Political Science

Students gathered in the Viking Grove during an event

Welcome to West Valley’s Political Science Program

Political Science is an academic discipline that includes theory, philosophy, institutions, comparative governments, international relations, and public policy and dates back to before even Plato. Our program focuses primarily on modern institutions both at home and in the world.

Why Study Political Science?

Why is political science a required course for California college students? Living in a democracy requires that we understand how governments work; how the U.S. interacts with the nations of the world; and how we can affect public policy.

American government fulfills the History and Institutions requirement for the State of California. This course covers the structure and functions of the American national, state, and local governments with emphasis on the development of democratic institutions.

Comparative Government compares and contrasts our system with others throughout the world, while the Introduction to Political Science course takes this a step further by analyzing basic theoretical concepts of political science in a comparative approach. International Relations is a course which examines how governments interact, not just with each other, but with nongovernmental organizations, interest groups, and individual citizens within the international arena.

The study of political science helps develop skills in writing and communication, research and analysis, as well as critical and independent thinking. A degree in Political Science often leads to law school, business and public administration careers, government careers, journalism careers, international and trade organization work, community organizing, electoral politics, interest group work, lobbying, and public life.

Last Updated 3/11/19