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.
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:
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.
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
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.