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2023 Most Affordable Online Master's Degrees in Political Science

By the OnlineU team | Updated 1/18/2023
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We live in a world of complex political systems with professionals who establish political parties, write decision-making policies, and ensure equal opportunities are available to all. A top-quality education is essential for anyone who wants to succeed in the political science field, and an online master's degree in political science can help you gain the skills and knowledge you need to advance your career to the next level. Our 2023 list of the most affordable online schools offering a political science degree are based on manually collected tuition. These programs can help you stay within your budget while meeting your goals. View our methodology for details about rankings or learn more about us

Alternatively, an online master's degree in public relations focuses more on relationship-building and public image. You can also check out our overall list of the most affordable online degrees for more inspiration.

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All tuition numbers were manually collected and verified
Rank School Locations Annual Tuition
# 1 #1 Fort Hays State University Hays (KS) $4,478
# 2 #2 American Public University System Charles Town (WV) $6,660
# 3 #3 Eastern Illinois University Charleston (IL) $6,753
# 4 #4 Sam Houston State University Huntsville (TX) $7,583
# 5 #5 Jacksonville State University Jacksonville (AL) $7,800
# 6 #6 University of Alaska Fairbanks Fairbanks (AK) (and 1 other) $8,085
# 7 #7 Delta State University Cleveland (MS) $8,360
# 8 #8 University of Nebraska at Omaha Omaha (NE) $9,780
# 9 (tie) #9 (tie) Arizona State University Tempe (AZ) (and 4 others) $10,497
# 9 (tie) #9 (tie) Sul Ross State University Alpine (TX) $10,497
#1
#1
Annual Tuition: $4,478
Annual Tuition: $4,478
Annual Tuition: $4,478

Fort Hays State University (FHSU) is a public institution offering an online Master of Liberal Studies - Political Science for students who want to develop an advanced understanding of the world of politics and how it impacts aspects of daily life. The online master's degree in political science includes an 18-credit concentration in which students choose to complete six courses, such as Constitutional Law, Political Behavior, Policy Analysis, and American Civil Liberties. This 31-credit program generally takes full-time students two years to complete.

FHSU delivers its online curriculum via the Blackboard learning management system. In addition to courses in the concentrations mentioned above, students must also complete 10 credit hours of master's core courses and a culminating experience in projects in liberal or professional studies to graduate.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 96%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 4,411
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 2,453
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#2
#2
Annual Tuition: $6,660
Annual Tuition: $6,660
Annual Tuition: $6,660

American Public University System (APU) is a private, for-profit institution offering an online Master of Arts in Political Science to help students develop research, writing, and analytical capabilities in order to evaluate governments. Students choose a 12-hour concentration in Public Policy, Comparative Government and Development, International Relations, or American Politics and Government. Graduating requires completing 36 credit hours of coursework, which may take two years of full-time attendance. However, students may transfer up to 15 credits, saving time and money.

APU uses Canvas so online students can access coursework and instruction. Those enrolled in the online political science program take classes such as Political Philosophy, Public Policy, Diversity in American Politics, and International Political Systems. Students must also complete a portfolio and critical reflection paper capstone in order to graduate.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 37,335
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 7,914
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#3
#3

Eastern Illinois University

Charleston (IL)
Annual Tuition: $6,753
Annual Tuition: $6,753
Annual Tuition: $6,753

Eastern Illinois University (EIU) is a public institution offering an online Master of Arts in Political Science with concentration options in Public Administration and Public Policy. Students must complete 32 credit hours to graduate, which may take two years of full-time enrollment. However, an EIU undergraduate student can opt for EIU's accelerated graduate program, taking courses that fulfill both degree requirements and finishing their master's degree in as little as a year.

EIU's distance learners access the political science program's online curriculum via the Brightspace learning platform. Those enrolled in this graduate program can choose from courses such as Contemporary Political Theory, The Supreme Court, Environmental Politics and Policy, and African American Political Thought. Students can choose to complete an administrative internship or independent study to graduate.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 95%
  • Average SATs: 940 -1130
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 562
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 524
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#4
#4
Annual Tuition: $7,583
Annual Tuition: $7,583
Annual Tuition: $7,583

Sam Houston State University (SHSU) is a public institution offering an online Master of Arts in Political Science for students who want to advance in their academic or professional careers or prepare for doctoral studies or law school. This program may also be ideal for students eager to teach at the community college level. Two degree plans are available, including a thesis and non-thesis option, which are worth 30 and 36 credits, respectively. Program completion generally takes full-time students at least two years.

SHSU delivers its online courses and instruction via Blackboard. Online political science graduate students enroll in classes — such as Comparative Politics, Women in Politics, Judicial Politics, and The U.S. Presidency — to meet graduation requirements and help prepare for professional credentialling if applicable.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 86%
  • Average SATs: 990 -1140
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 2,120
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 1,562
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC
#5
#5

Jacksonville State University

Jacksonville (AL)
Annual Tuition: $7,800
Annual Tuition: $7,800
Annual Tuition: $7,800

Jacksonville State University (JSU) is a public institution offering an online Master of Public Administration - Political Science to help prepare students for leadership roles in public and nonprofit organizations. Concentrations within this online program include The American Executive, Intergovernmental Relations, and Administrative Law. Graduating requires completing 39 credit hours, which may take full-time students two years.

JSU utilizes Canvas so distance learners can participate in online classes and engage with their instructors and peers. The online political science graduate program courses include The Analysis of Policy, Public Personnel Administration, Diversity in the Workplace, and Foundations of Public Administration. Students must also complete a public affairs internship and pass a comprehensive exam or complete a capstone project before they can graduate.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 95%
  • Average SATs: 930 -1160
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 979
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 935
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC

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