Political Science (BA)


2016-2017 UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES CATALOG

Effective 1 June 2016 through 31 May 2017

Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

This program offered by College of Arts & Sciences/History, Politics, and International Relations Department

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  • Put contemporary political issues in historical context and to use historical facts in building arguments about politics.
  • Demonstrate familiarity with the political institutions and processes of the United States.
  • Understand and evaluate the international and transnational dimensions of particular problems and policies.
  • Demonstrate familiarity with several methods and analytical approaches used by political scientists to examine political institutions and processes.

Degree Requirements

A minimum of 128 credit hours consisting of the following:

  • 42 required credit hours in the Department of History, Politics, & International Relations
  • 30 of the required 42 credit hours must be in political science, including INTL 1500, POLT 2600 or INTL 2700, a research requirement (completed by placing on file with the department a substantial research paper from an upper-level course or a senior thesis), and senior overview. 
  • 3 international language requirement credit hours
  • Applicable University Global Citizenship Program hours
  • Electives

Courses completed with a grade of D+ or below do not count toward fulfilling the specific course requirements of the major.

Political science students must take a minimum of 6 credit hours of HIST and at least 12 credit hours of upper-level coursework (3000 or above) in the department, of which a minimum of 6 credit hours must be POLT. 

At least 18 of the 42 credit hours must be taken at Webster University.

International Language Requirement

    • A minimum of three hours in a foreign language is required. Courses used towards the International Language requirement may also be used to fulfill global citizenship requirements or a major/minor in a foreign language.
    • Transfer students who have completed their 3 credits at an institution of higher education are considered to have fulfilled the requirement, as are students who have scored a "3" or higher on an Advanced Placement exam in a non-native language.
    • Students whose native language is not English are exempt from the foreign language requirement. 

Curriculum

Political science majors must complete at least 30 credit hours in political science* including:

Core Courses (18 hours)

  • INTL 1500 The World System since 1500 (3 hours)
  • POLT 1060 Introduction to American Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 1080 Introduction to Comparative Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 1050 Introduction to International Relations (3 hours)
  • POLT 1070 Introduction to Political Theory (3 hours)
    or HIST 3000 Ideas in History: History of Economic Thought (3 hours)
  • POLT 2600 Research Methods and Approaches in Political Science (3 hours)
    (INTL 2700 may be substituted)

Additional Required Courses (12-13 hours)

  • POLT 4000 Research Requirement (0 hours)
    (to be taken in conjunction with a designated 3000-level or 4000-level course)
  • Senior overview (0-1 hours)
  • History courses (6 hours)
  • Departmental electives (can include courses in POLT or INTL) (6 hours)

* "Political science" includes courses labeled POLT(political science) and those labeled INTL (international relations).

HIST 1800 may not be used to satisfy the 42-credit-hour requirement in political science.

Teacher certification courses (HIST 3800, HIST 3810) may not be used to satisfy the upper-level coursework, methods, or practicum requirements.

A maximum of 3 credit hours of individualized learning experiences (INDZ), practicum, or debate may be applied to the total upper-level coursework requirement. A maximum of 6 credit hours of INDZ, practicum, or debate may be applied to the total of 42 credit hours.

Emphasis in Public Law

The BA in political science with an emphasis in public law prepares students to examine the judiciary and legal system in the context of broader political structures and forces at both national and global levels.

Emphasis-Specific Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  • Put contemporary political issues in historical context and to use historical facts in building arguments about politics.
  • Demonstrate familiarity with the political institutions and processes of the United States.
  • Understand and evaluate the international and transnational dimensions of particular problems and policies.
  • Demonstrate familiarity with several methods and analytical approaches used by political scientists to examine political institutions and processes.
  • Demonstrate familiarity with the structures and processes of the judicial branch of both state and U.S. governments.
  • Analyze and evaluate the role of the judiciary as a political actor.

Required Courses for the Emphasis in Public Law

In addition to the core courses required for the political science major, students will complete the following requirements for the emphasis in public law:

  • INTL 2030 International Law (3 hours)
  • POLT/LEGL 2400 Introduction to Law (3 hours)
  • POLT 3010 American Constitutional Law (3 hours)
  • POLT 3020 Civil Liberties and the Law (3 hours)
  • POLT 3330 Judicial Politics (3 hours)
    or POLT 4350 Advanced Studies in Judicial Politics (3 hours)
  • Three additional credit hours in upper division courses within the department
  • Two courses with a HIST prefix
  • Overview and research requirement (research requirement must be fulfilled with a term paper focused on a law-related topic.)

Admission

Students who are interested in applying to this degree program should see the Admission Section of this catalog for general requirements.