Government and Politics, Master of Arts

33 Credits
St. John's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Queens Campus


The Master of Arts program in Government and Politics at St. John’s University combines rigorous academic study with the opportunity to develop valuable practical skills that are highly attractive to a wide array of employers across the public and private sectors. You’ll benefit from our small class sizes, individual attention from our distinguished faculty, and the flexibility to develop breadth and depth in the field of government and politics. You’ll become an expert in composing policy briefs and reports; drafting and evaluating project proposals, resolutions, and public statements; and completing in-depth evaluations of domestic and foreign events and trends. The program will prepare you for an array of opportunities in the civil or foreign services, positions of political or administrative responsibility in the public or private sectors, careers in education, or for further study as a doctoral or law student.

The 33-credit M.A. program offers both a thesis and non-thesis option and can be completed in one year of fall, spring, and summer semester study. We offer five concentrations: American Government, International Relations, Comparative Politics, Political Theory, and Public Policy and Administration. You can complete any of these five concentrations on our Queens, NY campus, and can complete the International Relations concentration on our beautiful, centrally-located campus in Rome, Italy. You can also study at both campuses for alternating semesters or take advantage of our winter intersession travel courses. To add an experiential dimension to your classroom study, we encourage you to take advantage of our vibrant internship program, which offers a wide variety of relevant experiences in both New York City and Rome, Italy.

You can also earn a certificate in Public Administration in Government or International Law and Diplomacy. These certificates -- both of which require 18 credits above the master’s degree -- can be earned in conjunction with the M.A., after completing the M.A., or independently as advanced certificates.

Program Requirements

You can complete the M.A. in Government and Politics in one year of full-time study, including summer study. Graduate courses on both the Queens and Rome campuses are offered in fall, spring, and summer sessions and are scheduled in the evening or online to accommodate working students.

Non-Thesis Option

  • GOV 205 Modern Political Research
  • Twelve credits in your major concentration
  • Three credits in Political Theory courses
  • Six credits in your minor concentration
  • Nine elective credits in any concentration

Thesis Option

  • GOV 205 Modern Political Research
  • Twelve credits in your major concentration
  • Three credits in Political Theory courses
  • Six credits in your minor concentration
  • Three elective credits in any concentration
  • Six credits of GOV 900 Master’s Research
  • Demonstration of knowledge of a foreign language (French, Spanish, or Italian) by passing an approved examination or a non-credit reading course in the language

Comprehensive Exam

  • During your last semester in the program, after the completion of at least 24 credits, you will be asked to sit for a comprehensive examination to test your knowledge in your concentration.


Diane Heith, Ph.D., Professor and Chair
Department of Government and Politics
St. John Hall, Room 234E

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For admission to graduate studies in the Department of Government and Politics, students are expected to have an undergraduate preparation of at least 18 credits in government and politics, political science, or an equivalent field, and a 3.0 GPA. Any deficiency in preparation may require supplementary or conditional credits in the form of suitable graduate courses, as determined by the department.

Graduate Admissions Contact

Robert Medrano, Director
Office of Graduate Admission

Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition rates for the Queens, NY and Rome, Italy campuses are the same and are listed online. U.S. citizens and permanent residents who are interested in studying on either campus are eligible for federal graduate loans. St. John’s also offers additional options for financing your degree, including scholarships, graduate assistantships, and resident assistantships.

Graduate Assistantships, Scholarships, and Resident Assistantships

Graduate assistantships are awarded to matriculated students on both the Queens and Rome campuses on a semester basis. They are based on academic achievement and possession of the skills necessary to fulfill the requirements of the position. Graduate assistantships cover the cost of tuition for up to four courses per semester. Students on the Rome campus are also eligible for scholarships and resident assistantships.

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Career Outcomes

Internships and Career Placement

In both Queens and Rome, you will have the opportunity to take advantage of unique internship opportunities, thanks to relationships that our faculty and administrators maintain with several international organizations, multinational organizations, and government and non-governmental agencies. You can receive up to three credits for internships once you have completed at least 12 credits of coursework for the M.A., and we encourage all students in the program to do at least one internship. In New York City, students in the program have interned with the United Nations, the Civilian Complaint Review Board, and various law firms and city agencies. In Rome, our students have interned with the United Nations World Food Programme, the U.S. Embassy, the International Development and Law Organization, and Save the Children Italia, among many other placements.

These internship opportunities have led to career paths for many of our students, and our graduates have fulfilling jobs around the globe in a variety of fields including: the Civil or Foreign Service; the United Nations; policy think-tanks, international NGOs; major multinational corporations; and dynamic start-up companies. Some graduates from the program have also gone on to law and doctoral programs in political science or related fields.

With an M.A. in Government and Politics from the Queens or Rome campus of St. John’s, you can join our successful alumni in landing rewarding positions with some of the following institutions and organizations:

  • American University of Rome
  • Amnesty International USA
  • Ernst & Young
  • Price Waterhouse Coopers
  • The World Bank
  • U.S. Air Force
  • U.S. Army
  • U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • U.S. Department of State
  • U.S. Navy
  • U.S. Secret Service
  • United Nations World Food Programme
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Additional Information

Graduate Faculty and Research Expertise

As a Government and Politics graduate student on the Queens or Rome campus, you’ll have the opportunity to learn from faculty members with expertise in a variety of fields.

William Byrne, Associate Professor
B.A., University of Pennsylvania; M.B.A. George Mason University; Ph.D., The Catholic University of America. Modern political thought; core problems of liberal democracy and late modernity; and the role of cultural elements in society and politics.

Fred Cocozzelli, Associate Professor
B.A., Catholic University of America; M.I.A. Columbia University School of International & Public Affairs; Ph.D., New School University. Peacekeeping and post-conflict reconstruction; Balkans Social Policy; Ethnic Relations and Conflict; Citizenship.

William Gangi, Professor
B.A., M.A., St. John’s University; Ph.D., University of Notre Dame. Personnel Management Administration; Public Constitutional Law; Mass Movement Politics.

Diane Heith, Professor and Chair
B.A., Cornell University; M.A., Ph.D., Brown University. The Presidency; media; public opinion; and American politics.

David Kearn, Associate Professor
B.A., Amherst College; M.M.P. Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government; Ph.D., University of Virginia. International Relations Theory, Security Studies, Military Innovation, Arms Control, U.S. Foreign Policy.

Barbara Koziak, Associate Professor
B.A., University of Texas at Austin; M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D., Yale University. Ancient political philosophy; Aristotle; contemporary political theory; and feminist political theory.

Azzedine Layachi, Professor
B.A., Algiers University; M.A., Ph.D., New York University. Middle East Studies; International Law; Nationalism.

Frank Paul LeVeness, Professor
B.S., M.A., Ph.D., St. John’s University. Latin American and Caribbean Politics and Integration; Comparative Systems; Minority Politics; Methodology; Development Politics; Political Economy.

William R. Nester, Professor
B.A., Miami University, Miami, Ohio; M.A., Ph.D., University of California at Santa Barbara. International Relations; Foreign Policy.

Robert F. Pecorella, Associate Professor
B.A., St. John’s University; M.A., Brooklyn College; Ph.D., The Pennsylvania State University. Public administration; urban governance; state and local politics; and research methods.

Luba Racanska, Associate Professor
B.A., Yale University; M.A., Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Russian Politics; East and West European Politics and Non-Governmental Institutions: European Union, Ethics in Public Administration.

Uma Tripathi, Associate Professor
B.A., M.A., University of Bombay; Ph.D., University of Notre Dame. International Law; South Asian Politics; Global Environmental Politics.

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