Frequently Asked Questions
For all three of these courses, the student will fill out an Independent Study formwith a detailed plan of work description and submit it to their faculty supervisor who signs. The form will be forwarded to the registrar’s office, where they will enroll you in the course.
Accelerated students need permission to enroll in graduate classes while they are still an undergraduate. Please contact Brooke Ryder at firstname.lastname@example.org to get permission to enroll.
Please contact the registrar's office at (502) 852-6522 or email@example.com
GA positions are available periodically. Please email Dr. Merry to ask about availability. There may also be other GA positions on campus you may be able to apply for.
Core courses are taught on a rotating basis with each course taught at least once every two years. If a core course is offered and you have not taken it, you should register for it then.
- Students who choose the non-thesis option must complete 33 hours of coursework and three hours of Directed Research (POLS 695). The directed research paper should be based on work the student has engaged in, in one or more graduate seminars. A directed research is usually an extension of a seminar paper. The length is usually 23-35 pages. Please refer to the graduate handbook (page 10) for more information.
- Students who choose the thesis option must complete 24 hours of coursework and six hours of Thesis Guidance (POLS 699). The six hours of Thesis Guidance can be taken in one semester, usually the final semester of the student’s degree program, or divided across two semesters. The thesis should be an original contribution to the discipline, show an awareness of scholarly work relevant to the thesis topic, and employ methods appropriate to the development of an extended academic project. A thesis is typically between 60 and 85 pages in length and consists of multiple chapters. Please refer to the graduate handbook (page 7) for more information.
Please refer page 8 of the graduate handbook for more information.
Students seeking support should apply to the Department of Political Science Graduate Committee. Individuals are eligible to be awarded only one grant each academic year.
Applications should be sent to Melissa Merry. No incomplete applications will be considered.
Students must include with their application of the following:
- An application form that includes a brief explanation of the activity or project for which they are seeking support and a detailed budget.
- An unofficial transcript.
Students must also obtain a recommendation from a member of the political science faculty.
For more information please visit this page.
While our department generally does not offer courses over the summer you can take a relevant elective from another department over the summer. You can also take an independent study, internship, directed research, or thesis if you can find a faculty member who will agree to supervise this course over the summer.
Yes, you can take up to 6 credit hours outside of political science. Please consult with Dr. Merry before registering for this elective so she can make sure the course is relevant to your program of study.
A full-time course load is 9 credit hours per semester.
The most important thing is to make sure you apply for the degree. Degrees are awarded in August, December, and May. Candidates who expect to receive degrees on a particular award date must fill out a degree application online. The degree application process is available through ULink (ulink.louisville.edu). Students must submit their completed application for degrees to the Graduate School on or before the dates specified in the University calendar You must be enrolled in the semester that you plan to graduate. Please refer to this page on the first and last day you can apply to graduate.
Yes! Students may take up to six hours of internship (practicum) credit under the supervision of a faculty member. Note that the total number of credits received from internship credit and independent study credit may not exceed six hours. In particular, students may take six hours of internship credit, or three hours of internship credit and three hours of independent study credit.
We have several pages on our website advertising internships:
- This page lists internships specifically seeking graduate students
- This page lists internships that are non-partisan
- This page lists internships for the democratic party
- This page lists internships for the republican party
Please contact Dr. Merry with any questions.
Yes, please keep in mind that you are limited to 9 credit hours of 500 level coursework. If you took one/both of these courses as an undergraduate at U of L you can take them again as graduate students. Keep in mind that you will be doing extra work beyond the undergraduate requirements. If you are an accelerated student you can take 510/512 for graduate credit as long as you do the extra work required of graduate students.
Have a question you think should be added to this list? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org! We love hearing from our students and we want to make sure you have everything you need.