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2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog

PDF of Political Science

Political science is the study of political systems and how they function.  It has its origins in the fourth century B.C., when Aristotle set out to classify governments. Today it encompasses four major focus areas: International Politics, including the behavior of countries, trade regimes, and theories of war; American Politics, including political parties, interest groups, and legislative, judicial, and executive powers; Comparative Politics, including the nature of democracy and comparison of parliamentary and other political systems; and Political Theory, including philosophical considerations such as what constitutes a good society.

Students of political science gain an understanding of the political nature of the contemporary world, from simple acts such as choosing products as consumers to the complexity of global politics in the information age. As governments and the private sectors of society become more intermingled, political scientists become more valued for their understanding of how both systems work and for their reasoning and analytical skills. Majors in political science are prepared for entry level positions in a variety of fields and for graduate study. Advanced degrees in political science offer the applied skills often necessary for professional advancement.

Note: Good communication and computer skills are essential to political scientists. Students are encouraged to develop their communication skills by taking ENGL 3150 Writing in the Disciplines and COMM 1100 Public Speaking and to develop their computer skills by taking BUAD 2280 Computer Business Applications.

Career Directions

Business

Government

Interest Groups

International Organizations

Journalism

Law

Also: Graduate Study

Preparation

Recommended High School Courses

English

History

Social Studies

Speech

Computers

Languages

Recommended Activities

Reading Diverse News Sources

Attention to News Events

Civic Engagement