Questions You Might Have About Pursuing Political Science

The workings of government can be both an intellectually interesting and extremely practical field of study. For those that are interested in pursuing a career in political science, there are many colleges that offer majors in this field, and learning more about political science and the opportunities it provides will help you decide whether this field is a good match for you.

Do Political Science Jobs Always Involve Campaigning?

When many people think of political science, they may picture politicians working the campaign trail for votes. While campaigning is one of the most important aspects of politics, it is important to note that many careers will never require campaigning. In fact, the career paths for those that are interested in pursuing partisan politics and civil servant positions are extremely different, which can allow those that are interested working for candidates, political parties or administrative positions in government institutions to pursue the areas for which they have the most interest and talent.

Will You Have To Specialize Within Political Science?

Political science covers a dauntingly wide array of fields and topics. From international relations to urban policies, there are many topics that you can choose to study in this field, and specializing will likely help you to make yourself competitive for positions.

For those that are hesitant about specializing in a subfield, it should be noted that many fields are interconnected, which can help prevent you from becoming intellectually stagnant. You will likely find yourself needing to incorporate research from various other disciplines throughout your research and work, which can help you expand your understanding of the political world.

What Is It Like To Pursue Graduate Studies In Political Science?

In order to be competitive for the highest level positions in political science, it will likely be necessary to pursue a graduate degree. The scope and type of experience you will have in graduate school will depend on the degree track you are pursuing. Individuals that are seeking a master's in public administration will likely spend much of their time learning effective management techniques and the laws surrounding government institutions.

For those that are pursuing more research oriented degrees, they will likely need to write either a thesis or dissertation. Preparing one of these documents will require completing unique research that contributes to political science, and it is designed to be the culmination of everything you have learned. After preparing the document, you will need to defend it in front of your advisors and a panel of other academics as they question your research, thesis and methods. Not surprisingly, preparing these documents can require intense work and a long time to write and get accepted, but the doors that the graduate degree will open may be far more than worth the sacrifices needed.