Interested in a new Political Science Living & Learning Community? Read about it here (opens PDF document).
The ancient Greeks thought of politics as the “authoritative” or highest form of study – since political decisions govern and shape our economy, the military, our social interactions, even what happens in our family life. At FDU’s College of Florham, we take the importance of political science seriously, not just as a way of studying governments, national values, and contemporary political problems, but in using ideas to improve our political and civic life.
Our majors explore the ideologies, institutions, and policies of governments. These include government at the local, state, and national level, as well as foreign governments and international relations. Our studies include legislatures and election systems, regulatory agencies and courts; police departments and armed forces, criminals and terrorists, the media and voters, presidents and prime ministers. We also study ideas: who ought to get what? What does it mean to live well? Which of our institutions and political arrangements are working well and which are dysfunctional and sick?
Finally, we explore political change over time and space and ask what leads to revolutions and what emerges from them? Why (and how) do some countries become and stay democratic – while other do not? Why do some ethnic groups come into conflict and violence while others do not?
Political science students at Fairleigh Dickinson
There are thousands of private and public interest groups whose leadership and staff participate directly in politics. There are also hundreds of thousands of civil service jobs in numerous executive departments and agencies of government. Our graduates pursue a variety of careers in Washington, D.C., state capitals, municipal government, or in corporate environments. Political science graduates can work as a city administrator or as an intelligence analyst or as a campaign manager; there is a government office to fit every interest.
Political science also provides outstanding preparation for rewarding legal careers and work in the vast criminal justice system. Our graduates have studied law at institutions such as Rutgers University, Seton Hall University, Pace University, the University of Denver, Villanova University, American University, and Penn State University. Political science students have also enrolled in graduate programs at institutions such as Penn State, John Jay School of Criminal Justice, American University, George Washington University, the University of Delaware, and the University of Florida.
Political science is divided into several subfields and we offer three "tracks" within the political science major in order to accomodate a variety of interests and career goals. Each track graduates the student with a Bachelor of Arts.
Traditional Political Science:Our most popular major option. The standard Bachelor of Arts in political science offers the most flexibility and broadest appeal. Generally speaking, it is most appropriate for students who want to work for government, interest groups, go to law school, or continue studies in political science at the graduate level.
Campaigns & Elections:This track isfor those who can’t get enough of the rough and tumble of elective politics. The Campaigns and Elections track emphasizes course work…[continue with rest of paragraph]
International Relations: The IR track focuses on regional politics and the analysis of global problems: it is most appropriate for those who want to enter one of the many foreign services (State, CIA, DIA, etc.) or international trade.
We encourage all of our majors to take a semester abroad at our campus in Wroxton College in Oxfordshire, England. Students find the semester in Europe to be an indispensable help to their understanding of history, global influences, and political economy.
Every semester we offer a three-credit internship in political science. Students, together with their instructors, identify appropriate internship sites and opportunities and earn regular course credit for work in a professional setting. Our students intern with federal, state, and local lawmakers, with court systems, area law enforcement agencies, law firms, interest groups, and public service organizations. A number of these opportunities are paid. The semester-long work internship leads directly to a good grasp of the many opportunities in politics and to gainful employment. Students may also complete an internship and study for a semester in our nation's capitol, by being accepted to The Washington Center. Contact the Department Chair for more information at 973-443-8721.
Dept. of Soc. Sci. & History
Fairleigh Dickinson University
285 Madison Ave
Madison, NJ 07940
See a video overview of the political science major.
FDU's political scientists are often involved in local, regional, and even national coverage of political events. See a brief video.
An introduction to FDU's PublicMind polling resource. See the video.