Admission: Admission to the M.A. program in politics is granted for the fall semester only. Admission is limited to students whose academic records and letters of recommendation indicate exceptional promise of success in the advanced study of political science. This means an outstanding undergraduate record or other related evidence. Applicants with lower averages may be admitted where there is indication of a particular strength in political science and clear aptitude for graduate work. The general test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is required of all students, including all international students applying from countries in which the GRE is offered. All international students who are not native English speakers are also required to submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).
Course of Study: Four departmental fields of study are offered: political philosophy and theory, political economy, international affairs, and comparative politics. Students are required to complete a total of 36 points consisting of the following: eight courses (32 points), of which at least six must be in the department and four must be in one departmental field; an internship and corresponding supervision course (2 points); and a master’s thesis and corresponding seminar (2 points). Courses in the major field must include the field core course. This core course and one additional core course are required and are usually the first courses taken in the department.
As noted above, students must also complete the master’s thesis as part of the Master’s Thesis Seminar course. The thesis will be a heavily researched academic work consisting of 10,000-15000 words dealing with an important and timely topic in politics related to a student’s chosen concentration. The thesis should demonstrate that a student has a sufficient command of literatures and arguments pertaining to the chosen topic. Students are required to notify the thesis seminar course instructor at the initiation of research for the master’s thesis and register for the M.A. thesis course. In conjunction with the M.A. advisor and the thesis seminar instructor, students will choose a faculty thesis supervisor. Once a thesis topic and supervisor are designated, the director of M.A. program must approve changes to them.
Students are expected to maintain a grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) in work for the master’s degree. Each student should meet with the M.A. program adviser every semester to discuss and agree on a course of study. The director of the M.A. program will assign an adviser prior to the start of the student’s first semester.
Foreign Language Requirement: Students must demonstrate proficiency in one language other than English or, with permission of the director of the M.A. program, in intermediate or advanced statistics. Students demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language by passing the GSAS foreign language proficiency examination or by completing an intermediate-level foreign language course with a grade of B or better. Students demonstrate proficiency in statistics by completing Quantitative Analysis I (POL-GA 1120) with a grade of B or better.
Students in the M.A. program have the option to enroll in one of two available concentrations. Students opting for the concentration in international politics and international business complete nine courses, four of which must be in the international relations field, including the international relations core course; in addition, they must register for the Master’s Thesis Seminar and the Internship Seminar. The other courses are taken from a designated group in other disciplines in the Leonard N. Stern School of Business and in the Department of Politics. Each student is also expected to write a master’s thesis on a topic related to his or her program work.
Students in this concentration also register for a 1-point reading and research course (POL-GA 3991), in which they produce a paper detailing how they will apply the methods, skills, or knowledge they obtain in their business courses to political science.
Students opting for the concentration in political economy analysis fulfill the concentration requirements by completing 16 points. The curriculum consists of a required course, Political Economy (POL-GA 1400), designed to introduce students to literature and debates in the field of political economy, as well as an approved political economy topics course. In addition, two other 4-point approved economics courses must be completed. These economics courses are subject to approval from the director of the NYU Alexander Hamilton Center.
Additionally, students in this concentration must write their master’s thesis on a topic that deals with analyzing political economy and must also undertake at least one approved internship with a professional organization or agency specializing in political economy analysis. The internship is supervised by the director of the NYU Alexander Hamilton Center and should focus on either domestic or international politics.