For a major in political science, the student must satisfactorily complete a minimum of 33 credit hours, including:

  • An 18-hour core introducing students to career opportunities, the conduct of political inquiry in the major areas of the discipline, an awareness of global issues and cultural diversity and the techniques of original research.
  • A 15-hour depth requirement in which students take at least one course from three of the major areas of political inquiry and acquire additional experience in the application of research techniques.
  • A four-hour capstone experience included in the core is designed to bring together knowledge gained in different courses into a coherent whole, to foster a capacity for lifelong learning, to connect the major to experiences outside the university and to provide the opportunity to work individually with a faculty member or with a professional in the appropriate applied field. Click here for course checklist prior Fall 2017 (pdf) Click here for course checklist Fall 2017 (pdf)

The Political Science, International Affairs, and Public Policy and Administration majors are available to any student in good standing at the university. To declare one of these majors (or to declare a minor), go to the Student Center component of MyMadison on the STUDENT tab.  JMU's Office of the Registrar provides a step-by-step video tutorial with instructions on adding, dropping, and/or changing majors and minors.

Please direct questions about the political science major to:
Dr. Scott Hammond, Miller Hall 2141, (540) 568-6313,

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