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Requirements, Registration & Forms

As you pursue your graduate degree at SIS, you will need to complete certain academic requirements. The information below is intended to help you navigate these requirements.

In order to access any form on this page, you will be prompted to log in using your AU email address (username@american.edu) and password.

Economics Placement Exam

In order to waive ECON-603 Introduction to Economic Theory, students must take and pass the SIS Online Economics Placement Exam. Exams are normally offered at least twice per semester. Students seeking a waiver should take the exam prior to the semester in which they plan to register for any of the following courses:

  • SIS-616 International Economics
  • SIS-620 Introduction to Environmental Economics
  • SIS-731 Economic Development

Exam Details

  • The Online Economics Placement Exam is offered live and is proctored, such that students must be on webcam for the duration of the exam.
  • The exam consists of 50 multiple-choice questions that cover the principles of both microeconomics and macroeconomics.
  • Students have 90 minutes to complete the exam.
  • Students may only take the exam once.
  • The minimum passing score is a minimum of 74%

Note: For students admitted for Fall 2016 or earlier, some MA programs may allow students to waive ECON-603 based on other criteria. Students should check with their Academic Advisor if they have questions about whether they must take the Economics Placement Exam.

Exam Times for Spring 2018

  • February 5-9
  • March 19-23

Register now

Approved Methods Courses

Students must select at least one course from their program's approved list of methodology courses. Students should reference their advising worksheet for more information about the methodology requirements for their degree. Please note that not all courses are available each semester. Students should check the Schedule of Classes for availability and any course prerequisites.

SIS Courses

  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights (Spring 2016 only)
  • SIS-628 Community Participatory Methods for Health Research or Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-634 Field Survey Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Mixed Methods for Community-Based Research
  • SIS-635 Program Planning in Global Health
  • SIS-653 Art and Science of Intelligence Analysis (Summer 2016. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-653 Policy Analysis (Specific Policy Analysis topics will vary. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-695 Research Seminar in IC
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite of SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • ANTH-652 Anthropological Research Design
  • CSC-610 Intro to Geographic Info Systems
  • ECON-505 Intro to Mathematical Economics
  • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
  • ECON-624 Applied Econometrics II
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods
  • STAT-510 Intro to Survey Sampling
  • STAT-514 Statistical Methods
  • STAT-515 Regression
  • STAT-524 Data Analysis
  • STAT-530 Mathematical Statistics I
  • SOCY-580 Social Policy Analysis

SIS Courses

  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis, Data Analytics, and Methods
  • SIS-620 Policy Analysis for GEP
  • SIS-628 Community Participatory Methods for Health Research or Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-634 Field Survey Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Program Planning in Global Health
  • SIS-635 Mixed Methods for Community-Based Research
  • SIS-653 Policy Analysis (Specific Policy Analysis topics will vary. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • ACCT-670 International Accounting (Prerequisite: ACCT-607 and ACCT-609)
  • ANTH-640 Graduate Research Methods
  • ANTH-652 Anthropological Research Design
  • CSC-610 Intro to Geographic Info Systems
  • ECON-505 Intro to Mathematical Economics
  • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
  • ECON-624 Applied Econometrics II
  • ECON-665 Project Evaluation in Developing Countries
  • ECON-705 Mathematical Economics Analysis (Prerequisite: admission to the PhD program or permission of department)
  • ECON-723 Econometric Methods (Prerequisite: admission to PhD program or permission of department)
  • ECON-724 Advanced Econometric Methods (Prerequisite: ECON-723)
  • GOVT-615 Qualitative Research Methods
  • PUAD-604 Public Program Evaluation
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods
  • STAT-510 Intro to Survey Sampling
  • STAT-514 Statistical Methods
  • STAT-515 Regression
  • STAT-524 Data Analysis
  • STAT-530 Mathematical Statistics I

EPGA students choose two courses from this list to fulfill their methodology requirement.

