Top Universities for Political Science in USA

Political Science is the scientific study of the theory and practice of politics and government. Choosing the right university for political science is crucial for those passionate about understanding and influencing political systems. Here’s a curated list of the top universities for political science in the USA, known for their excellence in education, research opportunities, and career advancement.


  • The USA houses some of the top-ranked political science universities globally
  • The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected a 6% growth in employment for Political Science Enthusiasts.
  • Students get ample network opportunities with international governmental and non-governmental organizations.
  • The average annual salary of a political science graduate in the USA is around $80,137
  • The US government has constantly increased the Research and Development Expenditure. It was around $885M in 2022 and increasing every year.

Best Public And Private Universities For Political Science in The USA 2024

  • Picture
    University Name
    University Details
  •  Princeton University
    Princeton University
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Tuition fees: $60,000
    Duration: 2- 4 years
    Intakes: Sep, Jan, May
    Acceptance rate: 5.5%
  • University of California, Berkeley
    University of California, Berkeley
    On-campus/ off-campus
    Fees: $ 24,000 per semester
    Duration: 4-6 years
    Intakes: Sep, Jan, May
    Acceptance rate: 11.1%
  • Yale University
    Yale University
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Fees: $50,000
    Duration: 1-4 years
    Intakes: April, August
    Acceptance rate: 5%
  • Hillsdale College
    Hillsdale College
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Fees: $32,000
    Duration: 2-4 years
    Intakes: Aug, Jan
    Acceptance rates: 21%
  • Patrick Henry College
    Patrick Henry College
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Full time Fees: $30,000
    Duration: 2-4 years
    Intakes: Dec, Apr, Jul
    Acceptance rates: 76%
  • Stanford University
    Stanford University
    On campus
    Tuition fees: $52,000
    Duration: 2-4 years Intakes: Sep, Jan, May Acceptance rate: 4%
  • University of Chicago
    University of Chicago
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Fees: $68,000
    Duration: 1-4 years
    Intakes: Sep, Jan
    Acceptance rate: 5.5%
  • University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
    University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Fees: $34,000
    Duration: 1-4 years
    Intakes: Sep, Jan, May, Dec
    Acceptance rate: 9%
  • United /States Coast Guard Academy
    United /States Coast Guard Academy
    On-campus/ Off-campus
    Full time/Part-time
    Fees: Zero
    Duration: 4 years
    Intakes: Oct, Jan
    Acceptance rate: 15%
  • Northeastern Illinois University
    Northeastern Illinois University
    On campus/ Off campus
    Full time/ Part time
    Fees: $12,200
    Duration: 2- 4 years
    Intakes: Sep, Jan
    Acceptance rate: 63.1%

Types of Political Science Degrees Offered in The USA

Types of degreesCourses
Undergraduate Degrees (BA/ BA (Hons.))International Relations
Modern Political Theory
Policy and Law
Intel and Security
Graduate Degrees
American Politics
Comparative Politics
International Relations
Political Theory
Public Law
Doctoral DegreesPhD in Political science
Doctor of Public Administration
Doctor of Public Policy (DPP)
Doctor of International Affairs
Doctor of Political Economy
Joint DegreesPolitical Science and Law 
Political Science and Public Administration 
Political Science and Business Administration
Political Science and Public Health
Specialized Degrees and CertificatesCertificate in International Relations
Certificate in Public Policy
Certificate in Political Communication
Certificate in Public Administration

List of Top Universities For PhD in Political Science

Some of the top QS-ranked universities in the USA offer PhD in Political Science. The list includes:

  • Harvard University
  • Stanford University
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Southern California
  • University of Massachusetts Boston 
  • The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies
  • Princeton University
  • University of California, Berkeley

Admission Requirements for UG, PG, and PhD

The key criteria for admission to undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctoral political science programs in the USA are as follows:

  • Candidates should have completed their high school certification (12th or equivalent) from a recognized institution
  • A bachelor’s degree or equivalent in a related field (for post-graduate courses)
  • A master’s/ graduate degree in political science for a PhD. Some programs may accept PhD admissions after undergraduate as well.
  • A grade point of at least 3.0 or above
  • SAT/ACT scores
  • TOEFL/ IELTS/ PTE scores

Documents required

  • Application form
  • All available academic transcripts
  • Application fee
  • Graded Written Paper/ Writing sample
  • Standardized test scores
  • Medical Examination Certificate 
  • Research Proposal (if required)
  • SOP and LOR
  • Resume or CV
  • Visa and passport

Job Prospects with Salary

Job ProspectsSalary
Political Consultant$100,141
Research Analyst$109,230
Foreign Service Officer$112,209
Public Policy Specialist$108,500
Customs Immigration Officer$140,300
Embassy Employee$114,022
Press Secretary$120,520


Many universities, government, and private organizations offer scholarships to international students interested in pursuing political science in the USA. Some of them are:

  • Fulbright Scholarships: The scholarship covers full or partial tuition fees and other allowances like books and travel. Deadline- Oct 8th, 2024
  • Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation: A scholarship amount of $30,000 for graduate students related to public service. Deadline- Feb 4th, 2025
  • The Gates Scholarship: Scholarship for students with good academic standing covering the cost of attendance (tuition, fees, room, etc). Deadline- Sep 15th, 2024
  • Princeton University Financial Aid: Princeton University offers a completely need-based scholarship offering 100% of the demonstrated financial need by the student. Deadline- Nov 9th, 2024/ Feb 1st, 2025.
  • Yale Scholarship: Need-based financial aid up to $70,000 per year for undergraduate students of Yale University. Deadline- Oct 1st, 202


In essence, pursuing a political science degree in the USA offers unparalleled opportunities for academic excellence, research and career advancement. Besides, the ample scholarship options allows students to be well-positioned to excel academically and influence the political landscape.