Learn from award-winning educators, gain hands-on experience, and make sense of the various forces that shape the modern political world.
Political Science at UConn
UConn is a top research university, meaning that political science majors have opportunities to interact directly with professors who are active at the cutting edge of their fields. Our students learn through rigorous courses taught by these talented scholars and put theory to practice by getting involved in experiences beyond the classroom.
Through coursework and hands-on experiences, you’ll learn how to:
- think critically about politics,
- communicate your ideas effectively,
- identify different manifestations of power, and
- understand the ways that power interacts with public decision making and public policy.
Once they graduate, UConn political science majors go on to a variety of exciting careers as attorneys, public servants, diplomats, journalists, political campaigners, educators, members of advocacy groups, and numerous other occupations. They also pursue graduate studies at some of the top programs in the country. The two most recent members of Congress who have represented eastern Connecticut's Second Congressional District studied political science at UConn, as have numerous members of the Connecticut state legislature.
What We Offer
- You will learn from some of UConn’s best teachers, including several recipients of campus-wide teaching awards.
- You will study the various forces that influence our world today, including American politics; the politics of other nations; international affairs; the legal system; the politics of race, gender, and ethnicity; or the political ideas that motivate people.
- We offer a variety of internships, including in Congress, the Connecticut state legislature, law firms, state and federal agencies, and advocacy groups.
- There are many opportunities to study abroad and to get involved in organizations like the Pre-Law Society, the International Relations Club, the Model UN, and the Pi Sigma Alpha honor society.
- Our liberal arts education will give you skills that are essential in any career, including communication, critical reasoning, quantitative analysis, and an appreciation for human diversity.
The Bachelor of Arts in Political Science is designed for students who want to develop an in-depth understanding of domestic politics, the politics of other nations, international relations, and political theory. Through extensive course work and hands-on experiences, political science majors develop analytical reasoning and critical thinking skills while gaining expertise in one or more areas of political science. This degree provides maximum flexibility when selecting classes, allowing you to tailor your program of study to suit your interests and career goals. Also available in an honors track.
Current UConn undergraduate students may choose to minor in political science. While not required for graduation, the minor offers students the option to focus on political science topics and research in addition to their choice of major. The minor complements a wide variety of majors, particularly for students who are interested in topics like environmental studies, human rights, medicine, and communication.
Current UConn undergraduates can begin graduate-level study during their senior year and continue for a fifth year after completing their undergraduate requirements. This 30-credit master's program exposes students to a wide range of political science methodologies, preparing them to conduct independent research in politics.
Resources for Current Students
Academic Advising and Forms
Academic advising for undergraduate students in the Department of Political Science is coordinated by Jessamy Hoffmann, the POLS academic advisor.
All incoming first-year and transfer students are assigned to the POLS academic advisor. All rising juniors and seniors are also assigned a faculty advisor. In addition, students can make an appointment with the CLAS Academic Services Center.
Awards and Scholarships
The Department offers a number of awards and scholarships to undergraduate students every spring semester. All political science majors are welcome to apply. Applications are due February 1.
Find out more on our Awards page.
Clubs and Organizations
Students can get involved in several department-affiliated organizations and honor societies, including:
- Phi Sigma Alpha
- Undergraduate Political Science association
- Model United Nations
- UConn Undergraduate Political Review
These programs offer you the chance to meet new people, build your resume, and to apply the knowledge you gain in class to real-world scenarios.
Learn more about our clubs and organizations and how to get involved on our Clubs and Organizations page.
The Department offers several internship opportunities where students can get hands-on experience in politics and government at the local, state, and national levels. Find out more about specific programs and requirements on our Internships page.
Students who would like to get involved in research may contact the POLS academic advisor or their assigned faculty advisor for more information. In addition, the Office of Undergraduate Research is a resource for students in all majors, at all campuses, and at all stages, from freshman to senior. They support students throughout the research cycle, beginning with the exploration of possible topics and mentors and continuing through the dissemination of project outcomes to the campus community and beyond.
Learn more about research opportunities for undergraduate students on our Research page.
UConn's Pre-Law Center is committed to helping students and alumni prepare for law school and legal careers. They offer events and workshops to help students get a sense of what it means to be a lawyer. They also help students with the law school application process by reviewing personal statements and resumes, providing information about various schools and programs, and assessing competing offers of admissions.
Learn more on the Pre-Law Center's website.
Professional Development and Careers
Visit our Careers and Outcomes page to learn about possible careers in political science and to find a list of professional development resources for undergraduate students.