Graduate Program in Political Science


The Department of Political Science offers an exciting graduate curriculum leading to either a master's of arts or master's of science degree. Through an immersion in political science scholarship, students develop the analytical acumen to tackle issues such as:

  • the connection between political and economic inequality in the context of social justice theory
  • the variations between different national internet control systems throughout the world
  • political and economic factors affecting foreign direct investment in the Middle East
  • the relationship between restrictive legislative efforts and increasing public opinion support for gay rights (all recent thesis topics from students in our program)

These skills translate into preparation for careers in the public or private sector that address challenging issues and demand rigor and clarity. Our program features close engagement with faculty advisors in a rigorous program of study. Being situated in the heart of Portland offers many advantages to our students including relationships with city, regional, state, and federal offices, along with active participation in internationally focused groups such as the World Affairs Council of Oregon.

Graduate students can develop an expertise in any of the four major subfields of political science: American Politics, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Political Theory. Recent graduates have gone on to Ph.D. programs, careers in state and local government agencies, political consulting work, and work with non-governmental organizations. A graduate degree in Political Science offers our students the tools to move into advanced careers, using their rigorous analytical skills to work on pressing questions affecting our world.

The information on this website provides an overview of the master’s program in political science. More detailed information may be found on our Admissions page, Course of Study page, and in our Master’s Program in Political Science Student Handbook, all of which you are strongly encouraged to read. Rules and procedures that apply to graduate study at PSU generally are described in the PSU Bulletin (see pp. 57-68).

Dr. David Kinsella is Chair of the Department's Graduate Committee. If you have any questions about the program, please contact her and she will be happy to help you.