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MA in Politics

Course Description

The Department of Politics at The New School for Social Research takes a distinctive approach to the study of politics. We emphasize the theoretical dimension of political analysis with regard to both political explanation and normative evaluation. We focus on the historical roots of contemporary political forces and problems. Faculty members are interested in how institutions shape political life, in the intersection of political and cultural processes, and in classical and current conceptions of political economy.

The Department of Politics contributes to the scholarly community that is The New School for Social Research through joint courses, research projects, and conferences. For example, the Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility, founded by Professor Aristide Zolberg and now directed by Professors Miriam Ticktin and Alexandra Delano, engages in research, policy analysis, and education bearing on international migration, refugees, and the incorporation of newcomers into host societies.

Distinguished visiting scholars from other institutions join our faculty on a regular basis. Visiting professors are an important part of the department’s life; they assist the regular faculty by helping supervise dissertations and other student work.

[[Master of Arts in Politics]]
Entering students work with an individual faculty advisor. This advisor, together with the departmental student advisor, introduces them to the curriculum as a whole and helps them to formulate the program that best suits their interests and needs.

All students are required to concentrate in one of the three departmental fields described above.

[[Master's Degree Requirements]]
To earn the master's degree, a student must complete a total of 30 credits with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 . At least 18 credits must be taken in course offered by the Politics department.

Courses offered by other departments of The New School for Social Research that are cross-listed in Politics may be used to meet the 18 required Politics credits. Many cross-listed courses have prerequisites. Students should consult the primary listings of these courses in the relevant section of the catalog. The instructor of the course and the chair of the department or committee offering a course will determine whether the prerequisites have been met and whether a student in the Politics program will be admitted to the course in question. Courses that are not cross-listed in Politics may be taken as electives (see below) but not as part of the 18 required Politics credits unless by special permission of the Department of Politics.

All MA students must take the MA seminar and must also demonstrate competence in appropriate research skills by completing one course in quantitative or qualitative methods. (Students who have completed an equivalent course elsewhere can petition for a waiver of the latter requirement.)

The remaining 9 credits are electives that may be taken within or outside the Politics department. The department encourages students to avail themselves of the rich course offerings of the other departments of The New School for Social Research, but this should be done with appropriate guidance from advisors so as to maximize the coherence of the overall program of study.

In addition to the 30 credits of coursework, MA candidates must provide evidence of ability to carry out a significant intellectual research project in the field. This ability is established by the submission of the MA portfolio of two papers, which may originate as papers submitted for courses. Students must consult with a faculty advisor when planning their portfolio submission. The MA portfolio will be evaluated by a full-time member of the faculty of Politics.

Entry Requirements

A bachelor’s degree from an accredited American college or university, or the equivalent degree from a foreign college or university.

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