  • SIS-600 International Affairs Statistics and Methods (or SIS-619 Advanced International Affairs Statistics/Methods)
  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis, Data Analytics, and Methods
  • SIS-619 Human Rights Impact Analysis
  • SIS-628 Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Program Planning in Global Health
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods
  • SOCY-620 Social Research Methods
  • ANTH-652 Anthropological Research Design
  • One Qualifying Paper and One Graduate Seminar in Philosophy
  • An approved methods course (see EPGA graduate advisor to discuss)

GEP students choose two courses from this list to fulfill their methodology requirement.

  • SIS-600 International Affairs Statistics and Methods (or SIS-619 Advanced International Affairs Statistics/Methods)
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-620 Policy Analysis for GEP
  • SIS-628 Community Participatory Methods for Health Research or Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • CSC-610 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680) 
  • ENV-575 Environmental Risk Assessment
  • PUAD-606 Foundations of Policy Analysis
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods

SIS Courses

  • SIS-619 Human Rights Impact Analysis
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis, Data Analytics, and Methods
  • SIS-628 Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Program Planning in Global Health
  • SIS-653 Art and Science of Intelligence Analysis (Summer 2016. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-653 Policy Analysis (Specific Policy Analysis topics will vary. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis 
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
  • CSC-610 Intro to Geographic Info Systems
  • JLC-696 Cyber Security Policy and Doctrine
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods

SIS Courses

  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis
  • SIS-635 Social Accountability
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis 
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • EDU-642 Training Program Design
  • EDU-713 Advanced Training Program Design 
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • SOCY-623 Qualitative Research

SIS Courses

  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis
  • SIS-635 Social Accountability
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • EDU-642 Training Program Design
  • EDU-713 Advanced Training Program Design
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • SOCY-623 Qualitative Research

SIS Courses

  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis, Data Analytics, and Methods
  • SIS-620 Policy Analysis for GEP
  • SIS-628 Community Participatory Methods for Health Research or Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-634 Field Survey Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Program Planning in Global Health
  • SIS-635 Mixed Methods for Community-Based Research
  • SIS-653 Policy Analysis (Specific Policy Analysis topics will vary. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • ACCT-670 International Accounting (Prerequisite: ACCT-607 and ACCT-609)
  • ANTH-640 Graduate Research Methods
  • ANTH-652 Anthropological Research Design
  • CSC-610 Intro to Geographic Info Systems
  • ECON-505 Intro to Mathematical Economics
  • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
  • ECON-624 Applied Econometrics II
  • ECON-665 Project Evaluation in Developing Countries
  • ECON-705 Mathematical Economics Analysis (Prerequisite: admission to the PhD program or permission of department)
  • ECON-723 Econometric Methods (Prerequisite: admission to PhD program or permission of department)
  • ECON-724 Advanced Econometric Methods (Prerequisite: ECON-723)
  • GOVT-615 Qualitative Research Methods
  • PUAD-604 Public Program Evaluation
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods
  • STAT-510 Intro to Survey Sampling
  • STAT-514 Statistical Methods
  • STAT-515 Regression
  • STAT-524 Data Analysis
  • STAT-530 Mathematical Statistics I

Option 1

  1. Choose one of the following
    • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
    • ECON-624 Applied Econometrics II
    • STAT-515 Regression
    • An approved methods course*
  2. And select a second option from the following
    • ECON-624 Applied Econometrics II
    • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods & Methodology (formerly SIS-680)
    • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting (for MA/MBA students)
    • An approved methods course*

Option 2

  1. Choose one of the following
    • SIS-600 International Affairs Stats/Methods
    • SIS-619 Advanced International Affairs Stats/Methods
    • PUAD-601 Quantitative Methods for Policy Analysis I
    • STAT-514 Statistical Methods
    • An approved methods course*
  2. And select a second option from the following
    • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
    • PUAD-602 Quantitative Methods for Policy Analysis II
    • STAT-515 Regression
    • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting (for MA/MBA students)
    • An approved methods courses*

