PSYCHOLOGY AND SOCIAL SCIENCE

Political Science Degree

Psychology and Social Science Bachelor's Degree Program

Political science majors are, by nature, curious and ambitious people who seek an understanding of public problems and potential solutions. At BVU, we support your career goals with world-class internships, travel, and engaging discussions. On your very first day in the political science major, faculty get to know you and partner with you in a search for more enlightened perspectives on a world full of challenges and opportunities through the lens of a political science degree. 

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Take Me To

Why should I earn a political science degree?

Cross Borders

Political science majors are at the forefront of global issues. Look forward to a career that gives you a window on the world. 

Lead the Future

Gain skills and knowledge that allow you to stand up and be heard for the good of those you lead. 

Gain Purpose

Make your values the fuel for your life. You can find your path with this ambitious degree that builds your sense of social and personal responsibility.

What I Can Do With a Political Science Degree

  • Campaign coordinator
  • Prosecuting attorney (with further education or 3+3 track)
  • Policy analyst and program manager

On Campus

On Campus

Storm Lake

Why study political science at BVU?

Pre-Law

Prepare for law school at one of the only institutions in the country to have a dedicated legal studies track. Take advantage of partnerships with the University of Iowa College of Law and Creighton University School of Law.

Get Involved

Be a leader in student government, community service projects, and “Alternative Week of Spring Break” service projects around the country.

Mock Trial

Participate in American Mock Trial regional competitions and earn academic credit.

IRAN CARLOS

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IRAN CARLOS

Iran is learning how to investigate complex political issues and consider alternative solutions to societal problems in her political science courses. Her expanding knowledge base and critical thinking skills have equipped her to understand and help people from diverse backgrounds. One way she applies her skills is by helping immigrants prepare for the U.S. citizenship test and complete documentation essential to the naturalization process. Iran is eager to continue helping people after graduation.

Political Science Major Tracks and Courses

Choose a path in political science that lives up to your aspirations, with a concentration track focused on your goals.

Politics and Policy | Legal Studies | Public Administration | Teaching Licensure 5-12

Double concentrations are also possible. Talk to your advisor to learn more.

  • Political Science Major, Politics and Policy Track (40 Credit Hours)

    Required support work

    • PSCN 115 Introduction to Politics
    • MATH 140 Elementary Applied Statistics
    • ECON 206 Principles of Macroeconomics

    Politics and Policy Core

    • PSCN 205 Introduction to Political Philosophy
    • PSCN 240 Judicial Process OR PSCN 245 Introduction to American Law
    • PSCN 310 Comparative Politics OR PSCN 315 International Relations
    • PSCN 340 Congress and the Presidency
    • PSCN 400 Pre-Professional Seminar
    • PSCN 460 Constitutional Law
    • PSPA 320 State and Local Politics
    • PSPA 360 Introduction to Public Affairs

    Electives

    Complete Option A or Option B = 6 hours

    Option A

    Choose two

    • ECON 205 Principles of Microeconomics
    • PSCN 465 Civil Liberties
    • PSCN 485 Special Topics in Political Science
    • PSCN 495 Political Science Internship
    • PSPA 380 Administrative Agencies
    • One regional history course: HIST 320 History of the Middle East, HIST 360 History of China, OR HIST 362 History of Japan
    • Additional PSCN or PSPA course at the 300 level or higher not previously completed to satisfy a PSCN requirement

    Option B

    • PSCN 490 Washington Center Internship Program
  • Political Science Major, Legal Studies Track (40 Credit Hours)

    Required support work

    • PSCN 110 Introduction to American Government
    • PSCN 115 Introduction to Politics
    • PHIL 130 Logic

    Legal Studies Core

    • PSCN 205 Introduction to Political Philosophy
    • PSCN 245 Introduction to American Law
    • PSCN 370 Legal Research and Writing
    • PSCN 400 Pre-Professional Seminar
    • PSCN 401 LSAT Preparation
    • PSCN 460 Constitutional Law
    • PSPA 320 State and Local Politics OR PSPA 360 Introduction to Public Affairs

    Electives

    Complete Option A, B, or C

    Option A (choose four)

    • CRIM 371 Criminal Procedure OR CRIM 240 Criminal Law
    • MGMT 315 Business Law I
    • PSCN 240 Judicial Process or PSCN 245 Introduction to American Law
    • PSCN 465 Civil Liberties
    • PSCN 485 Special Topics in Political Science
    • PSCN 495 Political Science Internship
    • PSCN or PSPA course at 300 level or higher not previously completed to satisfy a PSCN requirement

    Option B

    • PSCN 490 Washington Center Internship Program

    Option C

    This option is available to students in the “3+3” Accelerated Law School Entry dual degree program.

