2006 - 2007 Site Archive



Graduate Bulletin

Political Science, Ph.D.


Admission Requirements and Deadlines

Application Deadline:

Fall: January 15

Applications are evaluated as they arrive.

Letters of Reference:

Number Required: 2

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should come from previous Professors.

Coursework Required for Admission Consideration:



Master's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:

Before being admitted to the Ph.D. program, students need to earn an M.A. in Political Science either at Temple or at a recognized graduate program of another institution.

Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:


Statement of Goals:

The Statement of Goals should be approximately 500-1,000 words and should include the following elements: your interest in Temple's program; your research goals; your future career goals; and your academic and research achievements.

Standardized Test Scores:

The GRE is required. 500 Verbal 500 Quantitative

Minimum TOEFL score or range of scores needed to be accepted: 600 on the paper-based test or 250 on the computer-based test.


A resume is required.

Writing Sample:

The writing sample should demonstrate your ability to research and to write a scholarly paper. The paper should be no more than 25 pages and fully referenced according to a professional, scholarly style manual.

Advanced Standing:

For students who enter the Ph.D. program after receiving an M.A. degree elsewhere, up to 30 semester hours (the equivalent of an M.A. degree from Temple) may be transferred, provided they are relevant to the department's required courses. To be elibible for transfer, these credits must have been obtained no more than five years prior to the student's matriculation at Temple and the grades must be "B" or better. Students transferring into the Ph.D. program should note that it is advisable to take at least one or two courses from Temple faculty in each of our two required fields before taking the Ph.D. qualifying exams in those two fields. The maximum number of advanced standing credits awarded is 30.

Program Requirements

Campus Location:

Main Campus

Full-Time/Part-Time Status:

Students are able to complete the degree program through classes offered after 4:30 p.m.

General Program Requirements:

Number of Didactic Credits Required Beyond the Master's: 23

Required Courses:

PS 400: Symposium in Political Science (M.A. Ievel)

PS 401: Political Statistics (M.A. Level)

PS 404: Teaching Methods (1 semester hour) (required before any student may receive financial aid)

PS 405: Qualitative Research Methods (Ph.D. Level)

PS 480: Intro to Political Theory (Ph.D. Level)

PS 900: Academic and Career Prep. (1 semester hour)

Students transferring into the Ph.D. with M.A.s in Political Science or a related Social Science from other institutions who have not taken closely equivalent courses to PS 410: Core Seminar in American Politics and either PS 440: Core Seminar in Comparative Politics or PS 460: Core Seminar in International Relations are strongly advised to take these seminars before sitting for their Ph.D. qualifying exams in our two departmental fields. Students must take at least four electives in the their Ph.D. field (American Politics or Internatinal Studies). In addition, students must register for the following: PS 951/2: Dissertation Proposal Preparation (taken during the term in which prospectus is developed and defended); PS 999: Dissertation Preparation and Submission (taken while students are writing their dissertations-a total of 6 s.h.).

Internship: No internship is required.

Language Examination: No language examination is required.

Culminating Events:

Preliminary Examination:

The purpose of the preliminary examination is to demonstrate breadth of knowledge and intellectual sophistication across the major Ph.D. field. Students should also be prepared to interpret political phenomena within the context of various theories and to use empirical data to illuminate concepts.

Subject Areas/Major Components of the Preliminary Examination Students are encouraged to meet with faculty in their field to discuss content of the exams to ensure that they have accurately identifed key theories, concepts and literature.

At what point in the program is the student expected to take the preliminary examination The preliminary examination should be completed no more than one semester after the student completes the coursework component of the program.

Writing the Questions for the Preliminary Examination The Graduate Chair selects three faculty members to write the questions for the preliminary examination.

Evaluating the Preliminary Examination The faculty committee will evaluate the examination. Each member votes to pass or fail the student. In order to pass, a majority of the committee members must agree that the exam has been satisfactorily completed.

Criterion for Passing the Preliminary Examination. The student must answer the required number of questions in order to be evaluated. The evaluators look for a breadth and depth of understanding of specific research areas.

Administering, Scheduling, and Proctoring the Preliminary Examination All preliminary examinations will be conducted within a designated period once each semester. Students should request the application for exams from the Graduate Secretary and return it before the deadline. The student will be advised as to the time limit for the exam.


Dissertation Advising Committee Information The Dissertation Advising Committee is formed to oversee the student's doctoral research and is comprised of at least three Graduate Faculty members. Two members, including the chair, must be from the Political Science Department. Committee compositions must be approved by the department's graduate chair. The Dissertation Chair is responsible for overseeing and guiding the student's progress, coordinating the responses of the Committee members, and informing the student of his or her academic progress.

Dissertation Examining Committee Information The Dissertation Examining Committee evaluates the student's dissertation and oral defense. This committee is comprised of the Doctoral Advising Committee and at least one additional Graduate Faculty member from outside the Political Science Department. The Outside Examiner should be identified no later than the beginning of the semester in which the student will defend the dissertation.

Advisor/Committee Information If a student needs to change a member of a Committee, the new member must be approved by the department's graduate committee and registered with the Graduate Secretary and the Graduate School.

