Chatham University

Political Science Curriculum

The Political Science program offers courses in American Politics, International Politics, and Law-related subjects. The study of Political Science develops students’ conceptual skills and provides them with the tools to analyze political concepts in broad perspective and make sense of new issues as they arise. In addition to knowledge of the subject, the program is designed to develop skills in critical thinking and written and oral expression, deepen commitment to social responsibility and political participation, and to position students to go on to graduate study and professional careers.

The program maintains affiliations with programs and centers across the University and within the community, which bring students into contact with scholars and practitioners from multiple academic fields. There are opportunities for students to learn outside of the classroom, for example through participation in internships and in the programs and research of The Center for Women, Politics and Public Policy(e.g.: Winning Edge campaign school, and the Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN).

Program Requirements

+Major Requirements

12 courses, including:

POL101 American Government and Public Policy

This course provides an introduction to the principles and practices of government, federalism, with special attention to the policy process, political participation and selected political issues in the United States.

3
POL100 Introduction to Comparative Politics

Introduction to politics, policies, and political institutions outside of the United States. Includes concepts such as electoral systems, party systems, parliamentary and presidential systems, democratization, and political change in both Western and non-Western settings.

3
OR
POL104 Introduction to International Relations

A survey of significant patterns and trends in 20th-century world politics, modes of conducting relations among nations, instruments for promoting national interests, and current problems of economic and political interdependence.

3
POL202 Understanding Public Policy

This course introduces students to the concepts and tools used in the analysis of public policies, and uses these concepts and tools to examine public policies in the United States and other industrial democracies. Prerequisite(s): POL 100 or 101

3
POL311W Selected Topics in Social Science Research

The course introduces methods and approaches used to describe, explain, and evaluate social science research. Students will get an introduction to an instructor chosen research topic. Students will learn to formulate questions, create a literature review, gather and evaluate evidence and provide feedback on outside research concerning the selected course topic. Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of the instructor.

3
POL490 Integrative Capstone

The integrative capstone , undertaken by the student during the senior year, is an extended project that helps the student complete their transition from an undergraduate student to a world-ready professional.  The study usually centers on the student’s major and may be conducted, at least in part, in the context of a group experience.  Such programs are crafted to meet the unique needs of each major, and could include, for example, fieldwork, theatre production, creative work in the arts, independent research, or independent readings. The integrative capstone in an interdisciplinary major must have the approval of both academic programs.  

3
1 approved 3-credit internship (INTPOL 303)
5 additional 3-credit program electives, 3 at the 200-level and 2 at the 300-level or above

+Interdisciplinary Major Requirements

8 courses, exclusive of the Integrative Capstone:

POL101 American Government and Public Policy

This course provides an introduction to the principles and practices of government, federalism, with special attention to the policy process, political participation and selected political issues in the United States.

3
POL100 Introduction to Comparative Politics

Introduction to politics, policies, and political institutions outside of the United States. Includes concepts such as electoral systems, party systems, parliamentary and presidential systems, democratization, and political change in both Western and non-Western settings.

3
OR
POL104 Introduction to International Relations

A survey of significant patterns and trends in 20th-century world politics, modes of conducting relations among nations, instruments for promoting national interests, and current problems of economic and political interdependence.

3
POL202 Understanding Public Policy

This course introduces students to the concepts and tools used in the analysis of public policies, and uses these concepts and tools to examine public policies in the United States and other industrial democracies. Prerequisite(s): POL 100 or 101

3
POL311W Selected Topics in Social Science Research

The course introduces methods and approaches used to describe, explain, and evaluate social science research. Students will get an introduction to an instructor chosen research topic. Students will learn to formulate questions, create a literature review, gather and evaluate evidence and provide feedback on outside research concerning the selected course topic. Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of the instructor.

3
POL490 Integrative Capstone

The integrative capstone , undertaken by the student during the senior year, is an extended project that helps the student complete their transition from an undergraduate student to a world-ready professional.  The study usually centers on the student’s major and may be conducted, at least in part, in the context of a group experience.  Such programs are crafted to meet the unique needs of each major, and could include, for example, fieldwork, theatre production, creative work in the arts, independent research, or independent readings. The integrative capstone in an interdisciplinary major must have the approval of both academic programs.  

