The general objectives of the department of politics and international relations are:
1) To challenge students to evaluate their conceptions of the good life for the individual and for society.
2) To prepare students for lives of enlightened and responsible citizenship.
3) To help students attain knowledge of the theory and practice of politics.
4) To help students develop the faculties of expression and critical thinking.
The professional objectives are:
1) To prepare students for graduate work in politics, law, and public service.
2) To prepare students for examinations required for governmental service.
3) To prepare students to be political leaders.
Requirements for Majors
A major in politics requires POL-218, 237, either 242 or 252, 300, one seminar at the 400 level, plus five additional courses, at least four of which must be at the 300 level or above. The capstone, oral presentation, and writing requirements within the major are fulfilled by taking one of the following seminar courses: POL-418W, POL- 437W, POL-442W, POL-452W, or IR-400W; or POL-491 and POL-492W.
Secondary School Teaching Certificate
In addition to the basic requirements of the major, students seeking a teaching certificate in social studies must be enrolled in the College’s teacher education program. Substantial further coursework outside of either major is required in order to prepare the student for actual subject matters taught in the secondary curriculum. Students who wish to obtain teaching certification should consult their departmental adviser and the chair of the department of education as early as possible, preferably at the end of the freshman year. Students and their advisers should also consult the Ursinus College Education Department.
Requirements for Minors
A minor in politics consists of two courses from among POL-218, 237, 242, 252; and three courses at the 300 or 400 level.
International Relations majors become capable of living and working in a worldwide setting by developing an understanding of how that setting came to be and how its various political, economic, and social systems function.
Requirements for Majors
The International Relations major is an interdisciplinary program for students interested in careers in international politics and diplomacy, intelligence work, higher education, international law, international trade, journalism, and other fields where expertise in international affairs is necessary. Courses required to complete the International Relations major include: ANTH-100, ECON-102, HIST-102, POL-242, 252, 300, and a capstone consisting of either POL-442W, 452W, IR-400W or another capstone approved by the International Relations coordinator. Eligible students may write a departmental or interdisciplinary honors paper for their capstone requirement, with the approval of the IR coordinator. (Note: Students planning to do graduate study in political science should take POL-218 and 237 as well.) Majors are additionally required to take five of the following courses, including courses in at least two different departments: ANTH-212, 221, 230, 235; ECON-201, 202, 223, 263, 361, 362; HIST-101, 103, 125, 126, 151, 152, 175, 176, 202, 225, 252, 254, 255, 276, 277, 303, 307, 308, 351, 352, 354, 376, 377; LAS-200; IR-400W; POL-343, 344, 345, 346, 348, 349, 350A and 350B, 352, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 359. (Note: Both POL-350A and 350B must be taken to qualify as one elective.) Special topics courses such as ANTH-251, ECON-213, HIST-250 or 350, LAS-332, MGT-300 and POL-399 may count as electives with permission of the IR coordinator. Finally, all students in the International Relations major must take at least two courses at the 200 level or above in a foreign language. International Relations majors are strongly encouraged to pursue study-abroad options. The department regularly tries to accommodate students by accepting courses taken abroad in fulfillment of major requirements.
International Relations majors can fulfill the capstone, oral presentation, and writing requirements within the major by taking one of the following seminar courses: POL-442W, POL-452W, or IR-400W. HIST-450W may fulfill the major capstone requirement with permission of the IR coordinator.
Requirements for Minors
The international relations minor consists of POL-242, 252 and three courses from the following list: ANTH-212, 221, 230, 235; ECON-201, 202, 223, 263, 361, 362; HIST-101, 102, 103, 125, 126, 151, 152, 175, 176, 202, 225, 252, 254, 255, 276, 277, 303, 307, 308, 351, 352, 354, 376, 377. LAS-200; IR-400W; POL-300, 343, 344, 345, 346, 348, 349, 350A and 350B, 352, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 359, 442W, 452W. Special topics courses such as ANTH-251, ECON-213, HIST-250, 350 or 450W, LAS-332, MGT-300 and POL-101 or 399 may count as electives with permission of the IR coordinator. Minors are required to take courses from at least two contributing departments.