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Political Science Minor

Are you interested in how the world works and how it could be better? Do you wonder how and why people, advocacy groups, political parties, and nations interact as they do? If so, Dordt’s political science minor could be for you.

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Program Overview

At Dordt, we believe politics, like every other part of this world, belongs to God. Its role is to promote justice for all people. Politics touches all areas of social activity, including families, churches, government, education, and more.

Our political science minor will equip you to actively engage as a citizen in transforming society. We do this through the lens of a Kingdom vision that promotes public justice in a multicultural and multi-faith society. Our faculty pours into students—even Political Science minors—with personal attention and one-on-one advising. We provide opportunities for impactful internships. And we prepare students to put their minor to good use in whatever career path they pursue.

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What You'll Learn

As you study politics and government at Dordt, you will be challenged to understand and develop your role as a Christian citizen. You’ll study governmental structures and public decisions. You’ll learn to think critically in the world of politics. And you’ll do it all through a foundation firmly rooted in a biblical perspective.

What You Can Do With A Political Science Minor

If you want to add depth to your major with skills that benefit you for life, a political science minor fits that role. For starters, you’ll develop your reading, writing, and critical thinking skills. Understanding the political system can help with a career in healthcare, business, or several other fields. Whatever you apply it to, a political science minor can supplement your major and positively impact your career.

Campaign Manager

Campaign Managers oversee and help with the operations of a political campaign.

Public Relations Specialist

Public Relations Specialists use media and social programs to create a positive public image of the company they represent.

Policy Analyst

A Policy Analyst identifies problems with policies and proposes solutions to them.

To earn a political science minor, students will take six political science courses and choose one course from a variety of options.

  • Introduction to Politics: An introduction to the political dimension of life from a biblically-oriented perspective. Laying the foundation for political thought and practice, the course will examine scripture, models of how the church relates to culture, and examples of Christian engagement with the political world. It will also provide a brief survey of each of the fields of political science and raise practical questions about political involvement.
  • American National Politics: A general introduction to the American political process–its foundations, external influences, institutions, political actors, and policymaking.
  • International Relations: An introduction to the contemporary relations among states with a consideration of the issues of war and peace, international organizations, law, integration, political economy, interdependence, and relations among the superpowers.
  • Ancient and Medieval Political Thought: This course will examine the major ideas and trends in political thought from ancient times through the medieval period up to the early modern era. Philosophers to be studied include Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Aquinas, Protestant reformers and Machiavelli. Relevance to the politics of our time will be included.
  • Modern Political Thought: Major ideas and trends in political thought from the early modern era of the 1600s to the present will be examined. The first portion of the course will be a survey of major political philosophers. This will set the stage for understanding modern ideologies (populism, libertarianism, conservatism, liberalism, totalitarianism, and other -isms).
  • Public Policy: Provides a general introduction to the public policy process in the United States, including an exploration of the socioeconomic and cultural context, the defining characteristics of the political system, and various phases in the policy process. Special attention is given to selected policy issues such as energy and the environment, criminal justice, poverty, health care, and immigration.
  • Global Security Issues: This seminar course examines the challenges facing world security in the twenty-first century, including arms proliferation, ecological threats, economic globalization, ethnic conflict, resource scarcity, political economy, and human rights.
  • Victimology and Family Violence: The victimology section will look at the various harms suffered due to crime, how victims interact with various agencies and players, public reaction to victims, the victims’ rights movement, and how to better serve the victims of crime through our criminal justice system. Students will also identify and describe the problem, measure its true dimensions, and review evidence and hypotheses of victimologists. In the family violence portion, theories on family violence will be analyzed, the consequences of family victimization will be considered, as well as how to recognize child abuse and understand the dynamics of partner violence. Students will analyze legal and enforcement responses, consider how institutional responses can prevent or lessen revictimization, and look to how a restorative justice model can alleviate some of the harms of victimization. Prerequisite: junior standing; or permission of instructor.
  • Global Economic Development: A study of economic aspects of poverty and underdevelopment in the modern world. Specific topics include the dimensions and nature of poverty in the world, characteristics and types of developing nations, theories of development, and emerging issues in development. We will also consider the implications of biblical principles for policy to promote economic development and alleviate poverty.
  • Field Experience in Politics: Students complete a limited field experience in a politics-related area. The experience is aimed at providing exposure to the type of activities in which political science graduates are likely to be involved as professionals. Three hours of course credit is to be based on the completion of 8 - 10 hours on the site per week plus one hour of work determined in consultation with the supervising member of the political science department for 14 weeks.
  • Diversity and Inequality: Students examine the historical and contemporary factors related to diversity and inequality in North America and increase their appreciation for the contributions of diverse groups in culturally-pluralistic societies. The course assumes that human diversity is created good and explores how to discern that goodness after the Fall. Students assess their own biases in light of course material and increase their sensitivity to diversity.

See the course catalog for more information.

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With experience in a variety of fields, our faculty members are equipped and ready to help you succeed.

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