Notes on Courses:

  • Courses may not be available every term or may only be offered on-campus or online for said term.
  • Students must successfully complete PSCI 8000 within the first 15 credit hours/five courses of their program.
  • A student who does not have sufficient background in one or more subfields may be required to take a provisional undergraduate course before taking its equivalent graduate seminar.
  • Electives may be taken outside of the political science department with approval from the graduate chair. The course must be related to political science.
  • Students who were undergraduate students at UNO cannot take a dual-listed course at the graduate level if they have already taken the course at the undergraduate level. For example, if they completed PSCI 4270/ENVN 4270 Global Environmental Politics as an undergraduate student, they cannot take PSCI 8276 Global Environmental Politics as part of their MS degree.
  • Students may not count more than six credit hours of courses ending in 8-5 (for example, 8265) towards the completion of their degree.
  • Any concentration or certificate a student would like to add-on to his/her MS-PSCI program must be officially added within the first 15 credit hours.

Notes on Exit Requirements

All students begin this program as a non-thesis student. Students who would like to complete a thesis may petition to do so after completing 15 credit hours, but at least one term before he/she plans on starting his/her thesis. To petition to change to the thesis track, a student must request an application from, and submit it to the academic program coordinator during the time specified above. The graduate chair will then evaluate whether a thesis track is the best option for the petitioning student. If denied, a student may appeal once in a following term by going through the same process. During a petition, the graduate program committee will review the application.

Non-Thesis Exit Requirement: Comprehensive Exam

Graduating political science master’s degree students will complete a written comprehensive essay synthesizing their knowledge of at least three political science subfields to answer one prompt. Passing answers must demonstrate proficiency in each of the four MS-PSCI student learning objectives: research methods, writing in the discipline, critical thinking and proficiency of subfields.

Students must notify the APC at the beginning of their graduating term, noting the three subfields to be included in the comprehensive essay. The essay is open book, open note. Students will have 72 hours to complete their essay(s) within a designated window of time.

Students must write their exam during the spring or fall semester of the year in which they graduate. Students graduating in the summer may write their essay the prior spring if they have 6 or less credit hours remaining to complete in the degree program to be taken over the summer term, AND they have completed at least three subfield seminars.

Thesis Exit Requirement (6 credit hours)

PSCI 8990: The first term of thesis includes the forming of the thesis committee and approval of one's thesis proposal. The second three credit hours will focus on writing and defending the thesis.

Students must have a minimum of three voting committee members. All committee members must be graduate faculty members with a PhD and employed by UNO. One of the committee members must be from a non-political science field. Distance students may work with a faculty member outside of UNO, however, this member cannot be a voting member on the committee. Please refer to the graduate catalog's thesis guidelines for more detailed information.

Students must follow UNO's Graduate College's thesis submission guidelines and ensure that all paperwork has been submitted to the graduate office on time.