May 08, 2021
Political science is devoted to the study of the theory and practice of government and politics. The political science program complements a student’s liberal arts education with an emphasis on understanding the theoretical and practical aspects of political philosophy, public administration, law, international relations, and American government and policy. Vocational alternatives for political science majors include teaching, public management, law, and foreign service.
Program Learning Outcomes
- Students will develop a mastery of critical thinking skills by evaluating political developments individually, through research, and in course discussions
- Students will be exposed to and understand alternative perspectives on political affairs by engaging in internships, study abroad, community service, and other experiential learning opportunities. Students will develop an understanding of the scholarship, analytical methods, and theories of politics in one or more of the discipline’s four sub-fields: American Politics, International Relations, Comparative Politics, and/or Political Theory.
- Students will develop and hone a mastery of oral and writing skills by communicating their perspectives, empirical findings, interpretations, and the conclusions of their research on political issues, policies, institutions, and behavior.
- All courses must be passed with a “C-” (1.7) or better to be counted in the major.
- No more than 15 credits of lower-division political science courses may be counted toward the credits requirement for the major.
- No more than 12 credits of transfer courses will apply toward the major.
- Up to six (6) credits of POLS 4830 - Readings and Conference may be used as track-specific electives with approval.
General Education Requirement (30-35 Credits)
See General Education for course options.
- Core Course Requirements (12-15 Credits)
- Knowledge Area Requirements (16-20 Credits)
Please note: All students must complete a minimum of 30 credits between the Core and Knowledge Area requirements.
Bachelor’s Degree Type: Arts or Science Requirement (12* or 16** Credits)
Select one degree type from either Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science:
Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree Requirement (12 Credits*)
- Bachelor of Science Degree - Math or Science minimum requirement 12 Credits
* Note: A portion of the B.S. requirements may be met by fulfilling the General Education Core and Knowledge Areas. Because of this, these credits are typically not counted in the degree total at the bottom of page. Some students majoring in non-science fields may need additional math/science courses to reach the minimum 12 credits. Consult your Student Success Advisor for details.
Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree Requirement (16 Credits**)
- Bachelor of Arts Degree - Foreign Language Requirement 16 Credits
** Note: One semester of a foreign language may also fulfill the General Education Humanities requirement. The 16 credits may be fulfilled by taking four semesters of a foreign language or by testing out of a language and purchasing the credits. These credits are typically counted in the degree total at the bottom of the page. Consult your Student Success Advisor for details.
Political Science Curriculum Summary (37 Credits)
Core Requirements (19 Credits)
Select One of the Following (3 Credits)
Select One of the Following Tracks (18 Credits)
Required Courses (6 Credits)
Select Four of the Following (12 Credits)
Select 12 credits from the following:
Required Course (3 Credits)
Select Five of the Following (15 Credits)
Select 15 credits of the following:
International Politics Track
Required Courses (3 Credits)
Select one of the following (whichever one you did NOT complete as part of the Core Requirements):
Select Five of the Following (15 Credits)
Select 15 credits from the following:
Free Electives (32-56 Credits)
Total elective credit is determined by General Education courses taken, degree type selected, additional credits earned, and any additional math or other prerequisite courses needed. For a bachelor’s degree, students must earn a minimum of 40 upper-division credits (courses numbered 3000-4999). Students may need to select additional upper-division courses not included in their major requirements in order to reach this minimum. Please consult your Student Success Advisor for details.
Total Credits, B.A./B.S. Degree: 120