Enrolling in a political science degree program is the important first step to earning a versatile and valuable credential that can help you reach your professional goals. A political science degree can create numerous opportunities and equip students with diverse communication and critical thinking skills.

“A political science major prepares students for much more than law school. It empowers them to understand and critically analyze the fast-paced world of political events, ideas, and information. Our majors go on to careers in business, nonprofits, government agencies, foreign service, political campaigns, law, national security, and more,” said James A. Piazza, liberal arts professor of political science.

What you study

Political science is one of the most broad and versatile areas of study, and students have flexibility to tailor their curriculum to match their individual interests and career goals.

While pursuing a political science degree, you will study many subjects that relate to varied career paths and occupations. This gives you the chance to explore new areas that might spark your interest and help you decide what career path you want to pursue.

Upper-level courses in political science programs emphasize research-based writing projects, giving students the opportunity to develop skills in those areas. Students also conduct research and evaluate data, so they can strengthen their analytical abilities, as well. This comprehensive skill set makes graduates strong candidates for opportunities with employers in many industries.

Career options

Political science is a promising field expected to see continued growth. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employment of political scientists is projected to grow 5 percent from 2018 to 2028, about as fast as the average for all occupations.”

Graduates aren’t limited to political science job titles, however. This versatile credential has helped those with Penn State political science degrees go on to pursue careers in many fields, including:

  • Business
  • Finance
  • Politics
  • Diplomacy
  • Law
  • Consulting
  • Government
  • Journalism
  • Communications
  • Campaign management
  • Education

Penn State political science graduates work in many types of jobs, such as:

  • Lobbyist
  • Lawyer
  • Diplomat or foreign service officer
  • Political scientist
  • Professor
  • Business executive
  • Political consultant
  • Government official
  • Policy analyst
  • Legislative assistant
  • Communications/public relations professional
  • Public opinion researcher or pollster

Penn State World Campus political science degree options

Students interested in studying political science have several options at Penn State World Campus.

Bachelor of Arts in Political Science

In this program, a primary goal is to help students develop analytical reasoning and critical thinking skills. This degree is designed for students who want to develop an in-depth understanding and engage in analysis of domestic and international politics and political theory.

Bachelor of Science in Political Science

The emphasis of this program is on helping students gain practical skills. This program enhances a foundation in the social sciences with supplementary course work in mathematics, statistics, and computer science to help students develop a unique blend of expertise and technical knowledge. Gaining knowledge in a wide range of topics can make graduates strong candidates for many roles in both the public and private sectors.

Bachelor of Arts in International Politics

This program would be a good fit for students interested in foreign affairs and homeland security, those pursuing careers in international business, and those considering continuing with graduate study in domestic or international law.

This program offers a choice of three areas of concentration:

  • International Relations
  • International Political Economy
  • National Security Studies

Why earn your political science degree from Penn State World Campus?

Penn State World Campus offers the flexibility and convenience of earning your political science degree from anywhere in the world, whether you are a parent, a professional, active-duty military, or a veteran. These programs can be completed entirely online, with the expertise and support of the talented faculty of Penn State’s College of the Liberal Arts.