Entry requirements

Good undergraduate degree and preferably an MA or MSc degree in political science or a closely related discipline

Months of entry


Course content

In a departure from the traditional 'thesis only' manner of doing doctoral work in most of Europe, the Government Department operate an exciting PhD programme in Political Science that combines rigorous training with specialised research.

Traditionally, doctoral students in most European departments spend several years working almost exclusively on their own research topics. The MRes/PhD is designed to provide a different experience, with a more structured teaching programme, more collective and collaborative working, a broader training as a well rounded political science professional, and a systematic emphasis on research design and methodology. This is the emphasis in the first year of the programme which leads to an MRes award. Students build on this first year in their doctoral research in the following three years.

The central aim of the MRes/PhD Political Science at LSE is to help produce a new generation of political scientists who upon graduation will immediately be qualified to accept leading positions in their professions. Graduates will be carefully trained and widely read - indeed they will be able to interpret, evaluate, and use research results across a broad spectrum of topics, well beyond the field of their specific doctoral research.

The programme has two different streams. Students on both streams will be broadly trained in a range of methods in political science and will be able to apply quantitative and/or qualitative methods in their own research. In Stream A there is a greater emphasis in training in quantitative political science, while in Stream B there is greater emphasis on training in qualitative approaches to the study of politics as well as some quantitative methods. Both streams provide grounding in the scope and theory of political science and the challenges of research design. Students must meet high standards in all these fields and must apply their training to the construction of a research prospectus designed to underpin subsequent doctoral research.

Department specialisms

Political Theory; Comparative Politics; Political Philosophy; Public Administration; Public Choice Theory; Politics of Individual Countries; the Politics of the EU; Politics of Ethnicity

Information for international students

IELTS 7.0 overall

Fees and funding


Qualification and course duration


full time
36-48 months


full time
12 months

Course contact details

Student Recruitment Office
+44 (0)20 7955 6613