​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Program Description

As a student in the political science program, you’ll combine liberal arts with politics, while training for specific career paths. You’ll learn about state and local government, national institutions, public policy, political theory, global politics and international relations. You’ll gain cultural competency through valuable knowledge of international politics and global issues. Dedicated faculty members will assist you with securing internships throughout Michigan, the U.S. and international organizations. You can choose the general major or a concentration in public administration or international relations/comparative politics.

Points of Pride

CMU’s chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society, won the Best Chapter Award for the 2013-2014 school year.

Put Your Degree to Work

Political science graduates find a variety of career opportunities including activist, advocate/organizer, attorney, campaign operative or manager, CIA analyst or agent, city or county manager, congressional office/committee staffer, foreign service officer, international agency officer, international research specialist, legislative assistant/coordinator, lobbyist, policy analyst, pollster, public affairs research analyst, public opinion analyst, and research analyst.

​U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics sample data

JobMedian PayJob Growth through ​2022​
Political scientist$102,000 per year21% (1,400 more jobs)
Campaign fundraising manager$95,450 per year13% (8,000 more jobs)
​Lawyer$113,530 per year10% (74,800 more jobs)

For More Information

Visit the political science website or contact:

Department of Political Science and Public Administration
Anspach Hall 247
Email: psc@cmich.edu
Phone: 989-774-3442

Program Overview

The course listings below are a representation of what this academic program requires. For a full review of this program in detail please see our official online academic bulletin AND consult with an academic advisor. This listing does not include the General Education courses required for all majors and may not include some program specific information, such as admissions, retention, and termination standards.

(Click on the course name or number for a complete course description.)

Political Science Major: General Concentration

A political science major consists of 33 hours. A minimum of 15 hours of course work must be at the 300 level or above, with at least one course at the 400-500 level. PSC 405 cannot be used to fulfill this requirement. Students must choose between the General Political Science Major, the Public Administration Concentration or the International Relations/Comparative Politics Concentration. Courses taken on a Credit/No Credit basis may not be counted toward political science majors or political science minors. Majors and minors in political science should enroll in PSC 105 as freshmen (see course description). Transfer students majoring in political science will be expected to take at least 15 hours of coursework in the department; transfer minors, 12 hours. The student is required to take a minimum of three hours in four of the following five fields: I. American National Political Institutions and Processes; II. American State and Local Government, Public Administration and Policy; III. International Relations; IV. Comparative Politics; V. Political Theory. Note: Field II is not applicable to the International Relations/Comparative Politics Concentration. It is recommended that all political science majors enroll in PSC 280 during their sophomore year. PSC 398 and PSC 598 are Special Topics courses which may be used to fulfill the area requirements for majors and minors. Permission to do this is based on the substantive content of the course, and requires the consent of the student's major or minor advisor or the department chair. Any regular faculty member in the department can serve as the student's advisor on a major or minor. Internships: The department has established an internship program where students are provided relevant firsthand work experience. The duration of an internship can vary depending on the number of credit hours (1-12) taken. Students majoring in political science with a concentration in public administration, as well as the minors in public administration and public affairs, are allowed to count three internship credit hours toward their major or minor.
Total: 33 semester hours Note: A minimum of 15 hours of PSC course work must be at the 300 level or above, with at least one PSC course at the 400-500 level. PSC 405 cannot be used to fulfill this requirement.
Required Courses
(9 hours)
PSC 100
Introduction to Political Science
PSC 105
Introduction to American Government and Politics
PSC 280
Introduction to Empirical Methods of Political Research
Other Requirements
(12 hours)
Select one 3-credit hour course in four of the following five fields:
Field I
Field II
Field III
Field IV
Field V
(12 hours)
Hours selected from the five fields listed above.