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Prospective Majors

Prerequisite Coursework

Prerequisite coursework serves as a broad introduction to the discipline and its subfields. Students prepare for advanced study in the discipline by completing two of the following introductory courses: 

  • POLSCI 101: Introduction to Political Theory
  • POLSCI 111: Introduction to American Politics - Learn more from Prof. Lowande 
  • POLSCI 140: Introduction to Comparative Politics
  • POLSCI 160: Introduction to World Politics

Credit from the prerequisite coursework is not counted toward the 30 credits required for the major. A student must complete the prerequisite before declaring the major. To declare, schedule an appointment with an advisor.

Political Science Requirements

Political science is the systematic study of governmental and political structures, processes, and policies. This study uses institutional, quantitative, and philosophical approaches. The field is highly diverse, and includes five primary subfields:

  • Political Theory 
  • American Politics
  • Comparative Politics 
  • World Politics
  • Research Methods

Political scientists concentrate on public opinion and voting, organized political behavior, governmental institutions, studies of single countries, comparisons across countries and relations among countries. 

As a political science undergraduate at Michigan, you will be encouraged to expand your perspective through supplemental programs and activities such as: 

  • Internships
  • Independent study
  • Research opportunities
  • Senior seminar
  • Political science clubs and student organizations

Qualified students who wish to tackle a rigorous course of study and complete a thesis can apply for the Honors Program.