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Many people with Master’s degrees in Political Science end up working for the Federal government; the rest are employed by colleges, non-profit organizations, lobbyists and other groups. Whether you work for the government or a private concern, you’ll use your skills to collect and analyze data and to come up with fresh ideas and solutions for your team to try.
Some political science majors go into research, working in more clinical settings to collect and analyze data and get important insights into the way society works. Private employers who hire political science majors include schools, banking and healthcare organizations, but for those who choose to work in public relations, the opportunities are unlimited.
Depending on your focus, you could work anywhere in the nation or even in the world; political analysts are needed all around the world and in a variety of settings right here in the United States. Learning more about your options can help you plan for the future and ensure you know what to do with your new degree once you graduate. From political analyst to historian and even a sociologist, these are a few of the jobs you could get once you obtain your master’s degree.
#1 Political Analyst
The most popular career choice for people with a Master’s Degree in Political Science is to work for the government or for a specific campaign as an analyst. Political Science analysis work full time in an office setting, choosing one political party or cause and focusing on a singular goal.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the vast majority of political science graduates work for the Federal government, but they can be found working at the state, county or local level as well.
In addition to supporting a party, initiative or campaign, a political analyst could have some or all the following responsibilities:
- Researching politics and political subjects
- Analyze data from a variety of sources
- Use data to create theories and strategies for campaigns and initiatives
- Evaluate the impact a law or political agency has on a community
- Track and respond to current events
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for a political analyst working for the government is $119,800; a political analyst working for another organization has a median salary of $120,610.
Not all political science majors go into politics; some turn to research and history, documenting specific time periods, events or personalities. A historian interprets and learns from the past by studying the remnants of a specific period, including everything from written documents to personal histories, art and textiles to make conclusions and formulate theories. As a historian, you would use your Master’s degree in Political Science in your work to:
- Research, gather and preserve historical information
- Analyze historic documents and information to determine authenticity
- Follow historic developments in a particular era or field
- Engage with and teach the public in a variety of settings
- Publish findings and share them with the academic community and the public
Whether you want to work in a museum, preserve important parts of history or find out significant things about the past, your master’s in political science can help.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for a historian depends on the location and area of interest and can range from $92,400 when working for the Federal government to $54,920 when working for another employer.
A sociologist studies group dynamics and behavior and can gain insight into cultures and how different societies work. Your Master’s degree in Political Science can help you work in the field of sociology, teach either subject at most post-secondary schools or work as an advisor to businesses, campaigns and other organizations. Some of the duties of a sociologist include:
- Testing theories about social issues
- Analyzing data via surveys, interviews and other sources
- Presenting findings via articles, papers and presentations
- Working with other sociologists to attain a better understanding of society and culture
According to the Unites States Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the role of sociologist is seeing slower than average growth and offers a median salary of $79,750 per year.
#4 Adjunct Professor or Teacher
Your Master’s in Political Science degree allows you to teach in a variety of settings, including high school, community college, vocational school and some college settings. As a professor, you have the opportunity to teach others to work in the political arena and to have an impact on the young people who pass through your classroom each year. Like most teachers, you’ll need to prepare for classes, create structured programming and help your students know what they need to succeed in the field of political science. Responsibilties include:
- Creating lessons and a synopisis for your program
- Teaching students in a variety of disciplines about Political Science
- Grading and reviewing work
- Counseling students on career paths with a Political Science degree
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, post-secondary teaching is seeing a 13% growth rate, which is faster than average. Post-secondary teachers make a median salary of $75,430 per year.
#5 Public Relations Specialist
If you enjoy writing and communicating with the press and promoting a product, service or candidate, then your master’s in political science could prepare you for a career in public relations. Whether you work for a specific party or campaign or even an initiative, you can bring your skills to bear to ensure voters and people in the community are aware of what your organization has to offer.
A public relations specialist needs excellent communication skills, the ability to come up with creative ways to showcase a specific brand, person or idea and an outgoing personality. You may have to craft press releases, create media kits, meet with members of the press and even appear on television on behalf of your clients.
In 2016, public relations specialists had a median salary of $58,020, according to the United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics.
- Political Analyst (2017, August 19) Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/political-scientists.htm#tab-5
- Historian (2017, August 19). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/historians.htm#tab-5
- Sociologist (2017, August 19). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/sociologists.htm
- Professor or Teacher (2017, August 19). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/postsecondary-teachers.htm
- Public Relations Specialist (2017, August 19) Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/public-relations-specialists.htm