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Political Science Major, B.A.; B.S.

B.A. and B.S. degrees

Major Map

This major is also offered via Global Campus/CMU Online.

A political science major consists of 33 hours. A minimum of 15 hours of course work must be at the 300 level or above.

Courses taken on a Credit/No Credit basis may not be counted toward political science majors or political science minors, with the following exceptions: Internships (PSC 395), Practicums (PSC 393 & PSC 394) and lab courses (PSC 355). In the case of these exceptions, no more than three credits total may be applied to the major or minor. Majors and minors in political science should enroll in PSC 105 as freshmen (see course description). Transfer students majoring in political science will be expected to take at least 15 hours of coursework in the department; transfer minors, 12 hours.

It is recommended that all political science majors enroll in PSC 280QR during their sophomore year.

Any regular faculty member in the department can serve as the student’s advisor on a major or minor.

Internships: The department has established an internship program where students are provided relevant firsthand work experience. The duration of an internship can vary depending on the number of credit hours (1-12) taken. Students majoring in political science are allowed to count three internship credit hours toward their major or minor.

Program Requirements

Required Courses I (15 hours)

PSC 100Introduction to Political Science


PSC 105Introduction to American Government and Politics


PSC 261State and Local Government


PSC 275Great Political Thinkers


PSC 280QRIntroduction to Empirical Methods of Political Research


Required Courses II (3 hours)

Select one of the following:

PSC 513Citizen Engagement in Public Life


PSC 520American National Government and Politics


PSC 590Independent Study


Required Courses III (15 hours)

Select 15 hours of PSC and/or PAD courses.


Select one of the following certificates:

Undergraduate Certificate - Citizen Engagement

Undergraduate Certificate - Political Advocacy and Elections

Undergraduate Certificate - Lawmaking and Legal Processes

A student earning a certificate must choose courses different than those chosen to fulfill the major required courses. Up to 6 hours of course work from one certificate may be used to fulfill requirements in another certificate in the department. Although the major may be combined with any of the certificates, students pursuing the major in Political Science are advised to consider choosing one from among the list above.

Total: 33 semester hours

Note: A minimum of 15 hours of PSC and/or PAD course work must be at the 300 level or above.