Political Science - B.S.

The Political Science bachelor's degree program prepares students to engage with questions of power, governance, justice and injustice in American and global politics. This program provides students with a rigorous grounding in the analytical, critical and ethical thinking necessary to be an effective professional in the world of politics and public service. Political Science majors encounter the dynamic, complex world of politics through the program’s core sequence of courses that emphasizes political literacy and communication, civic and global engagement, ethical decision making, and the application of theory to politics. With priority on exploration and choice, students may pursue their educational and career goals through our program’s three major elective categories: 1) American/U.S. Politics, 2) International and Comparative Politics, and 3) Political Thought, Communication and Practice.

Upon completion of the program, graduates are expected to:

  • Analyze a diversity of political systems, movements, issues and the dynamic nature of international relations.
  • Apply political theory to the practice of politics and political science.
  • Demonstrate fluency in the fundamentals of political communications in a variety of professional contexts and settings.
  • Effectively employ qualitative and quantitative research methods as appropriate to data demands and contexts.
  • Articulate and integrate core ethical principles and standards that define public service and the professional practice of political science.

Students are encouraged to pursue a wide range of opportunities for experiential and applied learning in politics and political science, through program options such as internships, study abroad and language learning. These opportunities provide students with the critical edge needed for building a career in politics and political science, including political campaign management and leadership, political communications, policy research, constituent relations, foreign service, nonprofit organizations, international governmental organizations, transnational corporations, international trade, and government agencies operating at the local, state and federal levels, as well as graduate study. Students also have the opportunity to produce an undergraduate thesis, which prepares them for further graduate study.

Political Science

A four-year program leading to the bachelor of science degree

Major Courses
PSCI1001Introduction to Political Science3
PSCI1030Introduction to Political Theory3
PSCI2001International Relations and World Politics3
PSCI2050Political Communications3
PSCI2100Comparative Politics and Government3
PSCI3005Political Ideologies and the 21st Century3
PSCI3050American Politics, Policy and Institutions3
PSCI3100Research Methods in Political Science3
PSCI3150Ethics in Public Life3
PSCI4900Capstone Seminar in Political Science3
Major Electives
Choose seven of the following courses (at least four courses must have a PSCI designation): *21
American/U.S. Politics
U.S. History Since 1877 (to the Present)
A Multicultural History of America
Contemporary American History: The United States in a Global Age
American Constitutional Law
Race, Politics and Power in America
Women in American Political Life
Special Topics in Political Science
Sustainability Policy and Planning
International Relations and Comparative Politics
Cyber Crimes
Homeland Security
Modern History
Dynamics of Contemporary Diplomacy and Statecraft
Politics of Food, Human Security and Social Justice
Comparative Study of World Religions
Political Thought, Communication and Practice
Power and Leadership
Political Parties, Social Movements and Interest Groups
Issues in Political Theory: The Politics of Human Rights in Global Perspective
Psychology of Conflict Resolution
Applied/Experiential Learning
Choose 6 credits from the following: **6
College of Arts & Sciences Internship Ic
Directed Experiential Education D
Undergraduate Research Experience
Honors Directed Academic Experience
Study Abroad Sa
Related Professional Studies
CAR0010Career Management1
FYS1020First-Year Seminar1
MATH2002Statistics II3
A&S Core Experience
Communications Foundation Courses9
Rhetoric & Composition I
Rhetoric & Composition II
Communication Skills
Integrative Learning 6
Two ILS courses, one at the 2000 level, one at the 4000 level
Arts and Humanities 6
American Government
One course from ART, HUM, LIT, PHIL or REL
A Survey of College Mathematics (or higher, based on student's placement)
Statistics I
Environmental Science
Social Sciences 6
One course from ANTH, GEND, LEAD, PSCI, PSYC, RES or SOC
A&S Electives6
Two courses with an EASC attribute
Free Electives #
18 credits selected from 1000-4999 numbered offerings within the university18
Total Credits122.0

Students are responsible for meeting prerequisites.


In lieu of an internship, directed experiential education, research course, or study abroad, students may use the Applied/Experiential Learning credits towards a minor.

IcTypically, internships require a minimum of six credits. Students interested in a 9 or 12-credit internship can apply additional experiential learning and free elective credits, if available. Students are strongly encouraged to contact a faculty advisor before scheduling internship and free elective credits.

D Directed Experiential Education (DEE) opportunities are based on project availability with community partners and student eligibility. For more information, visit Experiential Education & Career Services (EE&CS). 

