Apply

Main Content

Specializations

Three specializations are offered in the Department of Political Science at SIU for undergraduates to choose the best course of study based on their respective career goals. 

International Affairs

Many students hold the determination and desire to find careers abroad after graduation and to create change in the global political structure. The nations of the world are more interconnected than ever before and a specialization in international affairs provides a solid foundation for building analytical and communication skills when working with different cultures and governments outside the United States.

Successful graduates with a specialization in international affairs find rewarding careers in a number of multinational corporations and non-profits such as Amnesty International, The Red Cross, The Peace Corps, and in foreign service work focusing on refugee rights and global politics.

Courses in international affairs cover topics including politics of the global economy, international relations, and war within world politics. Russian and post-Soviet affairs and the politics of Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East are part of the broad curriculum that provides an in-depth understanding for all international affairs students.


Compass IconCheck out the International Affairs Curricular Guide, which helps you outline what courses you would want to take each semester for all four years. View all specialization requirements.


Pre-Law

For undergraduates planning on attending law school and later working in the legal realm of courts, business, and government, the pre-law specialization instills analytical and substantive skills in each student to ensure success in law school and beyond.

One of the most common undergraduate degrees to obtain in preparation for law school, the political science program focuses on several different areas of study within the major with coursework in subjects such as the legal and judicial process, constitutional law, and civil liberties. Pre-law students in political science gain an understanding of these topics and skills to ensure a competitive edge during the intensely demanding years of law school.

Advisors are available to assist pre-law students with finding a suitable career focus and preparing for the LSAT and law school application procedures. With a proper foundation of relevant coursework and advanced readiness for law school, pre-law specialization students have an advantage when heading into advanced degree work and a multitude of careers in law.


Compass IconCheck out the Pre-Law Curricular Guide, which helps you outline what courses you would want to take each semester for all four years. View all specialization requirements.


Public Service

The public service specialization is specifically designed for political science students planning a career in local, state, or national government. Through specially devised courses of study and instruction focused on government and non-profit organizations, public service students follow customized programs of study geared towards their specific career goals.

Students focusing on public service are required to complete a minor, internship, or interdisciplinary program of study outside of the existing political science major requirements. Fulfillment of this additional requirement gives public service students the chance to explore complementary fields of study such as public policy, administrative law, and intergovernmental relations. 

Advisors in the political science department collaborate with students during their period of enrollment to ensure the proper course of study is followed. This close attention provides students with a well-rounded approach to the demands of a career in government and work with non-profit organizations. 


Compass IconCheck out the Public Service Curricular Guide, which helps you outline what courses you would want to take each semester for all four years. View all specialization requirements.


SIU Political Science studying in lecture hall