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Department of Political Science

SLU-Madrid's Department of Political Science strives to form leaders who understand the world today and have the tools to critically analyze key developments in global politics.

Two students talk with the professor outside of the classroom in Padre Rubio Hall.

Graduates have a theoretical and empirical understanding of the complex international processes that are increasingly important to all nations.

Our innovative program — in the European Union and the heart of Spain — provides an interdisciplinary course of study designed to enhance your knowledge and understanding of global affairs.

SLU-Madrid offers a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a concentration in international relations that can be completed in Spain. In addition, students can begin their studies in other political science disciplines, such as American politics, comparative politics or political thought, and complete their degree at the St. Louis campus. Our department also offers a minor in political science, which complements nearly all of the majors offered in Madrid.

Students interested in earning a master's degree in political science can apply to take graduate courses in our B.A. to M.A. five-year program.

Degree Programs


SLU-Madrid's faculty are equally international, hailing from France, Germany, Romania, Syria, Argentina, the Netherlands and the United States.

Accelerated B.A.-to-M.A. Program

SLU-Madrid's B.A.-to-M.A political science program allows you to earn both a bachelor's and a master's degree in just five years.

The program allows students at Saint Louis University to enroll in graduate courses while paying the undergraduate rate. Count up to two of the 5000-level courses you take toward your master's degree and save on the tuition fees and living expenses associated with finishing the graduate program in St. Louis. You’ll also be eligible to apply for a wide range of internships open in the United States.

The program has no application fee and doesn’t require students to take the GRE or TOEFL for admission.

Application Requirements

Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a GPA of at least 3.4 may apply for admission into the accelerated program during their junior or senior year.

Undergraduate students interested in taking courses at the master's level without pursuing a graduate degree are also welcome to apply.

Current SLU-Madrid political science students should contact their Madrid academic program advisor and complete the Petition by an Undergraduate Student to Enroll in an Accelerated Bachelor/Master (ABM) Program. The director of graduate studies in the Department of Political Science at the St. Louis campus will complete the "future classes to be taken" section of the form.

Students must also submit a writing sample from a political science or international relations course and a one-page statement of purpose.

You must also obtain approval from Simona Rentea, Ph.D., director of SLU-Madrid's political science and international relations program. Professor Rentea will send a brief email supporting your application to the director of graduate studies in St. Louis, explaining your suitability and qualifications, including language proficiency, for the program.

First-year, visiting students and transfer students should contact the Madrid Office of Admissions for more information on how to apply to the program.

The deadlines to apply are:

  • April 15 to begin courses in the fall.
  • Nov. 1 to begin courses in the spring.
  • April 1 to begin courses in the summer.

In order to get all application materials to St. Louis by these dates, you will need to start the application process several weeks in advance.

Curriculum Requirements

Only students who have been approved for the accelerated bachelor's-to-master's program will be allowed to register for the courses at the 5000-level. Courses offered in Madrid are:

  • POLS 4590/5590 Crisis of Political Leadership
  • POLS 4610/5610 International Relations: Theory and Practice
  • POLS 4630/5630 Political Economy of the European Union

Students are encouraged to register immediately for the corresponding class at the 4000 level to ensure enrollment. Once accepted into the accelerated program, you will be re-registered from the 4000-level (undergraduate) course to the 5000-level (graduate) course.

All three 5000-level graduate courses fulfill undergraduate degree requirements. The three 5000-level classes are offered as 4000-level undergraduate seminar classes simultaneously, but the graduate courses contain additional assessment and grading components.

Observatory on Contemporary Crises (OCC)