Skip to Main Content
dropdownCombined ShapedropdowndropdownnextGroup 3circle_arrow_left_redGroup 2Group 8Group 35homelocationSHULogo_Crimson Copyphonemagnifying-glass

Below are all of the courses you have to choose from in this academic major. Some are required while others are electives. Please view the course catalog to see what is required to earn a degree in this major.


Oral Communication (SCA 130)

Students develop informative, persuasive, and expressive speaking proficiencies. Practice in personal communication skills, writing for the ear, effective listening, oral reports, and the use of body language, visual aids, technologies, and occasions to motivate and enhance communication. Fall and spring semesters and ADP session 4. 3 credits.

Shaping Public Opinion (SCA 340)

Study of the Constitution and the press, free speech, religion, assembly, and petition clauses that shape public discourse and artistic endeavors. Review of graffiti, art, political cartoons, editorials, blogs, and public statements. Effects of social media on vox populi and the force, impact, and challenge to a democracy. Spring semester, even-numbered years. 3 credits.

Social Studies (SED 224)

Lesson planning for the teacher of elementary social studies based on Pennsylvania Core Standards and NCSS Standards is stressed. Instructional techniques for the teaching of history, geography, civics, and economics to diverse learners receive major focus. Focus is on professionals and professional organizations, the use of curricular materials and technology, and inclusion strategies for students with emotional and behavioral disabilities. Field experience is a required component of this course. Tubercular check, Act 33 Child Abuse, Act 34 Criminal Record check, Act 114 FBI Federal Criminal History Record, and PDE-6004 (Arrest or Conviction Report and Certification Form) required. Prerequisite: SED202. Fall and spring semesters. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Social Studies in Secondary Ed (SED 323)

Lesson planning for the teaching of citizenship education, based on the Pennsylvania Core Standards, is stressed in this class. Instructional techniques for the teaching of history, geography, civics, and economics to diverse learners receive major focus. Exposure to professionals and professional organizations, the use of curricular materials and technology, and discussion of ethical behavior and classroom management complete the course. Corequisite: SED304. Prerequisite: SED201. Fall semester, even-numbered years. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Introduction to American History (SHY 103)

This course introduces students to major themes in American history such as cultural diversity, democracy, and economic growth. Also covers historical analysis, research methods, and a variety of social studies disciplines as they are used in history. Fall semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Historical & Political Geography (SHY 106)

An introduction to geographic thought with emphasis on the importance of geographical factors in history and politics. Spring semester. 3 credits. Fee.

3 Credits.

Ancient World (SHY 120)

Introduction to critical thinking and research skills related to historical inquiry through the lens of the study of the ancient past. Study of ancient societies in the Near East and Europe and the major themes and questions related to them, emphasizing the development of social groups, gender expectations and perceptions, early economies, political organization, and all aspects of developing culture. In combination with SHY226, counts toward ancient Western Cultures requirement (SLA200) of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Fall semester. 3 credits.

Era of Civil War & Reconstruction (SHY 206)

Examines the causes of the Civil War and the war itself, and concludes with the Reconstruction era. Spring semester, odd-numbered years. 3 credits.

World War II (SHY 225)

World War II transformed all world relationships in just over a decade. This course traces the rise of prewar tensions and of expansionistic pressures, followed by in-depth discussion of the political, social, and military consequences of war. The course gives particular attention to state violence against civilians, especially the Holocaust or German-instigated murder of European Jews. Fall semester. Offered online. 3 credits.

Medieval Europe (SHY 226)

Survey of the history and culture of the West beginning with the fall of the western Roman empire to the Renaissance (c. 400-1400). Explores the development of society, economics, and culture with additional emphasis on issues related to gender and religious life. Students develop their research, writing, and critical thinking skills through materials and student/teacher interaction. In combination with SHY120, counts toward ancient Western Cultures requirement (SLA200) of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Spring semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

African History and Culture (SHY 307)

An overview of the cultural, political, and economic history of the African continent. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Fall semester, odd-numbered years. 3 credits.

Russian and Soviet History (SHY 311)

Survey begins with Peter the Great and continues through the break-up of the Soviet Union. Emphasis on research and writing. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Spring semester. 3 credits.

