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CUNY Institute for Demographic Research


People crossing the street

Students in the Demography certificate program gain a keen understanding of and ability to rigorously analyze population structure and processes.


Degree Offered



Certificate in Demography Must be a current doctoral student at The Graduate Center, CUNY Neil G. Bennett


Graduate Center students can earn a Certificate in Demography en route to their doctoral degrees. The program is the first demographic training program in the New York metropolitan area. It is overseen by the CUNY Institute for Demographic Research (CIDR), which was established in November 2007 to foster demographic research and facilitate interaction among demographers throughout CUNY.

Demography students engage in courses focused on understanding the causes and consequences of changes in population-related phenomena, such as family formation, fertility and reproductive health, disease, aging and mortality, urbanization, racial and ethnic composition, and mobility, and how such changes shape social, economic, and political processes and outcomes at the local, national, and international levels.

Students in class


The certificate program requires students to take 15 credit hours in total — nine credits of required courses and six credits of electives. The required courses serve as an introduction to the substance and methods of demography and an in-depth examination of the methodological tools that demographers use in their research. Students can choose their electives based on their interests. Students can also participate in our Demography Seminar Series.

New York City, with GC flags in distance


CIDR-affiliated faculty from throughout CUNY teach the courses that comprise the certificate program. Our faculty conduct research on a great number of subjects spanning many regions of the world. Topics of interest include urbanization; climate change; poverty; the demographic impact of forced migration; the modeling of mortality, marriage, and divorce patterns; the impact of policy on the use of abortion; and disability. 

Crowd connected by lines


Graduate Center doctoral students may enroll in the Certificate Program in Demography through their home doctoral program. Prospective doctoral students must first apply for admission to one of the many doctoral degree programs in the traditional disciplines associated with demography, such as Sociology, Economics, and Political Science. Once admitted, students in good standing are then eligible to take demography certificate courses en route to the doctoral degree.

A limited number of supplementary fellowships are available for demography students.