3470 Political Science

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Political Science
    • Concentration in General Political Science
    • Concentration in International Affairs
    • Concentration in Pre-Law
    • European Union Studies Certificate
  • Minor in Political Science
  • Dual B.A. / M.A. Program

Department of Political Science
1005 Langdale Hall

Michael Herb, Chair
Jeannie Grussendorf, Undergraduate Director

Political science is the study of “who gets what, when, and how” in the distribution of goods and values in society and in groups. Specifically, political scientists study the determinants of such distributions, including political parties and voters, public opinion, interest groups, bureaucracies and administrative behavior, public law, international relations, international law and organizations, national security, intergovernmental relations, political behavior, political philosophy, comparative politics, public policy, and conflict.

Students may specialize in any of the five fields of the discipline: American politics and government, comparative politics, international politics, political theory, and public policy and administration. The department also provides specific concentrations for majors and minors in pre-law and in international affairs. The department sponsors intercollegiate academic teams for Mock Trial, Model United Nations, and Model Arab League. The department sponsors student honor societies and clubs in pre-law, international relations, and political science. In addition, the department provides advisement for pre-law students.

The proximity of Georgia State University to the center of government for the Southeast and the State of Georgia and its location in an international city of business, communication, and transportation provide unique opportunities for students to observe and participate in government and politics. For example, many qualified students serve as interns as part of their academic program.

Academic Advisement for Undergraduate Students

Academic advisement for undergraduate students is provided through the University Advisement Center (freshman through junior status/fewer than 90 hours) and the college’s Office of Academic Assistance (senior status/90 or more hours). See section 3040 for additional information.

Program Academic Regulations

Internship and Practicum Credit: Applicants for internships must meet departmental prerequisites. Internship and practicum credit may not be applied toward the major or minor, but may be used as elective credit. Such credit includes: POLS 4930, POLS 4940, POLS 4950, POLS 4951, POLS 4952, and POLS 4955.

Program Degree Requirements

In addition to the Program Degree Requirements, students must fulfill the College of Arts and Sciences Degree Requirements (see section 3030) and the University Degree Requirements (see section 1400).

B.A. in Political Science

Area F: Courses Appropriate to the Major (18)

  1. Required courses (6)
    • POLS 2401 Global Issues (3) (if not taken in Area E)
    • World language at the 1002 level or higher (3)
      (See “World Language Requirement for B.A. and B.I.S. Majors,” previously described.)

Select additional courses as follows to complete 18 hours in Area F:

  1. Choose at least two of the following:
  2. Choose at least two of the following:
    • AAS 2010 Introduction to African-American Studies (3)
    • ECON 2105 Principles of Macroeconomics (3)
    • ECON 2106 Principles of Microeconomics (3)
    • GEOG 1101 Introduction to Human Geography (3)
    • HIST 1111 A Survey of World History to 1500 (3)
    • HIST 1112 A Survey of World History since 1500 (3)
    • HIST 2110 Survey of United States History (3)
    • MATH 1070 Elementary Statistics (3)
    • MATH 1112 College Trigonometry (3) or MATH 1113 Precalculus (3)
    • PHIL 2010 Introduction to Philosophy (3)
    • POLS 210 Introduction to Political Science (3)
    • SOCI 1101 Introduction to Sociology (3)
    • SOCI 1160 Introduction to Social Problems (3)
    • WGSS 2010 Introduction to Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies (3)
    • World language 2001 (3)
    • World language 2002 (3)

Area G: Major Courses (30)

A grade of C or higher is required in all major courses.

General Political Science Concentration (30)

  1. Required Courses (12)
    • POLS 3800 Introduction to Political Research-CTW (3)
    • POLS 4900 Senior Seminar in Political Science (3)
    • Either POLS 3200 Comparative Politics or POLS 3400 International Relations
    • Either POLS 3530 Classical and Early Modern Political Thought or POLS 3540 Modern Political Thought
  2. Take 18 hours in political science at the 3000 level or above. At least one course must be taken in American government and politics (3100s and 4100s). (18)

International Affairs Concentration (30)

  1. Required Courses (6)
    • POLS 3800 Introduction to Political Research-CTW (3)
    • POLS 4900 Senior Seminar in Political Science (3)
  2. International Affairs Requirements (6)
  3. Select 18 hours at the 3000 level or above in comparative politics and international politics. (18)
  4. Select 3 hours at the 3000 level or above in American politics, public policy and administration, or political theory. (3)

Pre-Law Concentration (30)

  1. Required Courses (6)
    • POLS 3800 Introduction to Political Research-CTW (3)
    • POLS 4900 Senior Seminar in Political Science (3)
  2. Pre-Law Requirements (9)
  3. Select 2 courses. (6)
  4. Select nine additional hours in political science. (9)
  5. Of the courses taken, students must have one course in three of the five areas of the discipline.
  6. POLS 4940 is recommended as an elective.

