Students choosing to major in political science gain fundamental understanding of American government, how our governmental system compares with other major political systems, and how the U.S. interrelates with the rest of the world. Majors gain competence in political analysis and research skills as well as an understanding of political power, government institutions, international affairs, and political theory.

Students majoring in political science affiliate with either the Letters or Behavioral Science Collegium, depending on their individual career or research plans. Both collegial tracks require the completion of Introduction to American National Government and Politics, Introduction to Comparative Politics, and Introduction to International Relations. Beyond the three introductory courses, all students must complete six additional non- introductory political science courses including at least one from each field within political science.

American Politics

  • PO 202E Public Policy-Making in America
  • PO 223S American Political Thought
  • PO 251S The Media and Foreign Policy
  • PO 301S Constitution and Individual Rights
  • PO 302S Constitution and Individual Rights
  • PO 303S The American Presidency
  • PO 304S U.S. Congress
  • PO 305S Political Parties and Interest Groups
  • PO 325S Environmental Politics and Policy
  • PO 351 National Security Policy

Comparative Politics

  • PO 221S Politics of Revolution and Development
  • PO 231G East Asian Comparative Politics
  • PO 232G The Pacific Century
  • PO 252S Middle East Politics
  • PO 261G African Politics
  • PO 263G North African Politics
  • PO 311G Latin American Politics
  • PO 313 Politics of the European Union
  • PO 321S Comparative European Politics
  • PO 322S Authoritarian Political Systems
  • PO 324 East European Politics
  • PO 333 Japan: Government, Politics and Foreign Policy
  • PO 335S Government and Politics of China
  • PO 336S East Asian International Relations
  • PO 363G Middle East Political Economy
  • PO 421S Comparative Judicial Politics

International Politics

  • PO 200S Diplomacy and International Relations
  • PO 211G Inter-American Relations
  • PO 212S U.S. Foreign Policy
  • PO 222G Political Ideologies
  • PO 241S International Political Economy
  • PO 242S Politics of Defense: Economics and Power
  • PO 243S Human Rights and International Law
  • PO 313 Politics of the European Union
  • PO 315 International Relations: Theories of War and Peace
  • PO 316G Women and Politics Worldwide
  • PO 322S Authoritarian Political Systems
  • PO 336S East Asian International Relations
  • PO 341 Ethics and International Relations
  • PO 342S Hunger, Plenty and Justice
  • PO 343S International Environmental Law
  • PO 352G The Globalization Debate
  • PO 362G Middle East Conflicts and Wars
  • PO 364 Islam and Human Rights

Political Theory

  • PO 201S Power, Authority and Virtue
  • PO 223S American political Thought
  • PO 315 Theories of War and Peace
  • PO 302S Constitution and Individual Rights
  • PO 316G Women and Politics Worldwide
  • PO 323S Democratic Theory
  • PO 341 Ethics in International Relations

All political science majors must also complete Political Science Research Methods and the political science Senior Seminar. The typical course sequence for political science majors includes the completion of three introductory courses in their first year, followed by an individually tailored set of upper-division courses.

Students with specific career or research interests
that are not adequately covered by the discipline may substitute one course from another discipline for one upper-level political science course with prior approval of the political science faculty. Students are encouraged to explore their career or research interests through an appropriate internship. With the approval of the political science faculty, one internship may fulfill a political science major requirement. One winter term project may also be accepted toward degree requirements in political science.

Students may earn a minor in political science with successful completion of PO 102S, either PO 103G or PO 104G, and any four additional non-introductory courses spread across the political science faculty.