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The Department of Political Science (PSC)

The Department of Political Science offers two majors, one in political science and another in international studies, both of which culminate in the BA degree. Minors in both fields are also offered.

Political Science Major (BA)

Department of Political Science, 318 ten Hoor Hall
www.as.ua.edu/psc
politicalscience@as.ua.edu

Degree requirements. Students earning the bachelor of arts (BA) degree with a major in political science must complete all University, college (see p. 50-52), and departmental degree requirements. These include the general education requirements, the following major requirements, all requirements for an approved minor, and sufficient other credits to total a minimum of 120 applicable semester hours.

Admission into the major. Students are expected to formally declare a major no later than the fourth semester of full-time enrollment (or at 61 semester hours for transfer students). With the assistance of an advisor in the major department, students should complete the “Declaration of Major” form.

Grade point average. A 2.0 grade point average in the major is required for completion of the degree. The major GPA is calculated based on all courses applicable to the major that the student has attempted at UA and all work attempted applicable to the major throughout the entire higher education career.

Major courses. The major in political science requires successful completion of the following 30 semester hours:

CoursesHours
PSC 1013
PSC 201, PSC 202, PSC 203, PSC 204,
    PSC 205, or PSC 2066
PSC field requirement*9
PSC electives12
Total30

*Fields: Students must earn a minimum of 3 hours in three of the fields listed below for a total of 9 hours.
  1. American Government: PSC 102, PSC 103, PSC 211, PSC 311, PSC 312, PSC 313, PSC 314, PSC 315, PSC 316, PSC 318, PSC 319, PSC 364, PSC 411, PSC 412, PSC 413, PSC 414, PSC 423, and PSC 466.
  2. Comparative Politics: PSC 203, PSC 317, PSC 331, PSC 332, PSC 333, PSC 334, PSC 341, PSC 352, PSC 433, PSC 436, PSC 437, and PSC 443.
  3. Political Theory: PSC 205, PSC 251, PSC 317, PSC 352, PSC 353, PSC 362, PSC 451, and PSC 452.
  4. Public Administration: PSC 206, PSC 211, PSC 361, PSC 362, PSC 412, PSC 461, PSC 462, and PSC 466
  5. International Relations: PSC 204, PSC 342, PSC 343, PSC 413, PSC 414, PSC 432, PSC 434, PSC 435, PSC 441, PSC 442, PSC 444, PSC 445, and PSC 446.

Upper-level residency. A minimum of 12 hours of 300- and 400-level courses in the major must be earned on this campus.

Ancillary courses. The major in political science does not require ancillary courses. However, it is recommended that students considering graduate school study a modern foreign language.

Required minor. This major requires the completion of a minor.

Additional major requirements. Specific sections of topics courses (PSC 320, PSC 321, and PSC 422) may be appropriate to fulfill the field requirements. Students should contact the department’s undergraduate director concerning this use of special topics courses. Students are responsible for ensuring that they have met all University, college, major, and minor requirements. However, each student must meet with an advisor in the major department for academic planning and to be cleared for registration each semester.

Special opportunities. The department sponsors a local chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honorary. To be eligible for election to Pi Sigma Alpha, a student must have taken at least 12 hours of political science with a 3.3 overall grade point average. At least one course must have been at or above the 300-level . In addition, a student must have a 3.0 grade point average for all course work undertaken prior to the time of election. The department also offers internship opportunities in state government and politics in Montgomery, Alabama, and in national government and politics in Washington, D.C.

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