Political Science majors will…
- Understand the nature of politics, public values, and the institutions and processes of politics in their various forms.
- Understand and be able to interrelate the leading theories, literature, and approaches in the subfields of American Government, political theory and methods, international relations, and comparative politics.
- Be able to analyze and formulate effective argumentation in written and oral forms, including
- The ability to appreciate and accommodate diverse political ideas
- The ability to collect and critique information in ideas of others in support of original arguments
- Appreciate the knowledge and civic responsibilities required for effective participation in political life.
- Degree Program profiles
- “Imbedded Skills” curriculum analysis
- Alumni Surveys
- Senior Survey
- Senior Focus Group
- External reviews
- Placement data
- LSAT scores
- Advanced Writing Assessment (Pol S 395)
CHANGES BASED ON RESULTS 1994-2008
- Orientation course added, introducing students to discipline, career applications, and degree program opportunities.
- Pol S 495 was changed from a “Senior Seminar” to “Capstone Project in Political Science” to provide additional opportunities for students to participate in service learning and research experiences.
- Added Pol S 491x “Senior Thesis” introduced to provide opportunities for advanced research for students intending to pursue graduate study. Course is proposed as permanent offering for 2005-07 catalog.
- Added Pol S 395, “Advanced Writing in Political Science” as a major requirement to evaluate students’ research and/or argumentative writing skills within the major.
- Degree requirements changed from two courses to three credits per subfield, allowing more flexibility for students, in hiring, and in scheduling.
- Participation in internships increased from 21% to 35% in cohorts studied.
- Participation in study abroad programs increased from 7% to 20% in cohorts studied.
- Four year graduation rate among Pol S graduates entering ISU as freshmen (regardless of major at entry) increased from 36% to 59% in cohorts studied.
- Placement of Political Science graduates significantly broadened in scope in cohorts studied, with a significant decrease in private sector employment and gains in public and non-profit sector employment.
Master of Arts Students in Political Science will…
- Develop in-depth understanding of one or more subfields in political science
- Develop qualitative and quantitative skills for conducting and executing research on the political process
- Be able to analyze complex political questions
- Integrate theoretical and substantive materials
- Learn to integrate and present research findings
- Undertake and defend an original piece of political research at the culmination of their degree program.
- Course grades
- Writing samples
- Research design courses
- Student evaluations of all courses
- Faculty written assessments of graduate students
- Educational and professional career paths pursued by graduate student
- Oral examinations
- Written theses
Changes Based on Assessments in the Last Decade
- Restructured research design/research methods course (Pol S 502)
- Created proseminars in each of the major fields of the discipline (Pol S 504, Pol S 505, and Pol S 506)
- Consolidated Pol S 560 and Pol S 561 into Pol S 560, American Political Institutions, to afford graduate students a better opportunity to take advanced courses in this subfield.
- Expanded the courses qualifying in major subfields to broaden MA student background
- Created a reading list for new graduate students to assist their preparation for the proseminar and advanced courses
- Recruited high quality students from Iowa quality four-year colleges