The study of political science at Philander Smith College offers students the knowledge and necessary skills to understand both the theory and practice of local, state, and national politics in the United States as well as international politics. Students are required to apply for admission into the department by the end of their sophomore year in order to be declared an official major. Students majoring in political science at PSC will study the presidency, legislative and judicial systems, political parties, interest groups and elections, political thought, international relations, conflict, war and other political processes. The political science curriculum places direct emphasis on the political experiences of Black communities both domestic and abroad, as well as on women’s issues. It also seeks, nonetheless, to develop a global understanding of political behavior of leaders; however, all instruction will begin its inquiry from the vantage point of Black communities and women.
Additionally, majors will be taught how to conduct research and produce a senior capstone paper as a requirement for graduation. Our department offers experiential learning opportunities such as our internship and service-learning programs that provide opportunities for students to experience where theory and practice meet in the political world through placements and collaboration with government agencies, law firms and nonprofit agencies throughout the Little Rock metro area. The department’s student organization, the Political Science Academy, holds monthly meetings to discuss timely topics of pertaining to politics. Occasionally, guest speakers are invited to weigh in on the topics relating to the discipline.
The Major in Political Science
The basic requirement for a B.A. degree in Political Science include but is not limited to, the following courses: POLS 103, 203, 223, 253, 263 OR 273, 283 OR 333, 313, 343, 353, 363, 383, 400, 423, 433, SOCG 463 OR BADM 403, 400, 453, OR 483, 473, OR SOCG 483*.
Political Science Electives
Electives may be chosen from the range of Political Science courses offered or from other academic departments depending on the student’s interest.
Program Goals and Learning Outcomes
Students completing the requirements for a B.A. degree in Political Science will be able to:
1. To demonstrate comprehensive knowledge on the major theories and concepts in all of the major sub-fields of political science by taking Major Field Test by ETS.
2. To demonstrate critical, analytical, and strategic thinking, including the ability to form an argument, detect fallacies, and marshal evidence on contemporary political issues.
3. To explain and differentiate between domestic, international and law/public policy matters.
4. To describe the role that race, ethnicity, gender and political economy play in the political world.
5. To administer research by recognizing assumptions and devise basic research designs, test questions, arguments, and hypotheses with qualitative and/or quantitative methods.
6. To position students to advocate, propose, and formulate possibilities for social justice change in the larger world as engaged and informed citizens.
7. To analyze political and policy problems and formulate policy options.
8. To develop high written and communication skills to equip them for graduate/law school or the workforce.
9. To demonstrate competency in the use of traditional library and other research resources to analyze national, state, local and international events; and deliver thoughtful and well-articulated presentations of research findings.
Political Science Minor
To obtain a minor in Political Science, students must earn a total of 18 credit hours in Political Science courses, which must include POLS 103 and POLS 203, and 12 additional hours of upper level Political Science courses). At least six of the 18 credit hours must be at the 300-level and/or 400-level. Students must also earn a minimum grade point average of 2.00 in Political Science.
Chair: Dr. Daniel Egbe
Phone: (501) 370-5232
Location: Titus Academic Center, Suite B, Room 205