Political Science Degree Overview
Political science is a degree that typically leads to a career in government and politics. Historically it has been a cornerstone of the liberal arts education and one of the social sciences. While the scientific field concerns itself with studying the physical and natural world around us, political science — along with sociology, economics, and, to some degree, psychology — examines reality as it relates to a human-centric, social construct. Or put another way: that dollar bill in your pocket only works because humans have the mental capacity to believe in nations, like the United States, which create legal tender to buy goods. Otherwise, it would just be a fancy-looking, if useless, piece of paper!
When it comes to categorizing the social sciences, people sometimes make the mistake of pulling in disciplines from the humanities (archeology, geography, etc.). However, an easy rule of thumb to distinguish the two is that the social sciences analyze how society functions and why people behave the way they do, while the humanities concern themselves with the cultural impact of society on humankind in the form of maps, literature, laws, or paintings.
In college, political science majors develop analytical and problem-solving skills that can propel them to various jobs. Although many will seek employment in public service, positions aren’t exclusive to a role in this domain. Whereas a traditional scientific discipline like physics will use math to arrive at an objective answer, political science concerns itself with a more subjective approach to analyzing situations and laws. 카지노사이트
If you are innately curious, analytic, and a natural problem-solver, you might consider majoring in this discipline. Researchers say the number of political science degrees awarded in 2020 was about 3% more than the year prior. And with a median salary of almost $100,000, this degree path has a lot of promise.
10 Political Science Degree Benefits
Learn about government policies not just in the United States, but all over the world
Discover methods of analysis that are useful in your personal and professional life
Obtain a deep understanding of policy issues
Predict political, economic, and social trends
Study a wide range of topics that impact business, law, education, and other fields
Develop interpersonal, writing, and oratory skills
Place your finger on the pulse of current events
Expand your critical-thinking ability, and learn how to apply it to institutions all over the world
The versatility of this career can open a lot of doors
It’s an easy way to affect real change in politics
Cons of Political Science Degrees
Most careers in this field involve politics and law, so they can be incredibly high-stress
Jobs deal with life-and-death issues on a regular basis
Many positions can expect to work long hours, sometimes including nights and weekends
It may be extremely difficult to land a job without the right connections
A career as a political scientist is contingent on a postgraduate degree
Is Political Science a Hard Major?
Remember when we mentioned earlier that political science is more of a subjective nature of study? In that way, it shares many similarities with the humanities like art or literature — as in, it is continually derided for being a proverbial cakewalk.
Political science majors might bristle at this notion, and for good reason. At first blush, the complete lack of any mathematically challenging equations in this area of study might make political science seem easy. However, the further you advance, the more it has in common with interrelated fields such as psychology, law, and history. In short, the work is intensive in other ways.
Students will have to quantify and explain the influences that define a person’s political views, various ideologies, and levels of political participation. The major’s purview covers a wide range of topics, from international relations to political theory, and students will have to identify and discuss important scholarly debates with their class. They might learn about the rise and fall of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) or how slavery was inexorably tied to the United States’ early economy. Reading and research will be plentiful, as will writing papers and presenting your findings aloud. 안전한카지노사이트
While not everyone will be cut out for the work, those who graduate from an undergraduate or graduate program will have gained the writing, communication, analytical, and data skills that are valued in a broad spectrum of potential careers, according to the American Political Science Association. Someone with a political science degree can leverage both humanistic and scientific perspectives and various methodological approaches to examine the process, systems, and political dynamics across disciplines, making them highly versatile professionals.
Is Political Science Worth It?
The short answer is yes. Earning a degree in this field can set you up for further advancement — so long as you’re prepared for the work. It is common practice for political science majors to double major in their desired professional field (e.g., someone seeking a career in public health might double major in political science and biology). Others may diversify their studies to be more competitive when it comes time to apply for graduate school (e.g., majoring in a foreign language).
Keep in mind that if you wish to become a political scientist, graduate school is mostly a necessity. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), students typically require at least a master’s degree in political science, public administration, or a related field to fulfill this job requirement. The good news is that after completion of their studies, the annual wage for this profession is around $122,000. And job prospects look good. Careers are expected to grow about 9% from 2020 to 2030, with about 700 openings in the U.S. each year, on average, over the next decade.
For the vast majority of political science students, following graduation, they will need to hone their skills in an internship. These internships run the gamut from assisting with a grassroots campaign to working for a nonprofit or lawyer. The hours are often long, and the pay can be minimal.
Not feeling a career as a political scientist? Not to worry. Political science majors don’t need to feel hemmed into either the private or public sector — they are free to work across either, or both. There are a variety of occupations this degree covers, from paralegal to market research analyst and city manager. Interested? Keep reading as we further detail the range of options below.
Top Political Science Jobs & Careers
A variety of career options exist for those with a political science degree including law, journalism, policy analysis, and private-sector jobs with political parties. Aspiring lawyers can also use a political science degree to get additional background on U.S. politics for bar exams in various states.
