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Political Science Major Learning Outcomes

  • Upon completion of a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, students will be able to:

    • Explain general theories in political science
    • Explain the workings of the political systems (domestic and international) with regards to institutions and inputs
    • Explain theories of political behavior and main political ideologies, including the importance of key social variables such as gender, sexuality, class, ethnicity, and race
    • Identify key assumptions of disciplinary subfields
  • Upon completion of a BA in Political Science, students will be able to demonstrate critical thinking by:

    • Analyzing and evaluating scholarly work in Political Science by:
      • Summarizing the arguments and findings of scholarly work
      • Analyzing the theories and hypotheses being tested in scholarly work
      • Explaining methodological approaches to testing hypotheses in scholarly work
      • Critiquing research designs
      • Explaining the conclusions of author(s)
    • Distinguishing between factual presentation and argument
    • Constructing propositions based on a set of facts and values
  • Upon completion of a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, students will be able to demonstrate research skills by:

    • Formulating a research question, drawn from an appropriate existing literature
    • Developing testable hypotheses
    • Conducting tests of those hypotheses by:
      • Applying the appropriate methodology to those tests
      • Distinguishing between different methodological approaches
      • Justifying the use of a particular methodology
      • Developing argument or an approach based on existing work.
    • Reporting results to empirical tests
    • Developing conclusions based upon tests conducted
    • Recognizing limitations in applied research
  • Upon completion of a BA in Political Science, students will be able to demonstrate communication by:

    • Engaging in discourse with the political science literature by explaining and interpreting the literature
    • Recognizing the target audience of communication
    • Use writing or speech to convey an intended meaning with clarity, concision, fluency, and without errors
    • Mastering the conventions of political science, including presentation, formatting, and style
    • Synthesizing and developing ideas with a structured, logical, and/or intuitive flow