Distinction Program

  • Majors

    Rachel Ameen

    Class of 2020

    Rachel Ameen

    Completing my thesis through Maxwell’s Political Science Distinction Program was a challenging and fulfilling opportunity. As I wrote my thesis on climate change communication and activism, I gained invaluable experience formulating an original research question, conducting a survey experiment, and analyzing the results. The Distinction Program taught me skills that have helped me excel in my graduate program.

The department’s distinction program offers a valuable opportunity for highly qualified PSC majors to work on a senior research project under the guidance of a faculty advisor.

Students participate in a seminar during fall and spring semesters to ensure the successful completion of their projects. Professor Emily Thorson teaches the seminar and guides students through the program. For more information, please contact Professor Thorson or read about the program on our information sheet.

In the spring, students present their findings during a poster session at the Maxwell School Celebration of Undergraduate Scholarship and may submit their paper for the Outstanding Student Research paper award.

In 2019-2020, Political Science distinction students completed the following projects:

  • The Effects of Protest Image in News Tweets About Abortion
  • Responsibility Framings: Environmental Behavior and Belief
  • Is Sunlight Really the Best Disinfectant? The Effect of Media Pressure on Voluntary Political Contribution Disclosure
  • Framing Opposition to Renewable Energy in U.S. States
  • Crisis Conscience: How Climate Change’s Impact On Cities Affected Mobilization For The 2019 Climate Strikes
  • The Price of Decentralization and Ethnic Conflict

In 2016-2017, Political Science distinction students completed the following projects: In 2018-2019, Political Science distinction students completed the following projects: