Political Science Department


International Relations/MAGI Joint BA/MA Program

This program makes it possible for students to complete an undergraduate (B.A.) and a graduate degree (M.A) in five years of full-time enrollment. 

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Who is Eligible?

To be admitted to the program, students must have at least a 3.25 GPA overall, a declared major in International Relations, and at least a 3.5 GPA in coursework within the major.  Students must have completed 75 credits at the undergraduate level, at least 15 of which must be from a 4-year institution.  Finally, students must have completed the core requirements for IR plus at least two 300-level courses in the Global Studies Concentration.

Are there other special requirements for this option?

Yes.  There is an additional requirement, ECN 202 (Principles of Microeconomics).  We recommend further background in Economics, but it is not required.  In addition, IR students must be in the Global Studies Concentration within the major, and must complete those requirements for the BA degree. 

How does this differ from completing the BA degree and then moving on to the MA?

During senior year, students will be taking MA-level courses, along with graduate students.  These courses will be counted toward both the undergraduate and graduate degrees.  As a result, what would normally take 12 semesters will take 11.

I am now an IR major.  What If I don’t know whether or not I want to do this program?

Put off taking PSC 328 until you are a Senior.  If you take 328 before applying, you will have to take PSC 502 in addition.  This will slow down your ability to graduate.  If you decide not to be in the program, you can take 328 and get the BA degree.  If you want to move on, you can apply for the program, then enroll in 502 to do the “4+1” option.

When should I decide on the 4+1 option?

As early as possible.  You should be applying during your Junior year.  If you wait until your Senior year, you may end up taking 1-3 more courses than would otherwise have been required. 

What are the standards for continuing and completing the 4+1 program?

While enrolled in the program, students must maintain good standing in graduate courses, according to Graduate College standards (see Graduate Catalog, Academic Regulations).  All requirements for both degrees must be met to complete the program.

What if I lose eligibility to continue the program?

You will be advised to complete the undergraduate IR program requirements and graduate with a BA in International Relations, but will not be allowed to take any further graduate courses in the program.

What would the fifth year courses be?

After completing undergraduate requirements, the following courses would need to be taken:

ECN 582 International Economics (4 credits)
COM 670 International Negotiation and Bargaining (4 credits)
MLA 502  Intercultural Competence (2 credits)

Three courses in either the Political Interactions or Business Interactions track
PSC 585 Internship or experiential credit (study/living abroad) (3 credits)
PSC 580 Group project (2 credits)

Sample curriculum
Fall Spring
COM 670 ECN 582
MLA 502 Elective  (Political or Business Interactions)
Elective (Political Interactions or Business Interactions offerings) Elective  (Political or Business Interactions
PSC 580 Group Project PSC 585 Internship or experiential credit

(many students  do PSC 580 and/or 585 during Summer)

For a complete list of available electives, please consult the MAGI advising document.

Where and how do I apply?

Apply at the Department of Political Science.  Virginia has the form you will need.