3
1 approved 3-credit internship (INTPOL 303)
5 additional 3-credit program electives, 3 at the 200-level and 2 at the 300-level or above

+Pre-Law Program

Chatham’s pre-law program is designed to encourage and support students with an interest in careers in law. It also helps students prepare to attend law school. The program includes the pre-law advisor, a pre-law minor, cocurricular programs offered in partnership with the PA Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy, and the support of an advisory committee.

POL101 American Government and Public Policy

This course provides an introduction to the principles and practices of government, federalism, with special attention to the policy process, political participation and selected political issues in the United States.

3
POL100 Introduction to Comparative Politics

Introduction to politics, policies, and political institutions outside of the United States. Includes concepts such as electoral systems, party systems, parliamentary and presidential systems, democratization, and political change in both Western and non-Western settings.

3
OR
POL104 Introduction to International Relations

A survey of significant patterns and trends in 20th-century world politics, modes of conducting relations among nations, instruments for promoting national interests, and current problems of economic and political interdependence.

3
POL202 Understanding Public Policy

This course introduces students to the concepts and tools used in the analysis of public policies, and uses these concepts and tools to examine public policies in the United States and other industrial democracies. Prerequisite(s): POL 100 or 101

3
POL311W Selected Topics in Social Science Research

The course introduces methods and approaches used to describe, explain, and evaluate social science research. Students will get an introduction to an instructor chosen research topic. Students will learn to formulate questions, create a literature review, gather and evaluate evidence and provide feedback on outside research concerning the selected course topic. Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of the instructor.

3
POL490 Integrative Capstone

The integrative capstone , undertaken by the student during the senior year, is an extended project that helps the student complete their transition from an undergraduate student to a world-ready professional.  The study usually centers on the student’s major and may be conducted, at least in part, in the context of a group experience.  Such programs are crafted to meet the unique needs of each major, and could include, for example, fieldwork, theatre production, creative work in the arts, independent research, or independent readings. The integrative capstone in an interdisciplinary major must have the approval of both academic programs.  

3
1 approved 3-credit internship (INTPOL 303)
5 additional 3-credit program electives, 3 at the 200-level and 2 at the 300-level or above

+Political Science Minor Requirements

6 courses, including:

POL101 American Government and Public Policy

This course provides an introduction to the principles and practices of government, federalism, with special attention to the policy process, political participation and selected political issues in the United States.

3
POL100 Introduction to Comparative Politics

Introduction to politics, policies, and political institutions outside of the United States. Includes concepts such as electoral systems, party systems, parliamentary and presidential systems, democratization, and political change in both Western and non-Western settings.

3
OR
POL104 Introduction to International Relations

A survey of significant patterns and trends in 20th-century world politics, modes of conducting relations among nations, instruments for promoting national interests, and current problems of economic and political interdependence.

3
POL202 Understanding Public Policy

This course introduces students to the concepts and tools used in the analysis of public policies, and uses these concepts and tools to examine public policies in the United States and other industrial democracies. Prerequisite(s): POL 100 or 101

3
POL311W Selected Topics in Social Science Research

The course introduces methods and approaches used to describe, explain, and evaluate social science research. Students will get an introduction to an instructor chosen research topic. Students will learn to formulate questions, create a literature review, gather and evaluate evidence and provide feedback on outside research concerning the selected course topic. Prerequisite: Junior standing or consent of the instructor.

3
POL490 Integrative Capstone

The integrative capstone , undertaken by the student during the senior year, is an extended project that helps the student complete their transition from an undergraduate student to a world-ready professional.  The study usually centers on the student’s major and may be conducted, at least in part, in the context of a group experience.  Such programs are crafted to meet the unique needs of each major, and could include, for example, fieldwork, theatre production, creative work in the arts, independent research, or independent readings. The integrative capstone in an interdisciplinary major must have the approval of both academic programs.  

3
1 approved 3-credit internship (INTPOL 303)
5 additional 3-credit program electives, 3 at the 200-level and 2 at the 300-level or above