Data and Models Certificate FAQ

Looking for a form related to the Data & Models Certificate? Please go here.

I am not in my second year, can I still apply to the Certificate? 

Retroactive admissions of upper-level students into the certificate program may be permitted by the Data & Models Certificate Coordinator under three conditions:

  1. Students must have completed both POLI 110 and POLI 220-002 with grades of 75% (B+) or higher.
  2. Students must complete POLI 380 and POLI 381 (or similar courses in other Departments) before permitted entry into POLI 482 (the Capstone seminar).
  3. There is sufficient space in POLI 482.

I am not in Political Science, can I still apply to the Certificate? 

The certificate is intended for Political Science majors and minors, but enrollment of undergraduate students from other Faculties will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the Data & Models Certificate Coordinator, Prof. Christopher Kam ( for more information.

Will the certificate conflict with my Major or my Minor? 

The certificate requires 21 credit-hours. That’s a lot less than a major program – and some of those credit-hours are in courses also required for the POLI major (e.g., POLI 110 and 380). Consequently, there should be no conflict with your POLI major. In fact, by taking the courses listed above, you can complete the certificate while earning 21 credit hours toward your POLI major.

The certificate can also be combined with a POLI minor. Just remember that you have to take POLI 110 and POLI 220-002 to qualify for the certificate, and that you must complete the certificate’s 21 credit hours within the POLI minor limit of 42 credit hours of POLI courses.

It is also possible to complete the certificate alongside a POLI combined major, for example, a ECON-POLI combined major. Again, just remember that the certificate’s 21 credit hours must be completed within the limits that your combined major places on POLI credit hours.

What’s the difference between this certificate and a POLI minor? 

The certificate’s main objective is not to expose you to a second discipline like a minor does. Instead, the certificate focuses on the giving you the in-depth knowledge and specialized skills that you need to model and analyze Political Science data.

What will I get out from the certificate? 

The certificate is designed to prepare students for employment in areas of governmental or intergovernmental policy analysis, the private and not-for-profit sectors, political consulting, polling and survey design, and data science. The certificate also prepares students for postgraduate study in data-driven methods in Political Science or cognate social sciences. Finally, the certificate exposes students to a range of skills, knowledge, and practice in the application of various models, theories and concepts.


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