*See the IER graduate advisor to discuss options

SIS Courses

  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis, Data Analytics, and Methods
  • SIS-619 Human Rights Impact Analysis
  • SIS-620 Policy Analysis for GEP
  • SIS-628 Community Participatory Methods for Health Research or Community-Based Research Approaches for Social Change and Global Health Inequalities
  • SIS-634 Field Survey Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Mixed Methods for Community-Based Research
  • SIS-635 Program Planning in Global Health
  • SIS-653 Art and Science of Intelligence Analysis (Summer 2016. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-653 Policy Analysis (Specific Policy Analysis topics will vary. Note: not all courses listed under SIS-653 are approved methods courses.)
  • SIS-695 Research Seminar in IC
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ANTH-652 Anthropological Research Design
  • ECON-623 Applied Econometrics I
  • ECON-624 Applied Econometrics II
  • EDU- 610 Research in International Education
  • ENVS-575 Environmental Risk Assessment
  • JLS-680 Intro to Justice Research I
  • PUAD-604 Public Program Evaluation
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods
  • PSYC-550 Psychological Research
  • SOCY-580 Social Policy Analysis
  • STAT-510 Intro to Survey Sampling
  • STAT-514 Statistical Methods
  • STAT-515 Regression
  • STAT-530 Mathematical Statistics I
  • SIS-600 International Affairs Statistics and Methods
  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Advanced Analytical Techniques and Methods
  • SIS-619 Human Rights Impact Analysis
  • SIS-634 Field Survey Research Methods
  • SIS-635 Field Research Methods
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis 
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-req SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology(formerly SIS-680)

MIS students choose one course from this list to fulfill their methodology requirement.

  • SIS-600 International Affairs Statistics and Methods (or SIS-619 Advanced International Affairs Statistics and Methods)
  • SIS-612 Qualitative Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Affairs Statistics and Methods II (pre-requisite SIS-600)
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods

SE students choose one course from the list in addition to the 3-credit Professional Competencies series:

  • SIS-600 International Affairs Statistics and Methods (or SIS-619 Advanced International Affairs Statistics and Methods)
  • SIS-619 Human Rights Impact Analysis
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680) 
  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • PUAD-685 Qualitative Methods

SIS Courses

  • SIS-612 Qualitative Research Methods in PCR
  • SIS-619 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Human Rights
  • SIS-619 Cyber Policy Analysis
  • SIS-635 Social Accountability
  • SIS-750 Big Data and Text Mining in International Affairs Research (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Data Analysis
  • SIS-750 International Policy Analysis
  • SIS-750 Political Risk Analysis (formerly SIS-619)
  • SIS-750 Project Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation (formerly SIS-635 Program Evaluation)
  • SIS-750 Program Evaluation
  • SIS-750 Qualitative Methods and Methodology (formerly SIS-680)

Courses Outside of SIS

  • ACCT-607 Financial Accounting
  • EDU-642 Training Program Design
  • EDU-713 Advanced Training Program Design
  • PUAD-617 Project Management
  • SOCY-623 Qualitative Research

Last Updated: 10/27/2017

Professional Experience

The School of International Service requires that MA students demonstrate relevant and substantive professional experience. Students may certify this experience in one of three ways:

  1. By completing a for-credit or non-credit internship while enrolled in MA program
  2. Through current or previous employment
  3. Through previous internship experience completed prior to starting the MA program

Instructions

Students fulfilling the professional experience requirement via option 1 must register a for-credit or non-credit internship during their MA program and students must meet all relevant registration deadlines (see University Academic Calendar). Internships must be registered in the semester in which they are being completed. For internship registration instructions and forms, please visit the Internship Registration page.

Students fulfilling the professional experience requirement via options 2 or 3 must fill out the MA Professional Experience Certification Form. Completed forms must be submitted to the SIS Graduate Advising office.

