Accelerated B.S./M.A. in Political Science (Legal Studies)

The Accelerated Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts in Political Science provides exceptional undergraduate students in the Political Science program an avenue toward accelerated completion of a Master’s degree. This degree program mirrors the curricular and assessment requirements of the existing Master’s degree program and allows undergraduates to begin taking graduate-level courses when they have completed 90 credit hours toward their baccalaureate degree, thus reducing the calendar time necessary to complete the degree. No undergraduate course may count toward the accelerated Master’s degree. The Accelerated Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts in Political Science is a highly competitive program.

Marketable Skills

Defined by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board's 60x30 Strategic Plan as, "Those skills valued by employers that can be applied in a variety of work settings, including interpersonal, cognitive, and applied skills areas. These skills can be either primary or complementary to a major and are acquired by students through education, including curricular, co-curricular, and extracurricular activities."

  1. Employers want employees who can work collaboratively in groups. The B.A. in Political Science develops these skills by requiring students to work on group projects (presented in front of the instructor and peers), identify clear roles within the group (e.g., spokespersons/team leaders), and present the findings of the group in a public forum.  The M.A. in Political Science further develops this skill.
  2. ​Employers want employees who have solid writing and compositional skills. The B.A. in Political Science develops this skill by requiring students to engage in clear, persuasive, and grammatically and stylistically correct writing projects (research papers, policy briefs, reaction papers, memos, position papers, etc.). The M.A. in Political Science further develops this skill, for example through developing literature reviews in their graduate classes. 
  3. ​Employers want employees who have solid oral communication skills. The B.A. in Political Science develops these skills by requiring students to present their research in a public forum (that is, in front of a class of peers and the instructor) using visual aids (slides, charts, graphs, etc.) and/or to role-play in a public forum requiring extensive research on that role. The M.A. in Political Science further develops this skill.
  4. ​Employers want employees who can work independently on projects. The M.A. in Political Science develops this skill by requiring all students to complete an independent, original piece of scholarship in the form of a Master's thesis or professional paper.
  5. ​Employers want employees who can synthesize information (facts/data, concepts, terminology) into succinct language. The M.A. in Political Science develops these skills by requiring students to take a required course in research methods which involves reading the extensive literature on a topic in politics (e.g., voting behavior or literature on democratization), synthesizing the concepts presented, analyzing data and arguments, and discussing this orally in a public forum and/or in written form (reaction papers, summaries, literature reviews, etc.).

Admissions

All applicants must meet the general undergraduate admission requirements.

Program Contact

Dr. Parker Hevron, POLS Program Director and Graduate Director for History and Political Science

Application Deadlines for the Accelerated Degree Program

Fall: March 1st
Spring: November 1st
**No summer admissions**

Admission Requirements

To apply to the program, students must:

  • be a current TWU Political Science major.
  • have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher.
  • have successfully completed a minimum of 72 but no more than 90 hours of coursework toward the BA.
  • have a minimum of 12 hours remaining in political science courses toward the major.

How to Apply

Students interested in applying to the accelerated program in Political Science are encouraged to contact Dr. Parker Hevron prior to applying. 

  • Complete the application form. 
  • Applicants must submit the following materials in a single email to Dr. Parker Hevron. Submit as PDFs; include the student’s name and "Political Science Accelerated Master's Degree" in the subject line.  
    • a statement of purpose
    • an academic writing sample of 10-15 pages (double spaced). Writing samples should demonstrate the ability to make well-researched arguments with effective proofs; to use clear, articulate prose; and to employ a standard style such as MLA or APA to document sources.
  • Applicants must provide one recommendation letter in support of application from a current History or Political Science faculty member in the TWU department. Recommenders should include the applicant's name and “Political Science Accelerated Master's Degree” in the subject line.
  • Once admitted by the department, apply to the Graduate School.  Students cannot enroll in graduate-level coursework until accepted by the Graduate School.
  • Students interested in a graduate assistantship should also submit an application to the POLS Department Chair in the semester they complete the bachelor's degree.

