Information for Current MA Students

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Current MA students may wish to review the following documents:

1) MA Student Handbook. This is intended to answer all of your questions about the structure, procedures, and expectations of our MA program.

2) Program Form/Degree Planner. New students should fill out this form and have it signed by Prof. Taylor Dark, MA Advisor, at the beginning of their first semester in the program. It will be stored in the Political Science Department office.

3) Road Map Form. Students can use this form to plan their courses over a two-year period. Students may also wish to peruse our planned schedule of classes for the 2017-2020 period.

4) MA Student Guide to the Comprehensive Exam. This document provides detailed information about how to register for the comprehensive exam and prepare effectively.

5) Information on applying for graduation (a necessary step to receive your degree), is available from the University Graduation Office.

Graduate Assistant Positions

The department regularly offers positions to graduate students to work as Graduate Assistants (GA) in undergraduate courses (typically, POLS 1000: American Government and Society). This duty mainly involves helping the instructor in the grading of large numbers of papers, exams, etc., and in related tasks. In general, students should have completed POLS 5050 with a B+ or better grade prior to working as a Graduate Assistant for POLS 1000.

To apply for a GA position, fill out the Graduate Assistant Application Form, and turn it in to Isabel Garza in the main office. Students who are approved by the MA Graduate Advisor will be placed on a list, and faculty will be free to either choose their own GA from this list or have a GA assigned to them by the Graduate Advisor. Grad students selected as GAs will be notified by the Graduate Advisor, then students must provide two letters of recommendation, a resume, and complete various forms (available from the department office) before they can be appointed officially as GAs.

Continuous Enrollment for Students Writing a Thesis (Only)

Starting Spring Semester 2017, new rules apply only for MA students who choose to write a thesis. If writing a thesis, graduate students who have completed all required units in their degree program but who have not completed the thesis will be required to enroll in the Graduate Continuous Enrollment course (UNIV 9000) through the College of Professional and Global Education. The purpose of this zero-unit (0) course is to allow graduate students to maintain continuous enrollment at Cal State LA, thereby retaining access to the University Library and other critical University services necessary to complete their degree. This flat-rate administrative processing fee will be charged each semester until students complete their culminating project. The Graduate Continuous Enrollment fee will be $350. Enrollment in UNIV 9000 provides students with limited access to some Cal State LA facilities and no access to student employment or student funding. To take UNIV 9000, MA students should obtain the MA Advisor's signature on the Graduate Continuous Enrollment Form, which is available here:

For other questions, contact Prof. Taylor Dark, MA Advisor, at

MA students may wish to join the Political Science Department Facebook page