“No man is an island” – this famous quote reflects how much of a social being we, humans, are. We can only reach this level of progress and advancement through collective action and social relationships. Thus, we can only see just how essential and impactful a society is for us.

Sociology is the field that tackles societies, how they function, how people interact within them, and their consequences. From families to religions, the different societal units we are part of are being explored and investigated. If you aspire to be a future sociologist, look no further. Reading this article will tell you about some of the free sociology schools that wouldn’t require you to pay tuition fees.

Free Sociology Schools

1. Free University of Berlin

The Free University of Berlin, or Freie Universitaet Berlin in German, is a renowned German Universities Excellence Initiative member. The university is especially highly regarded in political science and humanities. Indeed, it is part of the top 30 schools for sociology.

Like most universities in Germany, this free sociology school does not charge tuition fees, except for a few graduate and postgraduate programs. However, there are fees and contributions students have to shoulder. These include enrollment or re-registration fees, semester contribution for student support service, contribution to the student government, and transportation tickets. They may also charge fees for late payment and replacement of documents like an ID card.

You may be interested in their Master of Arts in Sociology – European Societies program. It is based on research focusing on the differences, similarities, and conflicts of societies or nation-states in Europe. It is delivered in English and German. The program is set for four semesters only and begins in the winter semester. Graduates have the chance to pursue work in the academe or politics, such as teaching or joining research centers, NGOs, or government positions.

2. University of Copenhagen

  • Free Tuition Fee Link
  • Free to: EU/EEA/Nordic citizens, students with a permanent residence permit in Denmark or have the possibility of having one

Also known as Københavns Universitet, the University of Copenhagen is an old university established in 1479. It is a public institution that began by teaching theology and catering to clergy members. However, by the 19th century, it became a secular university and has proven itself to be among the best in Europe. Indeed, it takes pride in its alumni and associations with Nobel awardees and Prime Ministers.

Tuition fees are not implemented for students with European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) citizenship. Those from Nordic countries are also exempted from paying, along with students who have a permanent residence permit in Denmark or at least have a possibility of becoming permanent residents. You can visit the link for more information about the exemptions.

The University of Copenhagen is part of the top schools in sociology. Interested students can choose from three programs: BSc in Sociology, MSc in Sociology, and Ph.D. in Sociology. The undergraduate and master’s level programs are taught in Danish; however, some individual courses may be available in English. Both BSc and Ph.D. in Sociology are set for three years, while the MSc in Sociology program is for two years only.

3. Stockholm University

Another free sociology school on our list is Stockholm University, a public institution in Stockholm, Sweden. It was established in 1878 but became a university only in 1960. It has four faculties (law, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences) and is one of the most prominent universities in the Scandinavian region. It is part of the top 50 schools in sociology, placing at the 45th rank.

Only students from outside the EU, EAA, and Switzerland must pay application and tuition fees. Other conditions that may exempt you from paying are if you have permanent or temporary residency (for reasons other than education) in Sweden; have a family member from the EU or EEA and have a right of residence in Sweden; have a family member from Switzerland have a Swedish residency; or have long-term resident status in Sweden or EU.

There is a Master’s Program in Sociology available at Stockholm University. Students learn how to analyze social issues through sociological theories and methods. This program is the top in its field in Sweden and is set for two years only. Furthermore, it is taught in English and handled by the Department of Sociology. Another related program is the Master’s Program in Applied Social Research.

4. Central European University

The Central European University is in Vienna, Austria. It is a private institution with accreditations from Austria, Hungary, and the USA. It also has another campus in Budapest, Hungary. Quite renowned for its social sciences and humanities program, the university is a member of the CIVICA Alliance, along with Sciences Po, Stockholm School of Economics, and other schools in Europe.

Although the Central European University charges tuition fees, they offer several financial aids or scholarships that can cover up to 100% of the payment. Students with a bachelor’s degree or equivalent are qualified to apply for such support and may do so during the application stage. Examples of financial aid that can provide 100% tuition fee are the CEU Master’s Tuition Award, CEU Master’s Excellence Scholarship, CEU Master’s Distinction Scholarship, and CEU Master’s Scholarship. Meanwhile, Ph.D. applicants are automatically considered for the CEU Doctoral Scholarship, which provides a full tuition waiver.

These are the sociology programs offered at the university: MA in Sociology and Social Anthropology (1-year), MA in Sociology and Social Anthropology (2-year), and Ph.D. in Sociology and Social Anthropology. The 1-year MA program is accredited by the New York State Education Department. Meanwhile, the 2-year MA program is approved and registered by the New York State Education Department, registered by the Hungarian Educational Authority, and accredited by AQ-Austria.

5. Bielefeld University

Bielefeld University, a free sociology school, was founded in 1969 in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is considered a relatively young reform university, which employs a unique teaching and organization style that brings together teaching and research.

There are no tuition fees imposed at Bielefeld University, like other German universities. However, additional payments need to be made, such as the social fee. This covers a semester ticket, allowing you to use public transport across North Rhine-Westphalia.

There is an International Track in MA Sociology offered by the university’s Faculty of Sociology. This track is the English equivalent of the German degree program. Thus, students may opt for a combined German and English program or an entirely English-taught one. The track also focuses on two elective profiles: “Social Structure Analysis and Social Inequality” and “Sociology and Anthropology of the Global World.”


I hope this article on free sociology schools was informative and helpful. Make sure to also check out the Available Programs in Europe!