Political Science  
Welcome to the Department of Political Science

Political Science-the study of government and politics-deals with the perennial issues of power, authority, freedom, and order in societies and on the international scene. Just as the ancient Greeks used the word "idiot" to refer to one who took no interest in the affairs of the state, we believe that the study of political science is an essential part of the educational process.

Purpose

The purpose of the program is to provide a liberal arts education with an emphasis in the study of political science. The program prepares students for a wide variety of careers as well as for active and discerning roles in the community.

Objectives
  • Sensitize students to the perennial issues of power, freedom, order, and authority in societies and on the international scene;
  • Enable students to become more active and discerning citizens;
  • Introduce majors and minors to the various subfields of the discipline;
  • Assist in preparing students for graduate school, law school, and opportunities and/or post-baccalaureate careers.
Special Features & Careers

Students majoring in political science can choose among five degree options, of which four are designed to further specific vocational objectives:

  • Option 1: B.A. (Bachelor of Arts) Liberal Arts Emphasis - Designed for the student with a broad interest in political science.
  • Option 2: B.S. (Bachelor of Science) Pre-Professional Emphasis - Designed for the student seeking graduate work in political science leading to a career in college teaching or research.
  • Option 3: B.A. Pre-Law Emphasis - Designed for students intending to go to Law School.
  • Option 4: B.S. Public Management Emphasis - Designed for students seeking either a position in government or graduate work in urban studies, public administration or urban planning.
  • Option 5: B.A. International Affairs Emphasis - designed for students seeking either a career in the U.S. foreign service, a corporation doing business abroad, a non-governmental international organization, or teaching or research abroad.

The department offers a wide variety of courses out of which all majors choose a "core curriculum" of nine hours. Depending on the option selected, further specialized courses are taken in political science and related areas. There are a variety of options for off-campus study, including internships and the Washington Semester. Students can work with faculty on a one-to-one basis in independent studies or directed readings and are encouraged to master basic career skills-writing, research methods, problem-solving, and the ability to analyze problems. Culminating the major is a required senior project which includes a significant advanced study which includes either an experiential or a written research component. Student organizations foster learning and interaction among students and faculty outside the classroom; these include a pre-law chapter of Phi Alpha Delta for pre-law students, the OCU delegation to the Oklahoma Intercollegiate Legislature (OIL), Pi Sigma Alpha; the national political science honorary society, the College Republicans, and the Young Democrats.