Mexican Civilization & Culture (SHY 312)

Traces the development of Mexican society and culture from pre-Colombian times to the present. Presents both a chronological and a thematic approach, dealing especially with the clash of cultures in Mexican history. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. J-term. 3 credits. Fee.

Early Modern Europe (SHY 325)

After the disaster of the Black Death, Europe recovered but also reformed itself. The major developments of this period included the recovery of ancient learning and new artistic expression, division in Western Christianity, the growing power of the state, and the expansion of Europe as part of a new world system. This course examines the lives of ordinary Europeans as well as rulers. In combination with SHY327, counts toward modern Western Cultures requirement (SLA201) of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Writing Intensive course. Prerequisite: SHY106. Fall semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Modern Europe (SHY 327)

Explores the major themes and questions in Europe from the French Revolutionary period to the twenty-first century. The roles of gender and class and the relationship of evolving culture to society are key connections. In combination with SHY325, counts toward modern Western Cultures requirement (SLA201) of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Prerequisite: SHY325. Spring semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

The New Nation (SHY 335)

Covers American and early United States history from the Revolutionary era through the Era of Good Feelings (1763 to 1820). The course explores the formation of and challenges to constitutional government, including the growth of republicanism, federalism, and Jeffersonian democracy. Regional and cultural conflicts are central themes of this course. Satisfies the U.S. Cultures requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Prerequisite: SEL106, SEL107, or SHY103. Fall semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Gilded Age & Progress Era 1877-1920 (SHY 336)

During the Gilded Age and Progressive Eras (1877-1920) the United States recovered from the sectional strife of civil war only to face the demands of rapid industrialization and class division. Robber barons, populists, reformers, labor radicals, and street urchins all make appearances in this period. Course approaches the era topically, with short assignments designed to encourage historical thinking and information fluency. Prerequisite: SHY103 or SLA201. Satisfies the U.S. Cultures requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Spring semester, ADP session 3. 3 credits.

The U.S. Civil Rights Movement (SHY 337)

A survey of the politics, events, and individuals involved in the Civil Rights Movement in the United States, focusing on the post-World War II era. May be taken as political science elective. Satisfies the U.S. Cultures requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Upper level students only. Spring semester, odd-numbered years. 3 credits.

The Middle East (SHY 340)

This course focuses on the multifaceted dimensions of the modern Middle East, beginning with an historical overview of the ancient and medieval periods preceding it. The course examines the complex religious, cultural, and economic characteristics of the three major regions of the Middle East, and researches the roots of Middle Eastern tensions today. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Offered as needed. 3 credits.

Modern Latin America (SHY 345)

Surveys the political, economic, social, and cultural development of Latin America from the beginning of the independence period to the present. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Spring semester. 3 credits. Fee.

Topics in 20th Century US History (SHY 391)

This course explores a variety of selected topics in American history, from the era of Progressivism to the present day. Students explore topics or time periods in depth, master interpretations of the topic or era, and use primary sources and historical works to carry out guided research. Prerequisite: SHY103 or SLA201. Offered as needed. Repeatable for credit. Satisfies the U.S. Cultures requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. 3 credits.

Research Seminar (SHY 405)

Students read historical works related to the course theme and go through the steps of developing and carrying out a research project in a topic related to the course theme. Prerequisite: 6 credits upper-level history coursework. Fall semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Internship (SHY 430)

By arrangement. Repeatable for credit. Permission required. Variable credit.

1 Credit.

Introduction to Political Science (SPS 103)

A comprehensive introduction to the study of political science. Key concepts and theories are explored. Emphasis on the development and organization of the modern state; functions, processes, and ideologies of contemporary political systems; and introduction to the subfields of political science. Fall semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Introduction to Global Studies (SPS 105)

Surveys current world and domestic events, reading and analyzing using a variety of newspapers and news magazines available online, in various sites. Students follow the news generally and select one or more issues for independent research and presentation. Fall semester, even numbered years. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

American National Government (SPS 121)

The background and general principles of American government with emphasis on the Constitution; critical analysis of political processes, political behavior, and aspects of public policy. Fall semester. 3 credits. Fee.

3 Credits.

Introduction to American Law (SPS 122)

This course provides an overview of the U.S. legal system with emphasis on the Constitutional framework of American law. Spring semester. 3 credits. Fee.

