Political Science

College of Liberal Arts & Sciences


What is Political Science?

In this major, you’ll study policy in nations, between nations, and in non-governmental settings. Students delve into questions of power, conflict, cooperation, and diversity in the U.S. and across the world. With these questions, you'll learn about decision-making and disagreement management. Instruction is divided into five areas: American politics, comparative politics, public policy, political theory, and international relations. Your coursework will teach you how to gather, analyze, and interpret data and evidence. You will also learn how to write and communicate with confidence. In your classes, you'll learn how to collaborate on projects. You can choose from seven concentrations:

  • General Political Science
  • Citizen Politics
  • Civic Leadership
  • International Relations
  • Law and Power
  • Public Policy and Democratic Institutions
  • World Politics

Career Options

  • City management
  • Congressional staffing
  • Data analysis
  • Diplomacy
  • Education
  • Elected positions
  • Human resources
  • Industrial relations
  • Journalism
  • National security analysis
  • Urban or logistical planning

Post-Graduation Success1

86% employed or continuing education

57% employed after graduation

29% attending graduate school

$45,463 average starting annual income

Sample employer destinations: Epic Systems, Teach for America, U.S. Senate View All

Sample grad school destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, DePaul University, Chicago-Kent College of Law View All

Review Criteria

First-Year Major-Specific Criteria

  • Demonstrated understanding of and interest in the major

View All Review Criteria

Transfer Criteria

Transfer Guide

Graduation & Retention2

4.0 years to degree

93% first-year retention rate

69% four-year graduation rate

81% six-year graduation rate

Annual Program Costs3

Illinois Resident

  • Tuition: $12,712
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,222
  • Total: $35,862


  • Tuition: $31,832
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses:$18,562
  • Total: $55,322


  • Tuition: $34,280
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,562
  • Total: $57,770

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