Political Science

Bradley’s political science major, available as a B.A. or B.S., gives you a global perspective on governing systems to prepare you for a career in business, foreign affairs, government, law, politics or journalism. Because many related careers require graduate degrees, it’s a good starting point for future studies.

Preparing You for Success

You sharpen your critical-thinking skills and understanding of current events by studying the world’s political systems, political theory and international relations. Classes encourage you to research topics of interest and discuss your findings with faculty and classmates. The major gives you flexibility to add a second major, such as economics, English, history or public relations.

By the time you graduate, your experiences include:

  • Research with faculty
  • Internships in campaign management and organization, economic development, urban planning, law and criminal justice
  • Opportunities to gain firsthand knowledge of political systems by studying abroad or in Washington, D.C.
  • Networking and career development through organizations such as the Pre-Law Club, Mock Trial Team and Pi Sigma Alpha honor society

Making Your Mark

Political science graduates are active in state capitols, city halls, local media newsrooms, nonprofit organizations, research institutions, law firms and private corporations. Others have pursued graduate degrees at institutions such as the University of Southern California, University of Colorado, Harvard University, Northwestern University and University of Illinois.

Major Requirements

Required Courses - 15 hrs.

  • PLS 105: Introduction to American Government - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 205: Introduction to Comparative Politics - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 207: Introduction to Political Thought - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 208: Fundamentals of International Relations - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 209: Scope and Methods of Political Science - 3 hrs.

In addition to the above required courses, students must take four courses from the following list of elective courses, with a minimum of one course in each of three separate sub-fields.

American Politics Courses

  • PLS 301: Topics in American Politics - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 310: Political Behavior - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 311: Political Parties Electorate and Politics - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 314: The U.S. Congress - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 315: The U.S. Presidency - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 360: Judicial Politics - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 419: Introduction to Public Administration - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 420: Public Personnel Administration - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 421: The Politics of Regulation - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 422: Urban Politics - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 459: Constitutional Law - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 460: Constitutional Law - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 494: Seminar in American Politics - 3 hrs.

Comparative Politics

  • PLS 304: Governments of West Europe - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 305: Topics in Comparative Government - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 306: Comparative Public Policy - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 491: Seminar in Comparative Politics - 3 hrs.

International Relations

  • PLS 302: Topics in International Relations - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 317: International Law - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 318: International Organization - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 319: International Political Economy - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 492: Seminar in International Relations - 3 hrs.
  • IS 312: American Foreign Policy - 3 hrs.
  • IS 410: Globalization in World Affairs - 3 hrs.

Political Theory

  • PLS 300: Topics in Political Thought - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 307: Classical Political Philosophy - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 308: Modern Political Philosophy - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 407: American Political Thought - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 493: Seminar in Political Theory - 3 hrs.

Finally, students are required to take one senior seminar designed to be a capstone experience.

  • PLS 491: Seminar in Comparative Politics - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 492: Seminar in International Relations - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 493: Seminar in Political Theory - 3 hrs.
  • PLS 494: Seminar in American Politics - 3 hrs.