Sep 20, 2020  
2016-2017 CSU East Bay Catalog 
2016-2017 CSU East Bay Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Political Science, B.A.

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Department & Faculty Information  

Political Science (B.A.) 180 units

Program Description

The political science curriculum helps students to acquire an organized body of knowledge about government and to think analytically about public policy, law, and politics. The political science degree prepares graduates to enter careers in government, public service, public administration, public policy analysis, legislative advocacy, business, international relations, and teaching. Many Cal State East Bay political science graduates continue their academic careers in law school, or in the pursuit of graduate degrees in political science or public policy analysis.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with a B.A. in Political Science will be able to:

  1. develop and articulate an understanding of democratic theory and practice and gain practical experience in politics, public policy, and civic engagement.
  2. demonstrate through oral and written competency, an understanding of the theories, concepts, empirical content, and research agendas of the fields of political science with advanced understanding in the selected option.
  3. demonstrate an understanding of political culture in the U.S. and around the world including the economic, ideological, ethnic and cultural groups and movements that engage the political process.
  4. articulate career goals, demonstrate knowledge of how to achieve those goals, and produce evidence of working to achieve the goals.
  5. demonstrate the ability to apply knowledge through collaborative learning and teamwork.

Career Opportunities

  • Administrative Assistant
  • Attorney
  • Campaign Aide/Manager
  • Diplomat
  • FBI/CIA Agent
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • International Relations Specialist
  • Journalist
  • Labor Organizer/Union Representative
  • Law Clerk
  • Legislative Advocate/Lobbyist
  • Legislative Aide
  • Paralegal
  • Legal Assistant
  • Police Officer
  • Politician
  • Polling Specialist
  • Private Investigator
  • Public Administrator
  • Public Information Officer
  • Research Specialist
  • Secret Service Agent
  • Teacher


The political science major offers a Pre-Law option for students planning a career in law. The Public Affairs and Administration option is designed to meet the needs of students contemplating a career in public administration. The Political Science department offers a major and a minor. Special features of the Political Science major include: the Intercollegiate Model United Nations Club; field trips to Sacramento and to State and Federal courts; guest political speakers; pre-law advising; local, Sacramento, Washington, and political campaign internships; and the Political Science Club.


For Advanced Placement course equivalencies, see Registration.

Major Requirements (B.A.) 56-64 units

The B.A. degree requires a total of 180 units.

  • The core major consists of 20 units;
    • the electives for the non- Option consists of 36 units;
    • the Pre-Law Option consists of 44 units.
    • the Public Affairs and Administration Option consists of 41 units;
  • GE/USHG/UWS consists of 84 units (some courses may double-count units - see your advisor).
  • Free Electives (if any) will make up the remainder units to reach 180 minimum total units (see your advisor). 


Note: Please consult an advisor in your major department for clarification and interpretation of your major requirements. 

Shared Core (20 units)

All Political Science majors are required to complete the following shared core curriculum:

Option Requirements

Political Science offers three choices for students to complete the major: 

Students can complete the required units for the major by choosing one of the options below:

The Traditional Political Science Major: Additional Course Requirements (36 units)

Students NOT completing an option are required to complete the following 36 units for the major:


And an additional 20 units from any upper division political science courses.

Course Descriptions

Use this link to see all Course Descriptions  available throughout this catalog.

Other Undergraduate Degree Requirements

In addition to major requirements, every student must also complete the University requirements for graduation which are described in the Undergraduate Admission and Degree Information & FAQ  chapter in the front of this catalog. These include the General Education-Breadth requirements; the second composition (ENGL 1002 ) requirement; the cultural groups/women requirement; the performing arts/activities requirement; the U.S. history, U.S. Constitution, and California state and local government requirement; the University Writing Skills Requirement; and the residence, unit, and grade point average requirements.

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