Political science investigates the institutions, practices, traditions, concepts and rules by which human beings organize their lives and govern themselves.

Courses enable students to use empirical analyses and theoretical constructs to understand the political aspects of the world, both in the United States and elsewhere.

Majoring in political science, you gain a comprehensive understanding of political institutions, politics in general and the processes of translating values and information into public policy. Expand your knowledge of the leading theories and disputes within the subfields of political science with diver courses. Ultimately, you gain an appreciation for the need to participate fully in political life.

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"We want the students to identify what works for them,” says Bird. “It’s not Big Brother watching over them. Rather it’s helping them understand why they want to conserve because people decide to conserve energy for a lot of different reasons."

Stephen Bird, Associate Professor of Political Science

Career Opportunities

History majors shine in careers in which critical thinking, historical perspective and strong writing skills are essential for success. A few such careers include those in education, law, business, not-for-profits and start-ups.

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The political science major has a total of 28 out of the 120 credit hours devoted to program-specific classes. This leaves flexibility to narrow your area of interest with minors, concentrations or double majors. Take courses such as :

  • Intro to Global Politics
  • Zombie Politics
  • Contemporary Political Theory
  • Sex, Gender and Power
  • Environmental Law
  • The Bussiness of War

Political Science Major Curriculum


Looking to take your education a step further? Check out our list of minors to complement your political science degree.

Clarkson Minors

Experiential Learning

Research Opportunities

As a student at Clarkson, you work with political science faculty on many different research projects. You will also have the opportunity to work with fellow students and professors on cross-campus, interdisciplinary research in the areas of environment, health, gender and sexuality, and business.

Internship and Co-op Opportunities

As a Clarkson student, you have the opportunity to apply for the Washington and N.Y. Assembly Internships. These unique opportunities allow you to attend American University in Washington D.C. for a semester or intern at the N.Y. State Assembly. In Washington, you will take 12 university credits worth of classes and participate in an extraordinary array of internships. Clarkson students attending the Washington Semester have worked for the World Bank, NBC, Greenpeace, and Homeland Security and as legislative aides to members of Congress. The Albany internships allow you to contribute to the ongoing development of state policy in the Assembly.

Regional and local internships are also available for you at museums, not-for-profits and other educational organizations.

What's your purpose? Achieve it here.