Political Science

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Bachelor of Arts in American Politics

The American Politics major offers students a unique learning environment that synthesizes rigorous academic study alongside practical experience and skills, exemplifying the Drake mission statement’s focus on collaborative learning among students, faculty, and staff and the integration of the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation. The major serves our students who choose Drake for the distinct experiential environment available in Des Moines and on campus, allowing consistent and meaningful participation in local, state, and national politics.

The American Politics major requires a minimum of 42 credit hours.

  1. Core requirements (18 hrs):
    1. POLS 001: The American Political System (3 hrs)
    2. POLS 065: Comparative Politics (3 hrs)
    3. Introductory Methods in American Politcs (3 hrs)
    4. One upper-level methods-designated topical seminar (3 hrs)
    5. One course in theoretical foundations (3 hrs)
    6. American Politics capstone (3 hrs)
  2. Electives (24 hrs):
    1. Two elective courses in political institutions (6 hrs)
    2. Two elective courses in contemporary public policy debates (6 hrs)
    3. One elective course in political behavior (3 hrs)
    4. Nine credit hours in professional development/practical politics (9 hrs). Students will complete these nine credit hours through a combination of advisor-approved internships (paid or unpaid), experiential learning opportunities in Washington, D.C., and/or short courses focusing on professional skills taught by experts in the field. 
  3. For graduation, majors must have at least a 2.00 cumulative GPA in all courses counted towards the major.
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