About the programme

The MRes/PhD in Political Science offered by the LSE Department of Government is designed to provide a more structured route into a PhD. 

For more information about the unit options available please see the programme structure.


In the first year, you will take a series of courses and prepare a Research Prospectus. You will be trained in research design and research methods and also take courses from a broad range of graduate specialism in our Department and across the LSE.

You will study with acknowledged leaders in their fields and learn what political scientists know (and don’t know), what the key debates have been and where the discipline is going. 

At the end of the first year you will complete the assessments for your courses and finalise your Research Prospectus, the provisional research plan for your PhD. You will defend the prospectus at a committee of relevant faculty in September at the end the first year. 


If you pass the exams and successfully defend the Prospectus you will be ‘upgraded’ to the PhD part of the programme.

You will now be ready to implement your research plan, for example though fieldwork, data collection and analysis, theoretical work, or a combination of several approaches. You will participate and present your work in Doctoral Workshops with faculty and fellow researchers, and you will start to attend and present papers at international conferences.

You will also be eligible to help teach undergraduate courses in the department.