Degree Essentials

Political Science

Faculty

Associate Professor Sue Davis, Chair

Associate Professors Sue Davis, Paul A. Djupe, Andrew Z. Katz, James R. Pletcher; Assistant Professors Michael C. Brady, Heather Pool, Katy Crossley-Frolick; Visiting Assistant Professors Dane Imerman, Jake Neiheisel

Political Science Major

For a major in Political Science, you need to complete nine courses (36 credit hours), only three of which may be at the 100 level and only two of which may be completed in an off-campus experience. Political Science, as a discipline, is divided into four subfields:

  1. Political Theory - focus on normative issues such as the purpose of government and notions of liberty, justice, and governance;

  2. American Politics - seeks to explain political phenomena in the United States;

  3. Comparative Politics - the study of domestic level politics around the world;

  4. International Relations - concentrates on the interaction between and among states as well as with transnational non-state actors.

We strongly encourage students to take courses in each of the four subfields for breadth and to develop depth of knowledge by choosing elective courses that create an area of expertise in one of the subfields.

All majors must take:

  • one course in American Politics (course numbers ending with 01-19);

  • one course in Political Theory (80-89);

  • one course in either: Comparative Politics (20-39) or International Relations (40-59);

  • POSC 201, Analyzing Politics. This course is the research methods course for the department and should be taken in your sophomore year.

  • A second 200 level course. In order to further refine your research and writing skills in political science, we have designated a number of courses to follow up and expand on the skills taught in POSC 201. These courses have a substantive area in one of the four subfields of the discipline as well as a stronger focus on skills such as reading, writing, critical thinking, and research methodology/approaches. This course should be taken in the semester following POSC 201.

  • POSC 491, Senior Seminar. Senior seminars are offered only in the fall semester each year and should be taken in your senior year, juniors may take a senior seminar if space allows.

Additional rules:

  • A maximum of three 100 level courses may count towards the major;

  • Students studying off campus may transfer a maximum of two major courses for a one semester off-campus experience and three for a year long off-campus experience;

  • Neither directed study nor independent study courses may be used to fulfill major requirements;

  • The two-semester senior research sequence counts as ONE course for the major.

Political Science Minor

A minor in Political Science is six courses (24 credit hours) and must include:

  • one course in American Politics (course numbers ending with 01-19);

  • one course in Political Theory (80-89);

  • one course in either:Comparative Politics (20-39) or International Relations (40-59).

Additional rules:

  • Neither directed study nor independent study courses may be used to fulfill minor requirements;

  • Only two 100 level courses may count towards the minor.

Additional Points of Interest

The Richard G. Lugar Program in Politics and Public Service For further information, consult Lugar Program.

Other Programs The Political Science Department participates in the interdepartmental major in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE). The department also participates in the interdisciplinary International Studies, Environmental Studies, Latin American & Caribbean Studies, Black Studies and Women's Studies programs.