Laura Halcomb

Graduate Student


Medical Sociology, Economic Sociology, Culture, Gender, Qualitative Methods, Organizations, Medical Sociology, Economic Sociology, Culture, Gender, Qualitative Methods, Organizations


B.A., Boston University, Philosophy
M.A., University of Houston, Sociology 


Laura Halcomb is a doctoral candidate in sociology. The overarching goal of her work is to theorize how moral and cultural beliefs shape markets for socially important goods, like medicine. She is a qualitative sociologist interested in both bottom-up and top-down meaning making within the US health care system. She employs multiple methodologies, including historical analysis, content analysis, and in-depth interviews. Her analytic approach uses strategically selected case studies across multiple levels of analysis, in order to leverage theoretical insights across institutional, organizational, and individual experiences of medical treatment. In her prior research, she examined how the organization of the sperm and egg market reflects contested notions of the family (Journal of Family Issues) and how men's diverse institutional roles surrounding medicalized experiences of infertility are critical for understanding inequality in reproduction (Sociology Compass). Her current research focuses on the interaction between governmental policy, organizational decision-making, and individual funding strategies in health care pricing. Her work has been funded by the American Sociological Association and the Institute for Citizens and Scholars.  


As Instructor of Record:
Methods of Cultural Analysis (SOC 108c),

As Teaching Assistant, University of California at Santa Barbara:
Introduction to Sociology (SOC 101)
Special Topics in Research Methods:Ethnography (SOC 208st), Research Traditions (SOC 108b)

As Teaching Assistant, University of Houston
Introduction to Demography,
Racial and Ethnic Relations in the U.S.
Cinema, Sex, and Sanctimony
Introduction to Social Statistics
Introduction to Sociological Theory
Introduction to Sociology
Sociology of Marriage and Family
Mexican American Family