The political science program at Saint Martin's University seeks to understand the basis of power in society, how that power is organized and exercised, and its impact on people’s lives. The department seeks to help its students engage in critical analysis of society and power structures.

Program highlights

  • Undertake rigorous coursework and seek to understand the significance of class, race, gender, property relations, and other identities in shaping political structures and political behavior.
  • Faculty promotes social justice and encourages students to be active, thoughtful members of their community.
  • Engage with active self-governance and an understanding of political structures and behaviors.
  • Close proximity to the state capitol offers exciting opportunities for internships, such as the Washington State Legislature, Washington State Historical Society, and Simpson Timber Archive

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The Political Science Program at Saint Martin’s aims to acquaint students with the great issues of politics. The faculty is driven to develop the student's intelligent and lasting interest in society and politics, and provide him or her with an environment for learning active self-governance.

Political science students will undertake rigorous course work as they seek to understand the significance of class, race, gender, property relations and other identities in shaping political structures and political behavior. The department will strive to promote social justice and to encourage students to be active, thoughtful members of their community.

Student internships opportunities are available within:

  • Washington State Legislature
  • Washington State Historical Society
  • Simpson Timber Archive

Political Science majors can go on to rewarding careers in a wide variety of fields, including:

  • Federal, state and local government service
  • Activism
  • Education
  • Law
  • Foreign service
  • Journalism
  • Business
  • Mediation
  • Public affairs research analysis

Students also can prepare for the traditional fields of secondary and higher education and advanced study. 

For a complete list of professional applications, visit "What Can I Do With Major?". For additional information about how Saint Martin’s can help you find the career for you, visit our Career Center.

Requirements

Major

  • 40-46 semester hours of CORE requirements
  • 27 semester hours of upper-division courses
  • No more than six semester hours of credit in internships may be applied toward requirements for a political science major

Visit the undergraduate academic catalog for a complete breakdown of CORE (general) requirements for bachelor's degrees.

PLS 150Survey of American Government and Politics
PLS 152Global Issues
American Politics (choose one):PLS 151 The Politics of U.S. Public Policy
PLS 310 American Foreign Policy
PLS 320 State and Local Politics
PLS 322 American Political Development
PLS 330 Cold War
PLS 364 U.S. Political Participation and Opinion
PLS 366 Congress and the Presidency
Comparative and International Politics (choose one):PLS 200 International Relations
PLS 205 Comparative Politics
GPH 210 World Regional Geography
PLS 315 Politics of Globalization
PLS 325 History of the Vietnam War
PLS 340 Global Environmental Politics
PLS 352 Asia and the World
PLS 371 Model United Nations
PLS 376 Global Food Politics
PLS 377 Global Poverty and Development
Power and Inequality (choose one):PLS 360 Gender and Global Politics
PLS 362 American Exceptionalism
PLS 367 U.S. Labor Politics
PLS 368 American Political Thought
PLS 372 Global Human Rights and Justice Movements
PLS 377 Global Poverty and Development
PLS 379 Judicial Process
CJ 410 Law and Society
PLS 420 Philosophy of Law
PLS 430 Civil Liberties
History (choose 6 semester hours in History at the 300 level or above that align any of the three PLS concentrations):

American Politics: HIS 310, HIS 325, HIS 326, HIS 356, HIS 357. HIS 358. HIS 359, HIS 365

Comparative and International Politics: HIS 344, HIS 347, HIS 410, HIS 411, HIS 413, HIS 415

Power and Inequality: HIS 305, HIS 319, HIS 360, HIS 365, HIS 370, HIS 435

PLS 498Research Methods
PLS 499Senior Seminar Paper

Additionally, 9 more semester hours at the 300 level or above from within any of the three PLS concentrations
(American Politics; Comparative and International Politics; Power and Inequality) or the courses
listed below:

  • PLS 195/295/395 Special Topics
  • PLS 397 Directed Study
  • PLS 390 Legislative and Administrative Internship (No more than six semester hours of credit in internships will count toward the political science major)
  • PLS 490 Legislative and Administrative Internship (No more than six semesterhours of credit in internships will count toward the political science major)

Required courses
• PLS 150 Survey of American Government and Politics
• PLS 152: Global Issues
• 3 semester hours from the above listed History courses
• Complete 9 more semester hours from PLS courses in any of the
subject areas, 6 semester hours at the 300 level or above

Required courses (9 credit hours)
• GPH 210 World Regional Geography
• PLS 200 International Relations OR PLS205 Comparative Politics
• SOC 103 Cultural Anthropology


Non-western history courses (3 credit hours)
One course chosen from:
• HIS 410 History of Modern Egypt
• HIS 411 Modern Latin America
• HIS 413 History of Modern Africa
• HIS 415 History of the Modern Middle East

Elective courses (6 credit hours)

Two electives chosen from:

• BA 420 International Business
• PLS 315 Politics of Globalization
• PLS 325 History of the Vietnam War
• PLS 340 Global Environmental Politics
• PLS 352 Asia and the World
• PLS 360 Gender and Global Politics
• PLS 362 American Exceptionalism
• PLS 371 Model United Nations
• PLS 372 Global Human Rights and Justice Movements
• PLS 376 Global Food Politics
• PLS 377 Global Poverty and Development
• SOC 396 Intercultural Communication
• Or, any upper-division intercultural course with approval
of the faculty advisor for Global Studies

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