Jun 16, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Political Science

520 Park Hall
North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260-4120


Jacob Kathman, Ph.D.
Rachael K. Hinkle, Ph.D., J.D.
Director of Undergraduate Studies

Political Science Overview

The Political Science department offers a BA in Political Science with a range of concentration options to meet student’s diverse interests and career aspirations as well as a BA in Global Affairs.

Undergraduate political science majors join the department with an array of backgrounds, interests and career aspirations. To meet their unique needs, we offer a selection of concentrations that prepare students for law school, graduate school, public affairs, government service or international studies. Many political science majors go on to obtain advanced degrees in law or political science. Some students build upon their internship experiences to pursue careers in politics or government.

Students who wish to pursue a BA in Political Science may choose one of six concentrations: General; Advanced; American Politics and Public Affairs; Comparative Politics; International Politics; or Public Law. 

The American Politics and Public Affairs Concentration prepares students for careers in public service or political organizations, and provides a solid background for the more than 15 million employment opportunities in local, state, or federal government. An internship is considered a useful part of this option.

Comparative politics focuses on the politics and government of other countries, an activity that is essential for students to fully appreciate their own country’s political system. In addition, some comparativists seek to identify and explain broad patterns in the conduct of politics and government across many countries in the world.      

Students pursuing the international politics concentration will explore relationships between states and other governmental and nongovernmental actors (such as international organizations). In addition, foreign policy and conflict are often central to the study of international relations.

The public law concentration is popular among those who are planning on or considering going to law school. Courses focus on constitutional law, judicial process, and judicial behavior.

The advanced concentration in political science has a methodological focus at the center, with required courses in both game theory and statistics. Students choosing to complete this particular track within the major are well-positioned to pursue jobs that require a facility with data analytics. The skillset developed through this particular concentration is also helpful preparation for graduate study in political science or a closely related field.

Finally, the general concentration of the Political Science BA allows students the most flexibility in designing a curriculum to meet individual needs.

In pursuing a BA in Global Affairs UB students will study and answer important questions related to international politics, covering issues of power, global policies, international law, and economics. 

Students interested in international relations, global economic development, human rights, conflict, international law, political economy, and international organizations are well-suited for a BA in Global Affairs. This degree will help students prepare for a career working with non-governmental organizations or international organizations, government service, graduate school, or law school among other alternatives. Within the degree, students may take courses from the Political Science, Economics, Communication, and Sociology departments. The degree also allows students flexibility in designing a curriculum to meet individual needs. 

A BA in Global Affairs is an excellent complement to other BA degrees including Political Science, Economics, Linguistics, History, Sociology, and Communication among others.

Academic Advising

Students obtain academic advice and guidance from the academic advisors in the College of Arts and Sciences Student Advisement & Services office (275 Park Hall) and from faculty in their program of study. The CAS Student Advisement and Services Office assists undergraduate students in the College of Arts and Sciences to plan their academic trajectory, develop goals, and successfully complete their college careers.

Academic Advising Contact Information

College of Arts & Sciences Student Advisement & Services
275 Park Hall, North Campus
North Campus, Buffalo, NY 14260-4140
Phone: 716-645-6883
Email: cas-advisor@buffalo.edu