Sociology, Department of


Document Type


Date of this Version



Hill, Michael R. 2007. “American Sociological Association.” Pp. 130-134 in the Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology, Vol. 1, edited by George Ritzer. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing.


Copyright 2007 Michael R. Hill


The American Sociological Association (ASA) is currently the largest and most influential membership organization of professional sociologists in the US. The ASA began its organizational life in 1905 when a small group of self-selected scholars representing several existing scholarly organizations (including the American Economic Association, the American Historical Association, and the American Political Science Association) proposed a separate and independent American Sociological Society (ASS) ("Organization of the American Sociological Society" 1906). The first ASS annual meeting convened December 27-29, 1906, in Providence, Rhode Island, with 115 members and a full program of scholarly papers. In 1959 the organization's name was formally changed from the American Sociological Society to the American Sociological Association. As of 2004, the ASA reported 13,715 paid members and an investment portfolio valued at $7.1 million.