Master of Arts in Political Science (MA)

The Master of Arts in Political Science is available in two forms: non-thesis and thesis. To earn this degree, you must complete 36 credit hours.

We designed these plans to provide you with:

  • Broad training suitable for pursing doctoral work
  • A foundation for teaching
  • Practice in the private sector

In both plans, you complete the following:

  • A12 credit score
  • 9-12 units of political science specialization
  • 6-9 units of foci specialization

In both plans, you choose your political science specialization from one of these three areas:

  • Public Administration
  • Comparative Politics
  • International Relations

In both plans, you choose your foci specialization from one of these three areas:

  • Environment/Sustainability Politics
  • Diversity Politics
  • Development Politics

Non-thesis Plan Requirements

For this 36-unit plan, you must complete:

  • 33 units as detailed above plus an oral exam (3 units) to be completed in the final semester

You may count up to two 400-level courses toward this academic plan if they haven’t previously been counted toward a bachelor’s degree.

Thesis plan requirements

For this 36-unit plan, you must complete:

  • 27 units as detailed above plus 9 units of thesis credit

You may count up to two 400-level courses toward this academic plan if they haven’t previously been counted toward a bachelor’s degree.

Please note that you may end up taking more units of thesis credit than the 6 units you can count toward your degree because you must enroll for POS 699 each term while you work on your thesis 

The graduate program provides a strong foundation in the discipline with core classes in political theory, epistemologies, research methods, and policy analysis. Students develop specialization in the traditional political science subject areas of American Politics, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Public Administration. In addition, students develop expertise in one of our core foci: environment/sustainability politics, diversity politics, or political development. We offer three graduate programs and one certificate program.