of job openings, paid internships, research opportunities, and hiring events announced in the MAPSS Weekly Digest.

We have an annual career conference, featuring alumni panels and TED-style talks on how to secure career-level positions in different sectors. In addition, our Alumni Association hosts networking and social events throughout the year.

MAPSS students also have access to UChicagoGRAD which offers additional support and
campus-wide recruitment.

See professional outcomes.