Degree Requirements

Total Semester Credit Hours (SCH): 120

Major: 27-33 SCH

Program Code: POLSCIENCE.BA.MA.LEGAL  CIP Code: 45.1001.00

Texas Core Curriculum

ENG 1013Composition I3
ENG 1023Composition II3
Mathematics3
Life & Physical Sciences6
Language, Philosophy, & Culture3
Creative Arts3
HIST 1013History of the United States, 1492-18653
HIST 1023History of the United States, 1865 to the Present3
POLS 2013U.S. National Government3
POLS 2023Texas Government3
Social & Behavioral Sciences3
CAO: Women's Studies3
CAO: First Year Seminar, Wellness or Mathematics3
Total SCHs42

Courses Required for Major 

POLS 3153Law, Politics, and Public Policy3
POLS 3173Introduction to Comparative Politics3
POLS 3723Modern Political Thought3
POLS 4073Constitutional Law: Governmental Structure3
POLS 4533International Relations3
POLS 4833Political Science: Scope and Methods3
POLS 4933Senior Seminar3
Select 6-12 SCH from the following6-12
Criminal Investigation
Criminal Law
Criminal Evidence and Procedure
The American Legislative Process
Gender, Identity, and the Law
Constitutional Law: Individual Rights
Constitutional Rights and Criminal Justice
Women, Elections, and Strategy
Global Law and Legal Systems
Legal Studies Internship
Legal Studies Internship
Total SCHs27-33

Departmental Requirements

English Literature (2000 level or higher)3
Global Perspectives3
Electives (select with academic advisor)36
Total SCHs42

Master's Level Courses

Select 6-12 SCH from the following6-12
Comparative Politics
Seminar in Political Theory
American National Defense Policy
The Presidency and Public Policy
Issues in Constitutional Law
Law, Gender, and Sexuality
Leadership and Women
Women in Politics
Women, Elections, and Strategy
Problems in the Legislative Process
Vietnam War: Culture, History, and Law
Women As Citizens
Special Topics
Independent Study
Independent Study
Research Methods in Government
Total SCHs6-12

Recommended Plan of Study

*The example below is only a suggestion. It is recommended to see an advisor for a personalized Plan of Study.

First Year
FallTCCNSCHs
ENG 1013Composition I ENGL 13013
HIST 1013History of the United States, 1492-1865 HIST 13013
UNIV 1231Learning Frameworks: The First Year Experience EDUC 1100, EDUC 1200, EDUC 13001
Social/Behavioral Science Core3
CAO: Wellness or Mathematics Core2
Creative Arts Core3
 SCHs 15
SpringTCCN
ENG 1023Composition II ENGL 13023
HIST 1023History of the United States, 1865 to the Present HIST 13023
Mathematics Core3
CAO: Multicultural Women's Studies Core3
Elective (Global Perspectives course)3
 SCHs 15
Second Year
FallTCCN
POLS 2013U.S. National Government GOVT 23053
English Literature3
Life & Physical Science Core3
Elective3
Elective (or minor)3
 SCHs 15
SpringTCCN
POLS 2023Texas Government GOVT 23063
Language, Philosophy, & Culture Core3
Life & Physical Science Core3
Elective3
Elective (or minor)3
 SCHs 15
Third Year
FallTCCN
POLS 3173Introduction to Comparative Politics 3
POLS 4533International Relations 3
Elective3
Elective3
Elective (or minor)3
 SCHs 15
SpringTCCN
POLS 3723Modern Political Thought 3
POLS 4073Constitutional Law: Governmental Structure 3
POLS Elective3
Elective (or minor)3
Elective3
 SCHs 15
Fourth Year
FallTCCN
POLS 3153Law, Politics, and Public Policy 3
POLS 4833Political Science: Scope and Methods 3
Master's Level Course3
Master's Level Course3
Elective3
 SCHs 15
SpringTCCN
POLS 4933Senior Seminar 3
Elective (or minor)3
Master's Level Course3
Master's Level Course3
Elective3
 SCHs 15
 Total SCHs:  120