Fields of Study

Political Science Subfields

American Politics

The study of politics in the United States, including the study of national institutions (Congress, the President, the Supreme Court, executive bureaucracy), state and local government, and representative processes at all levels (elections, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, protest and extremist groups).

Comparative Politics

Comparative politics is the study of politics outside the United States or politics compared across countries, possibly including the USA. The field of comparative politics includes the study of governing institutions, electoral behavior and procedures, public policy, political economy, social movements and organizations, protest and revolution.

International Relations

International Relations is the study of political relations between nation-states. It includes the study of diplomacy, military conflict, and conflict resolution, as well as the international political economy, international organizations, and other processes that operate across the boundaries of nation-states.

Public Policy

Public Policy is a very broad field of study that explores substantive policy areas as well as the procedurs of policy making. Examples of substantive areas include social welfare policy, communications policy, and morality policy.

The study of public policy is most usually linked to work on American or Comparative Politics but an increasing number of students who study Public Policy also study International Relations

Political Theory

Political theory is the oldest field in political science. Finding its roots in the ancient theories of Aristotle and Plato, this field integrates the timeless with timely questions about political ideology, fairness, justice, and equity.