Discover what’s new in the Political Management program

Understanding how to leverage your passion is only the first step toward a successful political career.  Today, politics is a billion dollar industry with an increasing demand for professional political practitioners who are on the leading edge of tools, strategies, and techniques. 

The GSPM is committed to preparing you to succeed in the arena of professional politics and has realigned the Political Management program to address needs of this ever-changing industry. 

We prepare our students to be ahead of the political curve, to develop strategies based on relevant empirical evidence, to communicate effectively, and to recognize and work through reoccurring political dilemmas in a manner that upholds the ethical standards of the profession and exhibits principled leadership.  We game out real-world scenarios in the classroom, teaching you the tools of the trade from the masters who wield them best.  From consultants, media gurus, pollsters and speechwriters to even former winning candidates themselves, our updated curriculum and DC contacts will not only serve you in the classroom, but prepare you to be an agent of change in the political world.


The New Curriculum

Our Political Management master’s program offers a cutting-edge hands-on curriculum, that teaches the “how” and not the “what” of politics.

▪ Twelve courses (36 credit hours)
▪ Offered in person at GW’s Foggy Bottom campus or fully online
▪ Designed for working professionals, classes conveniently meet Monday through Thursday evenings 
Along with a rigorous core curriculum, we offer electives across the three topical clusters below

All courses 3 credit hours unless otherwise noted.


The program is designed to help students meet specific career goals. Students may choose to focus their coursework in one of the following areas, or work with the program director to select courses from several areas to meet individual aspirations.

Applied Proficiencies: If you are interested in becoming a pollster, communications consultant, or fundraiser, the Applied Proficiencies cluster will provide the flexibility to customize and hone important skills in a specific area. And, with the permission of the program director, students may design a three-course sequence that includes courses from each concentration.

Advocacy Politics: If you want to pursue a career in lobbying, grassroots organizing, public affairs, or non-profit operations, the Advocacy Politics cluster will teaches the skills needed to immediately start shaping policy outcomes.

Electoral Politics: If you interested in running for political office or planning to manage political campaigns, the Electoral Politics cluster offers a solid foundation for success at the local, national or international level.

REQUIRED CORE COURSES (5 courses, 15 to 18 credit hours)

PMGT 6401  Fundamentals of Political Management
PMGT 6402  Applied Political Communications 
PMGT 6403  Political Data and Analytics
PMGT 6404  Principled Political Leadership


PMGT 6495  Political Power and Practice (3 credit hours)
PMGT 6498-99  Thesis Research (6 credit hours)


With your advisor's approval you may also take electives outside the program. Many classes in the Legislative Affairs or the Strategic Public Relations programs would make excellent electives for Political Management students. Some students also take courses at the Elliott School of International Affairs, Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration, or the School of Business.