Political Science Program

Political Science Graduating Seniors and Faculty Spring 2016

Why Major in Political Science?

Political Science is the study of government systems, political behavior, and public policies at both the domestic and international level. Majoring in political science offers you a broad, comprehensive knowledge and understanding of how political decisions are made and how they shape our society and world.

The Political Science program at Murray State University offers a rigorous and extensive curriculum using both scientific methods and humanistic perspectives. This well-designed academic training provides students with a valuable stepping stone to successful careers in various fields.

Students with a Political Science degree will:

  • Acquire comprehensive knowledge on political systems, policies, and political behavior of the U.S. and other countries
  • Develop their academic interest through various research opportunities
  • Attain analytical, research, and problem-solving skills
  • Hone data management and analysis skills

What Can You Do with a Political Science Degree?

The knowledge and skill sets that Murray State Political Science graduates gained are required for many successful careers and valued by diverse employers in various fields. Many Political Science majors go on to careers in government, law, polling and campaign management, diplomacy, international organizations, nongovernmental organizations, business, journalism and communications, education and research, etc. Our graduates have also been very successful at gaining admission into law school and various graduate programs.

Program Requirements

Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science Degree (CIP 45.1001)

University Studies Requirements (39-43 hours)
(See Academic Degrees and Programs.)

  • University Studies selections must include:
    • Scientific Inquiry, Methodologies, and Quantitative Skills
    • STA 135 Introduction to Probability and Statistics Note: See required courses below before selecting University Studies elective courses. A minimum grade of C is required in ENG 105 and POL 140 from freshmen and transfer students majoring or minoring in political science.

Required Courses (25 hours)

  • POL 100T Transitions
  • POL 140 American National Government
  • POL 240 State and Local Politics
  • POL 250 Introduction to International Relations
  • POL 252 Introduction to Comparative Politics
  • POL 261 Introduction to Political Theory
  • POL 359 Writing and Inquiry in the Social Sciences
  • POL 360 Research Methods
  • POL 499 Senior Seminar in Political Science

Required Limited Electives (15 hours)

  • Chosen from any POL course numbered between 300-499.
  • Note: Only six hours of credit toward the major may be received for POL 488, 489, or 495.

Required Minor (21-24 hours)

Unrestricted Electives (13-20 hours)

Total Curriculum Requirements (120 hours)

The Political Science program at Murray State University also offers Political Science/Legal Studies Track (Pre-Law Program) and Political Science/Social Studies Teaching Certification.

Political Science Minor (24 hours)

POL 140, 250, 252, 261; and 12 hours of POL electives. Electives may be chosen from any POL course numbered between 300-499. Only three hours are allowed from POL 488,489, 495. Six hours must be upper-level courses completed at Murray State University. A minimum grade of C in ENG 105 and POL 140 is required of all students minoring in political science. No substitutions shall be made in the minor without written approval of the department chair.

Social Science Minor (24 hours)

Open only to majors in economics, history, or political science who seek secondary certification in social studies. ECO 231, EES 110, HIS 221, 222, POL 140, SOC 133; and six hours of upper level courses (300 or above) from the social science disciplines with approval of advisor. Courses required for a major may not be counted toward the minor; substitutions must be from a social science discipline other than the major and be approved by the advisor; and requirements for certification for teaching secondary school social studies, grades 8 through 12 through the College of Education and Human Services must also be met. 

Social and Behavioral Sciences Minor (21 hours)

POL 140, PSY 180, SOC 133, and an additional 12 hours from ECO, LST, PHI 350 or PHI 382, POL, PSY, or SOC. Six hours must be upper-level courses. 

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