Political Science

Mission

Our mission is to cultivate faculty whose research and teaching interests cross the traditional boundaries that divide many political science departments into separate groups. Our goal to to provide students with a holistic approach to political science that gives full attention to studies in American government, international relations, political theory, and comparative politics in an interdependent global system. 

Major Description

Political science is the study of government, individual and institutional behavior in the public sector, relations among nation-states, and theories of politics. Political science addresses fundamental issues confronting modern society - globalization, war, inequity, poverty, the environment - and seeks to evaluate the processes, policies, and theories that have been devised to deal with them. The Political Science program provides courses in theory, methods and case studies within the four sub-fields of political theory, comparative politics, international relations and American politics, as well as many courses that cross subfields. 

The political science major emphasizes the development of skills in effective writing and speaking, as well as creative problem solving -- some of the most useful skills in a wide variety of careers in the public, non-profit and private sectors. These skills are also crucial to success in graduate school. Our small classes and abundant individual attention from faculty give students ample opportunity to hone those skills. Political Science is also an excellent choice for students planning to study politics, public policy or law at the graduate level.

The department also offers Political Science majors the opportunity to select all of the EDU secondary education certification courses (listed below) as their electives in order to become middle or high school teachers (grades 7 - 12) in the area of social studies.

Pre-Law Emphasis

The pre-law emphasis allows students interested in studying law to receive special advising and to develop a liberal arts program of study appropriate as preparation for admission to law school and success in the legal profession, and careers and jobs in various areas such as government, media, business, international affairs, foreign service, non- government organizations and teaching. The study of law involves many aspects of social life and integrates many fields of study. Judges and lawyers are expected to handle different litigations, ranging from social to medical, environmental and other applications. Thus, law schools encourage students to have diverse undergraduate majors. UNE students who are majoring in any department can take advantage of the pre-law program.

Although the choice of major is open, law schools expect students to have acquired skills that enable them to think critically, reason logically, and speak and write effectively. The Pre-law Advising Committee will help students build their interdisciplinary program of study that includes not only humanities courses, but also courses in biology, environmental studies, psychology, and management.

Curricular Requirements
 

CREDITS

CAS Core Requirements

42-46

  Credits
Program Required Courses  
One of the following courses: 3
PSC 105 - Introduction to Political Science  
PSC 202 - Politics as Social Science  
One course in each of the following areas: 12
Introductory level course in American Politics including:
PSC 101, 106, 203, 205, 207 or 250
 
Introductory level course in Political Theory including:
PSC 100, 120, 200, 206 or 207
 
Introductory level course in International Relations including:
PSC 201 or 240
 
Introductory level course in Comparative Politics including:
PSC 100, 110, 204 or 205
 
One advanced course (300 level or higher) in three of the following areas: 9
Political Theory  
Comparative Politics  
American Politics  
International Relations  
Three Political Science Electives
At least one must be at 300 or 400 level
9
Senior Seminar and Essay 6
PSC 490 - Senior Seminar  
PSC 491 - Integrative Essay  
Minimum Program Required Credits 39
Open Elective Courses (as needed to reach 120 credits) variable
Minimum Required Total Credits 120

Students wishing to pursue teacher certification in Political Science can complete a double major with Political Science and Secondary Education OR a major in Secondary Education and a concentration in Political Science.  For more Information, see the Secondary Education catalog page.

 

Students in this major can participate in the pre-health graduate school preparation tracks.

https://www.une.edu/cas/programs/pre-health-graduate-school-preparation-tracks-non-degree

 

Learning Outcomes

At the completion of this major students will:

  1. Have developed a mature political imagination which includes an ability to envision what constitutes an important political question/issue and to understand the various ways in which a political scientist might address such a question/issue.
  2. Have mastered essential facts relevant and necessary to the study of global political life. This involves a working knowledge of the key actors, structures, institutions and historical dynamics that constitute the contemporary political order. It also includes a broad familiarity with the historical roots of that order.
  3. Be able to think critically, analytically and rigorously about the world of politics.
  4. Have an informed sense of the historical dimension of the various political issues, developments, trends, theories and forms of inquiry relevant to the students’ interests.
  5. Have an enlightened understanding of the multicultural nature of global (but especially American) political life.
  6. Be able to convey information, analyze results and persuasively argue, in both written and oral form, clearly and effectively.
  7. Be able to conduct sound and rigorous social inquiry using a variety of methodologies and techniques.
  8. Be able to compete successfully for placement in graduate programs or employment relevant to the field of study.

Direct Measures of Student Learning:

  1. Capstone Course
  2. Senior Thesis 
  3. Oral defense of Senior Thesis 
  4. Internship supervisor evaluations  
  5. Symposium  Presentations 
  6. Annual departmental review of graded assignments and exams and samples of student writing 
  7. Performance on exams

Indirect Measures of Student Learning:

  1. Admission rates into graduate programs  
  2. Alumni and employer satisfaction 
  3. End-of-course student evaluation forms
Minor

A student with a major in another department may minor in Political Science with the approval of the Political Science Department Chair. 

Courses Credits
PSC 105- Intro to Political Science OR 3
PSC 202- Political Sciences Social Science  
(2) 100-200 Level PSC Courses 6
(3) 300-400 Level PSC Courses 9
Total Credits 18

The Political Science Department offers another minor in Health Law and Policy.

Honors Program

We offer qualified students the option of graduating with Honors. This includes significant research, scholarship or creative activity under the direction of a faculty member. Interested students should consult with their major advisor. 

Transfer Credit
Admissions
Financial Information

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees for subsequent years may vary. Other expenses include books and housing. For more information regarding tuition and fees, please consult the Financial Information section of this catalog.

Brian Duff (Chair)

bduff@une.edu

Bachelor of Arts with a major in Political Science

College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Political Science