Dissertation/Monograph Philosophy A doctoral dissertation should demonstrate that the candidate can conduct and report on scholarly research with a high level of professional competence. The dissertation should constitute a distinctive contribution to knowledge in Politial Science. Normally, it should outline theoretical knowledge in some field of Political Science, propose a question or hypothesis that is linked to the theory, and provide empirical data to illuminate the theoretical issues in a convincing manner.

Philosophy of the Proposal The dissertation proposal demonstrates the student's knowledge of and ability to conduct the proposed research. The dissertation prospectus should consist of a research design and literature review. The prospectus should be defended and accepted by the full membership of the committee within two semesters after passing the preliminary examination.

Criterion for Passing the Dissertation and the Defense. The oral defense should demonstrate that (1) the dissertation satisfies the standards for original research in Political Science; (2) the ethics and standards governing Political Science research have been followed; (3) the candidate has mastered the research and appropriate methodology; and (4) the candidate has an understanding of the relationship of this work to the broader field in which it is lodged.

Dissertation Defense Scheduling Students who are preparing to defend their dissertation should confirm a time and date with their Dissertation Advisory Committee and register with the Graduate Secretary at least 15 days before the defense. The Graduate Secretary will arrange the time, date and room within two working days, and forward the appropriate forms to the student.

Announcing the Dissertation Defense After the Graduate Secretary has arranged the time, date and room for the defense, a completed "Announcement of Dissertation Defense" form will be sent to the Graduate School (501 Carnell Hall) at least 10 working days before the defense. The Department will post fliers announcing the defense.


Program Contact Information:


Department Information:

Dept. of Political Science

411 Gladfelter Hall
1115 West Berks Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122


Department Contacts:


Annette Beh


Program Coordinator:

Graduate Chairperson:

Sandra Suárez, Ph.D.



Gary Mucciaroni, Ph.D.


About the Program

The primary mission of the Political Science Department's graduate program is to prepare students for careers in academia. The department gives equal emphasis to training students for both the research and teaching sides of such a career. Many of our graduates also successfully apply their political science training to non-academic careers. The Ph.D. program offers study in three broadly defined fields: American Politics, International Relations, and Comparative politics. The Ph.D. program seeks primarily to develop the research skills and substantive knowledge necessary for successful completion of a dissertation.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 7 years

Campus Location:

Main Campus

Students are able to complete the degree program through classes offered after 4:30 p.m. Students are able to complete the degree program on a part-time basis (8 credit hours or less per semester).

Department Information:

Dept. of Political Science

411 Gladfelter Hall
1115 West Berks Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122



Not applicable.


Not applicable.

Areas of Specialization:

Coursework in the American Politics field covers a wide variety of topics and institutions including: the presidency and the administrative system of government; Congress and the legislative process; the judiciary and consitutional law; public policy; political parties and political process; and urban politics and policy. Courses offered in International Relations may be arrayed under several areas, such as the nature of the international political system; international conflict and its resolution and international political economy. Courses offered in Comparative Politics include comparative politics of advanced industrial nations; comparative politics of developing nations; Western Europe; latin America China; and democratization. Students are encouraged to arrange their course offerings in whatever manner makes coherent intellectual sense to them and their primary advisor.

Job Placement:

Most Ph.D. students are preparing for college teaching careers. Our program has had an excellent placement record. About three-quarters of recent Ph.D.s hold tenured or tenure-track professorial positions at colleges and universities, many of which are in the Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware state university and college systems. Other Ph.D.s are in government or research positions.


Not applicable.

Interdisciplinary Study:

Not applicable.

Study Abroad:



Not applicable.

Non-Degree Student Policy:

Students wishing to take graduate courses as a non-matriculated student must get the permission of the Graduate Chair. An applicant who has taken Political Science courses as a non-matriculated student at Temple University can apply up to 9 semester hours toward the Ph.D. course requirements, as long as the courses taken satisfy the degree requirements. Students considering applying to the Ph.D. program while taking courses on a non-matriculated basis should discuss their plans with the Graduate Chair.

Financing Opportunities

Departmental Support. The department has resources to support a portion of the graduate students on a competitive basis. Students accepted to the program will receive application forms. The amount of support available varies from year to year. Highly superior students may be nominated for University Fellowships. All departmental support requires recipients to teach or assist full time faculty in undergraduate courses. Undergraduate teaching complements graduate study very well, and helps graduate students integrate their studies and prepare for examinations. It is also highly desirable for Ph.D. students who plan on pursuing an academic career. In making funding awards, the Graduate Committee places high priority on a student's academic performance or potential. The following rules and criteria guide the committee's decisions: A student must be making normal progress toward meeting his/her degree requirements. Two incompletes disqualifies a student from consideration. Advanced students should note that no student will be supported who has not successfully defended a dissertation prospectus within a year of passing the comprehensive examinations. No student will be supported for a second year without having successfully completed P.S. 404, Teaching Methods. (This is a required course for all doctoral students.) To spread support more broadly and to provide an incentive for students to move quickly through course work and examinations and into the dissertation, the department typically will not provide support for students who have already had four years of support as a Teaching Assistant. The graduate committee considers the extent to which a student's interests and skills fit departmental needs.

Other Financial Opportunities