The B.A. in Political Science
The Department of Political Science offers an undergraduate degree program to prepare students for professional careers in public service, law, international relations, and teaching, and for more effective civic participation as a citizen, public servant, or elected official. Undergraduate study in political science is designed to develop knowledge, analytical skills, and critical insight into the nature of politics and political problems. The Department attempts to acquaint students with the broad questions that have occupied political thinkers and theorists for millenia, as well as contemporary issues both in this country and abroad and the skills necessary to analyze and understand those issues.
Students should consult with a Faculty Advisor in the Political Science Department or an Advisor in the College of Natural and Social Sciences Academic Advisement Center to review the current requirements in the major and develop a plan for prompt completion. More detail on the BA program can also be found in the online University Catalog. Information on applying for graduation (a necessary step to receive your degree), is available from the University Graduation Office.
The Political Science Major consists of a common core of two lower division and five upper division courses to be taken by all political science majors, plus eight elective courses (including four in a selected political science option). It is recommended that 2000- and 3000-level requirements are completed prior to enrolling in 4000 level courses.
The common core for all students in the major:
POLS 1000 - Government and American Society
POLS 2810 - Quantitative Methods in Political Science
POLS 3710 - Foundations of American Politics
POLS 3720 - Foundations of Political Theory
POLS 3730 - Foundations of Comparative Politics
POLS 3740 - Foundations of Global Politics
Senior Capstone Seminar (POLS 4980 or 4981 or 4982)
In addition to the core, eight elective courses are required.
All requirements are available in chart form here:
Semester System Worksheet for All Options
In addition to the core requirements, all students must choose one of the four options offered in the B.A. program. Each option is adapted to a different objective as described below.
The General Political Science Option is a general program of undergraduate preparation for graduate study that allows students to choose their own upper division courses to prepare for professions in both the public and private sectors.
The Global Politics Option is a program of undergraduate preparation for graduate study that focuses on the changing nature of international politics and the emergence of a global political space.
The Pre-Legal Option provides undergraduate preparation for professions in law, education, and public service. While a strong emphasis is placed on developing skills of legal analysis and research, courses in this option also provide students with a critical understanding of the interrelationship between law and politics in American society.
The Public Administration Option provides undergraduate preparation for career government service or positions in nonprofit organizations.
The requirements for each option are available in chart form here:
Roadmaps for Degree Completion
A "roadmap" provides a schedule for the courses necessary for completing the BA degree within a designated period of time. Below are roadmaps for full-time and part-time students, with further detail based on whether students enrolled at CSULA as freshmen or transfers.
Four Year Plan for Students who Start at CSULA as Freshmen
Two Year Plan for Students who Start at CSULA as Juniors