Students majoring in government and politics must complete 36 credits of major required courses. A minimum of 120 credits is required for graduation.  Up to 6 credits from the major and 6 credits from the minor may be applied toward the General Education requirements. Government and Politics is favored by students preparing for law school. Government and law majors interested in a career in teaching may also be admitted to QUEST, the five-year accelerated preparation program for teaching certification. Students should see college requirements for details of the general education requirements.

Degree Plan

NOTE: All students are required to complete the General Education Requirements of their campus in fulfillment of their Bachelor degree requirements.

6 credits from the MAJOR may be applied toward General Education Requirements

Required major courses (15 credits)

Major electives (21 credits)

  • Select from 2000, 3000 and 4000 level courses in GOVT.  At least (6) credits from 3000 level or higher.

6 credits from the Minor may be applied toward General Education Requirements

Minor is optional.  Additional 15 credits of free electives will need to be taken in lieu of a minor.

International Affairs Concentration (15 Credits)

(Metro campus Only)

The international affairs concentration offers students the opportunity to focus on how states and other actors, including non governmental organizations (NGOs), interact in the global environment, and within the dynamics of globalization that shape policy outcomes affecting levels of cooperation and conflict. International affairs provides the student with analytical and foundational courses, and the flexibility to pursue individual career goals in government and private sectors, and in academics. In addition to the courses required of all government and politics majors, students in the international affairs concentration must take a minimum of 15 GOVT credits.

  • GOVT1101    Intro to Political Science
  • GOVT1102    Geography and World Issues
  • GOVT2211    International Organization
  • GOVT2212    International Law
  • GOVT2231    Comparative Government & Politics

Global Politics Concentration (15-30 credits)

(Florham Campus Only)

Students majoring in government and politics with a concentration in global politics must complete 36-45 credits of course work in the area of government and law. The goal of the global politics concentration track is to prepare students for careers in international corporations, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and departments and agencies of the federal government which manage foreign affairs. In addition to the courses required of all government and politics majors, students in this track must take a minimum of 15 GOVT credits with a global politics emphasis at a 2000 or higher level.

Select a minimum of 15 GOVT credits with a Global politics emphasis at a 2000 or higher level designated 2100-2199, 3100-3199 or 4100-4199.

Legal Studies Concentration (15-24 credits)

(Florham Campus Only)

Students majoring in government and politics with a concentration in legal studies must complete 33-42 credits of course work in the area of government and law. The goal of the legal studies concentration is to prepare students for law school or to provide students with a basic overview of law and legal institutions to help them in a variety of careers in government service, public policy or the private sector. In addition to the courses required of all government and law majors, students in this concentration shall take the following courses.

Required Legal Studies foundation courses (6 credits)

Choose at least two courses from the following

  • GOVT1200 Introduction to Law or
  • GOVT2030 The Supreme Court or
  • GOVT2230 Judicial Process or
  • GOVT3220 American constitutional Law or
  • GOVT3210 Civil Liberties and Civil Rights or
  • GOVT3496 Legal Externship or
  • GOVT3496 Legal Internship or
  • GOVT2281, 2283, 2284 Mock Trial

Additional law courses (9-24 credits)

Select a minimum of 9 GOVT credits with a Law emphasis at a 2000 or higher level designated GOVT2200-2299, GOVT3200-3299 or GOVT4200-4299.


Political Science
A Global Experience

Course Descriptions

  • GOVT1000 Structure and function of American national government: roles of interest groups and political parties, voting behavior, powers of president, Congress, bureaucracy and federal judiciary, Fall, Spring.

  • GOVT1101 The basic concepts of the discipline, its school of thought, its subfields and terminologies.

  • GOVT1102 This course investigates the linkage among geographical factors, political process and economic systems. This class will focus on that relationship as it impacts the political, economic and human environment of this diverse geopolitical world.

  • GOVT1200 Overview of substantive and procedural law, and scholarly research on legal behavior and institutions. Course emphasizes the contemporary U.S. legal system, but includes discussion of comparative and historical issues.

  • GOVT2030 The Supreme Court of the United States has emerged as the most powerful tribunal in the world. It plays a major role in resolving conflicts, making policy, and developing the rule of law. This class examines how history, theory, social science research, jurisprudence, public opinion, and a range of social and political forces help us in understanding why and how the Court is a major force in American politics.

  • GOVT2130 Theories and problems of international politics and foreign policy.

  • GOVT2211 Origin and development of international organizations; the League of Nations, United Nations, regional organizations.

  • GOVT2212 Development and principles of International law, nature of diplomatic relationship, international agreements, jurisdiction over persons and property, tariff and shipping relations, arbitration of disputes, operations of international institutions.

  • GOVT2216 This course is designed to link current events in the American and international political systems with political theory and contemporary research in political science and related disciplines. Students will make use of a variety of news media, including written, video and podcasts on a weekly basis to inform themselves about current events in the political system, then combine this with readings from scholarly research to understand what's really driving politics in the US and around the world. Students will discuss these events, and linkages to the scholarly reading, in seminar style class meetings.

  • GOVT2230 Students will be introduced to the litigation process, including basic evidentiary rules, courtroom procedures and trial advocacy. Students will use this knowledge to prepare and conduct a simulated trial in which they serve as attorneys and witnesses.

  • GOVT2231 Comparison of the development and functions of governmental institutions of selected modern political systems.

  • GOVT2281 Students in the mock trial class use hypothetical cases to develop their knowledge of (and ability to analyze) criminal and civil law and to develop courtroom advocacy skills.

  • GOVT2400 This course surveys and critically examines the dominant approaches to political ethics, including deontology and rights, consequentialism and utilitarianism, and contemporary critiques of liberalism. Students will explore the substance and implications of these approaches in applications to contemporary ethical and political problems and questions.

  • GOVT2500 Theory and method of the study of politics, research designs, theory building techniques of data collection and analysis.

  • GOVT3200 Development, Scope and role of judicial review; problems of federalism; civil rights and civil liberties.

  • GOVT3210 Analysis of Supreme Court decisions concerning speech, press, religion, rights of women, racial discrimination and affirmative action.

  • GOVT3220 A basic introduction to criminal law in the United States. Emphasis is upon social factors, values and social policy, considerations that shape modern criminal law. Subject areas include issues such as the justification of punishment, the elements of just punishment and the death penalty as well as the study of substantive laws of homicide, rape and other criminal acts. Attention is also given to the emergence of international criminal law and the punishment of war crimes.

  • GOVT4200 In this class, we examine the Constitution from the perspective of a political architect or framer-someone actually responsible for designing and maintaining a polity. We supplement (and transcend) the traditional emphasis on the Constitution as supreme law and as a text that courts alone should consider. Instead, we look at our Constitution as a dynamic blueprint for achieving certain aspirations, a "machine that would go of itself". We evaluate the Constitution as a source of American values, a basis for institutional conflicts, and a touchstone for our political and social life.