3 Credits.

Comparative Politics (SPS 204)

A comparative examination of the world's different governmental and political systems and political culture, both Western and non-Western. Emphasis on European political systems and non-Western political systems including China, Russia, and Iran. Spring semester, odd numbered years. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Inside Washington (SPS 205)

This course provides behind-the-scene perspectives on Washington politics, power, and public policy. Course is offered in Washington,DC. Lectures, site visits, tours, and special events allow students to see the impact of the political process and learn how the nation’s leaders address important contemporary issues. Student must apply and be accepted into the “Washington Experience” program sponsored by the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars. All expenses of the experience are the student’s responsibility. J-term. 0-3 credits. Pass/Fail only.

Genocide and Human Rights (SPS 206)

This course explores human rights as an important international norm that is reflected in policies, practices, and laws at the international and national levels. It addresses such topics as: the use of military force to promote human rights; the development of international criminal courts; humanitarian and human rights law; crimes against humanity; and ethnic cleansing. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Fall semester. 3 credits.

State & Local Government (SPS 222)

A comprehensive introduction to the Pennsylvania governmental structure - - state and municipal - - and its role in our federalist system. Explores the historic and present-day relationship between the Federal government and the Pennsylvania government and its people. Fall semester, even-numbered years. 3 credits. Fee.

Political Theory (SPS 235)

A survey of Western political thought and philosophy with emphasis on modern political ideologies. Writing Intensive course. Prerequisite: SPS103. Spring semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

International Relations (SPS 242)

Introductory analysis of major theories of international relations and their applications to current problems of world politics. Differing perspectives on the nature of the international system; the significance of power and global norms; patterns of conflict and cooperation between nations; and role and influence of non-state actors. Fall semester. Prerequisite: SPS103. 3 credits. Fee.

3 Credits.

Politics of the Sixties (SPS 338)

The enduring legacy of the 1960’s; the sixties as an historic period of culmination in U.S. politics; movements, ideologies, and pressures of the social and political movements of that era. Satisfies the U. S. Cultures requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Fall semester, even-numbered years. 3 credits.

American Foreign Policy (SPS 342)

Content and formation of American foreign policy since World War I. Emphasis on the formal and informal institutions and structures which contribute to the making of foreign policy, including domestic politics. Focus is on the dilemma of America's role as global sheriff in world affairs. Spring semester, even-numbered years. 3 credits.

Special Topics (SPS 390)

Different topics from a variety of subfields of political science. Fall semester, even-numbered years. Repeatable for credit. 3 credits.

Topics in Global Affairs (SPS 392)

This course covers a variety of topical issues in global affairs, including peacemaking, human rights, global governance, and democratization. Satisfies the Global Perspectives component of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Repeatable for credit. Spring semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Public Policy Seminar (SPS 400)

Development and implementation of government policy at the national level. Students research and report on the development of policy in particular issue areas such as military and defense or welfare policies. Juniors and seniors only. Spring semester. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Research Methods (SPS 405)

This course introduces students to the debates and methods that deal with the scientific study of political phenomena. Students learn to write in the field and develop a research design, as well as practice the variety of methods used to conduct research in political science. Fall semester, odd-numbered years. Prerequisites: SPS103 and SSS250. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

Internship (SPS 430)

Open to qualified political science majors and minors. Ordinarily taken for 3 credits. Repeatable for credit. Permission required. Variable credit.

Genocide in Comparative Perspective (SSO 306)

Places the Holocaust and other cases of genocide in comparative historical and cultural context. Investigates factors that cause genocide, the use of survivor testimony in documenting genocide, and the role of the international community in responding to acts of genocide. Satisfies the Global Perspectives requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. ADP session 3. 3 credits.

Introductory Statistics (SSS 250)

Designed to develop quantitative literacy, enabling students to produce, understand, and communicate statistical information. Prepares students to conduct research. Explores descriptive and inferential statistics that include parametric (Z, t, F) and non-parametric (chi-square) probability distributions. Ability to make recommendations based upon interpretation of statistical software output is emphasized. Satisfies the Mathematics requirement of the Liberal Arts Curriculum. Fall and spring semesters and ADP sessions 1, 3, and 4. 3 credits.

3 Credits.

View courses and full requirements for this program in the current course catalog.

View Course Catalog