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The University of Texas at Dallas
Graduate Admissions

Master of Arts in Political Science


Professors: Thomas Brunell, Anthony M. Champagne, Marie I. Chevrier, Harold D. Clarke, Euel Elliott, Edward J. Harpham, L. Douglas Kiel, Robert C. Lowry, Marianne C.Stewart
Associate Professors: Jennifer S. Holmes, Linda Camp Keith, Gregory S. Thielemann
Assistant Professors: Patrick Brandt Brandon Kinne, Banks Miller, Clint Peinhardt
Senior Leturers: Brian Bearry, Karl Ho

Mission Statement

The mission of the Master of Arts in Political Science (MAPS) degree is to offer advanced instruction in the social science literature and theories about politics, citizenship and governance. The program serves the interests and needs of talented students who can commit initially to a 30-hour program but may be attracted subsequently to the Ph.D. program, as well as those who can commit initially to the doctoral program but subsequently decide not to complete the program. The Master of Arts in Political Science further can satisfy the interests and talents of students who "fast-track" in the Political Science undergraduate program and who want an additional year of more rigorous, sharply focused graduate coursework in Political Science.


Students in the Master of Arts in Political Science program will:

Demonstrate the ability to apply political science theories and concepts to the study of citizenship, governance and politics.

Develop a competency in one of the fields of Democratization, Globalization and International Relations; Government and Political Institutions and Processes; or Decision Making and Public Management.

Develop basic skills in professional communication appropriate to political science research and analysis.

Develop competency in analysis, evaluation, and research design relevant to political science research and analysis.


Students have access to the computing facilities in the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences and the University’s Computing Center. The School has two computing laboratories that have over 30 computers that are network linked and equipped with major social science software packages, including E-Views, R. Rats, SPSS, and STATA. A computerized geographic information system, the Lexis Nexis Database and WestLaw are also available for student use. The University’s Computing Center provides personal computers and UNIX Workstations. Many important data and reference materials are available online from professional associations or at UTD via the Library's and School's memberships in the American Political Science Association, the European Consortium for Political Research, the Inter University Consortium for Political and Social Research, the Roper Center, and the University Consortium for Geographic Information Systems, and other organizations.

Admissions Requirement

The University’s general admission requirements are discussed here.

The Master of Arts in Political Science seeks applications from students with a baccalaureate degree from an accredited university or college. Although applications will be reviewed holistically, in general, entering students have earned a 3.0 undergraduate grade point average (on a 4.0 scale), and a combined verbal and quantitative score of at least 1100 on the Graduate Records Examination (GRE). Standardized test scores are only one of the factors taken into account in determining admission. Students should also submit all transcripts, three letters of recommendation, and a one-page essay outlining the applicant’s background, education, and professional objectives. Applications are reviewed by the Political Science Program Committee in the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences.

Undergraduate students who are interested in completing their undergraduate degrees while simultaneously taking graduate courses in the M.A. in Political Science program are expected to meet the School’s "fast-tracking" requirements.


While there are no specific course prerequisites, entering students will benefit from exposure to undergraduate courses in the Economic, Political and Policy Sciences, statistics, and research design.  In cases where undergraduate preparation is not adequate, students may be required to take additional course work before starting the master's program.

Transfer Policies

Students who have previous graduate work pertinent to the requirements of a master’s program may be given up to 12 hours of transfer credit, and the hours of coursework required for the degree will be reduced accordingly. Students desiring to transfer graduate courses thought to be equivalent to core courses may be required to demonstrate competency through examination. The award of such transfer credit must be consistent with the University’s "Transfer of Credit" policy.

Degree Requirements

The University’s general degree requirements are discussed here.

Students seeking a Master of Arts in Political Science must complete at least 30 semester credit hours of work in the program, must receive a grade of B- or better in all required courses, and must maintain at least a 3.0 grade point average to graduate.

The curriculum has two components:

(1) Fifteen semester hours of required coursework

(2) Fifteen semester hours of prescribed electives

Required Courses (15 hours)

All students should complete the core courses as soon as possible.

All of the following:

Two of the following:

Prescribed Electives (15 hours)

a) Two additional courses at the 5000 or 6000 level in the Democratization, Globalization and International Relations field; the Institutions and Processes field; or the Decision Making and Public Management field.

b) Three additional courses at the 5000 or 6000 level in one of the above fields, or methodology courses such as applied regression (EPPS 6316) or other methods courses offered throughout the School, or up to three credits of optional thesis (independent study).


Last Updated: June 3, 2011