2023-2024 College Catalog

Political Science, Bachelor of Arts

Department Chair: Laurel Elder 


Faculty: Amy Forster Rothbart; Jing Chen; Matthew Chick; James Buthman



Political Science



Political Science



The study of political science acquaints students with the principal concerns of the discipline and allows them to develop a critical outlook on the political universe around them. The political science faculty is committed to graduating well-rounded individuals mindful of their connectedness in this interdependent world. Our curriculum is designed to help students meet the moral and intellectual challenges of citizenship.

Courses in U.S. Government examine important aspects of the U.S. political system including governmental institutions as well as the political behavior of individuals and groups. International Relations involves the study of factors governing relations among state and non-state actors in global politics. Comparative or World Politics provides an analytical framework for studying states and regions in their rich diversity—economic, cultural, ethnic, and political. Courses in Political Theory examine the evolution of political ideas and concepts.

The department houses the interdisciplinary Legal Studies minor and participates in several other interdisciplinary programs including: the Public Health Major;  the Environment, Sustainability and Society major;  the Global Studies major; and the Women & Gender Studies Minor.

The department frequently directs off-campus programs. Additionally, the department provides a wide array of internship opportunities to help students deepen their understanding of political institutions and processes through experiential learning.

Many Hartwick Political Science graduates go on for advanced studies and earn graduate degrees in Political Science or allied fields. Some find employment working for government officials and agencies at the local, state, national and international level, and others employ their degree as advocates/organizers for various causes, as history or government teachers, journalists, and research analysts, among many other interesting careers. A substantial number of Political Science majors go on to law school.