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Major/Minor Requirements

The political science curriculum at Radford University is intended to provide undergraduates with a broad background in the discipline within the broader context of a liberal education. The major and minor requirements in political science are intended to develop students’ analytical and communication skills as well as a knowledge of politics and government.

Given its objectives, the curriculum covers six areas corresponding with the subfields of modern political science:

  1. American politics
  2. Public administration
  3. Comparative politics
  4. International relations
  5. Methodology
  6. Political philosophy.

For students desiring to teach political science at the secondary level, the teacher licensure option is offered through the Bachelor of Science program for Social Science. Students may pursue either a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree.

In addition to the core of required courses, all political science students must complete course work in one of two concentrations.

Required Departmental Core (12 credits)

  • POSC 110 - Introduction to Politics
  • POSC 120 - Introduction to American Government
  • POSC 231 - Comparative Government
  • POSC 241 - Theories of International Relations

Concentration (21-30 credits)

B.A./B.S. Requirements (6-12 Credits)

Electives
Students should consult with their academic advisors in selecting elective courses to complete 120 semester hours required for graduation.

Total Credits Needed for Degree -120

 

Concentrations

Concentration in Political Science (21 credits)

Students must complete one upper-level course (other than POSC 485, POSC 488, POSC 490, or POSC 498) in each of the following areas:

  • American Government (AG)
  • Comparative Government (CG)
  • International Relations (IR)
  • Political Theory (PT)

In addition, students must complete either POSC 490, Seminar, or POSC 491 - Scope and Methods in Political Science (PT). The total hours earned in political science must be a minimum of 33.

POSC electives must be taken at the 300-400 level. Courses transferred in from community college are not eligible for credit as 300-400 level classes.

Concentration in Law, Justice, and Society (39 credits)

This concentration specifies 21 of the required 43-45 credit hours for the Core Curriculum. It includes 15 credit hours of required departmental core classes; 9 credit hours of 300-400 level political science; and 15 credit hours of courses in related disciplines. A B.A. degree is recommended. POSC electives must be taken at the 300-400 level. Courses transferred in from community college are not eligible for credit as 300-400 level classes.

Core Curriculum Requirements:

University Core B:

  • Humanities: PHIL 112
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences: SOCY 110 or SOCY 121 or ECON 105 or ECON 106

College Core A:

  • Global Perspectives:  ENGL 201 or ENGL 202 or HIST 101or HIST 102 or INST 101 or RELN 112
  • US Perspectives: HIST 111 or HIST 112

College Core B:

  • Humanities/VP: POSC 110
  • Social/Behavioral Sciences: HIST 111 or HIST 112 or ECON 105 or ECON 106 or PSYC 121 or SOCY 110.

Political Science Foundations (15 hours):

  • POSC 120:Introduction to American Government
  • POSC 231: Introduction to Comparative Government
  • POSC 241: Theories of International Relations
  • POSC 290: Seminar in Political Science or POSC 491: Scope and Method in Political Science
  • POSC 485: Internship
  • 9 credit hours of political science elective course chosen from:
    1.  POSC 320: CONGRESS
    2.  POSC 333: JUDICIAL PROCESS
    3.  POSC 370: POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY I
    4.  POSC 438: CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: GOVERNMENTAL POWERS
    5.  POSC 439: CONSTITUTIONAL LAW—CIVIL LIBERTIES
    6.  POSC 440: LAW, JUSTICE, AND  PUBLIC POLICY
    7.  POSC 474: AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT
    8.  POSC 49O/CRJU 490: MOCK TRIAL

15 credit hours of course work chosen from the list below. Courses must be chosen from 3 different disciplines. At least 9 credit hours must be at 300-400 level.

  • COMS 332 (Argumentation and Advocacy);
  • COMS 400 (Media Law and Ethics);
  • CRJU 100 (Introduction to Criminal Justice); 
  • CRJU 315 (Rights of the Criminally Accused);
  • CRJU 360 (Criminal Law and Evidence);
  • CRJU 481 (Forensic Law)
  • ENGL 306 (Technical Writing);
  • HIST 331 (African American History From 1865)
  • HIST 354, HIST 355 (Social History)
  • HIST 356 (American Religious Thought)
  • HIST 381 (Recent American History)
  • PHIL 213 (Critical Reasoning and Argument);
  • PHIL 375 (Philosophy of Law);
  • SOCY 210 (Social Problems);
  • SOCY 250 (Social Inequality);
  • SOCY 360 (Sociological Theory);
  • SOCY 443 (Deviance); and
  • SOCY 444 (Juvenile Delinquency);

Concentration in Public Administration and Public Service (30 credits)

Students must complete

  • POSC 300 - Public Administration (AG, PA)
  • POSC 335 - American Public Policy (AG, PA)
  • POSC 432 - Public Organization Theory and Leadership (AG, PA)
  • POSC 435 - Contemporary Problems in Public Administration (AG, PA)

and one of the following AG courses:

  • POSC 320 - Congress (AG)
  • POSC 321 - The American Presidency (AG)
  • POSC 330 - State and Local Government (AG)
  • POSC 331 - Urban and Metropolitan Politics (AG)
  • POSC 485 - Internships in Political Science and Public Administration

Note:

Students also complete one upper-level course (other than POSC 485, POSC 488, POSC 490, or POSC 498) in each of the following areas: Comparative Government (CG), International Relations (IR), and Political Theory (PT). In addition, students must complete both POSC 490, Seminar (preferably on a Public Administration topic, which may then be counted toward the 15 hours in the concentration field), and POSC 491 - Scope and Methods in Political Science (PT). The total hours earned in political science must be a minimum of 42.

POSC electives must be taken at the 300-400 level. Courses transferred in from community college are not eligible for credit as 300-400 level classes.

 

B.A. Requirements (6-12 credits)

The Bachelor of Arts degree requires completion of the B.A. language requirements described in the undergraduate catalog.

B.S. Requirements (6 credits)

Bachelor of Science requirements for political science majors consist of six semester hours chosen from the following:

  • STAT 200 - Introduction to Statistics
  • ECON 105 - Principles of Macroeconomics OR
  • ECON 106 - Principles of Microeconomics

Graduation Requirements

To graduate with a major in Political Science, a student must have a grade point average of 2.0 or higher in all courses taken with a POSC prefix.

Teaching Licensure

Students wishing to teach government at the secondary level should declare a social science major (see Social Science, B.A. and/or Social Science, B.S.). To strengthen credentials as a government teacher, students should consider a double major in both social science and political science.

Minor in Political Science (18 Semester Hours)

The minor in political science consists of two courses from among POSC 110, POSC 120, POSC 231, and POSC 241; and twelve additional hours in the department, at least nine of which are at the 300- or 400-level.