Task Force on Graduate Education Task Force on Graduate Education (2002-2003)

In spring of 2002, APSA established a committee of scholars to serve on a Task Force on Graduate Education, at the instigation of then president-elect Theda Skocpol. The committee's charge was to assess the current condition, problems, and options for improvements in political science graduate education in the United States. The invited scholars represented a wide variety of backgrounds, subfields, methodologies, institutions, and levels of seniority.

At its April meeting in Chicago, the APSA Council accepted the Task Force's revised report and recommended its wide dissemination. The Task Force concluded that the challenges of providing adequate graduate education in political science today are more daunting than ever before. While the Task Force found that no single structure of graduate training could be appropriate for the wide range of institutions offering graduate instruction, it agreed that certain basic principles should be embodied. As cited in the report's introduction, these principles are not so broad as to be trivial, and they are also not uncontroversial. The report describes the principles and their rationales and then reviews a series of options for their pursuit by individual departments, institutions, and APSA.

Task Force Members

  • Christopher H. Achen
  • Rogers M. Smith, University of Pennsylvania
  • Cristina Beltran, Haverford College
  • Cathy J. Cohen, University of Chicago
  • David Collier, University of California-Berkeley
  • Edie N. Goldenberg, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
  • Robert O. Keohane, Duke University
  • Kristen Renwick Monroe, University of California-Irvine
  • Theda Skocpol, Harvard University
  • Michael Wallerstein, Northwestern University