Political Science

  • Degrees offered: MA
  • Application deadline: Jan. 10 (for funding consideration) or March 15
  • Study options: Research paper, Thesis
  • Duration: One year – research paper; Two years – thesis
  • Entry terms: Fall

Those who enroll in UNB’s political science graduate program gain the necessary critical thinking skills to thoughtfully participate in local and global political communities. Students learn how to make persuasive arguments while exploring contemporary political debates, social justice, war and peace, philosophical questions, and more.

Our joint master's program on the Fredericton and Saint John campuses brings together some of the country’s leading scholars to help students understand the dynamics of political power, institutions, decision-making and change. Classes are kept deliberately small so that students can pursue their unique interests under the close supervision of a dedicated faculty member.

Our graduates go on to pursue doctoral programs, law school and other professional programs, or embark on careers in government, international organizations, non-profit and social justice organizations.

Research areas

UNB's graduate program in political science can offer supervision across these sub-fields:

  • Canadian Politics
  • International Relations
  • Comparative Politics
  • Gender and Politics
  • Political Economy 
  • Political Theory 

Within these subfields, these are our faculty members' areas of research expertise and the specific topics that they are able to supervise: 

UNB Fredericton faculty

Dr. Catherine Bigonnesse can supervise students interested in health and social policy related to the aging population, local governance and civil society as well as the public engagement in policy making. She has a particular interest for qualitative methods and community-based participatory research.

Dr. Herb Emery can supervise student research in: Canadian regional economic development, health policy, immigration, demography, labour markets, fiscal federalism in Canada, income and social policy, public choice and related fields, particularly if they involve quantitative empirical analysis and evaluation.

Dr. Suzanne Hindmarch can supervise student research in: global health and the politics of infectious disease response; global security; international organizations and global governance; the United Nations;and constructivist, feminist, and critical international relations theory.

Dr. Paul Howe can supervise student research in various areas of electoral democracy: political participation and democratic engagement; youth engagement and disengagement; democratic institutions and reform (e.g. political parties, electoral reform, deliberative democracy); populist politics. His main geographic focus is North America and Europe. 

Dr. George MacLean's areas of supervision include international relations (general), foreign policy (Canada, United States), multilateralism (North America, the Americas, United Nations, and Europe), global political economy (trade, institutionalism), and security/insecurity studies (human security, terrorism, non-proliferation and disarmament).

Dr. Ted McDonald can supervise students interested in health, social and economic policy, particularly in terms of program and impact evaluation using data. His specific areas of interest include the social determinants of health, population dynamics, and immigration. 

Dr. Heather Millar can supervise student research in climate, energy, and environmental politics; Canadian public policy including provincial and urban policy; public engagement; social acceptance of new technologies; and policy process theory, including policy feedback and learning. 

Dr. Thom Workman can supervise in the areas of 20th century political theory including the Frankfurt School, radical political economy, North American political economy, Marxism and the left, politics and music, experimental political communities and the critical study of war.

Dr. Donald Wright can supervise students interested in Canadian federal and provincial politics and climate politics.

Dr. Joanne Wright provides supervision in the areas of feminist political thought and political theory more generally, as well as in contemporary gender politics (from raunch culture and sexual violence and the law to trans activism in Parliament), and the politics of rights and multiculturalism. She also supervises students in early modern political thought and social contract theory.

UNB Saint John faculty

Dr. Joanna Everitt can supervise students in the areas of gender and politics, identity politics, Canadian politics, New Brunswick politics, political communications, voting and elections and political behaviour. Her regional focus is North America.

Dr. Leslie Jeffrey’s areas of research supervision are gender and international relations, sex work policy, and global human rights issues.

Dr. JP Lewis can supervise students interested in: Canadian political institutions; Canadian public policy; Canadian cabinet governance; the Canadian political executive; civic education.

Dr. Hepzibah Muñoz-Martinez can supervise student research in: Latin American politics; urban politics; the global politics of violence; the political economy of drug trafficking; the US – Mexico border; politics of trade, international production and finance; and human rights (particularly enforced disappearances).

Application requirements

  1. All applicants should normally hold an undergraduate major or honours degree in political science with a minimum GPA of 3.5 (B+), or for international applicants, a Second Class Upper Division degree.
  2. Applicants who do not satisfy the requirements for full graduate student status may be eligible for a qualifying year.
  3. Applicants must submit a completed application. Carefully review the detailed application requirements on the Political Science department webpage.
  4. International Applicants whose first language is not English must submit language scores that meet or exceed:
    • International English language testing system (IELTS) = Overall band of 7, with minimum band of 7 in both the reading and writing sections.
    • Paper-based TOEFL = 600
    • Internet-based TOEFL = 100
    • TWE = 5.5

Contact us

For more information on our program, contact Dr. Paul Howe, Director of Graduate Studies, or Zabrina Hamilton, Graduate Program Secretary.

Tilley Hall, Rm. 219

Related: Master of Arts in Political Science