Political Science (BA)


2020-2021 (DRAFT) UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES CATALOG

Effective 1 June 2020 through 31 May 2021

Please see the Temporary Adjustments to Policy on Grading for Undergraduate Courses for Spring 2020

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


This program is offered by the College of Arts & Sciences/History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies Department. It is available at the St. Louis home campus and at the Athens campus.

Learning Outcomes

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

  • Put contemporary political issues in historical context and use historical facts to build 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

For information on the general requirements for a degree, see Baccalaureate Degree Requirements under the Academic Policies and Information section of this catalog.

  • 36 required credit hours in the Department of History, Politics, International Relations and Religious Studies
  • 27 of the required 36 credit hours must be in political science, including INTL 1500, POLT 1060 and POLT 2600, 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.

Students must take a minimum of 6 credit hours of HIST and at least 9 credit hours of upper-level coursework (3000-level or above) in the department, of which a minimum of 6 credit hours must be POLT or INTL.

At least 18 of the 36 credit hours must be taken at Webster University.

International Language Requirement

  • A minimum of 3 credit hours in a foreign language is required. Courses used toward 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 credit hours 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

The 36 credit hours required for political science majors include:

Core Courses (9 hours)

  • INTL 1500 The World System since 1500 (3 hours)
  • POLT 1060 Introduction to American Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 2600 Research Methods and Approaches in Political Science (3 hours)
    (INTL 2700 may be substituted)
  • POLT 4000 Research Requirement (0 hours)
    (to be taken in conjunction with a designated 3000-level or 4000-level course within the department)
  • POLT 4620 Overview (0 hours)

Distribution Requirements (9 hours)

U.S. Politics
3 hours from the following:

  • POLT 2050 Contemporary American Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 2060 Politics and Gender (3 hours)
  • POLT 2070 Politics of Race and Ethnicity (3 hours)
  • POLT 3310 Conduct of Foreign Policy (3 hours)
  • POLT 3320 American National Institutions (3 hours)
  • POLT 4330 Advanced Studies in American Politics (3-4 hours)

Comparative Politics
3 hours from the following:

  • POLT 1080 Introduction to Comparative Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 2250 Politics in the Industrialized World (3 hours)
  • POLT 2550 The Politics of the Developing World (3 hours)
  • POLT 3400 Comparative Politics (3 hours)
  • POLT 4400 Advanced Studies in Comparative Politics (3-4 hours)

International Relations
3 hours from the following:

  • POLT 1050 Introduction to International Relations (3 hours)
  • POLT 4100 Advanced Studies in International Politics (3 hours)
  • INTL 2030 International Law (3 hours)
  • INTL 3100 International Political Economy (3 hours)
  • INTL 3700 International Organizations: Structure and Political Conflict (3 hours)
  • INTL 3800 International Security (3 hours)

Additional Requirements (18 hours)

  • HIST electives (6 hours)
  • POLT or INTL electives (3 hours)
  • Upper-level POLT or INTL electives (6 hours)
  • Upper-level elective in HIST, POLT or INTL (3 hours)

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

HIST 1800 may not be used to satisfy the 36-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 36 credit hours.