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.
Why Study Political Science?
Are you interested in American politics? International affairs? Critical issues such as health, the environment, civil rights? Theories concerning the ideal government and how power and resources are allocated in society? Do you want to study these subjects and pursue a career based on your interest? If so, you should consider studying political science.
Political science students can gain a versatile set of skills that can be applied in a wide range of exciting careers in federal, state and local governments; law; business; international organizations; nonprofit associations and organizations; campaign management and polling; journalism; precollegiate education; electoral politics; research and university and college teaching.
Graduate Student Resources
One key component of APSA's mission is to support political science education and professional development. The links below provides resources and opportunities available to political science students.
- Interested in pursuing a PhD in political science? View a list of political science doctoral programs in the United States
- Interested in finding an internship? Discover internship resources here
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.