Harold Lasswell said political science was the study of “who gets what, when, how.”  Think about it: Common decisions about who gets what happen everywhere: at the international level, inside the United States, in Richmond, and inside organizations.  Will government funds be used to purchase vaccines for the poor or to build high-speed trains?  Will the international community focus on refugees, conflict, or climate change?  Political decisions will determine the answers.

Why Study Political Science?

  • Find your passion, whether it's law, racial justice, election campaigns, or learning about other countries
  • Take interactive courses with simulations where you can act the part of a Congressperson, cabinet member, or diplomat
  • Highly applied courses allow you to learn about the real world, not distant concepts
  • Design your own concentrations in areas including American Government, Public Administration, Law, and Foreign and National Security Policy
  • Participate in events like Poli Sci Days, which introduce you to many different facets of Political Science beyond what is taught in classes
  • Take a required course on Political Science Careers so you can graduate ready to move onto your next steps
  • Courses will help prepare you with the skills employers are looking for: critical thinking, problem solving, ethical judgement, teamwork, understanding of diversity and global issues, and oral and written communication. 

Embark on careers in government administration, campaigns, law, activism, non-profits, lobbying, foreign policy, defense, counter-terror, intelligence, and international development.  You’ll also have the chance to form close relationships with your Political Science faculty who can be valuable mentors. Radford Political Science alumni working in many fields are eager to mentor you, as well. 

How Can You Get Started?

Good courses to begin your journey in Political Science are:

  • POSC 120: American Government
  • INST 101: Introduction to International Studies
  • POSC 111: Big Questions in Political Science
  • POSC 130: Changing the World
  • POSC 180: Leadership Theories and Practices

Look around the Political Science webpage to learn more.

Hear from Radford University Alumni about studying Political Science

The Political Science major includes thirteen three-credit courses (39 credit hours) and additional requirements for either the Bachelor of Science or the Bachelor of Arts. 

This subject area fulfills the A and L of the REAL Curriculum

Add a knowledge of politics to any major on campus. The Political Science minor includes five three-credit courses (15 credit hours) in Political Science.

This subject area fulfills the A of the REAL Curriculum

Add an international component to any major on campus. Learn about major international issues and complement that with a selection of international courses from literature, history, anthropology, economics, art history, peace studies, women’s and gender studies, religion, and theater.  The International Studies minor includes six three-credit courses (18 credit hours).

This subject area fulfills the E and A of the REAL Curriculum

Add knowledge and competencies in leadership to any major on campus. Learn how to lead wherever you are in an organization. Build your skills to lead and understand leadership as a citizen. This minor is highly experiential with applied assignments and group learning. The Leadership minor includes six three-credit courses (18 credit hours). 

This subject area fulfills the E and L of the REAL Curriculum
This subject area fulfills the E of the REAL Curriculum.