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Grand Valley State University    
2018-2019 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog 
  Aug 23, 2019
2018-2019 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Political Science

Requirements for a Major in Political Science

Students seeking the B.A. or B.S. degree are required to take at least 36 credits in political science, including PLS 102, PLS 103, PLS 211, PLS 231 or PLS 232, PLS 495, and seven additional courses, two of which must be in American politics, and one in international relations, one in comparative politics, and one in political thought (200-level or higher). Please see a list of elective courses by category as follows. At least four of these courses must be at the 300 level; independent studies, internships, PLS 300, PLS 350, and PLS 495 do not count toward the 300-level requirement. A total of no more than nine credits of internship and independent study may count toward the major, with no more than six credits in either category. Public Administration (PA) 307 may count as an American politics elective.

Students seeking a B.A. degree must demonstrate third-semester proficiency in a foreign language. Students seeking a B.S. degree must complete the following courses: STA 215, PLS 300, and PLS 350. When taken for the B.S. degree, PLS 300 and PLS 350 do not count toward the 36 required credits for the major.

Additional Required Courses for the B.S. Degree

Additional Required Courses for the B.A. Degree

  • Third-semester proficiency in a foreign language

Political Science Elective Courses by Category

Special Topics, Independent Study, Internship

Suggested Order of Coursework for a Major in Political Science

The flexibility in course selection makes it important for students to seek the advice of a faculty member in the department when choosing courses to fit their specific needs and interests. No sample curriculum will be appropriate for everyone, although these general guidelines should be helpful to nearly everyone. It is also assumed that some counseling will take place to match the curriculum with career plans. We strongly recommend study abroad and an internship. We also advise students to take elective courses in history, economics, and in other social science disciplines.

First Year

  • Basic skills as needed (WRT 150 and/or MTH 110)
  • One or two general education courses in Arts and/or Philosophy and Literature
  • One or two science general education courses
  • Electives or foreign language. Choose foreign language if choosing B.A. (see B.A. section)
  • One general education social science course from another discipline

(We recommend

as these courses are good background for  , an option for the B.S.)

Second Year

Third Year

  • Three or four political science courses at 200-300 level
  • Completion of general education courses
  • Electives
  • Political science internship
  • If choosing B.S. (and upon completion of STA 215 and PLS 300), take  

Fourth Year

Political Science Program Description

Political Science - Program Description