Why study Political Science?

Are you interested in American politics? International affairs? Critical issues like civil rights, health care, the environment and the deficit? If so, you should consider political science as a major. Most social, economic and moral issues have political implications; and governmental policy affects most aspects of daily life. Political science is an excellent liberal arts major if you are interested in learning how groups of people govern themselves; how policies are made; and how we can improve our government policies at the local, state, national, and international levels. A political science major provides a solid foundation for jobs in almost any field, from business to law to research.

Mission Statement

The Department of Political Science strives to further the primary goals of the Irvine Valley College Mission Statement. Completion of political science courses will assist students in meeting their career, transfer and lifelong learning goals as members of a diverse and changing society. The Department of Political Science strives to offer a curriculum of diversity and breadth that prepares students to be astute and keen political observers and actors. The study of politics is relevant to students' lives today and provides them the skills needed to effectively participate in the political system. In addition to traditional courses, the department provides opportunities for student learning outside the classroom through internships and co-curricular activities. The faculty are committed to currency in their fields, teaching excellence, and mentoring outside the classroom. Departmental faculty also recognize and embrace a wider role beyond teaching that encompasses work on campus and in governmental affairs at the local, state, national and international levels. Departmental Learning Objectives Students earning and AA degree in Political Science will be able to:

  • Identify the institutions, players and processes in both American national and state government.
  • Understand the importance of citizenship and political participation.
  • Analyze the exercise of power in formal governmental institutions and non-governmental institutions.
  • Differentiate and classify political systems, their historical context and development, and the social and economic systems with which they interact.
  • Compare the U.S. political system to the political systems of European, Asian, African, Latin American, and Middle Eastern states.
  • Describe the political and economic relations among states and the transnational relations practiced by people, organizations, and institutions.
  • Identify the methods, approaches, or theories used in accumulating and interpreting information applicable to the discipline of political science.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of contemporary political issues and be able to present differing ideological viewpoints.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking skills and formulate and defend an argument about politics in a written and/or oral format.
  • Demonstrate the basic research skills necessary to write a paper in the discipline of political science.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the content of the major subfields in political science: American Politics, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Political Theory.

Requirements for Major

Students must complete a minimum of 60 units of credit, including the courses in the major ("Major Requirements") and general education requirements (pages 43-49), with an overall GPA of 2.0 or better, and a grade of "A," "B," "C," or "P" in all courses to be counted toward the major. A minimum of 12 units must be completed at Irvine Valley College. See College Catalog for further information.

Cost & FeesALL fees are subject to change. Registration is not complete until all required course fees have been paid.

Required Core Courses: Units
PS 1 American Government 3
PS 1 American Government 3
PS 3 California Government and Politics 3
PS 4 Introduction to Political Science 3
PS 5 Political Philosophy 3
PS 12 Comparative Politics 3
PS 14 International Relations 3
Required Options , Regional Studies: Units
PS 6 Politics & Government of the Middle East 3
PS 7 The Politics of Communist & Post Communist State 3
PS 41 The History of East Asia Since 1800 3
Program taught in:
  • English

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This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2020
2 years
46 USD
per unit
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Sep 2020
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