Ph.D. Admission Requirements

We require a bachelor’s or equivalent from an accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 3.3, or master’s or equivalent from an accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 3.5. Under special circumstances the department may consider applicants with lower GPAs. Applicants must have completed 12 credits of coursework at the upper-division or graduate level in Political Science. At the discretion of the department, students who lack such course work may be admitted on the condition that they remedy that deficiency.

The recommended GRE score is 600 (160*) on the verbal and 600 (148*) on the quantitative sections. We also pay attention to the analytical score. The applicant's undergraduate record is examined in conjunction with the GRE scores. The former is weighed more heavily than the latter: an outstanding undergraduate record may allow the admission of an applicant with GRE scores somewhat below the recommended level.

* GRE Revised Test Scores

Application Process

  1. See Graduate College for dates (please note that International students have different deadlines).

  2. Apply online through the Graduate College website. Follow the instructions at that site.

    All required materials must be uploaded into the online application before the department will make a decision on your application. We do not make admissions contingent upon receipt of satisfactory GRE scores.

    Send official transcripts from all postsecondary institutions attended showing all degrees and dates awarded to the following address:

    University of Nevada, Las Vegas
    Graduate College
    Box 451017
    4505 S. Maryland Pkwy.
    Las Vegas, NV 89154-1017

    (unofficial transcripts: upload to online application)

  3. GRE Scores

    You must have your scores on the GRE General Test sent to (address below), as a rule we do not accept another standardized exam in place of the GRE.

    University of Nevada, Las Vegas
    Department of Political Science
    Box 455029
    4505 S. Maryland Pkwy.
    Las Vegas, NV 89154-5029


    Institution Code for UNLV is 4861
    Department/Major Code is 1902

  4. Personal Statement

    Upload a personal statement to the online application in which you describe specific interests in, and approaches to, the study of comparative politics or international relations. The statement should also include a description of your background for advanced work in this field as well as academic and professional goals.

  5. Writing Sample

    Upload a writing sample to the online application under "Other Required Documents". Writing sample in the form of a master's thesis or original research paper of substantial length. If possible, the sample should concern comparative politics or international relations.

  6. Letters of Recommendation

    Use recommendation provider list to input the names and contact information for each recommender (minimum 3 required). Recommendation provider should be former instructors indicating you can do doctoral-level work in comparative and international relations. Recommender provider must submit the letter of recommendation online.

  7. Graduate Assistantships

    If you are a new student to UNLV please complete the graduate assistantship portion in the online application. If you are a current student (you must create a new log-in) and want to apply for a graduate assistantship, follow the process detailed at the Graduate College website. The deadline for assistantship applications is February 1 for the following academic year.