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Bachelor of Arts in Political Science 

Are you fascinated by American politics? Want to make a difference in your community, state, and country?

If you are passionate about important local, national, and international issues like healthcare, education, the economy, civil rights, and foreign relations, earning a bachelor’s degree in political science may be a great fit for your interests and career goals.

Why choose the B.A. in political science at Marian?

By exploring United States political history, systems, and structures in addition to contemporary political trends, challenges, and opportunities, we’ll help you build a firm foundation for a great career. 

Political scientists study the origin, development, and operation of political systems. They research political ideas and analyze governments, policies, political and social trends, and related issues.

As a political science major, you will acquire the knowledge and tools you need to better explain, describe, compare, and predict U.S. political outcomes.

You’ll also develop the problem-solving, critical thinking, communication, collaboration, leadership, and other skills that top employers and graduate schools seek.

  • Study political systems like state and federal government, political activism and grassroots strategies, public policy, constitutional law, international relations, and election processes.
  • Explore American politics in relation to governance, law, public policy, ethics, religion, sociology, economics, international affairs, and related topics.
  • Learn about historic and current U.S. political practices and their influence on our national consciousness and culture.
  • Analyze political activity and behavior, including American alliances and relationships with our North American neighbors and nations around the world.

Customize your studies

To add more depth to your studies—and further define your career interests and options—consider adding one of these academic concentrations to your plan of study:

  • Concentration in law studies 
  • Concentration in political leadership and engagement 
  • Concentration in international affairs 

Other minors or concentrations from which you might choose:

What else does Marian University’s political science program have to offer?

  • We’ll engage you inside and outside of the classroom through our Global Speakers Series, field trips, study-abroad and honors courses, undergraduate research projects, and service-learning opportunities in Indianapolis, across the U.S., and around the world.
  • Marian University’s Richard G. Lugar Franciscan Center for Global Studies promotes exploration of contemporary global issues and trends as they relate to the university’s Franciscan values and heritage. Students who choose to minor in global studies complete a required study-abroad experience and an exclusive, one-week program in Washington, DC over spring break. Incoming freshmen are eligible for generous Lugar Fellow scholarships.
  • You can join student clubs and organizations like our Politics Club, College Republicans, International Club, Model United Nations Club, or Student Government Association.
  • Thanks to central Indiana’s thriving employment market and economy, our Indianapolis location will give you outstanding access to a range of internship and employment opportunities, including paid internships at the Indiana State House.

What will you study?

To earn the 128-credit Bachelor of Arts in Political Science degree, you’ll complete at least 33 credits of courses focused on political science, including:

  • POL 102: Introduction to American Politics
  • POL 206: Applied Political Science Statistics
  • POL 210: Introduction to Comparative Politics
  • POL 220: Introduction to International Relations
  • POL 230: Introduction to Political Theory
  • POL 490: Senior Political Science Seminar

You’ll also complete at least five additional POL courses at or above the 300 level. Working closely with your academic advisor, you can choose from courses on topics like:

  • Public policy
  • Game theory and strategic thinking
  • Leadership and political activism
  • International law and organization
  • Voting, campaigns, and elections
  • Women and politics
  • American foreign policy
  • State and urban politics
  • American Constitutional law
  • American political thought
  • Ancient and medieval political theory
  • Politics of the global economy

If you choose one of our concentrations, you will complete courses relevant to that concentration (i.e., law studies, political leadership and engagement, or international affairs) in addition to the core courses all political science majors are required to take.

Sample four-year plan and checklist

​What are your career paths?

Earning a B.A. in political science at Marian will prepare you to directly enter the workforce after graduation and/or to be a competitive candidate for admission to graduate school.

Upon completing your B.A. in political science, you’ll have the knowledge, skills, and experience you need to pursue full-time employment in a range of settings, including business, government, media, education, and nonprofit organizations.

According to a 2019 article from thebalancecareers.com, the top ten jobs for political science graduates are:

  1. Policy analyst
  2. Legislative assistant
  3. Public relations specialist
  4. Social media manager
  5. Marketing research analyst
  6. Political consultant
  7. Attorney
  8. Intelligence analyst
  9. Political campaign staff
  10. College student leadership and activities officer

Some political science majors are interested in pursuing international careers that lead them to employment or travel to other countries. Among the employment options for graduates who want to work overseas:

  1. Demographer
  2. Diplomat
  3. United Nations officer
  4. Foreign affairs analyst or specialist
  5. Archivist
  6. Foreign service officer
  7. Immigration specialist
  8. International marketing specialist
  9. CIA officer

If you plan to earn a master’s or doctoral degree in a field like law, public policy, public administration, international affairs, public health, environmental policy, human rights, or foreign relations, you’ll work closely with your academic advisor to select the most relevant and meaningful undergraduate courses.

Our faculty advisors can also help you prepare for the LSAT, GRE, GMAT, and other exams that may be required by graduate schools.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), here are employment projections for jobs related to political science.

OccupationGrowth through 2026Median 2017 salary 
Political scientist*3 percent$115,110
Judge or hearing officer*5 percent $115,520
Law enforcement (police officers and detectives) 7 percent$62,960
Emergency management director 8 percent $72,720 
Attorney (lawyer)* 8 percent $119,250 
Arbitrator, mediator, or conciliator 10 percent $60,670 
Public relations and fundraising manager 10 percent $111,280 
Program and management analyst 14 percent $82,450 
Market research analyst 23 percent $63,230 

*NOTE: Occupations followed by an asterisk require graduate study and a master's, Ph.D., or J.D. degree.

For admission information

Office of Undergraduate Admission
(317) 955-6300 or (800) 772-7264
admissions@marian.edu

For program specifics

Dr. Pierre Atlas
Director, Richard G. Lugar Franciscan Center for Global Studies
(317) 955-6336
patlas@marian.edu

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