Contact Information

Contact Information
Liberal Arts
Patrick Marasso
Associate Deans
Soni Verma, Maria Villasenor
Division Office
W 107, Rocklin Campus


Political Science is a disciplined study of power, politics, and government. Courses focus on political authority and the making of policy and rules. They also focus on how diverse ideas and interests produce political behavior such as cooperation and conflict. Understanding and explaining political problems permits students to critically consider solutions. 

TRANSFER MAJOR REQUIREMENTS in Political Science are available in the Counseling Center. In all cases, students should consult with a counselor for specific transfer requirements. Four-year graduates in Political Science are qualified for staff and management positions in local, state and federal government as well as business and industry. Many work as lobbyists, journalists and in public relations.


Betty Chan

Assistant Professor, Political Science

B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara
B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara
J.D., University of California, Los Angeles

Michael V. Deaver

Professor, Political Science

B.A., University of California, Los Angeles
M.A., George Washington University
Ph.D., New York University

Political Science for Transfer

AA-T Degree

By completing this degree, students will learn about the operation of political authority at the local, national and international levels. Besides studying American political institutions, students will examine other governments, their civil societies, policy issues and decision making. In addition, appreciation will be gained for the growing role of international actors and importance of global issues. Helping to make sense of it all, students will learn scientific methods and theories.

The Associate in Arts in Political Science for Transfer degree (AA-T) prepares students to transfer into the CSU system to complete a bachelor’s degree in Political Science or a major deemed similar by a CSU campus. Students earning an associate degree for transfer and meeting the CSU minimum transfer admission requirements are guaranteed admission with junior standing to the CSU system, but not to a particular campus or major. Upon transfer, students will be required to complete no more than 60 additional prescribed units to earn a bachelor’s degree.

To earn the Associate in Arts in Political Science for Transfer degree, students must complete 60 CSU-transferable semester units with a minimum grade point average of 2.0, including both of the following:

The exact wording of the law pertaining to associate degrees for transfer may be found in Education Code Section 66746.

It is highly recommended that, prior to transferring, students complete courses that satisfy the CSU United States History, Constitution and American Ideals graduation requirement. In all cases, students should consult with a counselor for more information on university admission and transfer requirements.

RESTRICTION: International coursework from non-United States regionally accredited institutions cannot be applied to associate degrees for transfer.

Required Courses

POLS 0001Introduction to American Government and Politics3
Select 9 units from the following:9
Comparative Government
International Relations
Introduction to Political Theory
Introduction to Political Science Research Methods
Select 6 units from the following or unused course from the preceding area:6
Russian and East European Political Systems
California Politics and Government
Politics of the Developing World
American Foreign Policy
Politics of the Middle East
Women and Politics in a Global Society
Total Units18


Understanding course descriptions

POLS 0001. Introduction to American Government and Politics

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Introduction to the principles and problems of the American political system on national, state, and local levels. Includes discussion of constitutions, federalism and executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the government. Other topics include political behavior, elections and parties, interest groups, and the policy making processes that address political issues. (C-ID POLS 110) (CSU, UC)

POLS 0002. Introduction to Comparative Government

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Compares the major political systems of selected countries of the world, both autocratic and democratic. Comparison includes the origins and development of governments, their constitutional principles, political cultures and ideologies, institutions, parties, and government policies. (C-ID POLS 130) (CSU, UC)

POLS 0003. Introduction to International Relations

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Introduction to the political relations between governments and other global actors. Examination of theories and concepts that help to explain conflict and cooperation in a range of issue areas. (C-ID POLS 140) (CSU, UC)

POLS 0004. Russian and East European Political Systems

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Comparison of Russian government and politics with that of other Eastern European states. Discussion of the past imperial and communist systems. Focus on social and political actors, decision-making institutions and major policy issues. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0005. California Politics and Government

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
An examination of state and local governments and their relations to the federal government. Topics include interest groups, elections and policy issues. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0007. Politics of the Developing World

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Study of revolution and political changes of selected countries in the Developing World/Global South focusing on historical experiences of European and American imperialism and colonialism. Major emphasis on popular movements of self-determination and conflicts between traditional indigenous values and non-traditional Western ideology. Contemporary case studies include Latin America, Africa, and Asia. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0008. American Foreign Policy

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Overview of American diplomatic history and the politics of foreign policy formation and implementation. Survey of contemporary international issues confronting the U.S. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0009. Politics of the Middle East

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
An introduction to the politics and political systems of the Middle East. Focuses on the influence of colonialism, nationalism and Islam on forms of government, social turmoil and international conflicts. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0012. Terrorism

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Overview of terrorism, including history, motives, and political impact. Implications of counterterrorism policies. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0016. Introduction to Political Theory

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Survey of major political theorists and their analyses of political concepts, such as state of nature, natural law, natural rights, and civil and political society. Examination of various theoretical approaches to politics, exploration of proposed solutions to basic political problems, and analysis of selected political theories and the relevance of theory to contemporary issues, such as environmentalism, feminism, and justice. (C-ID POLS 120) (CSU, UC)

POLS 0017. Introduction to Political Science Research Methods

Units: 3
Advisory: Completion of MATH 13 with grade of "C" or better; completion with grade of "C" or better or concurrent enrollment in any POLS course
Hours: 54 lecture
Surveys research methods employed in political science. Introduces research design, experimental procedures, descriptive methods, instrumentation, collection, interpretation, and reporting of research data, and the ethics of research. (C-ID POLS 160) (CSU, UC)

POLS 0018. California Government

Unit: 1
Hours: 18 lecture
Introduction to politics and government in California. A survey of state and local institutions and processes. Fulfills California state and local government requirement for students who have taken the equivalent of POLS 0001 outside of California. Not open to students who have completed POLS 0005. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0027. Women and Politics in a Global Society

Units: 3
Hours: 54 lecture
Exploration of past and current influences on the political and legal status of women as well as women's participation in the political process throughout the world. Includes political theory and strategy as it relates to women. (CSU, UC)

POLS 0028. Independent Study

Units: 1-3
Designed for students interested in furthering their knowledge at an independent study level in an area where no specific curriculum offering is currently available. Independent study might include, but is not limited to, research papers, special subject area projects, and research projects. See Independent Study page in catalog. (CSU, UC-with unit limitation)

POLS 0095. Internship in Political Science

Units: 0.5-4
Designed for advanced students to work in an area related to their educational or occupational goal. Provides new on-the-job technical training under the direction of a worksite supervisor, allowing students to expand knowledge and skills in the chosen field. Mandatory orientation session and faculty approval to determine eligibility. One unit of credit is equal to 54 hours of work. Students may earn up to a total of 16 units in internship courses (any course numbered 95 and PDEV 94). (CSU-with unit limitation)

Program Student Learning Outcomes (PSLOs)

  • Analyze power and explain how it operates.
  • Identify key institutions in government and society and outline their interaction.
  • Describe ideas that play key roles in shaping politics and appraise them.
  • Describe the role of rules and outline the processes of creating, implementing and changing them.
  • Discuss and evaluate the U.S. in a global context.
  • Analyze and explain the impact of diversity on government and politics.
  • Apply scientific theories on state-society relations.
  • Describe issues in politics, outline policies and recommend reforms.