The Associate in Arts for Transfer degree in Political Science is designed to provide a seamless pathway for students planning to transfer to a California State University (CSU) with a major in political science. Politics has an impact on everybody’s lives, and as citizens and voters, students should be informed about political issues and choices. Majors in political science learn to think critically, express their opinions in a thoughtful manner, analyze political events, evaluate political ideologies and make informed decisions on how to participate in political processes. The goal for study as a political science major is to maximize students’ capacity to analyze and interpret the dynamics of political events and governmental processes and their significance. Training in political science courses should equip students with analytical skills including: (1) the ability to recognize and understand the use of theory, analytic frames and models and their use to interpret and understand political phenomena; (2) the ability to recognize the importance of and to weigh the worth of evidence marshaled to support or oppose an argument; (3) the ability coherently to systematize and accumulate political information and knowledge and to use this stock of knowledge to better understand the political world. With these skills, and the ability to read and think critically, to write effectively and express themselves clearly, students can undertake a variety of careers. Students with a political science major enter careers in business, law, teaching, government, and in policy-related fields. The political science major complements a student’s liberal arts education with an emphasis on understanding the theoretical and practical aspects of government and politics. The major is structured to provide students with a background in the basic fields of political science, as well as to permit them a range of choice in completing the program.
Program Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:
- Identify and employ the pertinent vocabulary of political discourse and political science.
- Examine and apply theories, concepts, and practices in political theory.
- Recognize, describe and analyze the significant and usually direct influence of social, economic and cultural factors on political behavior, beliefs, and institutions.
- Assess how the design of political institutions and processes affect policy and stability.
- Identify the institutions, players and processes in American national and state governments.
- Demonstrate a knowledge of contemporary comparative systems and governments.
- Analyze world politics and diplomacy in the international system.