Students hanging out in New Hall quad


Political Science

Dr. Stephen Cole
(650) 508-3548

The Department of History and Political Science offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. The program provides an understanding of important political ideas and ideologies as well as the workings of basic political processes and institutions. We challenge our students to understand how decisions made in the past continue to shape society and political discourse and to appreciate their own agency in shaping a better world. Completing a major in Political Science is excellent preparation for graduate study and for careers in law, politics, journalism, business, public administration, social work, nongovernmental advocacy organizations, and education.

Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate from NDNU with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of American governmental institutions and processes that enable them to be active and effective citizens
  • Acquire familiarity with and understand the variety of political systems in the world at large, their social and historical contexts, and their relation to the global political order
  • Identify and critically examine the major political theories and ideologies
  • Employ historical perspectives to evaluate contemporary conflicts and issues, both domestic and international
  • Analyze political and policy problems and formulate policy options
  • Use the tools of social science research – statistical and qualitative – in formulating a research topic, collecting and analyzing data, and presenting results

Bachelor of Arts in Political Science

In addition to major requirements, students must meet General Education Requirements and Degree Requirements.

Prerequisites Units
HST1000 World History I 3
HST1010 World History II 3
Total Prerequisites 6


Major Requirements Units
HST2110 History of Political and Social Thought 3
PSC1000 Introduction to American Government 3
PSC1100 Introduction to Comparative Governments 3
PSC2110 International Relations 3
PSC2301 State and Local Government 4
PSC2310 Parties, Politics, and Campaigning 3
PSC2400 Methods and Methodology 3
PSC2400L Statistical Software in Behavioral Science Research 1
PSC2880 Capstone 4
Upper-division Electives in Political Science 6
Total Major Requirements 33
Other Degree Requirements* and General Electives 85
Total Unit Requirement 124

*Other degree requirements include General Education Requirements and General Degree Requirements (e.g., U.S. History).                                                                                                                                                                        
Because of the large number of elective units available, the Department usually recommends a double major.

Minor in Political Science

Required Courses Units
HST1000 World History I 3
HST1010 World History II 3
PSC1000 Introduction to American Government 3
PSC1100 Introduction to Comparative Governments 3
Upper-division units in Political Science, approved by  Department Chair 9
Total Unit Requirement  21