Master of Arts in Political Theory

The consecutive and research-based Masters programme in Political Theory is offered jointly by Goethe University Frankfurt and TU Darmstadt (Technical University of Darmstadt) and has an international focus. It teaches the theoretical knowledge and academic skills necessary for a comprehensive analysis of the political present and its dynamics. Conceptions of justice, democracy and power are confronted with current problems of an increasingly complex world. According to this understanding, Political Theory contains:

  • A historical perspective, i.e. a critical reconstruction of systematically relevant theoretical approaches based on the history of ideas
  • A philosophical perspective, i.e. a conceptual analysis of and normative debate on political problems
  • An institutional perspective, i.e. an empirically substantiated reflection on how legitimate political conditions can be created under complex societal circumstances

In order to achieve these objectives, the M.A. is designed as an interdisciplinary programme. It centres on Political Theory. Apart from Political Science and its various branches, the Masters programme also regularly includes aspects of philosophy, sociology, law and economics.

Unique joint programme

The Masters programme in Political Theory is unique in Germany. Students attend courses and profit from the supervision available from the two universities involved, which jointly award the degree. In so doing, they are continuing the long-established Frankfurt tradition of critical and theoretical reflection on political and social order yet with a modern approach. The programme is embedded at both universities in the research context of the Cluster of Excellence “The Formation of Normative Orders”.

Within the Masters programme in Political Theory, provision is made for students to spend one of the four semesters at a renowned partner university abroad in an English-speaking country. Partnerships exist with the New School for Social Research, New York, the University of Toronto and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia.


At a glance

Programme duration: 4 semesters (2 academic years)
Programme start:  Winter semester only
Restricted admission:    Yes
Amount: 120 credit points (CPs)
Number of modules (main subject): 6 compulsory modules, 1 compulsory elective module and a semester abroad or
8 compulsory modules, 1 compulsory elective module
Type of module examinations: Coursework
Written test
Oral examination (only in modules 2-4 and 10)
Language(s) of instruction:  German, English


Work by Mgmoscatello (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons