Our Master of Arts degree in Political Science is designed to prepare students for further academic training as well as careers inpublic administration, law, business, education, community engagement, survey research, and journalism. Some graduates go on to Ph.D. programs, while others pursue careers as lobbyists, congressional staffers, policy analysts, city managers, attorneys, and public program managers.
To prepare for these future careers, our students are trained in research techniques, critical thinking, and analysis through a combination of required coursework and research-related requirements.
Why get your Master’s at Oklahoma State?
More coming soon...
What are the requirements for a degree?
Our Master's program requires 33 hours of coursework and includes training in research techniques, critical thinking, and analysis. The specific requirements are detailed below.
Social Science Research Training:
- All Master's students are required to complete 6 hours of methods coursework:
- Research Design (POLS 5103)
- Quantitative Methods (POLS 5013)
- To help train in the ethics of social science research, the Graduate College requires all students to complete The Social and Behavior Responsible Conduct of Research certification their first semester. For additional assistance, you might refer to this guide on the process.
Core Field Training: To familiarize themselves the major substantive subfields of political science, all students are required to take Proseminar (introductory) courses:
- American Politics (POLS 5703)
- Comparative Politics (POLS 5403)
- International Relations (POLS 5203)
Personal Specialization: The remaining 18 hours of the degree allows students to explore in detail the areas of political science they find most interesting.
- Students complete 6 hours of elective credits in courses offered by the department. For their electives, MA students may select from graduate course offering or may enroll in select POLS 3000-level and 4000-level courses and receive graduate credit (click here for a full list of political science courses). Some undergraduate courses have a special graduate section available, while others may be available after a student receives special permission from the instructor.
*** Undergraduate courses that are designated as a General Education course are NOT eligible for graduate credit.
- To cap off their training, students work with a faculty mentor and committee to complete a Master's thesis on a chosen topic. While writing their thesis, they enroll in 6 hours of thesis coursework (POLS 5000).
To guarantee timely completion of their degree, students must fill out a preliminary plan of study (POS) before completion of their 17th credit hour. More information on this is available from the Graduate College.
What funding is available?
More coming soon...
How do I apply?
Students interested in applying should do so online through the Graduate College. You will need to submit scanned copies of the following materials:
- Official undergraduate transcripts
- A 1-2 page personal statement that outlines why you are interested in the program and what you hope to achieve with the help of a Master of Arts degree in political science,
- GRE scores*
- The email addresses of three individuals willing to write you a letter of recommendation, with preference given to faculty who are familiar with your academic work and record.
- International students may need to submit TOEFL scores, and other materials as required by the Oklahoma State Graduate College. This information can be found on the Graduate College website.
* The department does not currently have a minimum GRE requirement. Evaluation of GRE scores will be conducted along with the rest of an applications academic record. However, the normal benchmark for an unrestricted (i.e., non-probationary) admission is a 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA. This may be tempered by additional considerations, such as performance in political science and other closely related courses, number and scope of undergraduate courses taken, etc.
Applications for the political science MA program will be considered at any time as long as space is available. However, to ensure funding consideration, we encourage applications to be completed by March 1 for fall semester admittance and November 1 for spring semester admittance.
More about our program
Since the graduate program in Political Science was established in 1946, it has awarded MA degrees to hundreds of students from more than a dozen countries.
Master's students may be eligible for department funding in the form of teaching assistantships for our undergraduate American Government class, making our program more affordable and helping our students build fundamental communication skills. These teaching assistantships also allow our graduate students the opportunity to instill a greater sense of citizenship and a more enthusiastic understanding of American political processes in a new generation of students.