Political Science M.A.


Key Info

Basic Information

Master of Arts
Start of Studies:
Winter Semester
Standard Period of Studies:
4 semesters
ECTS Credits:
120Mehr Informationen

What does that mean?

ECTS are credit points that measure the workload of one's studies.


Admission Requirements

  • First university degree, required qualifications according to the examination regulations Mehr Informationen

    What does that mean?

    A first recognized university degree, through which the necessary education background for the Master course of study can be proven. The necessary knowledge needed in order for studies to be successful is determined in the respective exam regulations (PO).


  • Proficiency in German --- Mehr Informationen ---

    What does that mean?

    You must provide documentation of your language skills for the language of instruction at the time of enrollment. The exam regulations stipulate the relevant requirements.

Admission to First Semester


Admission to Higher Semesters


Dates and Deadlines


The Master's course of study Political Science has two particular characteristics.

1. Students select a political science focus starting in the second semester:

  • International Relations or
  • Political Theories and Systems

2. The course of study makes it possible to have an interdisciplinary orientation so that students can build an individual profile

The focus Political Theories and Systems imparts comprehensive knowledge and skills necessary to understand and scientifically analyze the political present. It deals with knowing the history of political thinking in view of the relevance of past political theories for understanding current political problems. It also deals with theory-driven, comparative examination with basic characteristics of political organizations and institutions and typologies of different political systems. Furthermore, normative fundamentals of political decisionmaking will also be taken into account.

The focus International Relations concentrates on the central, transgressive political actors, structures, and processes, that are indispensable for understanding the current and future problems of a globalized and increasingly complex interconnected and simultaneously fragmented world. Along these lines, studies in international relations contribute to imbedding technological and social developments into the political context. Students learn to evaluate the systematic compatability and functional adequacy of theoretical and practical approaches to solutions for global problems.

The interdisciplinary modules offer students both a broad perspective of the social, natural, and technological sciences as well as the opportunity to specialize.

The curriculum for a Master's in political science is shaped by a variety of seminars, in which students intensively work on research questions in political sciences with each other and with instructors. In doing so they participate in current research work at the Institute of Political Science. Additionally, the courses are set up in such a way that the course of study opens up prospects for other qualified employment opportunities. An eight-week internship offers the possibility to get more in depth orientation regarding career fields.


Degree Content

The course of study consists of

  • Two mandatory political science modules
  • Three elective modules
  • Two interdisciplinary modules
  • Internship module
  • Master's thesis module

Program Structure

1st semester

Mandatory modules:

Political Science in a Social Context, Selected Problem Fields in Political Science, Interdisicplinary Module 1

2nd semester

Elective Modules 1 and 2

3rd semester

Elective Module 3

Interdisciplinary Module 2, Internship

4th semester

Master's Thesis

You can find additional information about the program layout and a link to the module handbook on the Institute of Political Science webpages (de).

Programs Abroad

The RWTH Aachen Institute of Political Science actively promotes its students' efforts to gather international experiences. In the third semester, the course of study offers a mobility window. In order to promote orientation early on, there is an obligatory information event about international studies during the first semester, and all students receive individual advising with a study abroad coordinator.

You can find information about the Institute of Political Science's exchange partners on the Institute's pages about stays abroad (de).

Moveonline Exchanges offers an overview of RWTH's study abroad offers in individual subject areas.


The eight-week internship is a mandatory component of studies. Students can choose between a career-orienting internship or a research project.

Practical experience in political science application areas during studies has significant influence on later career opportunities. In addition to the Institute's departmental advising, the Faculty of Arts and Humanities Career and Practical Experience Service offers assistance.

The internship can also be completed in two four-week components.



A prerequisite for beginning studies is an initial university degree in a political science or social science course of study. The examination regulations state the background knowledge required, which is substantially based on whether the Bachelor's thesis was written in political science or at least on a topic relevant to political science. The examination board determines whether or not the admissions requirements have been fulfilled.


Decision Aids

The didactic strategy behind the political science course of study is interactive. Students have a unique opportunity to closely work together with instructors – but it is also expected of them.

The content of both focus areas is closely oriented towards the research interests of the respective instructors. Interested individuals should look at the instructors' profiles (de) before applying.


Career Prospects

The career opportunities for political scientists are as diverse as the subject itself. Political science graduates are expected to be able to efficiently include themselves in complex contexts, precisely sort them out, critically evaluate them, and communicate them in a comprehensive manner.

Public administration, political institutions, international organizations, political advising, nongovernmental organizations, foundations, publishing houses, media, and educational institutions are just a few fields, in which this expertise is sought.

Non-university contacts are extremely important during studies as well as experiences in the practical application of political science skills. They can be the start to one's professional career. For this reason, students should carefully select an internship durign their studies and supplement their studies with other employment.


Examination Regulations

Regulations that apply for all Bachelor and Master courses of study as well as detailed information about the necessary documentation of required language skills can be found in RWTH’s Comprehensive Examination Regulation. Examination regulations are only published in German as they are legally binding.

Subject Specific Exam Regulations regulate academic goals, the course of study layout, and exam procedures. The appendix to the regulations contains the description of the modules, from which the course of study is composed.



The Master's course of study in Political Science is offered by the Institute of Political Science in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities.