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Political Science (PS)
Bachelor of Arts
Natalie M. Davis, Vincent T. Gawronski, Mary-Kate Lizotte, Robert J. Slagter
Political science is the analysis of power dynamics within and between
societies and nation-states. We conduct theoretical and practical analysis to
explore, explain, and predict political behavior at the individual, group and
institutional levels. Comparative studies of the United States, Europe, Latin
America, and Asia as well as insights from sociology, political psychology,
media studies, and economics are utilized in the study of power across
cultures. The results of research need to be communicated to a variety of
audiences; we work together to develop the skills to do this effectively.
Our students are encouraged to participate in internships, collaborate with
practitioners, and work in political settings. 
The political science major is intended for those students who wish to
attend law school, pursue graduate studies, enter public service, or work in
the private for-profit or non-profit sectors. In recent years, political science
majors have gone on to become Truman Scholars, Fulbright and Rotary
scholarship winners, elected public servants, lobbyists and policy analysts,
noted lawyers, business entrepreneurs, Foreign Service Officers, journalists,
authors, and community leaders.
Upon completion of the political science major, students will be able to
demonstrate competency in the fields of American politics and
comparative politics,
demonstrate competency in basic methods of empirical social
science analysis,
demonstrate competency in critical thinking, research and analysis
demonstrate competency in the formulation of theses and research
demonstrate competency in synthesizing information about
Major Requirements
Prerequisites: Normally, PS 101 will be a prerequisite for all other
courses in American government, and PS 238 will be a prerequisite for all
other courses in comparative government. Students are encouraged to take
these courses during their first year. PS 204 and 304 should be taken during
the sophomore year.
The following courses are required (11 units):
PS 101
PS 204 and 304
PS 238
PS 470
PS 472
five elective units in PS with at least three at the 300-400 level