    Electives (choose two)

    • CRIM 371 Criminal Procedure OR CRIM 240 Criminal Law
    • MGMT 315 Business Law I
    • PSCN 465 Civil Liberties
    • PSCN 495 Political Science Internship
    • PSCN or PSPA course at 300 level or higher not previously completed to satisfy a PSCN requirement

    AND admission to the "3+3" Accelerated Law School Entry Program & successful completion of the first year of full-time study in partner law school's Juris Doctor program.

    Buena Vista University 3+3 partners include the University of Iowa College of Law and Creighton University School of Law. Eligibility for the "3+3" Accelerated Law School Entry Program is contingent on satisfaction of the following criteria:

    • ACT of 24 (or above) or SAT of 1110 (or above) at time of admission to BVU
    • Successful completion of: a minimum of 98 credit hours, the Legal Studies Track, BVU Foundations and Explorations requirements and IDST 400
    • Favorable recommendation from BVU’s designated Pre-Law Advisor.
    • Successful admission to a partner law school.
    • Successful completion of one year of full-time study (30 semester hours) in the partner law school’s Juris Doctor program
  • Political Science Major, Public Administration Track (37 Credit Hours)

    Support Work

    • PSCN 115 Introduction to Politics
    • MATH 140 Elementary Applied Statistics
    • ECON 206 Principles of Macroeconomics

    Public Management Core

    • MGMT 220 Principles of Management
    • MGMT 320 Human Resource Management
    • PSCN 245 Introduction to American Law
    • PSPA 165 Introduction to Public Administration
    • PSPA 320 State and Local Politics
    • PSPA 360 Introduction to Public Affairs
    • PSPA 400 Pre-Professional Seminar

    Electives

    Complete Option A or Option B = 6 hours

    Option A

    Complete either A1 or A2:

    • A1. Politics Emphasis: PSCN 340 Congress and the Presidency and PSCN 460 Constitutional Law
    • A2. Decision Making Emphasis: choose TWO of the following: ECON 205 Principles of Microeconomics, MGMT 205 Decision Science Foundations, and PHIL 336 Professional Ethics

    Option B

    • PSCN 490 Washington Center Internship Program
  • Political Science Major with Teaching Licensure, 5-12 (41 Credit Hours)


     

    • Political science politics and policy track major (41 credit hours)
    • Plus requirements for secondary education and education core
  • Political Science Minor (24 Credit Hours)

    • PSCN 115 Introduction to Politics
    • PSCN 205 Introduction to Political Philosophy
    • PSCN 310 Comparative Politics OR PSCN 315 International Relations
    • PSCN 340 Congress and the Presidency
    • PSCN 460 Constitutional Law
    • PSPA 360 Introduction to Public Affairs

    2 courses from

    • PSCN or PSPA at the 300 level or higher
  • Political Science Minor with Teaching Licensure 5-12

    Option 1

    • Political science minor (24 credit hours)
    • Plus requirements for secondary education and education core

    Option 2

    15 credit hours of social science courses and 15 credit hours of political science courses including:

    • PSCN 110 Introduction to American Government
    • PSCN 115 Introduction to Politics
    • PSCN 460 Constitutional Law
    • PSCN 465 Civil Liberties
    • PSPA 360 Introduction to Public Affairs
    • Plus requirements for secondary education and education core

Financial Aid & Scholarships

We’ll help you figure out your options for financial assistance and possible scholarships.

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Political Science Faculty

Our instructors are committed to helping you build the future of Iowa and beyond.

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Transfer Your Credits

Do you have previously earned credits or an associate degree? BVU accepts most — if not all — of your credits so you don’t have to retake courses

View Course Equivalencies

Earn a Master’s Degree Faster with Our Accelerated Program

With BVU's Plus One program, you can earn your special education, teaching English as a second language, or organizational leadership master's within one year of graduating with your bachelor’s degree. 

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