2016-2017 Undergraduate Course Catalog 
    Jul 20, 2024  
2016-2017 Undergraduate Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Political Science, BA

100 Eggers Hall

Chair:  Mehrzad Boroujerdi


Lamis Abdelaaty, Kristi J. Andersen, Michael Barkun, Hossein Bashiriyeh, Kenneth Baynes, James P. Bennett, G. Matthew Bonham, Mehrzad Boroujerdi, Keith J. Bybee, Horace Campbell, Matthew R. Cleary, Elizabeth F. Cohen, Francine D’Amico, Renée de Nevers, David Kwame Dixon, Gavan Duffy, Colin Elman, Miriam Fendius Elman, Margarita Estévez-Abe, Christopher G. Faricy, Shana Gadarian, Dimitar D. Gueorguiev, Petra Hejnova, Margaret Hermann, Seth Jolly, Thomas M. Keck, Ralph Ketcham, Audie Klotz, W. Henry Lambright, Robert D. McClure, Daniel McDowell, Glyn Morgan, Spencer Piston, Sarah B. Pralle, Grant D. Reeher, Mark Rupert, Anoop Sadanandan, S.N. Sangmpam, Yüksel Sezgin, Jeffrey M. Stonecash, Jennifer Stromer-Galley, Brian D. Taylor, Laurence Thomas, Margaret Susan Thompson, Danielle M. Thomsen, Stuart J. Thorson

The study of political science helps us answer critical questions about how power in exercised in society and how benefits and burdens are distributed among the world’s countries and citizens within them. Political Science can serve as the core of a liberal arts education, helping you to master critical thinking, research, and writing skills while exposing you to some of the most important traditions of thought about politics and public life. It can prepare you for a lifetime of active and informed citizenship. And it can help you prepare a path to law school, graduate school, and careers in law, public service, electoral politics, public policy, journalism and communications, non-profit advocacy, international relations, and academia, among other fields.


Students are required to fulfill the requirements for the B.A. or minor in political science as stipulated in the course catalog for the academic year in which they enter Syracuse University. Graduation with a B.A. or a minor in political science requires a 2.0 average in the upper-division coursework applied toward the major or minor.

Major Requirements

To declare a political science major, students must complete one PSC course with a grade no lower than a C-. The B.A. in political science requires 30 credits, including PSC 121 , one additional course at the 100 level, and PSC 202 . Of the remaining 21 credits, 18 are taken in courses numbered 300 or above. An additional 3 credits may be taken at the 100 level as part of the remaining 21 credits, but no more than a total of 9 credits may be taken at the 100 level. PSC courses with a grade of D may not be applied toward the major requirements. The upper-division courses regularly offered by the department are included in the list below. PSC majors must take at least one course from the approved list of courses with international content (approved courses are designated with an asterisk [*], see list below). Political science majors must take at least 9 credits of coursework included in one cluster of related upper-division courses. (Clusters are listed below.) Experience credit courses may not be used to satisfy major requirements. Political science majors seeking a degree with honors must satisfy the requirements of the Honors Program in addition to the requirements for the major in political science.

Political Science Courses and Clusters

The courses regularly offered by the department for application toward a major are listed below. Special topics courses (PSC 300 , PSC 411 ) and courses which may be taken multiple times (PSC 350 ) may be included in a cluster with the approval of the undergraduate advisor. Courses taken abroad may also count with the approval of the undergraduate advisor. Finally, students may petition to construct their own cluster; this petition will be considered by the department’s Undergraduate Studies Committee.

Comparative Politics

Distinction in Political Science

Minimum Department GPA 3.5

Minimum Cumulative GPA 3.5

Additional Information

Award of Distinction in Political Science requires successful completion of 6 credits of distinction thesis preparatory coursework (PSC 495  and PSC 496 ) and successful defense of written thesis.