Major and Minor in Political Science

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS (Bachelor of Arts)

The major in political science, effective fall 2021

The political science major is designed to expose students to the philosophical and practical problems of political organization, action, and governance and to encourage critical thinking about the nature of citizenship, rights, and duties in the modern world. The undergraduate political science curriculum is divided into three general areas: theoretical approaches to politics, American institutions and politics, and foreign and international politics. While majors may choose to focus their studies on one of these areas, they are required to develop a solid intellectual foundation and understanding that spans all three and to approach the study of political science within the broader context of the social sciences.

Learning objectives

Students completing a major in political science need to demonstrate knowledge of the political world both here in the United States, in other countries around the world, and in the realities of politics between states. This includes normative theories of political behavior as well as the actual institutional, cultural, and interpersonal processes and theories explaining how they work. Students also need to demonstrate critical thinking and information acquisition skills, expertise in oral and written communication, quantitative and information literacy, and creative problem solving. Students should emerge from the program ready to engage the world politically, using their own political power to shape the world around them. Each course, and the overall structure of the program, aims to further one or more elements of these objectives.

The Major

The Political Science major shall be made up of 13 courses (39 credits). Requirements are as follows:

R1: Core Requirements

Any three of the following 3 credit courses:

101 Nature of Politics
102 Introduction to International Relations
103 Comparative Politics
104 American Government
106 Law and Politics

R2: Research Methods

Any one of the following 3 credit courses:

300 Political Science Research Methods
392 Qualitative Research Methods
307 Survey Research
391 Data Science for Political Science

R3: Political Philosophy

A total of one course from 300- or 400-level courses in political theory

R4: American Institutions and Politics

A total of one course from 300- or 400-level courses in American institutions and politics

R5: International and Comparative Politics

A total of one course from 300- or 400-level courses in international and comparative politics

R6: Political Science Seminar

A total of one course from 395 Political Science seminar or equivalent

R7: Political Science courses

A total of 15 credits from Political Science electives, of which

  • 12 credits must be 300- of 400- level courses
  • No more than 3 credits may be used from 1.5 credit mini courses
  • No more than 6 credits may be used from internship, independent study, or senior honors thesis.
  • No more than 12 credits may be used from non-Rutgers New Brunswick courses.

You must achieve a minimum grade of C in all courses.

MINOR REQUIREMENTS

  1. Minor in Political Science:
    • To minor in Political Science, students must complete six 3-credit Political Science courses with a grade of C or better. At least four of these courses must be at the 300-level or above. In addition, no more than six credits of independent study, internships, or any combination of these may be applied toward the minor. No more than two Political Science courses (6 credits) that have been taken outside of the Rutgers-New Brunswick/Piscataway Political Science Department may be applied to the minor. The Political Science Seminar 790:395 may not be counted toward the minor.
  2. Minor in Critical Intelligence Studies:
    • To declare the minor in Critical Intelligence Studies, students must complete 790:292 Introduction to Critical Intelligence Studies. Completing the minor requires 5 additional courses, including an internship in the intelligence field or appropriate research, two courses in computer science, and an elective that teaches competence in European, Latin American, South Asian, Middle Eastern, African or East Asian languages and culture. See https://polisci.rutgers.edu/academics/undergraduate/minor for more details.

TRANSFER CREDIT:

To receive transfer credit for Political Science courses from another college or university, the course must be evaluated by the Political Science Department. If you are planning to study at another college or university, you should obtain prior approval of the Political Science courses. In either case bring a syllabus that includes the university name, the instructor’s name and credentials, the contact hours, the graded assignments and the reading list to Prof. Dennis Bathory in 506 Hickman.

Equivalent courses for Political Science courses at New Jersey Community Colleges can be found on the NJ Transfer website https://www.njtransfer.org/ . There are a limited number of NJ community college Political Science courses that are accepted for major credit. Most are introductory courses. Contact a faculty advisor for more information.

No more than four Political Science courses (12 credits) that have been taken outside of the Rutgers-New Brunswick/Piscataway Political Science Department may be applied to the major. No more than two Political Science courses (6 credits) that have taken outside of the Rutgers-New Brunswick/Piscataway Political Science Department may be applied to the minor.

FOR STUDENTS DECLARING THE POLITICAL SCIENCE MAJOR BETWEEN AND JULY 2014 AND JULY 2021

To become a Political Science major, a student must complete TWO 100 level Political Science courses with an average of C or better. These courses can be counted toward major credit.

Majors must complete TWELVE 3-credit courses (OR eleven 3-credit courses and two 1.5-credit courses) in Political Science with a grade of C or better, including:

  1. The introductory course in "Theoretical Approaches to Politics":
    • 790:101 (The Nature of Politics)
  2. At least one of the following introductory courses in "American Institutions and Politics":
    • 790:104 (American Government)
    • 790:106 (Law and Politics)
  3. At least one of the following introductory courses in "Foreign and International Politics":
    • 790:102 (Introduction to International Relations)
    • 790:103 (Comparative Politics)
  4. At least one 300- or 400-level course in each of these three areas: "Theoretical Approaches to Politics", "American Institutions and Politics" and "Foreign and International Politics". Click here for a complete list.
  5. 790:395 Political Science Seminar* (taken after reaching junior status)
  6. 5 additional 3-credit courses.

NOTE: No more than one 790:395 (Political Science Seminar) may be counted for major credit.

The Political Science courses for the major may include:

  1. No more than 12 credits of 100 level course work.
  2. No more than 6 credits of independent study, internships, or thesis work, or any combination of these.
  3. No more than 3 credits of mini-courses (i.e. 1.5 credit courses).

No more than four Political Science courses (12 credits) taken outside the Rutgers-New Brunswick/Piscataway Department of Political Science may be applied to the major.

FOR STUDENTS DECLARING THE POLITICAL SCIENCE MAJOR BETWEEN 2005 AND JUNE 2014

To become a Political Science major, a student must complete TWO 100 level Political Science courses with an average of C or better. These courses can be counted toward major credit.

Majors must complete ELEVEN 3-credit courses (OR ten 3-credit courses and two 1.5-credit courses) in Political Science with a grade of C or better, including:

  1. The introductory course in "Theoretical Approaches to Politics":- 790:101 (The Nature of Politics)
  2. At least oneof the following introductory courses in "American Institutions and Politics":
    • 790:104 (American Government)
    • 790:106 (Law and Politics)
  3. At least one of the following introductory courses in "Foreign and International Politics":
    • 790:102 (Introduction to International Relations)
    • 790:103 (Comparative Politics)
  4. No more than four 3-credit courses at the 100 level
  5. At least one 300- or 400-level course in each of these three areas: "Theoretical Approaches to Politics", "American Institutions and Politics" and "Foreign and International Politics". Click here for a complete list.
  6. 790:395 Political Science Seminar* (taken after reaching junior status)

NOTE: No more than one 790:395 (Political Science Seminar) may be counted for major credit.

  1. The Political Science courses for the major may include:
    • No more than 12 credits of 100 level course work.
    • No more than 6 credits of independent study, internships, or thesis work, or any combination of these.
    • No more than 3 credits of mini-courses (i.e. 1.5 credit courses).
  2. In addition, majors must complete with a grade of C or better two 3-credit courses in each of any two of the following cognate departments:
    • Anthropology
    • Economics
    • History
    • Philosophy
    • Psychology
    • Religion
    • Sociology
  3. No more than four Political Science courses (12 credits) taken outside the Rutgers-New Brunswick/Piscataway Department of Political Science may be applied to the major. No winter session courses from any Rutgers campus or another university/college may be applied toward the major.