SB AdvisoryMay 20, 2020 update: Keep up with the latest from Stony Brook about the coronavirus situation.  More information
Skip Navigation

Graduate Admissions Information - MA


The MA in Political Science only offers Fall Admission. The MA in Public Policy offers both Fall and Spring Admission.

Application Deadlines

MA in Political Science (Fall Admission  Only)

  • International Applicants:   May 15
  • Domestic Applicants (Early Consideration):  May 15
  • Domestic Applicants (Rolling Admission):  July 1

MA in Public Policy (Fall and Spring Admission)

  • Fall Admission, International Applicants: May 15
  • Fall Admission, Domestic Applicants: July 1
  • Spring Admission, International Applicants: October 15
  • Spring Admission, Domestic Applicants:  December 15


Application Requirements

A complete application consists of the following documentation:

  • Stony Brook University   online application  including statement of purpose.
  • Applicants must have an earned baccalaureate degree with a grade point average of 3.0 or better (on a 4.0 scale) equivalent to a U.S. baccalaureate degree.
  • Three letters of recommendation. These letters should be academic, but consideration will also be given to non-academic letters. Letters are   must be  uploaded online by the recommender.
  • Transcripts should be uploaded as part of your application. In addition to the upload, two   official  transcripts from each institution you’ve attended (even if a degree was not issued) should be submitted to the department. If you’ve previously attend Stony Brook University, you will not be required to send an official SBU transcript, but are required to upload an unofficial version of the SBU transcript for review purposes.
  • GRE and TOEFL scores reported directly to Stony Brook ( code 2548).

    *In light of the COVID 19 Pandemic and the closures and cancellati ons of many ETS test sites, The Department of Political Science will waive GRE test requirements for the Fall 2020 application period. No action is needed by the applicant. 

  • Proof of Permanent Residency is required for students who declare themselves as Permanent Residents
  • Application fee of $100 (credit Card).

Completed applications are reviewed by the committee on a rolling basis. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. All application materials are due by the posted deadline.


Statement of Purpose

The Statement of Purpose should sufficiently describe your reasons for applying to the Master's program in Political Science program at Stony Brook University. Your statement should address:

  • Research Interests
  • Background in Political Science
  • Career plans
  • Additional interests or information that can assist the admissions committee in evaluating your application.

The Statement of Purpose should not exceed two double spaced pages (approx. 500 words).


GRE Scores

All applicants must submit GRE scores, even if they have completed an advanced degree. Applicants who are waiving the GRE scores for another test score (i.e. LSAT, GMAT, etc) must have prior approval from the program director prior to submitting the application AND must notify the Graduate Program Coordinator,   Carri Horner  after submitting their application so a waiver can be added to your application. Failure to do so can result in applications appearing to be incomplete and therefore not reviewed.

Q: Do you have a minimum GRE score or GPA Requirements?
A: No. We review many aspects of a candidate's application including your academic performances (UG and Grad), your letters of recommendation, statement of purpose and GRE scores (or other scores if the director gives approval to waive the GRE's for LSAT/GMAT/etc.)

Q: What happens if my official GRE/TOEFL scores or official transcripts arrive after the application deadline?
A: If we haven't received official scores or transcripts by the time the admissions final committee begins review, we will consider your application with the unofficial scores and transcripts submitted in your online application. However, we will need to receive official scores from ETS and official transcripts before making an official offer of admissions.

Q: How old can my GRE scores be?
A: GRE scores are only valid for five years. It is highly recommended that submitted scores are more recent (within three years).



These scores are required for applicants who declare a language other than English as their native language. The Graduate School will not accept any test scores that are more than 2 years old based on the application deadline date. For example, TOEFL exams taken prior to September 2016 will not be accepted for Fall 2018 applications.

The department of Political Science does not waive language score requirements.

Minimum Scores:

IELTS: Overall score of 6.5, with no subsection recommended to be below 6

TOEFL: 80 for Master's level; 90 for admission to a doctoral program and to be eligible for consideration for TA/GA support

There are no exceptions for these minimum score requirements.

Completing the Application  

Click here for the online application

Frequently Asked Questions