Experience Certification

Last Updated: 17 January, 2017

Students fulfilling the professional experience requirement via option 1 must register a for-credit or non-credit internship during their MA program and students must meet all relevant registration deadlines (see University Academic Calendar). Internships must be registered in the semester in which they are being completed. Students are responsible for finding their own internships. For internship resources, please consult the SIS Office of Career Development.

Course Numbers

  • SIS-091: Non-credit internship
  • SIS­-691: For-credit internship taking place entirely within the United States
  • SIS­-692: For-credit internship with any international travel component

Non-credit internships are used solely to fulfill the professional experience requirement. Internships for academic credit can fulfill the professional experience requirement and also may be counted towards academic program requirements (e.g. elective). Consult your advisor for more information.

Requirements

All registered internships must:

  • Take place between the first and last day of the semester in which it is registered. A 3-credit internship for academic credit and all non-credit internships require at least 210 hours of service. Students seeking to register a for-credit internship for fewer than 3 credits should consult their academic advisor.
  • Be at least 85% substantive in nature (e.g., research, report writing, etc.)
  • Be relevant to a student's program of study.
  • Non-credit internships: Internships registered for non-credit to fulfill the professional experience requirement do not require a faculty advisor or academic work plan, and are registered pass/fail.
  • For-credit internships: To receive credit for an internship, students are required to register for an SIS internship course, which is registered for a letter grade (see Schedule of Classes for further course information). Questions about registration should be directed to the Graduate Advising office. Questions about the course should be directed to the relevant instructor.
  • Internships with any international travel component require Graduate Global Program (GGP) approval. Students completing an international internship should meet with an SIS Career Advisor prior to departure to discuss how to best leverage their international internship towards their career goals. Schedule an appointment with an SIS Career Advisor.

Registration

  • Complete all required spaces on the Internship Registration forms (and GGP forms as necessary).
  • For-credit internships: 1) Have your internship site supervisor confirm your duties on the Internship Info Form; 2) Indicate for which internship course section/instructor you wish to register and the number of credits; 3) Sign the forms; 4) Submit the forms (including the GGP if applicable) to the Graduate Advising office. Your academic advisor will obtain the faculty supervisor and Department Chair/Dean signatures and submit the forms to the Registrar's office for processing on your behalf.
  • Non-credit internships: 1) Have your internship site supervisor confirm your duties on the Internship Info Form; 2) Sign the forms; 3) Submit the forms (including the GGP if applicable) to the Graduate Advising office. Your academic advisor will obtain the faculty supervisor and Department Chair/Dean signatures and submit the forms to the Registrar's office for processing on your behalf.
  • Deadline: Registration deadlines are listed on the University Academic Calendar. If the internship is the only academic credits for which you plan to register in a semester, the deadline to initially register without a late fee is the Friday before the first day of classes. Tuition charged for for-credit internships is the same as the normal tuition rate. There is no cost for non-credit internships.

International Students on F­-1 or J­-1 Visas

  • F-1 and J-1 students must receive authorization from International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) before beginning an internship off campus. Contact ISSS to determine your immigration eligibility and see the ISSS website for the process for obtaining authorization.

Last Updated 5 December, 2017

Internship form

Language Proficiency

In order to satisfy the Tool of Research language requirement, students must be able to conduct research in a language other than English. "Research," for the purposes of this degree requirement, is limited to intermediate reading comprehension. Students for whom English is not their native language may be certified on the basis of their native language and English.

Intermediate reading proficiency is the ability to read an article written in a non-English language with reasonable comprehension, using a dictionary only for specialized terminology.

For students whose first language is English, proficiency in another language may be demonstrated by:

  • Passing the free Tool of Research (TOR) examination in a language tested by the Center for Language Exploration, Acquisition, and Research (CLEAR) at American University. The TOR is offered in French, Spanish, German, Italian, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Swahili, and Arabic. Register for the next TOR exam.
  • Bachelor's degree in the language completed within 3 years of the date of matriculation.
  • Degree from a foreign university, in which the language of instruction is not English, completed within 3 years of the date of matriculation.

