Dec 10, 2019  
Catalog 2019-2020 
Catalog 2019-2020

Political Science

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Chair of Department of Political Science: Natalie Taylor

Professors: Beau Breslin, Katherine E. Graney, The Joseph C. Palamountain Chair in Political Science

Associate Professors: Feryaz Ocakli, Ronald P. Seyb, Flagg Taylor, Natalie Taylor, Robert C. Turner

Assistant Professors: Yelena Biberman-Ocakli, Christopher Mann

Visiting Assistant Professors: Patrick Campbell, Collin Grimes

* = part time

Department Overview

The Political Science department seeks to instill in its students a lively interest in politics, in how political systems work and how we can make them work better, in contemporary political issues, in international relations and foreign policy, in political theory, and in the law. We offer a comprehensive program that reflects the broad discipline of political science. Students take three required introductory courses followed by intermediate and advanced courses in four areas: American government, comparative government, international relations, and political theory. The major is designed to serve students who wish to concentrate in a particular area, those who aspire to go on to graduate school, and those who want merely to explore the field of politics.

Our main goal is to help students think analytically about political issues. We do this by developing students’ knowledge of the four subdisciplines of political science, by cultivating in them the skills they need to understand political issues, and by enhancing their abilities to assess political situations and problems from both empirical and normative perspectives.

We aim to provide students with the historical and contemporary information they need to understand national and international political structures, behaviors, and ideas. In terms of analytical skills, we seek to offer students the methodological and technical training they require to read texts carefully; collect, analyze, and interpret data; and communicate their conclusions effectively and elegantly. We, finally, teach students to examine political issues and problems from both empirical and ethical viewpoints as a first step toward developing policy recommendations that can improve political participation, processes, and outcomes.

Pi Sigma Alpha, Tau Gamma Chapter.

Founded in 1920 as the national political science honor society, Pi Sigma Alpha receives into membership students of political science and related disciplines who attain high standards of scholarship and academic distinction. Eligibility requirements include: at least six political science and/or political science-history (PLH) courses for which letter grades were assigned; a combined 3.5 GPA from all of these courses; and a 3.25 cumulative GPA.

Major Requirements


Minor Requirements




Course Listing

PL 207 - They Might Be Giants: Global Rise of BRICS  
PL 226 - States, Rebels, and, Warlords  
PL 233 - Political Islam  
PL 326 - Coasts of Bohemia: The Politics and History of the Czech Lands and People  

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