Application Process

In order to apply to graduate studies at Western, a completed application using our application system must be submitted. Select either the MA or PhD in Political Science using this “Apply Now".

The application deadline is January 15th.  September start only.  Applications received after the due date will only be considered if places are still available.

Application requirements are:

  1. An application fee of $125.00 CDN paid upon submission of your application
  2. Referees’ email addresses (two academic references required)
  3. Western accepts digital academic records within your application however if you are offered admission you are required to provide one official academic transcript from each post-secondary institution attended
  4. Applicable supporting documents - writing sample
  5. PhD applicants must submit a statement of interest

If you mail a copy of your document to The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies we will be happy to scan and attach the document to your application.  Please be sure to include your Application Number with the information you provide.

Mailing Address:

School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
1151 Richmond Street,
London, Ontario, Canada N6A 3K7

Electronic References

Within 24 hours of entering or updating your reference information, our electronic reference system will send reference requests directly to your referees. Submission of the reference will, in turn, be collected electronically and distributed alongside the application once it arrives at Western. No paper reference letters are required.


Western accepts digital academic records within your application however if you are offered admission you are required to provide one official academic transcript from each post-secondary institution you have attended.

  • Past or current students of The University of Western Ontario do not need to provide transcripts* for their academic history at Western (exchanges excluded).  This information will be obtained internally.

*Western considers a transcript official only if it is received in a university envelope that is sealed and signed on the flap by the official person in the office issuing the transcript.  If the transcript and degree certificate are not in English, a certified translation must also be included.  (Non-English transcripts from institutions within Canada do not require a translation.)

Supporting Documents

Writing samples and statements of interest must be submitted in digital format with the application.

  • A Writing Sample is your best written work, preferably a term paper.  PhD applicants should submit a substantial graduate-level paper.
  • PhD applicants should submit a brief statement describing their academic background and research interests.  MA applicants may submit a statement indicating their area of interest - Canadian politics, international relations, local government, political theory or comparative politics.


In addition to our guaranteed funding, applicants with an average of 80% or higher should also consider applying for the:

Canada Graduate Scholarship - Master's Program (CGSM) - $17,500

Application deadline is 1 December. Open to all MA applicants who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents.  For details see:

Ontario Graduate Scholarships (OGS) - $15,000

To apply for OGS, your application to the Graduate Program in Political Science must be completed before the OGS submission deadline.

Please note:  If you are not currently or have not recently been a Western student, you must first complete and submit your application to our MA or PhD program before you may begin an OGS application.  Western's receipt of your completed application and application fee triggers the creation of your unique Western Graduate Identity (user ID and password), which you will need in order to access the OGS application at Western.  This means that you should plan to complete and submit your program application well in advance of the deadline so as to give yourself and your referees plenty of time to submit the OGS application by its deadline.


To be considered for an OGS at Western, an applicant must:

-be a current graduate student or active graduate applicant at Western
-be registered full time in a Western graduate degree program at the start date of the award
-have an overall average of at least 80% (A-) over the last two years of full-time study
-be a Canadian citizen or permanent residents 

For details see:

-international students holding a valid Study Permit as of the OGS application deadline may be considered for one of eight(8) OGS awards that MTCU has allowed Western to provide to International students.

Admission Decision

Decisions are e-mailed directly to the applicant from the Department of Political Science.  Official offers of admission will come directly from the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.  Applicants who have been offered admission to the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies can accept or decline their offers of admission online through the Western Student Center.

  1. Login to the Student Center with the information provided with your Western Personal Computer Account and locate the Admissions grid.
  2. Select “Accept or Decline” to begin the decision process.


Students who have voluntarily withdrawn or who have been withdrawn and wish to complete their program must formally re-apply for admission using the application system.  Credit for previous work completed must be approved by the program and SGPS.