In political science, students have a wide variety of backgrounds, interests, and career aspirations. As our range of possible concentrations in the department suggests, students interested in law school, public affairs, government service, graduate school,
or international studies can obtain a solid background with the courses we offer. Of course, the core or basic concentration allows students the most flexibility in designing a curriculum to meet individual needs.
Courses Outside Political Science that Could Improve Employment Opportunities
English (especially writing skills)
The typical class size for:
Freshman/introductory courses is: 250 Sophomore/intermediate courses is: 75 Upper level/advanced courses is: 50
In the Department of Political Science, what do teaching assistants (TA's) do?
Advanced graduate students teach some undergraduate courses; other graduate students assist in grading examinations and papers.
About Our Faculty
The department has a faculty of 13 full-time members, all of whom have PhDs and teach both undergraduate and graduate courses. University honors awarded for excellence in teaching to several members of the faculty demonstrates the high quality of teaching.
Our faculty is professionally active, nationally recognized, and very accessible. They have authored or co-authored twenty-two books, edited another twenty-one books, and authored or co-authored more than 160 research
articles and nearly 100 chapters in edited collections. The faculty have published with many leading university presses, and their work has appeared in the leading professional journals. One faculty member is a SUNY
Distinguished Service Professor, two are UB Distinguished Professors, and several have won awards for their teaching and research. Several have had grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF), and one served as
the political science program director at NSF. Two faculty members have served as American Political Science Association congressional fellows. Several have served on the editorial boards of major scholarly journals,
and within the governing bodies of regional and subfield organizations in the discipline.
Practical Experience and Special Academic Opportunities
Undergraduate Research and Practical Experience
Washington Semester Program Undergraduate students with a GPA of 3.0 higher can spend either a fall or a spring semester in Washington D.C., participating in a full-time internship with a political institution,
agency, or group. Students in this program earn up to 16 credit hours, up to 6 of which can be applied to the major as upper division Political Science credits.
New York State Senate and Assembly Internship Undergraduate students with a GPA of 3.0 or higher are eligible to intern for a semester in the office of a state senator or member of the Assembly in Albany.
Participants earn up to 15 credit hours, up to 6 of which can be applied to the major as upper division Political Science credits.
Community Internship Undergraduates with a GPA of 3.0 or better can work with a government office or agency located in Western New York. An academic component, usually a paper is required and is arranged
in consultation with a sponsoring faculty member on a case by case basis. Students typically earn 3 credit hours.
Undergraduate Research Students are invited to approach faculty members to explore mutual research interests.
Honors, Awards, and Scholarships
In order to graduate with honors in Political Science at UB, a Political Science major must satisfy two requirements. He or she must have: (1.) received a grade of B or better in one of the following courses:
PSC 490 Honors Seminar, PSC 492 Pre-Law Honors Seminar, PSC 495 Senior
Seminar, PSC 497 Honors Thesis, or (with the permission of the instructor) any graduate seminar, and (2.) have a GPA of over 3.25.
Political Science majors receiving a grade of at least B in the above courses and graduating with a GPA of at least 3.25 but less than 3.50 will be designated as graduating with Honors.
Political Science majors receiving a grade of at least B in the above courses and graduating with a GPA of at least 3.50 but less than 3.75 will be designated as graduating with High Honors.
Political Science majors receiving a grade of at least B in the above courses and graduating with a GPA of over 3.75 will be designated as graduating with Highest Honors.
Those honor graduates completing a thesis will be so designated, as in High Honors (with thesis).
Undergraduate Political Science Club
This club sponsors meetings and participates in department social affairs. It also organizes special events, trips to Washington D.C., and faculty/student lunches. Members elect officers and control their own
funds. For more information, call (716) 645-2251.
Model European Union Simulation
Each year since 1993, the Department of Political Science has sent a delegation to participate in a simulation of decision-making in the European Union. To facilitate this, UB is a member of a consortium of New
York State and European universities. Approximately 150 American students and 100 European students participate in these three- to four-day meetings, which are held either at the University at Buffalo, SUNY/Brockport,
or in Luxembourg. Professor D. Munroe Eagles is the faculty advisor for this simulation; interested students are encouraged to contact him.
Pi Sigma Alpha
Our chapter of the national political science honor fraternity participates in departmental social affairs, receives guest speakers, and conducts other meetings. Members elect officers and control their own funds.
Invitations to apply for membership generally are distributed in February or March, with an induction ceremony in March or April.