Commission meeting room in Brussels, Belgium

On this page you will find the application instructions for JMU’s 10-month M.A. program in political science, based in Florence, Italy. In this practitioner-centered graduate program, you will:

  • Develop expertise in the politics of policymaking and in policy analysis.
  • Expand your personal and cultural horizons.
  • Build a professional network with roots in the United States and in Europe.

While a prior background in political science and/or European studies is useful, we have designed the program so that students coming from other fields of study can succeed.

Once you've reviewed these instructions, you can click on the purple APPLY ONLINE NOW button to begin your application. On that external website, you will be able to save your work as you go along -- enabling you to work on the application in segments.

Admission Requirements
  1. Check that you qualify

    All students must meet the following criteria in order to apply to the program:
    • An undergraduate degree received by the program’s start date.
    • International applicants whose undergraduate degrees are not from English-language institutions should have a TOEFL iBT score of at least 80 or an IELTS overall score of at least 6.5. Please see The Graduate School's website for further details.
  2. Gather official documentation

    • Official transcripts of all undergraduate coursework and any previous graduate coursework.
    • Two current recommendation letters from professors qualified to judge the applicant's ability to complete graduate studies.
  3. Draft your two required statements and update your resume or curriculum vitae

    • Personal statement: In this single-spaced, 1-2 page statement, applicants should describe their educational and professional background and their future educational and professional goals. They may also include other information that they think would be of interest to the admissions committee.
    • Statement of language proficiency & prior international experience: In the first paragraph of this statement, applicants should indicate the extent of their study of at least one language other than English. They should indicate which language(s) they have studied, the extent and nature of their studies, and the degree of proficiency that they have attained. Then, in the rest of the statement, applicants should summarize briefly any experiences they have had living and/or traveling outside of the United States.
    • A resume or curriculum vitae.
  4. Submit your application materials and pay the application fee via the JMU Graduate School’s online application system

    • Material can be submitted online and should include: your official transcripts, Personal Statement, Statement of Language Proficiency, & Prior International Experience, resume or CV, and two letters of recommendation.
  5. Submit a writing sample

    Applicants must submit a writing sample that showcases their ability to carry out academic and/or policy-relevant research. This example should be 5 pages or longer in single-spaced formatting and 10 pages or longer in double-spaced formatting.

    • Applicants will upload this sample through the online application system in .pdf or .docx format.
  6. Optional: apply for a program assistantship

    • For the 2024-2025 academic cycle, we anticipate that there will be four graduate program assistantships tied directly to the program. Each assistantship will provide approximately $10,000 in financial assistance with roughly half of it provided via a partial tuition waiver and the other portion consisting of a stipend paid out in accord with hours worked on the assistantship.
      • Applicants who are interested in applying for any or all of these available positions should consult the assistantship page for more information and for application instructions. Assistantship applications are due by no later than Monday February 26, 2024 and will only be accepted from students who submitted their admission applications by the Feb. 15th deadline.

Our Admissions Committee conducts a holistic review of every application to assess each student's capabilities for success in this graduate program. If you have questions about the application process for the M.A. in Political Science, please contact the program's Executive Director, Dr. Charles Blake at

Important Dates and Deadlines
  • Monday, May 20, 2024 
    • Final application deadline for the 2024-2025 academic year. Applications received between February 16 and May 20 are reviewed on a space-available, rolling basis as they are received.
    • Contact Program Executive Director Dr. Charles Blake with questions.
Application Checklist

✓ Check that you qualify

✓ Gather official documentation (transcripts, letters of recommendation)

✓ Prepare a writing sample with academic and/or policy-relevant research

✓ Draft your three required statements

✓ Update your resume or curriculum vitae

✓ Submit your application materials via The Graduate School

✓ Optional: Apply for Federal Financial Aid

✓ Optional: Apply for a program and/or research assistantship

Links and Contact Information

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