Political Science | Major & Minor

Political science studies governments, political behavior, social movements, and international affairs in the United States and around the world.

About the Political Science Major

The political science major at Southern Virginia University is for students interested in current events, American government, international affairs, public service, or law. The major is structured to provide you with a valuable personalized education by (1.) building a foundation in good writing and critical thinking, (2.) making connections with related fields like history and economics, and (3.) integrating career development into each stage of your college career.

Additionally, Virginia has odd- and even-year elections, which offers you the chance to work on political campaigns in any academic year. And because we are an afternoon’s drive away from Washington, DC, we can connect you with internship and work opportunities with legislative offices, think tanks, or other government and public organizations.

Learning Outcomes

  • Ability to engage with the world by understanding the differences and relationships between different societies
  • Ability to think and communicate constructively with people in a variety of circumstances
  • Ability to contribute to and support the communities in which we live
  • Preparation to pursue a wide variety of careers in law, government, management, education, and other public service
  • In the Pre-law and Government Tracks, a focus on careful writing, argumentation, and communication
  • In the Economics and Politics and Public Policy Tracks, developing skills in mathematics to analyze policy questions
  • In the International Affairs Track, a focus on learning about the societies, cultures, and politics of countries around the world

Major Tracks

The five tracks within the political science major allow you the flexibility to choose the skills and topics that you are most interested in, and which fit best with your career plans.


Receive the best preparation for the LSAT, law school, and your legal career.

International Affairs

Broaden your horizons and prepare for careers in diplomacy, charitable organizations, or other non-profit work.

Public Policy

An applied analysis program that gives you a foundation in the methods of formulating and evaluating policy.

Economics and Politics

A multi-disciplinary track that is an excellent intellectual preparation for graduate school or a range of careers that require strong analytical and quantitative skills.


A track that covers all four subfields in political science, best suited to preparing students for professional school or teaching licensure.

Getting Started in the Political Science Major

  1. Enroll

    Begin by taking American Government and Politics (POL 223) or Human Geography (POL 203) in your first or second year

  2. Contact

    Get in touch with Professor Jeremiah John to discuss your interests and goals

  3. Declare

    Turn in a completed Declare Major form to the Registrar’s Office

Alumni Success

The political science major is invested in your career development—beginning in the introductory courses and continuing through the final capstone project. Each semester, alumni and other friends of the University speak about their career paths in several Career Night events. Additionally, students in the major attend regular trips and events to connect them with internship and career opportunities.

Most people know that political science majors often work in government or law, but political science majors are also well-suited to business, non-profit leadership (including health care administration), and education. Even students in the arts or in pre-medical programs may major in political science to broaden their educational experience.

Related Programs and Concentrations

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Faculty Contacts:

  • Jeremiah John, Ph.D. – Program Coordinator

“In the political science major, we learn about the social and political problems of our own society, as well as those of others. We seek to understand what causes these problems, as well as how they might be solved. In the words of scripture, we study “things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms” (Doctrine and Covenants 88:79).”

– Professor Jeremiah John