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Phone: 512.245.2143
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Master of Arts in Political Science


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The master of arts (M.A.) in political science program, offered through the Department of Political Science, is designed to prepare students for careers in professional political science (teaching, research, writing, policy analysis, public service, foreign service) and to provide a general liberal arts education for students who desire to enter one of many other fields, including government, law, business, and journalism. The department offers courses in a number of different areas, including American national government, state and local government, international relations, comparative politics, and political theory.

The master of arts degree consists of 27 hours of political science course work (9 of which can be course work in a field related to political science with approval of the M.A. program director) and 6 hours of thesis. The Department of Policial Science also offers a non-thesis option. Students in the non-thesis option must take 36 hours of political science course work (9 of which may be course work in a field related to political science).

Except for the 9 hours that may be taken in a related field (with program director approval), M.A. students must select electives from the following courses:

POSI 5300, 5301, 5302, 5302A, 5302B, 5303, 5319, 5325, 5326, 5326A, 5326B, 5326C 5327, 5327A, 5327B, 5340, 5350, 5360, 5364, 5365, 5370, 5380, 5382, 5384, 5385, and 5398.

Students should regularly consult with the graduate program director when selecting coursework.
 



Admission Policy


Regular Admission -Regular admission to the master of arts program for a student with an undergraduate degree in political science or an undergraduate minor in political science, or a minimum of nine (9) advanced hours in political science or a related field, is based on a 3.0 or higher grade point average for the last 60 hours of undergraduate courses before the bachelor’s degree, plus any graduate coursework taken. Students with a 2.8 to 2.9 and the required undergraduate major, minor, or advanced hours, must take the GRE prior to admission and earn a preferred score of 292; with no less than 150 on the verbal section, 142 on the quantitative section or better, and a minimum score of 4 on the Analytical Writing section of the GRE to be considered for regular admission.

Conditional Admission – Conditional admission to the graduate M.A. program is available for the following students:

  • Students without an undergraduate degree in Political Science or undergraduate minor in Political Science, or a minimum of nine (9) hours in Political Science or related field, are eligible only for conditional admission and must take leveling courses prior to enrolling in graduate political science courses. Such students may be admitted conditionally with a GRE minimum score of 294 (combined verbal and quantitative) and with a minimum 3 on the Analytical Writing portion of the GRE. Applications for conditional admission are reviewed by the graduate program director in consultation with the M.A. faculty.

    In order to apply for conditional admission, a student must:

    1.  submit three (3) letters of recommendation
    2.  submit a writing sample (minimum five double-spaced typed pages) in a political science course or social  science/humanities course
    3.  complete an interview with the graduate program director

    If a writing sample is not available, the student must provide a typed personal statement of no less than 500 words.
     
  • Students with a 2.5-2.79 grade point average on the last 60 hours of undergraduate courses before the bachelor’s degree, plus any graduate coursework if taken, and an undergraduate degree in political science or an undergraduate minor in political science, or a minimum of nine (9) advanced hours in political science or a related field, may be admitted conditionally with a GRE minimum score of 292; with no less than 150 on the verbal section, 142 on the quantitative section and with a minimum 3 on the Analytical Writing portion of the GRE. Applications for conditional admission are reviewed by the graduate program director in consultation with the M.A. faculty.

    In order to apply for conditional admission, a student must:

    1.  submit three (3) letters of recommendation
    2.  submit a writing sample (minimum five double-spaced typed pages) in a political science course or social  science/humanities course
    3.  complete an interview with the graduate program director

    If a writing sample is not available, the student must provide a typed personal statement of no less than 500 words.
     

 Any student considered for conditional admission, whether the minimum grade-point average admission requirement identified in the “Admission Policies” section of the graduate catalog is met or not, must have a GRE score on file before the application file can be reviewed for admission to the master of arts degree program.
 

Thesis Procedure
 

  • Students may apply for the thesis option after completing 18 hours of graduate political science course work with no incomplete grades on transcript.
     
  • Only students with a minimum of 3.5 GPA in completed graduate political science course work will be considered for the thesis option.
     
  • A student must prepare a thesis proposal meeting the following guidelines:

              Abstract of topic to be examined
              Bibliography of the sources to be researched
              A chapter outline (abstract for each chapter) of the thesis
              Completed Graduate College paperwork
 

  • A student must have an approved thesis proposal and an approved thesis committee before enrolling in any thesis hours. The approved proposal should be filed with the Department of Political Science by early registration for the semester during which the student will be taking Thesis A.
     


Non-Thesis Option

Students who choose the non-thesis option are required to take 36 hours in the master of arts program and are required to pass an oral examination covering sub-fields of political science. The M. A. non-thesis oral exam consists of a review of coursework in the major. The student, in consultation with the graduate director, is responsible for assembling his/her oral exam committee, including designating which member will serve as chair of the committee. These committees are comprised of three political science faculty members. The oral exam consists of several rounds of questions concerning coursework the student has taken asked by the professors on the oral committee.


International Student Admission - International students must have a total score of 550 or better on the TOEFL, 78 (internet-based) or an IELTS (academic) score of 6.5 or higher with minimum individual module score of 6.0 before being considered for admission. This requirement is waived for an international student who has a degree from a university in the United States.

 


Important Links

 

MA Political Science Handbook

Internship Handbook

Internship Release Form

Intern Interview Verification

Internship Agency Responsibilities

Internship Evaluation Form

Graduate College

Financial Aid Office

Cost of Attendance

Incomplete Grades

Update Your Student Information

MA Courses Checklist

Apply for Graduation

Thesis Packet


Contact Information

Ms. Dodie Weidner
Administrative Assistant
dw29@txstate.edu
(512) 245-2143
UAC 355
Dr. Cecilia Castillo
Graduate Advisor
cr09@txstate.edu
(512) 245-2143
UAC 355