Alternatively, a student can be certified based on the following:

  • Presenting evidence of completion of a continuing education or graduate-level course in another language at the intermediate level with a grade of B or better.
  • If AU's Center for Language Learning does not offer a TOR exam in a language, we will accept certification by an accredited instructor/tutor of the language (please consult with your academic advisor prior to pursuing this option).

Either of these means can be certified up to a year before the student matriculates.

Note: If you have a learning disability that may adversely impact your ability to acquire foreign language competency, you must register with and provide documentation from American University's Academic Support Center. In such cases, the school will determine an alternative tool of research for you.

Last updated 12 September, 2016

For more information on how to enroll in these courses, please contact your advisor.

Substantial Research Papers, Thesis, & Independent Study

Substantial Research Papers, theses and independent studies require additional registration processes and are not registered in Eagle Service. While the basic registration process for these projects is the same, you will be asked to provide supplemental materials specific to each type of registration to both your academic advisor and faculty advisor(s) for the project. Please review the important information below in advance of the semester for which you intend to register the project.

Course Numbers

  • SIS-690 Independent Study Project (1-3 credits, letter grade only)
  • SIS-890 Doctoral Independent Study (PhD students only) (1-6 credits)
  • SIS-794 SRP with Coursework (3 credits, letter grade only)
  • SIS-795 Substantial Research Paper (SRP) (3 credits, letter grade only)
  • SIS-797 Master's Thesis (1-6 credits; SP/UP only - check letter grade on registration forms)

Before Registration

  • Conduct preliminary research on potential topics. A research question, preliminary outline, and bibliography must be approved by your faculty supervisor prior to registration.
  • Network with faculty to determine their availability and relevance to the research topic. Many faculty members prefer to be consulted one semester prior to the semester you plan to register. You are responsible for finding a faculty supervisor.
  • CRS, ID, IER, IP, IPCR, and USFP students are required to follow field-specific SRP guidelines that are available from your academic advisor or program office.
  • If you are writing a thesis, please consult the Office of the Provost's Guide to Preparation of Theses and Dissertations for information on writing a thesis proposal.
  • If you are planning to do research abroad, you must secure Graduate Global Program (GGP) approval. Please consult your academic advisor for more information.
  • If your project will involve human subject research, you may be required to receive approval from AU's Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Registration Procedures

  1. Complete all required spaces on the Registration checklist and the Independent Study Registration form, below.
  2. Sign the form, have your faculty supervisor sign, and submit the form and required attachments (including the completed GGP approval, if applicable) to your academic advisor. Your academic advisor will obtain the Department Chair/Dean signature and submit the form to the Registrar's Office.
  3. Submit the form to your academic advisor as soon as possible. Please note the deadlines listed on the Academic Calendar. If the independent study is the only course for which you plan to register in a semester, the deadline to register without a late fee is the Friday before the first day of classes.

Important Information

  • An SRP is graded on an A-F letter grade scale. A student must receive a B or better to earn credit. Theses are graded SP/UP (Satisfactory Progress/Unsatisfactory Progress), and independent study or reading projects must be registered for the A-F letter grade option.
  • Independent study courses may be registered across multiple semesters by dividing the credits. For example, a 3 credit SRP may be registered as 2 credits of SRP in the fall semester and 1 credit of SRP in the spring semester.
  • Work is expected to be completed during the semester when the course is registered. An In Progress (IP) grade may be assigned by the faculty supervisor if work is not completed in a timely manner and an extension is approved.
  • Students who register SIS-794 SRP with Coursework are required to complete all course requirements in addition to writing an SRP. Professors may allow the SRP to serve as the final course paper. The professor of the course must serve as the SRP faculty supervisor and the SRP and course must be thematically related. Please consult with your academic advisor for more information.

