Political science is the study of governments, public policies and political processes, systems, and political behavior.
Political science subfields include political theory, political ideology, political economy, policy studies and analysis, comparative politics, international relations, and a host of related fields. For a good cross section of the areas of study, see the list of APSA Organized Sections.
Political scientists use both humanistic and scientific perspectives and tools and a variety of methodological approaches to examine the process, systems, and political dynamics of all countries and regions of the world.
Political Science Club Guide
Political science clubs are a great way to get students involved in departments and campus life. Such clubs offer benefits to students and departments alike by facilitating greater and more meaningful faculty-student engagement, and by providing opportunities for networking, professional development, and leadership experience. Find out more about how and why to start an undergraduate political science club in the APSA Political Science Club Guide
APSA Career Materials
Political science students gain the writing, communication, analytical, and data skills that are valued in a wide spectrum of potential careers. APSA provides career resources for students at all levels of study, from undergraduates and graduate students to PhDs and early career professors.
Applying to Graduate School
Find and Select a Graduate Program
You can find a list of institutions that grant PhDs in political science here. PhDs.org and U.S. News and World Report also provide resources for learning more about graduate programs in political science.
APSA Graduate School Information Fair
APSA hosts a Graduate School Information Fair at its Annual Meeting. Representatives from political science graduate programs around the country are on hand to share information and answer questions about their political science programs and course offerings with undergraduates from area schools. For more information, contact [email protected].
Graduate Student Questions to Ask
Asking the right questions when you meet with prospective departments is critical to choosing the right graduate program for you. APSA has put together a list of Graduate Student Questions to Ask as a suggested starting-point for inquiring students who would like to know more about the goals of a doctoral program, including how they prepare students for careers, and what they do to facilitate job placement and professional development.
Watch APSA webinars on preparing a personal statement, grad school applications, and making grad school decisions
Graduate Student Resources
One key component of APSA's mission is to support political science education and professional development. Current graduate students can find a list of resources in APSA's Graduate Student Connection.
Student Journals in Political Science
To learn more about graduate & undergraduate student journals, click here.
Ethics for Students
Political scientists share problems in common with practitioners of other scholarly disciplines. They also frequently encounter ethical problems unique to their professional concerns. To assist scholars in working through problems and differences the APSA maintains a standing committee to oversee complaints and offers an authoritative statement of ethical principles for political scientists, particularly for those newly entering the profession. Download the Ethics Guide.