Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science

The doctoral program in political science prepares students with a strong intellectual interest in political science for careers in academia, government agencies, non-profit organizations and private-sector research firms. The Ph.D. degree in political science indicates not only the achievement of superior knowledge of the major theoretical approaches, research findings, and debates in the discipline but also the ability to initiate, design and carry out independent research.

Our program is premised on the assumption that students possess a strong intellectual interest in political science. We have structured coursework requirements to enable you to acquire a sound understanding of the methodology of political science, an excellent knowledge of your major area of concentration and good knowledge of two other minor fields.

Fields of study

We offer preparation in seven subfields of study: American government and politics, comparative politics, political theory, public administration, public policy, urban politics, and world politics. Our Ph.D. students specialize in one major and two minor fields. Through coursework and independent study, you are expected to become conversant with the major theoretical approaches in the discipline as well as the issues and controversies within your major and minor fields.

The Ph.D. program in political science offers many advantages, including small class sizes and a faculty dedicated to excellence in both teaching and research.


For more details about the program, please consult the most recent copy of the Political Science Graduate Handbook available on the program's Canvas site to current students or contact the director of graduate programs at

Career insights

This tool provides a broad overview of how major selection can lead to careers and is provided without any implied promise of employment. Some careers will require further education, skills, or competencies. Actual salaries may vary significantly between similar employers and could change by graduation, as could employment opportunities and job titles.