Last updated 17 January, 2017.

Independent Study form

Congratulations on completing your MA thesis! These guidelines will help you finalize your thesis and submit it to the university. Before beginning the submission process, be sure to review American University's thesis guidelines to make sure all aspects of your thesis conform to those rules.

What you need to submit:

Submission Steps

  1. Meet with each of your committee members to discuss the final copy of your thesis (typographical errors may still be corrected after this point). Once they have approved your thesis, all committee members must sign both copies of your title page. Your thesis chair should report any pending thesis grades at this time. Students should confirm grades are recorded on their unofficial transcript.
  2. Electronically submit your final thesis to the library by going to the Electronic Thesis Submission Site and clicking on "Submit my dissertation/thesis." The system will prompt you to create an account, provide complete materials about publishing, categorizing, and copyrighting your thesis before directing you to save and upload your thesis as a PDF. You should receive a confirmation email once you have successfully uploaded your thesis.
  3. Leave both signed copies of your title page with the Graduate Advising Office (SIS 250). We will arrange for the Dean's signature and contact you when your materials are ready. Please allow at least 2-3 business days for this process. The Graduate Advising Office will keep one signed copy of your title page for your file and will email you a PDF copy of the signed title page as receipt of your completion of the submission process.

Last updated 28 February, 2013

Consortium

AU students are eligible to take courses at other Consortium universities in DC through the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area.

Consortium Policies

  • Consortium registration is limited to courses that are not offered at AU.
  • Courses taken through the Consortium are treated as AU courses for registration, billing, financial aid, transcript, and GPA purposes.
  • All Consortium courses will appear on your AU transcript with the Consortium school code and course number (e.g. GWU-500).
  • Consortium registration is available during the fall, spring, and summer semesters.
  • SIS limits graduate students to no more than two Consortium courses during their MA program.
  • Signing the Consortium Registration Form means that you have read, understood and have agreed to all of the university policies on the reverse of the form.

Registration Instructions

  1. Download and complete the Consortium Registration Form, below.
  2. Obtain permission in writing from the instructor for the Consortium course and attach it to the Consortium Registration Form. A printed email is acceptable.
  3. If the course is offered in another department (ECON, HIST, etc.) at the visited University, you must obtain the approval of the Department Chair/Dean of the equivalent department at AU, confirming that the course is not offered at AU. If the course is offered in International Affairs/Studies at the visited University, confirmation that the course is not offered at AU is verified by the SIS Graduate Advising Office. You may need program director approval if you are seeking to substitute a Consortium course for a required course in your MA program. Please check with your advisor with any questions about approvals.
  4. Submit the form, course syllabus, and attached permission(s) to the SIS Graduate Advising Office before the end of the Add/Drop period for both schools.
  5. Once approved, SIS Graduate Advising will forward your registration materials to the Registrar's office for processing. Please be aware that Consortium registrations are not processed until the week before the semester of registration begins and registration is not guaranteed.

Course Schedules by Participating Universities

Note: Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of Johns Hopkins University is NOT part of the Consortium.

* Consortium universities use different course numbering systems. Please ensure that your chosen course is graduate level.

** Not all courses may be available for registration based on departmental restrictions or prerequisites.For example, many courses offered in the Security Studies program at Georgetown are limited to students in that program only.

Last updated 9 September, 2017

Consortium Registration Form

International Relations Online Registration

On-campus SIS graduate students may only request to enroll in an online course through the IR Online program if exceptional circumstances prevent the students from attending courses on campus during a given semester or they have a special graduation need. On-campus SIS graduate students may take no more than 25% of their required courses via IR Online courses.

Note: Submitting a request does not guarantee enrollment in the requested course.

  1. Review the IR Online Spring 2018 Course Schedule.
  2. Fill out the IR Online Course Request form and submit to your Academic Advisor no later than Dec. 11 for Spring 2018 classes.