Department of Political Science and International Affairs

Requirements for the B.A. in Political Science

Learning Outcomes for the Political Science Major


See the pre-Fall 2022 degree requirements

A. The Proficiency and General Distribution Requirements of the University (the Social Sciences and Humanities requirements will be satisfied by completing the core curriculum courses below).

B. Additional Foreign Language Requirement

Political Science students will need to demonstrate language proficiency in a language other than English. Language proficiency is defined as:

  • two years of U.S. college-level language instruction or,
  • level B2 or higher in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) or,
  • completion of a secondary education in a language other than English.  

Students may demonstrate language proficiency by taking JCU placement tests in Italian, Spanish or French or the Dialang which covers 14 European Languages. These services are offered by JCU’s Foreign Language Resource Center. Students who wish to be evaluated for languages for which the Dialang is not available should contact the Coordinator of JCU’s Foreign Language Center, Professor Gina Siddu Pilia: [email protected].

C. Core Curriculum

  • PL 209 World Politics
  • PL 210 Introduction to Political Theory
  • PL 223 Comparative Politics

Plus, one of the following courses:

  • PL 208 Statistical Analysis for Political Science
  • PL 260 Social Science Research Methodology
  • PL 299 Philosophy of Social Science
  • MA 208 Statistics I

Plus, one additional 200/300 level PL course.

D. Major Electives

Six additional PL courses, including a maximum of two 200-level PL courses and at least one 400-level Writing Intensive Senior Seminar. In lieu of ONE 400-level seminar, students with a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or above can choose to write a thesis. Note: Credit earned from an internship can also be applied towards the Major Electives.

The University requires an overall minimum grade point average of 2.00 in all courses taken at the University, with no more than two grades lower than C- in core courses.

E. General Electives sufficient to give a total of 120 credits.

Please note that students cannot earn a double major or a double degree in Political Science and International Affairs.