Political Science

Political Science Major

The major in political science requires a course in American politics in order to insure that all graduates have a working knowledge of the U.S. political system, and two courses that introduce various subfields within the discipline. Beyond those minimal requirements, the major in political science allows the student flexibility to structure a program of study in political science and related courses which will enhance the intellectual experience of the student and which will allow preparation for better understanding the world we live in, for law school, other professional and graduate education opportunities, or a variety of careers. 

NOTE: ALL POL FOUR CREDIT COURSES HAVE BEEN CHANGED TO THREE CREDIT COURSES BEGINNING FALL 2015. Political Science majors who started at Miami prior to Fall 2015 are required to have a minimum of 34 semester hours in the major for graduation.

A. Political Science courses (33 semester hours minimum)

  • POL 241 American Political System (3) [Take this course first]

  • [Then, take:] At least 2 from among the following:

    • POL 201 Political Thinking (3)*
    • POL 221 Modern World Governments (3)*
    • POL 261 Public Administration (3)*
    • POL 271 World Politics (3)*

*Prerequisites for certain 300- and 400-level courses

  • In consultation with a faculty adviser, choose at least 19 additional hours from other POL courses at the 300 level and above, with at least one course selected from two of the five major fields. (Hours may include the senior Capstone. Students who entered before Fall 2013 are not required to take a POL capstone, but you may take one. 

  • Additional hours from POL courses at the 200+ level to complete the 33 hour requirement (100-level POL courses do NOT apply to major).

  • Other requirements: 2.0 GPA in POL; all courses must be taken for a grade; at least 15 of the 33 hours must be taken at Miami.

B. Related courses (18 hours minimum)

  • Select from: AMS, ATH, BLS, BWS, BUS, ECO, ESP, GEO, GIC, GTY, HST, ISA, ITS, JRN, LAS, MAC, MGT, PHL, PSY, REL, SOC, STC, WGS, AES 221, AES 222, AES 431, AES 432, ENG 432, NSC 202, NSC 311, NSC 402, or other courses as approved by the department.
  • At least 12 hrs. must be at the 200+ level.

  • Other requirements: 2.0 GPA in all related courses; all work must be taken for a grade; at least half of the coursework must be at Miami.


STUDENTS ENTERING FALL 2013 OR AFTER - CAS/Miami Plan Advanced Writing Requirement: Students seeking the Bachelor of Arts in Political Science meet the College of Arts and Science writing in the major requirement by completing the following courses: (1) Take at least one of the required 200-level courses in a "Writing" or "W" section; (2) Take at least one of the POL 300-level courses in a "W" section; (3) and complete one of the required POL Capstone courses (all of which meet the Writing requirement).

NOTE: The Department of Political Science does NOT allow Political Science majors to pursue another major in the Department. A double major between Public Administration and Diplomacy and Global Politics is allowed, but will not meet the Miami Plan’s thematic sequence requirement as a double major that is in the same department. We strongly discourage a Diplomacy and Global Politics - International Studies double major, due to all the “double counting” that is involved.

Requirements can vary based upon the bulletin year of entry to Miami. Students should consult their DAR and with their faculty adviser to confirm their requirements.