Government Major and Minor Requirements

Major Requirements

Students entering St. Lawrence with an interest in government and politics are strongly advised to enroll in two of the 100-level core courses (103, 105, 108) during their first year, one of which should be taken as a writing-intensive version (103W, 105W, 108W). Students should also seek early advising from a government department faculty member.

The major in government requires the completion of nine units distributed as follows:

    1. Core Courses (4): Government majors must complete the introductory course for each of the four disciplinary subfields: American Politics (103), Comparative Politics (105), International Politics (108) and Political Theory (206). One of the three 100-level courses must be designated writing-intensive (WI) and is recommended to be completed by the end of the sophomore year. These four introductory courses must be taken in residence on the St. Lawrence campus, meaning students who have received credit for the AP American Government Exam must still enroll in GOVT 103 at SLU (though the credit they earned for AP American will still count toward their overall credits for graduation).
    2. Research Seminar (1): During the sophomore or junior year, ideally after completion of the writing-intensive course, majors must take one of the government Research Seminars (290, 291, 292, 293). Students may take only one research seminar.
    3. Elective Courses (4): The remaining four units may be earned through a selection of elective courses, one of which must be 300/400-level course taken on campus. Students may count up to one unit of internship coursework and one unit of independent study toward the elective requirements. Students who complete the two-course SYE: Honors Thesis may not also use an internship or an independent study course to meet the major requirements, although such courses do count toward the units required for graduation. No more than two of the elective courses may be taken off-campus.

A major may elect no more than four out of nine units for the major in any one subfield of the discipline. The academic work of transfer students in political science is evaluated upon entry into the department for determination of credit. In no case may a transfer student majoring in government take fewer than five government courses at St. Lawrence.

Minor Requirements

The minor in government requires the completion of five units distributed as follows:

    1. Core Courses (2).  Government minors must complete two of the following introductory courses: American Politics (103), Comparative Politics (105), International Politics (108) and Political Theory (206). These courses must be taken in residence on the St. Lawrence campus.
    2. Research Seminar (1).  During the sophomore or junior year, minors must take the government Research Seminar (290).
    3. Elective Courses (2).  The remaining two units may be earned through a selection of upper-level (i.e. non-introductory) elective courses. The department will credit one upper-level government course taken in a St.  Lawrence-sponsored off-campus program. Internships in government do not count as courses toward the minor.

Honors

Departmental honors are awarded at graduation to majors who have achieved a minimum grade point average of 3.5 in government courses and who have also received an “honors” designation on the senior thesis. Additional information regarding the senior honors thesis can be found on the departmental website. (See Honors in the Curriculum chapter of this Catalog.)

Certification to Teach Social Studies

The teacher certification minor is only available to students who matriculated before fall semester 2019. For information on teacher certification options approved by the New York State Board of Regents, requirements for the certification minor, and the requirements for the professional semester (including student teaching) please go to the Education department's website (https://www.stlawu.edu/education) or contact the Coordinator of the Teacher Education Program.  Students who are eligible to pursue this minor must complete all requirements and the professional semester by the end of spring semester 2022.