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Department of

Political Science and International Relations

Political Science Major

Supreme Court

The Political Science Major prepares the student for graduate study in the field as well as for careers such as government (the largest employer in the United States), teaching, journalism, law, and foreign service (with industry as well as government).

  • All Honors Students who are Political Science majors are required to enroll in the Research Seminar the semester before their Honors Thesis seminar.
  • All International Relations majors who plan to go on to graduate school are strongly encouraged to enroll in the Research Seminar during their junior or senior year.
  • All students who would like to write a senior thesis, or who want to conduct independent research in internationalrelations, should enroll in the Research Seminar in lieu of independent study.

Preparation for the Major

Political Science 100, 120, 170, 250.

Major requirements

Twenty-four units of upper division work to include Political Science 301 or 302.


Required: 24 upper division units (8 courses), including PS 301 or 302, which should be taken in the junior or senior year.

____POLS 301 Political Thought: Ancient to Medieval

____POLS 302 Political Thought: Modern and Contemporary

____POLS 304 American Political Development

  ____POLS 306 Political Ideology

____POLS 307 Politics and Religion

____POLS 308 Politics in Literature

____POLS 310 Presidency

____POLS 312Congress

____POLS 313 Parties and Interest Groups

____POLS 314 Campaigns and Elections

____POLS 316D Sex, Power, and Politics

____POLS 321 Constitutional Law and American Government:    Federalism and Separation of Powers

____POLS 322D Constitutional Law: Civil Right and Liberties

____POLS 323 Judicial Behavior

____POLS 326 Comparative Law                         

____POLS 327 International Law

____POLS 329 Law of the Sea

____POLS 340 State and Local Government

____POLS 342D Urban Politics

____POLS 345 Public Administration   

____POLS 347 Public Policy
____POLS 349 Politics and the Environment

____POLS 350 Comparative Politics
____POLS 352 Comparative Politics of Developing Countries
____POLS 354 Revolutionary Change

____POLS 355 Politics in Europe

____POLS 357 Politics in Latin America

____POLS 358 Politics in South Asia

____POLS 359 Politics in the Middle East

____POLS 360 Politics in Sub-Saharan Africa

____POLS 361 Politics in South Africa

____POLS 362 Politics in the UK

____POLS 363 Politics in France
____POLS 364 Politics in Germany

____POLS 365 Politics in Russia

____POLS 366 Politics in Mexico

____POLS 367 Politics in Japan

____POLS 368 Politics in China

____POLS 370 Theories of International Relations

____POLS 371 American Foreign Policy

____POLS 374 US-Latin American Relations
____POLS 375 Comparative Foreign Policy
____POLS 376 US National Security

____POLS 377 Regional Security
____POLS 378 Transnational Crime & Terrorism

____POLS 380 International Political Economy
____POLS 382 International Human Rights

____POLS 383 International Organizations

____POLS 430 Field Seminar in CA Government (1 Unit)

____POLS 434 Washington, D.C.: The Press and the   Presidency

____POLS 435 Washington, D.C.: Directed Study in Political Science

____POLS 436 Washington, D.C.: Internship in Political Science

____POLS 437 Washington, D.C.: Class in Political Science

____POLS 444 Special Topics in Political Science

(may be repeated for credit when topic changes)

____POLS 448, 498 Internship (3 units for major credit; 1-6 units max)

____POLS 480 Model United Nations (1 Unit)

____POLS 485 Washington, D.C.: Directed Study in International Relations

____POLS 486 Washington, D.C.: Internship in International Relations (6 Units)

____POLS 487 Washington, D.C.: Class in International Relations

____POLS 494 Special Topics in IR

(may be repeated for credit when topic changes, 1-3 Units)

____POLS 498 Internship in International Relations (1-6 Units)

____POLS 499 Independent Study (consult catalog for requirements)

Recommended Program For Study

  Semester I Semester II
Freshman Year Preceptorial (3) Poli Sci 100 (3) GE or Electives (9-10) Poli Sci 125 (3) GE or Electives (12-13) 
Sophomore Year Poli Sci 250 (3) GE or Electives (12)  Poli Sci 175 (3) Poli Sci Upper Division (3) GE or Electives (9) 
Junior Year Poli Sci 301 (3) Poli Sci Upper Division (3) GE, Minor, or Electives (9)  Poli Sci 302 (3) Poli Sci Upper Division (3) GE, Minor, or Electives (9) 
Senior Year Poli Sci Upper Division (6) GE, Minor, or Electives (9-10)  Poli Sci Upper Division (6) GE, Minor, or Electives (9-10)