SaTo be eligible to count toward Applied/ Experiential Learning, a Study Abroad offering must meet certain requirements. Contact JWU Global to discuss eligible Study Abroad options for this degree program.

#  In addition to classes, free elective credits may be applied to a number of options such as internship, study abroad, Directed Experiential Education courses and courses in a specialization or minor as relevant. For students who qualify for the J2 program, up to four graduate courses may apply. Students are strongly encouraged to contact a faculty advisor before scheduling free elective credits.

Note: Students must pass MATH0010 Pre-Algebra or have equivalent placement scores to enroll in required math courses.

Note: Students must pass ENG0001 Writing Workshop or have equivalent placement scores to enroll in ILS 2000-level courses.

In collaboration with academic colleges across all JWU campuses, JWU Global Study Abroad programs offer a variety of international, domestic, and digital options for major, minor, free electives, experiential learning, and transferable courses. There are many affordable options for students during a semester, winter session, spring and/or summer breaks.  Faculty-led, exchange, affiliate, and direct-enroll programs range in duration from one week to a full semester or full year. Financial aid may be applied, and some partners offer external scholarships.  Premiere programs do not qualify for JWU scholarships or grants; however federal aid is available.  Visit the study abroad website for information, program descriptions and online applications. Where will you go? Wherever you decide, make the best of your educational journey!


Johnson & Wales University holistically reviews all elements of a student’s application to identify those students most likely to succeed at the university.

For students applying as a first-year student, a completed application and high school transcript(s) are required, except in circumstances where a student is homeschooled or where the traditional high school transcript is, for various reasons, not available. For students applying as a transfer student, a completed application, high school and/or college transcript(s) is required for admissions review. 

Successful candidates for first year admission have taken a high school, college preparatory academic program including English, mathematics, science, social science and foreign language. Admissions decisions may also consider individual experiences and particular circumstances unique to each student. Other considerations are made based upon recommendations, writing ability and extracurricular activities.

Visiting campus, both in‐person or virtually, and interacting with admissions staff are all valuable ways of assuring that JWU is the right university for you. 

J2 Program

The JWU J2 program allows qualified students enrolled in a matriculating undergraduate program to take graduate level courses at JWU. Students interested in pursuing this option should meet with their academic advisor to discuss their interest, qualifications, and plans. The undergraduate student may take up to four graduate courses (maximum 12 credits) and are limited to 6 credits a semester and 3 credits per session (Fall Session I and Fall Session II). 

The completion of graduate credits to fulfill undergraduate program requirements does not guarantee acceptance into the graduate program after completion of the baccalaureate degree. Matriculating undergraduate students who wish to formally enroll in a graduate program, must fulfill all requirements for entrance into the intended graduate program and complete a graduate program application. 

Note: Not all graduate courses are included as part of this policy. Courses offered as part of the Masters of Arts in Teaching, Masters of Education, Masters of Science in Physician Assistant Studies and doctoral courses are excluded from this policy and are restricted to program majors only. Additional courses and/or programs as determined by individual colleges may also have restricted access.

Eligibility Criteria:

To be eligible to enroll in graduate level courses (excludes: Masters of Arts in Teaching, Masters of Education, Masters of Science in Physician Assistant Studies, doctoral courses and other programs as outlined by the colleges).

Undergraduate students must meet the following criteria:

·       Undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher

·       Completed & registered undergraduate credits at least 90 credits

·       Meet the individual course prerequisites

Appeal to Eligibility Criteria: College Dean or designee will receive a copy of the Petition Form, Student's GPS and email requesting appeal if the student requests to appeal the GPA or earned/registered credit criteria. College Dean / designee will review and determine approval.  

These courses carry graduate credit and will replace undergraduate degree requirements when applicable, traditionally free-electives (maximum of 12 credits). The course will be applied to the undergraduate degree in the order in which they are taken (if required) and will also be applied towards both the students undergraduate and graduate GPA.

Students should maintain enrollment in at least 12 credits of undergraduate coursework to maintain full-time status; graduate course enrollment is not calculated into undergraduate full-time status. For students already attending full-time as undergraduates (12 credits or more) and paying the full-time tuition, the graduate credits will be included in full-time tuition fee. Students attending part-time (11 credits or less) will pay the cost per-credit undergraduate tuition for the graduate course.

Course registration will be based on space availability and students enrolled in graduate level courses will be required to maintain good academic standing at the undergraduate and graduate level.