Area H: Minor and/or Additional Courses

  1. Students majoring in political science who take either the general political science concentration or the international affairs concentration are not required to take a minor. Students in the pre-law concentration should see the department’s pre-law adviser for further information.
  2. Additional courses not in the major or in a minor must be taken as electives to complete a minimum of 120 semester hours, exclusive of KH 1010.

Allied Field Concentration in Political Science for Pre-Education Majors in Other Social Science Departments (9)

Students majoring in other social sciences and who are pursuing a concentration in Pre-Education should choose from the following courses in using political science as an allied field to their major.

  1. Select one course
  2. Select one course
  3. Select one course

European Union Studies Certificate

The department provides courses and advising in regard to the European Union Studies Certificate offered by the University System of Georgia. This program enables students to develop expertise in the European Unions and in EU studies. Dr. Jeannie Grussendorf of the department serves as campus representative. See Section 3260 for a detailed description.

Courses that count towards the European Union Studies Certificate will have the EURO prefix. Students taking EURO courses can have these applied to their political science major. EURO courses can fulfill political science credit counting towards the International Affairs concentration. For more information, visit www.eustudiesprogram.org.

Minor in Political Science

Students wishing to minor in political science should take 15 semester hours of political science courses at the 3000 level or above.

Students seeking to take a minor in political science/pre-law should take POLS 3140, POLS 4130, POLS 4131, and two courses from POLS 3110, POLS 3145, POLS 3170, POLS 3700, POLS 3750, POLS 3770, POLS 4115, POLS 4157, POLS 4180, POLS 4220, POLS 4420, POLS 4425, POLS 4427, and POLS 4570.

Students seeking to take a minor in political science/international affairs should take POLS 2401 (if not taken in Area E)], POLS 3200, POLS 3400, and nine additional hours at the 3000 level or above in comparative or international politics.

Cooperative Education and Internship Programs

The department participates in the University’s Cooperative Education program, in which students work for six months in paid, full-time professional positions as part of their four-year degree program. Details are available on the department’s website, from the department chair or director of undergraduate studies.

The department also encourages students to seek out relevant internships to enhance their preparation for careers related to Political Science. Our students regularly intern with the state legislature through the Georgia Legislative Internship Program; the World Affairs Council; with local, state, and federal government agencies; the courts, local non-profits; lobbying organizations; and international organizations. We offer both major credit and elective credit, subject to department approval.

Exchange Programs and Study Abroad Programs

The department offers a Maymester study abroad program in Turkey; a Fall semester study abroad program in India; and spring break study abroad programs in Cuba, Brazil, and Ireland. Contact the department chair or undergraduate director for more information.

The department offers an exchange/study abroad program with the University of Strasbourg in France. Courses are available in English. Students spend one semester in residence and earn 12-15 credit hours.

The department also offers undergraduate exchange programs with the following universities:

  • Ewha Women’s University and Hanyang University in Seoul, Korea
  • Sciences Po’ in Lilles, France
  • Marmara University and Sehir University in Turkey

Students spend up to one academic year in residence in one of the universities with credit given for classes on a cross-registration basis.

Dual B.A. / M.A. Program in Political Science

The department offers a dual Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in Political Science. The dual degree opportunity enables qualified students to enroll in graduate courses late in their undergraduate program and apply the coursework toward both the bachelor’s and master’s programs.

Students must be formally accepted into the dual degree program by the department and College of Arts and Sciences to be able to take graduate courses as an undergraduate. Additionally, acceptance into the dual program does not constitute admission to the master’s program. Students must fulfill regular graduate admissions requirements and apply for the master’s program following college processes.

Information about the dual program, including application instructions and program requirements, can be found at cas.gsu.edu/dual-degrees/.

Graduation with Distinction in the Major

This department offers undergraduate students with the opportunity to earn the designation of graduation with distinction in the major. Please contact the department undergraduate director for the specific criteria for this honor.