Courses & Programs

Courses & Programs

The Department of Politics and International Studies offers the following programs of study: Honours, Major and Minor in Political Studies; Honours, Major and Minor in International Studies; and Honours and Major in International Political Economy.

Program Guides

PROGRAM Honours* Major Minor
Political Studies 60 credits 48 credits 24 credits
International Studies 60 credits 48 credits 24 credits
International Political Economy** 60 credits 48 credits X

* Grade requirements – To enter or continue in an Honours program, students must normally obtain and sustain a cumulative average of 75%. Honours students who do not maintain this average at graduation will automatically revert to the Major program.

** Offered jointly by the Departments of Economics & Politics and International Studies

Overall Program Introduction

Politics and International Studies provides students with a working knowledge of society and how decisions are made. Governments, politicians, leaders in private industry and ordinary individuals function within a framework of accepted political norms, e.g. notions of justice, freedom, rights and duties. Over time, these received norms are challenged by conventional methods such as voting, political parties, interest group lobbying and protest movements; or the challenge may be by militant or revolutionary means such as radical Marxism, fascist organizations or discrete acts of terrorism. Politics and International Studies systematically examines and presents these phenomena.

A degree in Politics and International Studies may lead to further specialization, e.g. an M.A. in a one year programme, or a Ph.D. It is also a preparation for professional studies in law, teaching, journalism and public administration. Our graduates have a high success rate in being admitted to Law and Graduate Schools.

Lectures, seminars and individual tutorials are normal methods of instruction and the department stresses personal contact with students as much as possible in order to assist students in choosing a postgraduate career in government, business or the academic field.

Political Studies (Honours, Major and Minor)

The Honours, Major and Minor programs in Political Studies provide students with a foundation across the main areas of political science, including Canadian Politics, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Political Philosophy. The programme is divided into seven divisions: I) General Introductory Courses, II) Canadian Politics, III) Political Theory, IV) Comparative Politics: International and Public Affairs, V) International Relations, VI) Empirical Theory and Methods, VII) Honours Thesis, Independent Studies and Practicum.

Majors and Honours students will normally take the two general introductory courses and a selection of courses from each of the other divisions. This ensures that graduates will have a wide knowledge of different areas of Politics and International Studies.

International Studies (Honours, Major and Minor)

The International Studies programs provide students with working knowledge of the global community in which they live, and prepare them to pursue careers involving international interactions. The programs consist of an integrated group of courses reflecting international aspects from cultural, economic, environmental, legal, political and social perspectives.

Foreign language training and study abroad experiences are also incorporated into the programs.

The Global Governance Concentration introduces theories, concepts and issues in world politics, examining areas such as conflict and intervention, peace and security, human rights, multinational corporations, environmental issues and globalization.

The Global Culture Concentration is designed for those students who wish to develop critical understanding about how cultures are formed, the social and political impacts of cultural growth, and the comparison of different cultures.

International Political Economy (Honours and Major)

These programs are offered jointly by the Departments of Economics & Politics and International Studies. As an area of academic inquiry, International Political Economy examines the relations between modes of production and distribution in the private and public spheres. Note that, in light of the impacts of globalization pressures on the political economies of the state, these programs have a decidedly international focus.

The B.A. Major Program in International Political Economy consists of at least 48 credits, with 24 credits drawn from Politics and International Studies and 24 from Economics. The Honours program in International Political Economy consists of at least 60 credits, with 30 credits drawn from Politics and International Studies and 30 from Economics.

For complete details on any of the above program, review the Politics and International Studies section of the academic calendar.