Loyola University Chicago

Department of Political Science

PhD in Global Politics

The PhD program in political science, with a focus on Global Politics, is intended for students who wish to acquire careers in teaching and research or work in the government or the private sector. PhD students will take most of their courses, and specialize, in two fields. The major field for all PhD students will be Global Politics, which includes the two core areas of Comparative Politics and International Relations and the four elective areas of Comparative Social Policy, Foreign Policy Analysis, Global Governance, and Political Development. For the minor field, students will specialize in either American Politics or Political Theory.

Degree Requirements

  1. Completion of the Master's degree
  2. Forty eight semester hours (16 courses) of work (including the MA and the dissertation), six hours (2 courses) of which can be in a related discipline. Required coursework includes:
    • Major field: Six courses (Global Politics)
    • Minor field: Four courses (American Politics or Political Theory)
    • Basic Techniques of Political Analysis: Three courses
      1. PLSC 401: Research Design (taken in the first semester)
      2. PLSC 475: Techniques of Political Analysis I (first semester)
      3. PLSC 476: Techniques of Political Analysis II (second semester)
    • Three elective courses
      • One of the electives is a directed readings class focused on developing a dissertation proposal just before comprehensive exams.
      Note: Students may be required to develop language proficiency to conduct research for their doctoral dissertations.
  3. Comprehensive Exams: Candidates must pass comprehensive examinations in Global Politics and their minor field. The comprehensive examinations have both written and oral components. All course requirements, including removal of all existing incompletes,must be fulfilled before students can take the written comprehensive exam.
  4. Dissertation Proposal and Dissertation: Candidates must complete and successfully defend both a dissertation proposal and the completed dissertation.

Students may transfer up to 12 semester hours of graduate credit (four courses) from another university program based on an evaluation of their transcript. However, all students must take the three techniques of political sciences classes listed above at Loyola. Students must complete four semesters of residence, including at least two consecutive semesters at Loyola. At least one academic year (two consecutive semesters) must be spent as a full-time student.

PhD students starting the program with a B.A. degree (or fewer than four transferred courses) will take their comprehensive exams by the end of their sixth semester, and students with twelve transferred courses will take their comprehensive exams by the end of their fifth semester. Students are also expected to have their proposal defended one semester after successfully passing their exams.

Time Limits

Graduate School regulations require students entering the program with a Bachelor's Degree to complete all PhD requirements, including the dissertation, within eight years of taking their first course in the degree program. Students admitted to the doctoral program with a Master's degree must complete all PhD requirements, including the dissertation, within six years of the start of their program. A student failing to meet these deadlines may submit a petition to the Graduate Studies Committee requesting an extension of the relevant deadline. The final authority to extend the time limits resides in the Graduate School.