If you’re interested in pursuing a degree in political science, read on to learn more about common career paths for this major.
Politicians don’t burst onto the scene without help. They run sophisticated campaigns to introduce themselves to the community. As a campaign manager, you’ll both craft and execute those marketing programs. 카지노사이트 추천
As a campaign manager, you’re likely to:
Draft formal communication documents. You’ll write up press releases, position statements, and blog posts.
Coach your candidate. You’ll help your chosen person shine in person, and on camera.
Supervise a team. You’ll be involved in canvassing, fundraising, social media management, and more.
Safeguard your brand. You’ll come up with your candidate’s look and feel, and you’ll ensure everything falls in line.
During campaign season, expect to work incredibly hard. You’ll give up nights, weekends, and vacations to help your candidate. If you lose, plan for some soul searching along with a frantic search for a new job. But if you win, you could ride the coattails of your candidate to higher office.
You’ll take home about $120,000 per year, says the BLS. But according to experts, don’t expect to get paid unless you have quite a bit of experience. Politicians can and will use free staff when available to pad their campaigns and ensure success. If you’re fresh from school, you might be shunted into a volunteer spot.
Political Science Teacher
You’ll lean on experts as you move through college. Become a teacher, and you’ll pass on what you learned to the next generation. A master’s degree or doctoral degree prepares you to teach at a college or university.
As a professor, you’ll lead your classroom in vigorous discussions about political theory, history, and current events. You’ll assign reading, check homework, and administer tests. Your days will be filled with helping young people master concepts. Teach at the university level, and you’ll also have time for research. You could study recent political campaigns, or you could reach way back and understand the past. You might be expected to publish academic papers or books on your topic to keep your position.
According to BLS, you’ll make close to $80,000 per year for all of your hard work. Research from the Chronicle of Higher Education suggests that college professors appreciate their jobs because of:
Colleagues. You might like trading notes about theory with other people as passionate about education as you are. If you’ve always wanted to work with intelligent peers, a college environment could be right for you.
Influencing policy. In some colleges and universities, you’ll have the ability to make campus-wide changes. Student lives and outcomes will improve because of the work you do.
Lifestyle. You’re paid to work in a field you love. For some professionals, that means more than any salary ever could.
How do political systems work? Why do some types of leadership get results, while others seem ineffective? Which governments hold the most power over their people? As a political scientist, you’ll study issues like this every day.
You’ll focus your work on:
National politics. You’ll think about how the American system works now. You’ll study how it developed in the past.
Comparative politics. You’ll pit two types of leadership against one another to compare and contrast them.
International relations. You’ll examine how two different types of governments communicate with one another and find common ground.
Political theory. You’ll develop concepts that can apply to systems from the past and those coming in the future.
As mentioned earlier, you’ll need a master’s degree or doctoral degree to get started, and you’ll make about $120,000 per year, says BLS.
The job market is competitive, and you’ll need some experience before you can land this job. Expect to assist a political scientist for a few years before you grab the job title on your own.
Why are some bills successful? Why do some states benefit from aid packages? Think of lobbyists as the power behind each vote. They meet with politicians individually or in groups, and they hope to move votes in the direction that benefits their clients.
Few people set out to become a lobbyist, analysts say. Instead, they come to the career after spending years working in the business or political sector. You might work as a legislator for several years, for example, and then leverage your connections for a paying client. But with a political science degree, you’re more than qualified to take a lobbying job.
Plenty of these jobs exist. For example, General Electric paid more than $238 million on salaries for lobbyists within the last 12 years, reporters say.
Your clients expect you to get results. If you don’t, you won’t keep your job, but if you’re effective, you’ll stay employed for years.
You can leverage your political science degree as a politician. Your educational background will help you understand what campaigns have worked in the past, what communities tend to expect from their leaders, and what would make you keep your job.
Top legislators make about $97,000 per year, BLS says, but after your years of community service are over, you’ll get paid through:
Book signing parties
It’s not uncommon for politicians to live a modest lifestyle while in office, and then move into a lavish lifestyle when the money starts flowing in.
You’ll need to work for years, if not decades, on building capital before you can get elected. You might start with a small elected office, like county commissioner, and then you might build on that by becoming mayor. In time, you could achieve the highest office in America.
Politicians talk extensively. Some of their chatter is informal, but much of it is scripted. As a speechwriter, you’ll tell your politician just what to say. Speechwriters with political science backgrounds know what language has worked in the past. They’re aware of what their candidates need to sound like right now. They create speeches that marry the two, and they might work with the candidate to nail intonation and hand gestures.
Expect to make about $69,000 per year, says BLS. You’ll need extensive on-the-job training. You’ll need to learn from people who worked in the industry for decades. You’ll also need to understand your candidate.