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The Department of Political Science believes that professionalism is best pursued in an educational environment that places value on both academic merit and social diversity. In admitting students to its graduate program, we assess merit criteria as reflected in prior undergraduate and graduate academic records, standardized test scores, letters of reference, and how well the individual profile of the candidate matches faculty research interests and field programs in the Department. Applicants may be admitted unconditionally, admission may be denied, or the applicant may be admitted subject to conditions imposed by the Graduate Coordinator. The Department considers each complete application, with special attention to:

  • Graduate Record Exam scores: The applicant must obtain scores on the aptitude (verbal, quantitative, and analytical) tests of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Applicants are not required to offer scores on the advanced test in political science.
  • Undergraduate and Graduate Transcripts: The applicant must have demonstrated a high level of academic achievement as an undergraduate or in previous graduate studies. The Political Science Department considers all applicants regardless of undergraduate major, but some work in political science, or another social science, is preferred.
    • We may begin our assessment with unofficial transcripts, which applicants can upload with other application materials.
    • However, the University Admissions Office must receive official copies of all transcripts before we can admit any applicant.
  • Three letters of recommendation from faculty members attesting to the academic abilities of the applicant are required. Students who are applying to the MA program in Public Affairs or Political Campaigning may (but are not required to) substitute one academic letter with a letter that speaks to the applicant’s relevant experience in an internship, public service, professional work environment, or a political campaign. Applicants who have been out of academic settings for many years and have difficulties finding three academic references should explain that in the statement of purpose, and provide letters that speak to work habits and the potential to succeed in a rigorous graduate program.
  • A statement of purpose which should be a concise, sharply focused and well-crafted essay of a page or more that conveys intellectual ambitions, indicates how the program of study satisfies the student’s interests, and how the student would contribute to the program.
  • A Writing Sample which should be an academic research paper or scholarly essay that demonstrates the applicant’s capacity to do doctoral level work. (Ph.D. students only).

Application Deadlines


How to Apply

Apply Online – click here for the application.

Submit your statement of purpose, unofficial transcripts, writing sample (Ph.D. applicants only), and three letters of recommendation using the online application process. Please direct any questions to our graduate Secretary, Sue Lawless-Yanchisin, 352-273-2376 (p) or suzily<at>

Please send your completed application, $30 application fee (for first time applicants), official transcripts, official GRE scores, Florida residency affidavit, TOEFL or IELTS scores (international applicants), and certificate of financial responsibility (international applicants) to the Office of Admissions.

Extra Considerations for International Students

Our international students are valued members of our academic community, and contribute much to the vitality of our department. Presently, we have graduate students from Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Canada, China, India, Kuwait, Mexico, Senegal, South Korea, Turkey, and Vietnam.

International students (who are not permanent residents of the U.S.) must complete their applications by February 1.

International applicants must submit to the UF Office of Admissions

  • an official copy in the native language of each transcript,
  • mark sheet and diploma/degree certificate from each university or college attended, and
  • a certified, literal (exact) English translations for documents not originally issued in English.

For admission to our graduate program, international students from non-English speaking countries are required to take the TOEFL or IELTS. We require that candidates seeking admission score 550 or better on the TOEFL (paper), 80 or better on the TOEFL (internet), or 6 or better on the IELTS. International students are exempt from the English proficiency requirement if enrolled for one academic year in a degree-seeking program at a recognized/regionally accredited university or college in a country where English is the official language prior to your anticipated term of enrollment at UF. For a list of those countries, see

PhD applicants seeking funding are also required to demonstrate proficiency in spoken English. Students from non-English speaking countries who are applying for financial assistance are required to submit scores of 23 or higher on the TOEFL speaking test, 7 or higher on the IELTS speaking test, or 45 or higher on the SPEAK test.

International students must be able to finance their tuition, books, room, board, other school expenses and travel to and from the United States. Before obtaining a visa and leaving their home country, students must be able to furnish the United States Consulate evidence of financial solvency. Graduate students must present proof of tuition and fees for one year’s study at the University of Florida, exclusive of travel expenses. Financial assistance offered by the Department or the University of Florida can be used in partial fulfillment of this requirement, but will not be sufficient on its own.

More information for international students at the University of Florida is available from the Graduate School, the Admissions Office, and the International Center.