Please note: The information displayed here is current as of Tuesday, October 16, 2018, but the official Course Catalog should be used for all official planning.

2018-2019 Course Catalog

Required for the major in government

Students who major in government will learn how to explain, interpret, and evaluate political institutions, policies, behaviors and beliefs. They will do so by using discipline-appropriate methods to answer questions concerning American politics, comparative politics, international politics, and political theory, and they will complete the major by undertaking a Senior Experience course in which they provide an original answer to a significant question concerning government.

Government majors must complete either of the following two tracks:

Required for the major in government: general track

  1. GOVT 110: Introduction to Political Science
  2. GOVT 271: Research Methods in Political Science
  3. One of the following courses in American politics:
    • GOVT 211: Flexibility and Freedom: American Federalism in Transition
    • GOVT 220: American Elections, Candidates, and Political Parties
    • GOVT 360: The American Presidency
    • GOVT 370: Congressional Politics
    • GOVT 375: American Political Development
    • GOVT 380: Introduction to Public Policy
  4. One of the following courses in comparative politics:
    • GOVT 215: Democracy in Comparative Perspective
    • GOVT 245: Comparative Politics of Developing Countries
  5. One of the following courses in international politics:
    • GOVT 140: Introduction to International Relations
    • GOVT 340: International Politics
  6. One of the following courses in political theory:
    • GOVT 200: Politics and Human Nature
    • GOVT 235: American Political Thought
    • GOVT 315: Founding the Just Regime
    • GOVT 322: Liberty and Constitutional Democracy
    • GOVT 405: Individuality and Community
  7. One six-unit course numbered 400 or above
  8. Senior Experience: one six-unit course numbered 500 or above. Students may satisfy this requirement by completing a 500 or higher-level seminar, independent study, tutorial, directed study, or internship.

The general track requires at least eleven six-unit courses, and at most two 100-level courses may count toward the major. Students may count one cross-listed course in economics toward the major.

Required for the major in government: international relations track

  1. GOVT 110: Introduction to Political Science
  2. GOVT 140: Introduction to International Relations
  3. GOVT 340: International Politics
  4. GOVT 271: Research Methods in Political Science
  5. One of the following courses in comparative politics:
    • GOVT 215: Democracy in Comparative Perspective
    • GOVT 245: Comparative Politics of Developing Countries
  6. One of the following courses in political theory:
    • GOVT 200: Politics and Human Nature
    • GOVT 315: Founding the Just Regime
    • GOVT 405: Individuality and Community in Modern Politics
  7. One six-unit course numbered 400 or above in international or comparative politics
  8. Three additional six-unit elective courses (see paragraph below)
  9. Senior Experience: one six-unit course numbered 500 or above, with an international or comparative focus. Students may satisfy this requirement by completing a 500 or higher-level seminar, independent study, tutorial, directed study, or internship.

The international relations track requires at least eleven six-unit courses, and at most three 100-level courses may count toward the major. One of the electives must be a course with a comparative or international focus offered by a department outside of government, and students must clear their choices with their advisors in advance. Foreign language courses may only satisfy this requirement if they exceed the level required for the B.A. degree. Students may count one cross-listed course in economics, in addition to the above course, toward the major. Students may count Government 211, 220, 360, 370, 375, or 380 instead of Government 110 if they secure permission from the relevant course instructor or if they have received credit for AP Government.

Senior Experience in government

The Senior Experience in government will allow seniors to pursue a capstone research project, an academic internship in government or politics, or other culminating work chosen in consultation with faculty advisors. Capstone research projects may be pursued through a senior seminar, in approved upper-level courses or independent studies, or through work toward an honors thesis.

Required for the minor in government

  1. GOVT 110: Introduction to Political Science
  2. The following courses, three of which must be numbered 200 or above:
    1. One six-unit course in American politics
    2. One six-unit course in political theory
    3. Two six-unit courses from the fields of comparative politics and international relations
  3. One six-unit course in government at the advanced level (numbered 400 or above), excluding tutorials and independent studies
  4. C average in the minor

Teacher certification in government/political science or broad-field social studies

Government majors can seek certification to teach government/political science or broad-field social studies at the secondary level. For certification in broad-field social studies, students must complete the government major and a minimum of two courses each in two other social studies (anthropology/sociology, economics, history, or psychology) and at least one course in each of the remaining social studies. Students are strongly encouraged to take a course in U.S. history and a course in global history. A course in environmental studies is also required. Students who plan to seek teacher certification should review the requirements in the Education section of the catalog and meet with the director of teacher education, preferably before the end of the sophomore year.

Off-campus study

Government students are encouraged to consider the Washington Semester in the Off-Campus Programs section of the catalog.

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