Political Science / Program of Study

Through the political science program, students develop an awareness of the modern world and its political dimensions. Students learn to research, analyze and communicate effectively about different political systems and theories and how each can impact cultures and economies. Students participate in hands-on learning experiences by observing the state government in action, visiting multiple historic sites and museums, and taking advantage of educational opportunities at international businesses in nearby Research Triangle Park.

Major in Political Science
Students majoring in political science are required to complete 21 credit hours, plus the requirements for one of the three concentrations offered.

Major in Political Science with a Pre-Law concentration
Students majoring in political science with a pre-law concentration take courses in political science as well as in elective areas including accounting, business, communications, criminology, English, social work among other fields. The overarching emphasis of the program is both theoretical and practical. The core curriculum requirements in constitutional law, civil rights and civil liberties are paired with a moot court and a required legal internship. As a result, they graduate having:

  • Explored current legal issues
  • Sharpened their writing, speaking, and analytical reasoning skills
  • Developed an understanding of human values in connection with law
  • Prepared for the LSAT, law school, and a career in law

The concentration requires 36 credit hours, which include 21 hours of core curriculum, plus six additional hours required courses for concentration, and nine hours of electives from at least two disciplines.

Major in Political Science with a Public Affairs concentration
Students majoring in political science with a public affairs concentration take an interdisciplinary program of study that combines government relations, media studies, issue management, corporate and social responsibility, information dissemination and strategic communication. Graduates are prepared for careers in businesses and organization influencing public policy, building and maintain a strong reputations and finding common ground with stakeholders.  Graduates complete the concentration having gained a theoretical and practical overview of the field, in part through a required internship in the public affairs domain. The concentration requires 36 credit hours, which include 21 hours of core curriculum and 15 hours of approved electives, at least nine of which must be political science courses.

Major in Political Science with a Public and Nonprofit Administration Concentration
Students majoring in political science with a public and nonprofit administration are prepared for careers in the vibrant, growing and rewarding field government and community service. They develop a specialized understanding of the roles that governmental agencies and non‐profit organizations play in American life and how the public and private sectors intersect. Students learn about topics affecting how public agencies and nonprofits are managed, including leadership, budgeting, fundraising, and advocacy. The concentration offers a theoretical and practical overview of the field with required research courses and an internship in the public or non-profit sector.concentration. The concentration requires 36 credit hours, which include 21 hours of core curriculum, a three-hour public or nonprofit administration course, and 12 hours of electives from at least two subfields in political science.

Minor in Political Science
Students minoring in political science are required to complete 21 credit hours, which include nine hours of core curriculum and 12 hours of approved electives in political science courses.

Minor in Pre-Law
Students minoring in pre-law are required to complete 18 credit hours, including 12 hours of prescribed core courses and six hours of approved electives from at least two disciplines.

Political Science course descriptions »

Undergraduate course catalogue »


Required Major Courses

Majors will also develop a serious acceptance of the obligations of citizenship.

POL-100 - American Political Systems (3.00 cr.)

POL-200 - Law and Society (3.00 cr.)

POL-203 - American Public Policy (3.00 cr.)

POL-204 - Comparative Politics (3.00 cr.)

- or -

POL-210 - International Politics (3.00 cr.)

POL-334 - Research Design and Methods (3.00 cr.)

POL-380 - Political Science Internship (3.00 cr.)

POL-498 - Honors Thesis in Political Studies (3.00 cr.)

- or -

POL-499 - Senior Research (3.00 cr.)

- or -

POL-480 - Enhanced Fieldwork (3.00 cr.)

18 credit hours in elective courses from at least two different sub fields in Political Science

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Contact Information

Dan Fountain, Department Head
226 Joyner Hall
(919) 760-8507
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