Political Science

Incoming students interested in political science should register for POL101. Advanced placement and IB credits may be counted toward the major but cannot be substituted for POL 101.

Political Science 101 is open to first-year students. Political Science 101 offers a rigorous introduction to the concepts and methods of the discipline.

Students majoring in political science are required to complete courses in each of the three subfields (comparative politics, international relations, and American politics) and two seminars at the 300 level. Majors must fulfill a specified 200-level prerequisite prior to enrolling in a 300-level seminar. No 200-level course can be used to fulfill the prerequisite for more than one seminar. It is possible to count up to eight credits as cognates from related fields of study in the social sciences if taken at the 200-level or above. In addition to taking 32 credits in the major, political science majors must take a course in statistics (MAT 115 or MAT 209).  Students must fulfill this statistics requirement on campus at Grinnell. The department recommends that students who have prior coursework in statistics enroll in MAT 209. Exceptions to this policy may only be made for transfer students on a case-by-case basis.

There are many ways to complete a major in political science. One possibility, which includes a semester of Off-Campus Study (OCS) is:

FIRST YEAR FALL   FIRST YEAR SPRING
POL 100   POL 2XX
SECOND YEAR FALL   SECOND YEAR SPRING
POL 2XX, MAT 115 or MAT 209   POL 2XX
THIRD YEAR FALL   THIRD YEAR SPRING
POL 2XX or OCS   POL 2XX
FOURTH YEAR FALL   FOURTH YEAR SPRING
POL 2XX and/or POL 3XX   POL 3XX