Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science
Major in Political Science or in Political Science
with a concentration in Public Administration
Minors: Political Science, Paralegal Studies
A political science major gives students a versatile degree in preparation for a career in government, law, government relations, journalism, or research, to name a few. Students in the general political science major are required to take two courses (Research Methods and their choice of a course in International Relations or Comparative Politics) and complete their major with their choice of courses from the five major subfields of political science: American Politics, Public Administration & Policy, Political Theory, International Relations, and Comparative Politics. The public administration concentration combines public management courses with business courses to prepare students for management positions in public or nonprofit organizations. Students are encouraged to engage in internships, travel programs, and extracurricular activities to develop networking and leadership skills.
A strong and balanced academic curriculum, teaching-oriented faculty, and easy access to internships and other extracurricular opportunities create a rigorous, stimulating, and hands-on introduction to the political and legal worlds. Our graduates are able to network with other UTM graduates serving as respected legislators, judges, attorneys, and policy experts across Tennessee and around the country.
The political science faculty view internship experiences as a valuable complement to our academic curriculum. Internships are available for political science, public administration, or paralegal studies credit. UTM has participated in the Tennessee Legislative Internship Program since its inception in 1973, and UTM juniors and seniors regularly serve in Nashville as interns for the state legislature. In recent years we have also significantly increased the number of students serving in Washington DC internships; political science majors have interned with the Heritage Foundation, the House Clerk’s Office, and the offices of Senator Lamar Alexander, Senator Bob Corker, Rep. John Tanner, and Rep. Steven Cohen, among others. Please click here for more information on our internships.
Political science majors are also encouraged to take advantage of travel opportunities. The department offers a yearly travel-study to Washington, D.C. As director of the Center for International Education, political science professor Dr. Malcolm Koch is an excellent resource for connecting students with international travel-study opportunities.
In addition to careers in government, political science majors may choose to pursue law degrees or master’s and doctoral degrees in political science, public administration, or public policy. Recent graduates have found themselves studying law at Loyola, public policy at Pepperdine, public administration at U.T.-Knoxville, and national security at the Bush School at Texas A & M. Political science degrees have led students to successful careers in law, government, business, journalism, public policy advocacy, and nonprofit management, among others.
The Political Science Club is open to all UTM students with an interest in politics. Qualifying students may join UTM’s chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honors society. Political science majors are also frequently active in the Student Government Association, College Democrats, College Republicans, and the Pre-Law Club. Political science majors have taken a leading role in forming UTM’s delegation to Tennessee Intercollegiate State Legislature (TISL), the annual mock legislature in the state capitol.
Most political science classes are held in the Business Administration Building, which offers students wireless access. Instructors have the latest in classroom A/V technology available for lectures and presentations.
Dr. Bryan Parsons specializes in American politics and research methods, with an emphasis on elections, public opinion, and political behavior. He teaches a variety of courses in American politics, including Scope and Methods of Political Science (POSC 303), American Political Behavior (POSC 381), Political Parties and Interest Groups (POSC 382), The President and Congress (POSC 333), and Introduction to Public Policy (POSC 362).
Dr. Malcolm Koch brings an international perspective to the classroom in courses such as International Relations (POSC 321), American Foreign Policy (POSC 322), Survey of Comparative Politics (POSC 341), and a special topics course on Globalization (POSC 480).
Dr. Chris Baxter, in addition to serving as pre-law advisor, specializes in public administration and state & local government, teaching courses such as Tennessee Government and Politics (POSC 312), Intergovernmental Relations (POSC 314), Introduction to Public Administration (POSC 361), Public Budgeting and Personnel Management (POSC 363), and Constitutional Law (POSC 431-432).