Undergraduate Programs


B.A. or B.S. Major

Political Science is a well-rounded, high-quality liberal arts major that provides a solid basis for intellectual and personal growth, civic participation, and professional success. NIU political science majors have gone on to law and other professional schools; graduate school in political science, public administration, and other disciplines; careers in government; teaching and other types of public service; and employment in the private sector.

Program Requirements (2012-13 Catalog)

Program Requirements (2013-14 Catalog)



The emphasis in politics is designed for students who want maximum flexibility within their program of study or wish to create a particular specialization within political science, such as American government, biopolitics, or political theory.


Public LawPublic Law

The department proudly maintains one of the most highly developed undergraduate public law programs in the nation.


public administrationPublic Administration

This emphasis is designed primarily for students seeking a career in federal, state, or local government; in non-profits; or in regional quasi-governmental bodies such as public authorities, special districts, or councils of government.

international politicsInternational Politics

International Relations encompasses American and comparative foreign policy analysis, international law and organization, international politics, international relations theory, national security studies, and world political economy.


justicescalesJustice and Democracy: The American Experiment

The Justice and Democracy emphasis allows students to take courses in various sub-fields of Political Science, and to study the theme of justice and democracy across Public Law, American Politics, and Political Theory. American democracy – its history, development, institutions, behavior, and traditions of political thought – serves as a primary but not exclusive case study.