Training Seminars

Faculty and graduate students regularly meet at training seminars and workshops to discuss their research as they move toward publication. These communities of scholarship value collaboration and collegiality, while pushing work to be innovative and impactful. This is where good ideas become great contributions. 

Center for Research on Educational Opportunity (CREO) Seminar

This seminar focuses on new and innovative research in the substantive area of sociology of education. Several different formats are used during the semester. First, prominent scholars from outside Notre Dame are invited to present their ongoing research to seminar participants. Second, seminar participants (faculty and graduate students) are encouraged to present their ongoing research in order to receive feedback to help improve the quality of their scholarship. Finally, some classes may focus on a recently published paper that is particularly influential and relevant for future research.

Mondays 3:30 to 5:00 p.m.

Craft of Advanced Sociological Theorizing (COAST)

This workshop will focus on practical aspects of doing sociological theory, with an aim to better enable participants to apply concrete lessons to improving their own work, whether theorizing in the context of empirical research in substantive journals or aiming to publish theory analyses in theory journals. It will combine hands-on learning from examples, guest visitors discussing their career as practicing theorists, and work-shopping student papers. Weeks in which we engage learning from published works will involve reading excellent examples of theory from recently published and classic works to dissect how they work, focusing on the structure of good theorizing rather than its substantive content. The workshop is appropriate for students from any sociological subfield, and participants need not self-identify as "theorists" in order to substantially involve their work through participation. 

The Culture Workshop

Students And Faculty At The Culture Workshop Bbq

The Culture Workshop is an interdisciplinary workshop that meets to discuss works in progress. The workshop provides faculty and graduate students with helpful critiques as they revise and refine early manuscripts, articles under review, conference papers, dissertation chapters, grant or fellowship proposals, and practice job talks. The setting is informal, and works to be discussed are circulated in advance so that we may have a more productive discussion.

The definition of what constitutes culture for the workshop is necessarily broad and cross-disciplinary. You’d be a good fit for the workshop if your work engages meaning and interpretation, cultural practice, ideology, cultural objects, discourse, creativity, framing, production or reception of culture, morality, categorization, narrative, visual culture, schema and cognition, materiality, tastes, media, and much more. The workshop is even open to papers that might not have a cultural dimension but that might benefit from one.

New members are always welcome, but we seek to establish a committed group of scholars willing to attend regularly and actively participate in improving colleagues’ research and writing.

If you are interested in joining the workshop, or visiting Notre Dame to present a paper, please contact us at

Fridays from 1:30 to 3:00 p.m.

“The collegial atmosphere of The Culture Workshop fomented my commitment to collaborative, interdisciplinary social science which I will carry with me throughout my career.”

Dustin Stolz, Assistant Professor, Lehigh University

The Gender Workshop

In this workshop, we will help both faculty and graduate students revise and refine works-in-progress: early manuscripts, articles under review, conference papers, dissertation chapters, grant and fellowship proposals, practice job talks, etc. Authors will circulate their work in advance, and workshop participants will read the paper prior to the workshop. During workshop, the author will briefly introduce the paper and outline any questions or concerns in need of group guidance. We welcome scholars whose research has primary or secondary relevance to gender, sexuality, or family. You need not identify as a gender scholar in order to participate. We also welcome researchers who are interested in developing gender as a theme in their research. If you are wondering how gender can be more than a control variable in your analysis, or how to theorize gender in your research context, you would be an excellent fit for the workshop.

Tuesdays 3:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Race & Ethnicity Training Seminar

This training seminar is for graduate students who are interested in and/or are conducting research in the area of race and ethnicity. The course aims to do the following things: 1) create a safe, stimulating, and structured space for the discussion and development of research agendas focused on race and/or ethnicity; 2) provide opportunities for students and faculty to present and receive constructive feedback on on-going research projects interrogating aspects of race and/or ethnicity; and 3) provide opportunities for students and faculty to engage with scholars doing research in the area of race and ethnicity from outside of Notre Dame.
Fridays 10:00a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Research & Analysis Sociology of Religion (RASR)

This workshop will engage students with key pieces of literature related to empirical research, measurement, and data analysis in the sociology of religion; teach some alternative approaches to basic data analysis strategies in the sociology of religion; and provide an informal seminar-based context for the collective reading, discussing, and critiquing of each others' scholarly papers in sociology of religion. Workshop readings are drawn from the reading list for the ND doctoral exam in sociology of religion, to also help facilitate preparation for that exam.

Wednesdays 10:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.

Studies in Politics And Movements (SPAM) 

SPAM is open to students and scholars interested in social movements research from different departments. We have members from sociology, political science, history, international studies, and peace studies who meet weekly to discuss ongoing as well as prospective papers, projects, and ideas. This is a great opportunity to meet and network with scholars engaged in cutting edge social movements research. The seminar focuses on presentations of ongoing research projects and structured feedback about those projects. Participants will also read and discuss recent contributions to the social movements literature.

Tuesdays 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

“One primary way the department helped me get published was through the stimulating workshops — specifically, the Social Movements seminar, Sociology of Religion seminar, and the Culture seminar. Faculty were genuinely invested in these seminars and provided critical and constructive feedback that was integral to getting papers over the finish line.”

Justin Farrell, Associate Professor, Yale University

Job Market Workshop Series

Getting a job is why you are here, but the job market is as mystifying as it is competitive. Our Job Market Workshop offers a series of sessions to get you prepared. Here’s a sampling of the workshops the department holds annually. 

  • Job Market Zero — Should you be on the market? What does it take? 
  • Pitch Workshop — Learn how to talk about your research and give the elevator pitch
  • CV/Cover letter — Get your application to the top of the stack!
  • Diversity Statement — How can you contribute to a university’s diversity mission?
  • Teaching Statement — Make your pedagogy pop!
  • First 10 minutes of your job talk — Get your audience engaged!
  • Practice interviews — How to make a good first impression...
  • Panels of recent graduates — Tips and tricks from those who just did it.
  • Non-academic jobs panel — How to find and apply for jobs outside of the university. 
  • How to Thrive on the Tenure Track — You have a job, how do you keep it?

“The job market workshop was foundational to securing a job and making a seamless transition following the completion of my degree. Having access to multiple faculty that offered their advice, provided sample templates of job market materials, and offered a space to practice interviews with one another was paramount. I would have been lost without the job market workshop. It is through these extra workshops that the department goes above and beyond just coursework to provide us with the skills and information to be successful.” 

Nicole Perez, Post-doc, University of Illinois, Chicago