Dept. of Political Science

Five Year BA/MA

Available to political science majors only (including double majors), this program allows students to complete a BA and MA in five years instead of six. It consists of three years of undergraduate coursework, a fourth year of combined undergraduate and graduate coursework, and a final year devoted to graduate coursework.

The program is open to students who have:

  • Achieved junior status.
  • A cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.3 or better, and a GPA in their major of 3.5 or better.
  • A minimum grade of B in POLS Y205: Elements of Political Analysis.
  • Completed at least 60 of their undergraduate credit hours and at least 15 of their political science credit hours at IUPUI.
  • Completed the 12 hours of introductory-level required undergraduate courses for political science.

Interested students can declare their interest to the Director of Graduate Studies in Political Science as soon as they start at IUPUI. The Department will then advise them in their choice of courses during their first three years, and students will be encouraged to help faculty members with their research, and to actively develop mentoring relationships.


Students should apply for admission to the BA/MA program by April 1 of their junior year. We will need a personal statement, a sample of academic writing (such as a term paper from a political science course), and three letters of support, including at least two from full-time members of the political science faculty. 

During their senior year, admitted students will:

  • Take the GRE, and will need to score at least 150 in each of the verbal and quantitative elements, and 4.5 or better in the analytical writing element. 
  • Complete and pass POLS Y490: Senior Seminar with a grade of at least a B-. This will then be double counted as an elective in the MA program.
  • Complete and pass POLS Y570: Introduction to the Study of Politics and POLS Y580: Research Methods in Political Science with a grade of at least B-. These will then be double counted as electives in the political science undergraduate major.

Admitted students then apply for admission to the MA no later than April 1 of their senior year. BA/MA students take their remaining graduate courses in their fifth year, as well as completing a thesis. The double counting of nine hours of undergraduate and graduate credit means that BA/MA students will only be required to take a total of 146 semester hours of coursework for their BA and their MA, rather than 155 (122 + 33).

When taking graduate courses in their senior year, students will be charged undergraduate tuition rates. After earning the BA degree, students admitted to the MA will be charged graduate tuition rates for their coursework.