MA major in Political Science (Monofach, 120 CP)

General information

The Master of Arts (MA) in Social Sciences in the subject area of Political Science prepares students for positions in municipalities, public administrations, and federal authorities as well as in consultancies, the media, and the private sector. The studies for the MA major last two years. It is recommended to start studying in the autumn term.

The rules of the Cantonal Regulations (German only), the Study Regulations of the Faculty of Arts (German only), and the Regulations and Guidelines of the IPZ (German only) are effective. Please read these documents thoroughly. The following guidance serves as further explanation.

To be accomplished in total

In the Master Monofach (120 credits) in Political Science you must attend: 2 research seminars, the courses "Advanced methods of Political Science I" and "Advanced methods of Political Science II", 10 MA seminars, the Master colloquium, and the Master thesis.

Overview Monomaster 120 (German only)

First year

During the first year students attend a two-term research seminar in an arbitrary field of research. Students may choose between the following fields:

  • Comparative Politics
  • International Relations
  • Policy Analysis
  • Political Economy
  • Political Philosophy
  • Swiss Politics

Furthermore they are to extend their methodological skills in a compulsory course called 'Fortgeschrittene Methoden der Politikwissenschaft'.

Second year

During the second year students write their Master thesis. In their third term students are committed to attend the MA colloquium where they are supposed to present their research design. Prerequisite for the colloquium is the successful finalization of the Research seminar. Based on that, a compulsory colloquium on social research methods follows during the fourth term. The attendance requires successful completion of the course "Fortgeschrittene Methoden der Politikwissenschaft" and the MA colloquium. The studies are to be finalized by a module spanning exam. Admission to the exam, as well as acceptance of the MA thesis, require successful attendance of all compulsory course achievements

Study-year independent study requirements

In addition to the above-mentioned courses, students must complete a total of 10 freely selectable one-semester MA seminars from the IPZ program (including focus MA seminars (MA-Seminare Schwerpunkt) as well as others).

Master thesis

Students are asked to contact a potential examiner on their own. Doing this they are to suggest a possible subject for the thesis.

While writing their MA thesis they should participate and thereby present their research design, in the MA colloquium of their examiner. After completing the MA colloquium students are to take part in the Methodological colloquium of the department.

Handing in an application before starting the MA thesis is mandatory. The MA thesis represents a two term module, which has to be booked. The booking can't be done by the students themselves, but instead has to be done by the person in charge for modules at the department. This is done once the application for starting the MA thesis has been filed and approved.

Application for Master certificate

The application for the MA certificate must be handed in online. Students should only apply once it is conceivable that they will be able to accomplish ALL remaining courses (in ALL their fields of study, thus their major AND their minor(s)) by the end of the running term. The application for the MA certificate is automatically fallowed by the booking of the module spanning final exams in all fields of study for the next test period. The booking is conducted by the Faculty of Arts, once the application has arrived and was verified.

Application dates at Faculty of Arts:

  • Fall term: October 15 - 30
  • Spring term: March 15 - 30

You may find more information regarding the application process on the website of the Faculty of Arts (German only).