Political Science


Fairleigh Dickinson University’s New Jersey Metropolitan Campus, located in the cosmopolitan suburb of Teaneck just outside of New York City, serves as an excellent venue for students studying political science – an intriguing discipline that dates back to the philosophical reflections of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle who critically examined the role of government, political activity, and political behavior within society.

Enjoying partnerships with the United Nations and a wide array of government, public, non-profit, and private sector organizations, the study of political science at the Metropolitan Campus offers students a dynamic, challenging, and engaging course of study. Its interdisciplinary curriculum skillfully examines, integrates, analyzes, and applies theoretical and philosophical concepts inherent to political systems and behavior that are influenced by an ever-changing, globalized, and technologically advanced society. The program places a premium on cultivating student knowledge and understanding, critical thinking and reflection, effective communication, information and technological literacy, and ethical and professional behavior.  

Specifically, the program examines political systems and behavior from a macro and micro perspective, taking into consideration the impact of globalization and technology that serve to influence political decision-making in areas such as climate change, the environment, migration and immigration, economic policies, economic disparity, hunger, social injustice and inequality, religious extremism, terrorism, and exponentially advancing technologies that influence the political landscape, on both the domestic and international stage.

Students studying political science at Fairleigh Dickinson gain valuable knowledge and skills sets that can be applied in a wide range of exciting careers in a wide range of venues, including but not limited to  federal, state and local government, law, business, international and non-profit organizations, education and research, journalism, campaign management and polling, and electoral politics. Other career paths can lead to employment within:  

Government and Military Service The Foreign Service
International Relations Intelligence, Information, and Analytical Services
Regulatory Agencies Public Relations and Consulting
Non-Profit and Nongovernmental Organizations (NGO)  Teaching and Research
Law and the Administration of Justice Social and Political Research
Journalism and Broadcasting Market and Financial Research

In addition to fulfilling the liberal arts course requirements within University College, political science students are to complete a total of 36 credits within the discipline. The program’s core curriculum provides students a foundation in the study of government, political systems and processes, how political behavior influences public policy, and the various methodologies employed by political scientists to inform and expand their knowledge, understanding, and decision making.  The core curriculum comprises the following courses:

Political Science Core Curriculum

POLS 1101     Introduction to Political Science
POLS 2231     Comparative Government and Politics
POLS 2232     Political Thought and Theory
POLS 2251     Foreign Policy of the United States
POLS 4600     Political Science Seminar or
POLS 4875     Honors in Political Science

In addition to fulfilling the requirements for the core curriculum, students are required to complete an additional 21 credits of political science electives. In fulfilling this requirement, students have the opportunity for developing concentrations in the areas of: (1) American Government and Politics, (2) Comparative Government and Politics, (3) International Relations, and (4) Law and Political Theory.

American Government and Politics

POLS 2206     American Minority Politics
POLS 2251     Foreign Policy of the United States
POLS 2253     American Government
POLS 2254     Public Policy
POLS 3331     American Political Liberties
POLS 3324     American Minority Groups
POLS 3311     The American Presidency
POLS 3312     The American Congress
POLS 3354     Political Parties and Pressure Groups
POLS 3349     African-American Politics
POLS 4320     Women’s America

Comparative Government and Politics

POLS 2205     Comparative Legal Systems
POLS 2231     Comparative Government and Politics
POLS 3334     The Soviet Union and Russia
POLS 3338     India and Its Neighbors
POLS 3361     Politics of East Asia I
POLS 3362     Politics of East Asia II
POLS 3363     Middle East Politics
POLS 3364     Middle East in World Affairs
POLS 3365     Latin American in World Affairs I
POLS 3366     Latin American in World Affairs II
POLS 3367     Africa in World Affairs I
POLS 3368     Africa in World Affairs II
POLS 4460     New Europe
POLS 3352     Government and Politics of the Third World
POLS 4463     Political and Economic Challenges in Africa

International Relation

POLS 2010     Nationalism and Ethnic Violence
POLS 2211     International Organization
POLS 2204     International Relations
POLS 2212     International Law
POLS 3010     Nationalism and the Modern State
POLS 3313     Problems in International Politics
POLS 3501     Globalization and World Citizenship
POLS 3502     Politics and the Global Economy
POLS 4341     Political Leadership and Changing International Order
POLS 4431     Politics of the Environment
POLS 4462     Terrorism and Political Violence
POLS 4511     U.N and Human Security

Law and Political Theory

POLS 2232     Political Thought and Theory
POLS 2606     Ethics and Politics
POLS 3011     Human Rights in Global Environment
POLS 3327     Civil Rights and Liberties
POLS 3345     Modern Ideologies
POLS 3355     American Constitutional Law I
POLS 3356     American Constitutional Law II

For further information on the program, please contact

Dr. Samuel J. Raphalides

Director of the School of Criminal Justice, Political Science, & International Studies