Explore the world of power and politics from the local, national, international and comparative perspectives

The Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at St. Edward’s prepares students for careers in public service, electoral politics, non-governmental organizations and the private sector. If you're passionate about making a difference in your community, then this major is for you.

Over the course of your studies as a Political Science major at St. Edward's, you will study four key fields: American Politics, Political Theory, International Relations and Comparative Politics. You will also...

  • Study politics at the international, national, state, and local levels
  • Debate the ethical issues associated with public service
  • Delve into the arguments presented by such political theorists as Aristotle, Thomas Hobbes, John Stuart Mill and Karl Marx
  • Understand how the different entities in the international system interact
  • Discuss how diplomacy and military force are used to achieve national objectives
  • Explore the politics of countries across the globe

Degree Requirements

Major Requirements: The Bachelor of Arts in Political Science requires 45 hours of major courses, which include a combination of different political studies classes. In addition, students choose two of the following tracks: American Politics, Applied Politics, International Politics or Pre-Law.

Electives: Students complete 6 hours of Political Studies electives and 21 hours of elective courses in any area of study they choose. 

General Education Requirements: The degree requires 54 hours of general education courses that students complete over four years in addition to their major courses and electives.

View and download the full degree plan for our Political Science major (PDF).

A few examples of courses students in this major take:             

  • Politics and the Media- explore how public officials, political campaigns, and interest groups attempt to influence media coverage
  • Civil Liberties – examine the way the U.S. Constitution protects individual rights in the context of competing claims by various groups and interests
  • Strategic Intelligence and Covert Action – delves into the role the intelligence community plays in American foreign relations

Our Faculty and Student Support Services

 

“I teach international politics simply because I have always been curious about the world around us.  The topics I teach prompt students to think critically about such questions as why are some countries warlike and others peaceful?  Why do some countries have democracies and others have dictatorships? And why do some countries enjoy great wealth and others suffer in poverty?  I find that my students are engaged, questioning and enthusiastic about making a difference in the world.”

– Dr. William Nichols, Professor of Political Science

 

“The best thing about political science at St. Edward's University is that you take exciting classes in the best political city in Texas.”

Brian Smith, Professor of Political Science 

Student Support Services

Along with personal attention and mentorship from their professors, our students have access to offices and programs outside of the classroom that support their success. We encourage students to take advantage these resources that help them thrive and excel:

  • Academic counseling and advising
  • Supplemental instruction and tutoring
  • Career preparation and advising 
  • Writing Center consultation
  • Health and wellness counseling
  • Student disability support

 

 

Learn more about these services.

Outside the Classroom

Students in the Political Science major at St. Edward's University are uniquely positioned to take advantage of the school's proximity to the state capital. This provides students with the chance to take part in the political process and observe the Texas Legislature. 

Internships

Students are also required to do an internship, which further enhances the experience. Many of our students are interns during the legislative session with state congressional members.

Some pursue internships with nonprofit and for-profit agencies that play a role in state government. Your internship experience gives you the chance to be immersed in government, giving you an up close view of critical issues. The experience prepares students to be a citizen of a democratic society and helps strengthen students' understanding of the professional world. These opportunities for practical application of coursework provide students the opportunity to further focus in on a specific career path.​

Alumni Outcomes

Our Political Science graduates have entered the field in a wide range of professional roles. 

Some careers our graduates pursue include:

  • The practice of law
  • Legislative aides
  • Lobbyists
  • Political campaign strategists
  • Public servants at the federal, state and local levels
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Journalism
  • Elective office
  • The Foreign Service with the U.S. Department of States

Graduates are also prepared to pursue advanced studies in political science, law, public administration, international relations or public policy. An advanced degree is required to teach at the college level.

Read about our successful alumni. See what they have to say about life after St. Edward’s.

About the Minor

Students interested in pursuing a role in law or government can enhance their knowledge and skill sets with a Political Science minor. Students must complete the 18 hours of required coursework.

Required Courses:
  • American National Government
  • International Relations
  • Comparative Politics
  • Any three upper-division Political Science courses