Courses

The online Bachelor of Science in Political Science is a liberal arts program, requiring 120 credits for completion. A grade of C or better is required for all courses in this major.

Course List - Bachelor of Science in Political Science 

Prescribed Courses (16 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Scientific Study of Politics PL C 010 This course introduces students to both the scientific study of politics and the way that study advances our understanding of political actors, events, processes, and institutions. 3 credits
Introduction to Political Research PLSC 308 Introduction to conceptualization, research design, and measurement in political research.

Prerequisite: any 3 credits in political science
3 credits
Quantitative Political Analysis PLSC 309 Data analysis and statistical applications in political research, including data processing; inferential statistics; contingency analysis; correlation and regression; multivariate analysis.

Prerequisite: any 3 credits in political science
3 credits

Introduction to Programming

or

Introduction to Programming Techniques

CMPSC 101

or

CMPSC 121

Fundamentals of computational thinking including reasoning about problems at multiple levels of abstraction; and analyzing code for its behavior, efficiency, and correctness.

or

Design and implementation of algorithms. Structured programming. Problem-solving techniques. Introduction to a high-level language, including arrays, procedures, and recursion.

Prerequisite: MATH 110 or prerequisite or concurrent MATH 140

3 credits

Techniques of Calculus

or

Calculus With Analytic Geometry I

MATH 110

or

MATH 140

Functions, graphs, derivatives, integrals, techniques of differentiation and integration, exponentials, improper integrals, applications.

Prerequisite: MATH 022 or MATH 40 or MATH 41 or satisfactory performance on the mathematics placement examination

or

Functions, limits; analytic geometry; derivatives, differentials, applications; integrals, applications.

Prerequisite: Math 22 and/or Math 26 and satisfactory performance on the mathematics placement examination or Math 40 or Math 41 or satisfactory performance on the mathematics placement examination.

4 credits
Additional Courses (Choose 9 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Introduction to American National Government PLSC 001 Introduction to development and nature of American political culture, constitution/structural arrangements, electoral/policy processes; sources of conflict and consensus. 3 credits
Introduction to Comparative Politics PLSC 003 Introduction to study of comparative government and politics: normative/empirical theories; government functions in modern societies; representative structures and processes. 3 credits
Contemporary Political Ideologies PLSC 007 Critical analysis of contemporary political ideologies such as liberalism, conservatism, socialism, anarchism, fascism, feminism, and environmentalism. 3 credits
International Relations PLSC 014 Characteristics of modern nation-states and forces governing their international relations; nationalism; imperialism; diplomacy; current problems of war and peace.  3 credits
Introduction to Political Theory PLSC 017 Introduction to basic issues in political theory through analysis of selected major political thinkers. 3 credits
Additional Courses - Data Intensive (Choose 9 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Analyzing of Public Policy in the American States PLSC 404 This course provides students with the tools to empirically evaluate policy proposals and outcomes in the American states.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001, PL SC 309 (concurrent)
3 credits
Analysis of Elections PLSC 429 The new politics, its technology, and the strategic perspectives that underlie it.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001, PL SC 309
3 credits
Analysis of Public Opinion and Political Attitudes PLSC 447 This course engages students in the empirical study of public opinion.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001, PL SC 309
3 credits
Empirical Legal Studies PLSC 476 This course engages students in the empirical study of law and the courts.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001, PL SC 309
3 credits
PL SC 400 Level Courses (9 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits

International Political Economy

PLSC 412

The transnational politics of trade, investment, aid, raw materials, and the environment; nation-states, multinational corporations, and the U.N.

Prerequisite: ECON 102, ECON 104 or I B 303

3 credits

International Relations Theory PLSC 418W     A survey of traditional and contemporary conceptual frameworks and theoretical approaches for the analysis of international relations.

Prerequisite: PL SC 014
3 credits
The Politics of Terrorism             PLSC 439 Analysis of political terrorism as a violent alternative for peaceful change and traditional warfare in the nuclear age.

Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100 or PL SC 014 or permission of program
3 credits
American Foreign Policy PLSC 442 Principles of American foreign policy; processes of policy formulation; roles of the President, Congress, the State Department and other government agencies.

Prerequisite: PL SC 014
3 credits
Governments and Politics of Western Europe PL SC 455 Comparative analysis of political and governmental structures of major West European nations; main functions and processes of such structures.

Prerequisite: PL SC 003 or PL SC 020           
3 credits

Politics and Institutions of Latin-American Nations

PLSC 456        Social forces and processes, governmental institutions, foreign policies of major states of Latin America.

Prerequisite: PL SC 003 or PL SC 020
3 credits

International Relations of the Middle East 

PLSC 467

The international relations of the Middle East, stressing national security policies of regional and outside actors, and major contemporary conflicts.

Prerequisite: PL SC 014 or HIST 181

3 credits
Politics and the Media PL SC 468 An examination of how politics and public policy affect and are shaped by the news media, as a political institution, in America.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001 or PL SC 003
3 credits
American Constitutional Law PLSC 471        The origins of judicial review, landmark decisions of the Supreme Court, and their impact on the American form of government.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001
3 credits
The American Legal Process PLSC 472 Analysis of the roles, procedures, and policies characterizing the American legal system.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001
3 credits

American Judicial Behavior

PLSC 473

Analyzes behavior of judges and other participants in the legal process; examines how and why courts function as policymaking bodies.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001

3 credits
Congress and the Presidency             PLSC 480W Basic characteristics and processes of the national legislature and executive; roles and interaction of these institutions in the policy process.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001
3 credits
Policy Making and Evaluation PLSC 490 Advanced analysis of public policy, emphasizing policy evaluation and the factors that determine policy success and failure.

Prerequisite: PL SC 001            
3 credits
Methodology (Choose 9 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits

Strategy and Politics

PLSC 410

Introduction to various methods of analyzing strategic behavior using social choice and game theories

Prerequisite: PL SC 001, PL SC 003, or PL SC 014

3 credits

Analysis of Variance STAT 461 Analysis of variance for single and multifactor designs; response surface methodology.

Prerequisite: STAT 200 or PL SC 309
3 credits
Applied Regression Analysis STAT 462 Introduction to linear and multiple regression; correlation; choice of models, stepwise regression, nonlinear regression.

Prerequisite: STAT 200
3 credits
Applied Time Series Analysis  STAT 463 Identification of models for empirical data collected over time; use of models in forecasting.

Prerequisite: STAT 462
3 credits
Survey Sampling STAT 466 Introduction to design and analysis of sample surveys, including questionnaire design, data collection, sampling methods, and ratio and regression estimation.

Prerequisite: STAT 200
3 credits
Capstone Experience (3 credits)
Title Description Credits
Capstone Select 3 credits from LA 495, or PLSC 494, 496, 404, 429, 447, or 476  (Sem: 7-8) 3 credits

Supporting and Related Area Courses

Select 12 credits from a department-approved list of courses in the arts, humanities, languages, social and behavioral sciences, natural sciences, and related fields in consultation with your adviser. Students can take a range of courses across disciplines or concentrate their selection to complete a minor in a supporting field.* (Semesters 1–8)

Supporting and Related Area Courses (12 credits)
Subject Course Numbers
Communication 403, 405, 409, 410
Communication Arts and Sciences 404, 452, 455,  475
Criminology 482 or Criminal Justice 304, 435, 465
Economics all courses at the 300-level and above
Geography all courses at the 300-level and above
History all courses at the 400-level and above
Political Science all courses at the 300-level and above
Psychology all courses at the 400-level and above
Sociology all courses at the 400-level and above
IST 235, 250

* Courses used to satisfy Required or Supporting and Related Area requirements may not be double-counted as General Education or electives.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.