Political Science
Major | 40 credit hours

Credits shown here reflect the number required to graduate for the given major. Your actual number of required credits may be higher or lower depending on your previous college experience. The actual number of credits you will need to graduate from BVU will be determined by a free official transcript evaluation.

  • Marshalltown
  • Ottumwa
  • Political scientists are at the heart of finding solutions to some of today's most hotly debated issues - scientific ethics, economic policies, environmental issues, to name a few.  They must have the ability to see beyond party lines and ideologies and to understand the machinations of our complex system of government.  As a political science major you study American politics, political philosophy, public affairs, comparative politics and international politics.  

    Employment opportunities include:

    • Elected or appointed official
    • Lawyer
    • Public relations manager
    • Special interest lobbyist


    Political Science Major Courses

    • PSCN 240 Judicial Process or PSCN 245 Introduction to American Law
    • PSCN 310 Comparative Politics or PSCN 315 International Relations
    • PSCN 465 Civil Liberties or PSCN 485 Special Topics in Political Science
    • PSPA 320 State and Local Politics or PSPA 380 Administrative Agencies
    • MATH 140 Elementary Applied Statistics
    • PSCN 110 Introduction to American Government
    • PSCN 115 Introduction to Politics
    • PSCN 205 Introduction to Political Philosophy
    • PSCN 400 Pre-Professional Seminar
    • PSCN 460 Constitutional Law
    • PSPA 360 Introduction to Public Affairs

    Political Science Option A (Choose 2 from)

    Additional PSCN or PSPA course at the 300 level or higher not previously completed to
    satisfy a PSCN requirement

    • HIST 320 History of the Middle East
    • HIST 349 Modern Europe
    • HIST 360 History of China
    • HIST 362 History of Japan
    • HIST 364 History of India
    • PSCN 495 Political Science Internship

    Political Science Option B

    • PSCN 490 Washington Center Internship Program

    Tuition & Fees

    Undergrad Tuition

    2015-16 Tuition:
    $402 per credit hour
    2016-17 Tuition:
    $413 per credit hour

    How to Apply

    Admissions Requirements

    Programs within BVU Graduate & Professional Studies are classified as junior-senior level. Persons who have completed an associate degree or 60 credit hours from a regionally accredited institution qualify for admission. College level examination program credits (CLEP) and life experience credit may be available as described in the academic section. 

    Application Process

    1. Although personal interviews are not required, applicants are urged to confer with an advisor.
    2. Request that official transcript(s) from each college or university previously attended be sent to the BVU Graduate & Professional Studies site office. Without official transcripts and records, a student will not be allowed to register beyond the initial semester.
    3. Complete the BVU Graduate & Professional Studies application form
    4. If you will be applying for financial assistance including student loans, complete the Free Application for Federal Financial Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov.
    5. Students who have previously earned a B.A. or B.S. degree may be eligible to earn a second bachelor’s degree from Buena Vista University. Guidelines are available from the BVU Graduate & Professional Studies office.

    Financial Aid

    Financial Assistance is available to qualified students at our traditional campus and to students taking undergraduate and graduate coursework at our Graduate & Professional Studies locations. All students are encouraged to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid at www.fafsa.ed.gov. The FAFSA is processed by the U.S. Department of Education. You may request to have your FAFSA results sent to BVU. Even if you are currently unsure if you will attend, completing this free application will help determine your financial need.

    BVU's institution code: 001847


    Grants are funds that do not have to be repaid. Click on a grant below to see more information.

    Federal Pell Grants vary based on financial need. Individual awards are determined based on federal formula. Payment is calculated for full-time enrollment (12 or more hours per semester), three-quarter-time enrollment (9-11 hours per semester), or half-time enrollment (6-8 hours per semester). Students enrolled less than half-time may also be eligible. To be considered for a Federal Pell Grant, the results of your valid aid applications (FASFA) must be received while your are still enrolled. Students enrolled in summer courses may be entitled to Federal Pell Grant funds for that enrollment. Students with prior baccalaureate degrees are not eligible. There is a 6 year limit on funding per individual. Learn more about Federal Pell Grants.

    TEACH Grant

    The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program provides up to $4,000 per year in grants for graduate and undergraduate students who intend to teach full-time in high-need subject areas for at least four years at schools that serve students from low-income families. Students must meet all eligibility requirements.

    Iowa Tuition Grants (ITG) are available to eligible residents of Iowa attending private institutions. Iowa Tuition Grants are available, based on financial need, for full-time undergraduate study and for less than full-time enrollment. The grant may be renewable for a total of eight full-time semesters of study and may be used for tuition only. Application deadline is normally July 1. Learn more about Iowa Tuition Grants.
    Available to many students through Vocational Rehabilitation, Social Services, Commission for the Blind, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and other programs. For more information, contact the agency counselors directly.


    Phi Theta Kappa Scholarships

    Phi Theta Kappa transfer scholarships are also available for those who qualify.


    Loans are made to students at low interest rates and must be repaid, but generally payments are not due until the student has completed his or her education or ceases at least half-time enrollment.

    Tuition Reimbursements

    Tuition Reimbursements are available through many area employers. Many companies will pay part or all of an employee's educational costs. Check with your company's benefits representative to see if you qualify. All tuition reimbursement benefits must be reported to the Office of Financial Assistance.

    G.I. Bill and Yellow Ribbon Program.

    All programs are approved for the G.I. Bill and Yellow Ribbon Program.

    Have more questions?

    In addition to the above information, our staff is happy to answer any questions you have about applying for financial aid. If you are in need of financial assistance, such as college scholarships in Iowa or scholarships for adults returning to college, please contact us at 712.749.1000 to receive more information about how affordable our programs can be.

    Contact Us

    Phone: 712.749.1000
    Fax: 712.749.1470
    E-mail: professional@bvu.edu

    Buena Vista University
    Graduate & Professional Studies
    610 W. Fourth Street
    Storm Lake, IA 50588