Jul 21, 2024  
2024-2025 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog

Political Science, B.A., Public Health Administration, Policy, and Politics Concentration

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Department Contact:

Chair: Dr. Denise Holladay Damico
Coordinator: Dr. Joseph A. Melusky

Program Description:

Political Science has been defined as the study of “who gets what, when, and how.” It involves the study of government and public policy, as well as the study of the behavior of individuals and groups in the pursuit of their interests. The BA in Political Science with a Concentration in Public Health Administration, Policy, and Politics Concentration prepares students to master the political, legal, social, cultural context of public health administration, policymaking, and politics. Majors develop skills in writing, communications, analysis, and research with application to public health policymaking, politics, and advocacy. In the belief that learning extends beyond the walls of the classroom, experiential educational opportunities in the form of internships and simulations are also available.

Public health administration, policy, and politics professionals work in government or advocacy, often with other public health professionals, to improve the public’s quality of life by advising and assisting in the development of public health programs at the local, state, and federal levels of government.

Public health administration, policy, and politics professionals have a variety of job titles: healthcare policy analyst; outreach specialist; policy advisor; program coordinator; international non-governmental organization aid worker; social services managers and director; lobbyist; legislative aid; advocacy coordinator; community affairs coordinator; external affairs specialist; political consultant.

Duties of public health administration, policy, and politics professionals include: conducting research and gathering data on public health concerns; compiling reports; developing and administering public health outreach programs; examining population statistics and health reports to identify patterns in public health outcomes; working with academic institutions and public health organizations; collecting and reporting public health data; performing survey research; conducting community research; evaluating health education programs; supporting public health assistance programs; making policy recommendations about how to improve community health; creating stakeholder groups to advance public awareness of healthcare; soliciting public input into public health policy; supporting government entities in managing public health crises, such as epidemics and pandemics.

Students are encouraged to complete a minor or second major in Public Health, Psychology, Sociology, Social Work, Management, or Communications.

Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Critical Thinking: Students will develop the ability to think critically about information (e.g., data or texts), theories, concepts, problems, issues, institutions and processes of American Politics and Government, World Politics and Political Theory before accepting or formulating a position or conclusion or proposing a solution to a problem.
  2. Citizenship: Students will develop a deeper and fuller understanding of political processes, acquiring a solid conceptual foundation that can be built upon in their lives as citizens.
  3. Research Methods: Students will be able to use and explain research methods used in the discipline of political science and evaluate conclusions derived from these methods. Students will develop skills that include the ability to identify, locate and access sources of information, the ability to critically evaluate information, the ability to organize information to present a sound central idea in a logical order, and the ability to use the work of others accurately and ethically.
  4. Communication Skills: Students will demonstrate the necessary oral and written skills (English and Public Speaking) to convey their knowledge to others about political science or other appropriate topics.
  5. Ethics: Students will demonstrate familiarity with theorists and ethical frameworks that can help them make hard decisions, evaluate the policy decisions that public officials make on their behalf, and recognize the implications of these choices; Knowledge of reliable frameworks of principles will help students evaluate ambiguous facts and define behavior as “right” or “good.”

Estimated Completion Time:

Typically 4 years of full-time study

Capstone Requirement:

Students in the Bachelor of Arts in the Political Science program, Environmental Policy and Politics, are required to complete the following two course sequence to graduate from this program:

  • PLSC 330   - Political Science Research Methods (3 cr)
  • PLSC 494  - Political Science Research (1 cr)

Total Credits Required:

128 credits

Courses Required for the Major: (49 credits)

Additional Requirements:

  • At least 21 PLSC credits must be at the 300 or 400 level, excluding 398/399, 487, and 494.

Free Electives: (10 credits)

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