York’s Department of Political Science is the largest program in Ontario (COU 2011-12 data), and with an international and unique reputation for critical scholarship (QS Ranking 100-150). The Department accentuates the singularity of York University, its interdisciplinary, critical, and comprehensive character (and York University ranks within the top 100 universities worldwide for social science and humanities). Created in 1967, York’s Department of Political Science, seeks to provide students with a comprehensive and critical understanding of the leading scholarship in the discipline; analytical and leadership skills equipping them to assume careers in which they will make substantial contributions to knowledge as researchers in the academy, community, and policy circles; and the communication skills and capacity to engage in the dissemination of knowledge to others through teaching, writing, and public presentations. The Department also encourages students to assume leadership in issues of democratic governance as thinkers and members of diverse communities and political society. A substantial number of our graduates have assumed a significant place in the scholarly communities in Canada and abroad, and prominent in the legal community, government and civil society organizations. This commitment to scholarly excellence, democratic governance, critical thought, social justice, and capacity-building is integral to our vision in terms of both faculty and students.
Almost all graduate faculty are Full and Associate professors who have earned their PhDs in Canada, the U.S. or Europe. The faculty has a strong publication record and is consistently successful in competitions for research funds from a great many sources. Several members are engaged in major, on-going projects of a national or international dimension.
York's Political Science graduate students come from all over Canada, from various locations in the rest of North America, as well as from overseas. The Graduate program provides financial assistance to most MAs and to all PhDs - and the latter are generally guaranteed support for up to six academic years. The quality of our students can be seen in their impressive record in competing for external funding, and in their active involvement in many academic conferences. Many students publish scholarly articles and numerous PhD dissertations have been published by top-ranking university presses. York PhD students have secured full-time positions at major academic institutions in Canada, the U.S., and Britain, as well as research positions in the public service. Many graduates of our MA program have also gone on to public service careers, into teaching, or on to further academic or professional training.