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Political Science

As a political science major, you will receive a BA in Political Science. You'll develop an understanding of political institutions and processes in the local, state, national, and global community. You'll be prepared to think critically and act effectively as an engaged citizen.

UMass Dartmouth's political science program examines the impact of government upon the life of the individual—and of individual citizens upon government. We use scientific, philosophical, and applied perspectives to examine politics in the U.S. and around the world.

2 concentrations available:

We want to ensure that you acquire proficiency in writing, communication, advocacy, and comparative analysis: all vital skills in today's workplace, which is why we require students to complete an internship. You'll be prepared for a career in local, state, and federal government—as well as in administration, business, corporate management, diplomatic service, public law, social work, urban planning, and many other fields. A major in political science can also be the stepping-stone to law school and graduate study in diverse academic and professional disciplines.

UMass Dartmouth's curriculum centers around four subfields of political science: American politics/policy, comparative politics, international relations, and political theory.

Our professors are accomplished scholars in their fields, committed to teaching and research. You'll work with them to:

  • Understand of the concepts, theories, and empirical findings in politics, government, and administration
  • Discover the impact of factors such as employment, environment, and gender on politics
  • Consider the theories and practices of governments on both the domestic and international levels

For the major, you'll complete 39 credit hours, and 120 credit hours overall. An internship is required for political science majors.

Further your career opportunities by engaging the world critically and socially. A minor in political science will provide you with analytical and communicative skills that will be valued in many fields.

For the minor, you'll complete 21 credit hours, consisting of 2 core courses and 5 specialized courses.

Enrollment in the 3+3 joint degree program with UMass Law allows offers an accelerated pathway to an undergraduate and law degree, enabling qualifying students to substitute the first year of law school for the final year of their undergraduate program, thereby earning both a bachelor’s degree from UMass Dartmouth and a Juris Doctor from UMass Law in six rather than seven years.

Enrollment in the 4+1 Teacher Preparation program allows undergraduate students to begin the education coursework towards a master’s degree in teaching (MAT) as early as the sophomore year. Half of the degree is completed as an undergraduate, reducing the time and costs of earning a graduate degree.

Student Success

Efe Oboh-Idahosa '23: Interning for the U.S. Senate

Political science major completes highly coveted internship in U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren's office.

Graduate School Placements

  • Boston College
  • Brown University
  • Claremont McKenna College
  • Duke University
  • Roger Williams University
  • Salem State University
  • SUNY Stony Brook
  • University of Rhode Island

Career Placements

  • Barrington Law Centers
  • Commonwealth of Massachusetts
  • Community Resources for Justice
  • Massachusetts Superior Court
  • Merrill Lynch
  • Morgan Stanley Wealth Management
  • Suffolk County District Attorney's Office
  • United States House of Representatives
  • U.S. Department of Veterans

Political science major starting salary:

NACE Data Collection of Class of 2022 Undergraduate Alumni

UMassD advantages

  • Internships: All political science majors complete an off-campus internship in government, politics, public policy, and/or law. Internship opportunities include the Washington Center.
  • Study abroad: Experiences through the International Programs Office may waive the internship requirement.
  • Experience: Participation in student government, community service, and Pi Sigma Alpha are some of the ways you'll gain hands-on experience in public affairs.
  • Pre-law advising: Receive advising on which courses to take to prepare for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) and law school.
  • 3+3 Law degree: UMass Law’s accelerated program allows you to receive both an undergraduate degree and a law degree in 6 rather than 7 years. In your fourth year, you would matriculate at UMass Law as a first-year law student.
  • Honors College: take advanced courses, pursue research, and be part of a community of scholars
  • Study Abroad: earn academic credits and gain a global perspective on your field
  • Undergraduate Research: faculty work with students on cutting-edge research projects
  • University Studies: gain the benefit of a broad university education to enhance your knowledge and skills

Political Science Faculty

Dilshod Achilov
David Prentiss
Douglas Roscoe
Heidi Berggren
John Fobanjong
Kenneth Manning
Kristen McHenry
Kristen McHenry
Peter Sandby-Thomas
Robert Darst
Shannon Jenkins

Study online

Online & Continuing Education at UMass Dartmouth offers a political science degree online