Political Science Major: International Security Option (B.A.)


The international security option in major allows students to focus the electives in their political science major on contemporary international security issues. Topics include: terrorism, ethnic conflict, nuclear weapons, drug-related violence, human security, technology and war, and much more. 

Students who elect this option can highlight their focus on international security to potential employers and graduate schools. The option in major will appear on students’ transcript. The option in major will allow students to develop a network with students who share an passion for international security, and to leverage this network at UNH and beyond.

Degree Requirements

Minimum Credit Requirement: 128 credits
Minimum Residency Requirement: 32 credits must be taken at UNH
Minimum GPA: 2.0 required for conferral*
Core Curriculum Required: Discovery & Writing Program Requirements
Foreign Language Requirement: Yes

All Major, Option and Elective Requirements as indicated.
*Major GPA requirements as indicated.

Major Requirements

The Political Science major option in International Security consists of at least 10 courses (40 credits).

The minimum grade requirement is C- per course. Any grade lower than a C- will not count toward the major option. The required minimum overall GPA for major coursework is 2.0.

POLT 401Politics and Society4
POLT 402American Politics and Government4
POLT 403United States in World Affairs4
Three 500-level Subfield courses12
Select 3 subfield courses, 1 from each of 3 different subfields below.
Subfield: American Politics
American Public Policy
State and Local Government
American Presidency
American Congress
Parties, Interest Groups, and Voters
Politics of Crime and Justice
Supreme Court and the Constitution
Managing Bureaucracy in America
Media and Politics
Women & Politics
Public Opinion in American Politics
Civil Rights and Liberties
Selected Topics Am Politics
Subfield: Political Thought
Politics, Justice, and Morality
Rights and the Political Community
Dissent and the Political Community
American Political Thought
Politics and Literature
Politics and Literature
Selected Topics in Political Thought
Subfield: Comparative Politics
Of Dictators and Democrats
People and Politics in Asia
Wealth and Politics in Asia
Drug Wars
The Politics of Markets
Comparative Government and Society
Ethnicity ,Violence, Democracy
Contemporary European Politics
Revolution and Protest in Latin America
Politics in China
Comparative Politics of the Middle East
Selected Topics in Political Thought
Subfield: International Politics
World Politics
Strategy and National Security Policy
The Global Information Grid's Disruptive Impact on Government, Politics, and Society
United States Policy in Latin America
Asian Challenge to Global Order
The Rise of China
Counterterrorism: Nation states' responses to terrorist activity
Selected Topics in International Politics
Subfield: Methods
Smart Politics

 International Security Option Requirements

POLT 568International Security4
Electives - select two courses:8
Drug Wars
Ethnicity ,Violence, Democracy
Revolution and Protest in Latin America
Comparative Politics of the Middle East
Strategy and National Security Policy
United States Policy in Latin America
Asian Challenge to Global Order
The Rise of China
Counterterrorism: Nation states' responses to terrorist activity
Selected Topics in International Politics
Capstone - select one course:4
States and Societies in the Middle East
Politics of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India
Comparative Environmental Politics and Policy
Seminar in Comparative Politics
Seminar in International Politics
  • Knowledge Base: a proficient knowledge base of the five subfields of Political Science including American Government, Political Theory, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Methods. The program fosters the development of a strong empirical foundation through multiple levels of courses. The option in major allows students to focus their elective coursework on critical international security issues.
  • Research Skills: A second goal is to advance the students’ abilities to understand and use basic political science research skills. These include knowledge of credible sources of information, basic statistical applications, and support for foreign language proficiency. We also strive to help students identify interesting and important research questions clearly and concisely, gather and assess various types of information, and come to well-reasoned conclusions.
  • Critical Thinking: The third objective involves enhancement of student cognitive abilities and critical thinking. We hone the ability to analyze, assess, and reconstruct findings in written, oral, and graphical form. We strive to promote students who are self-disciplined thinkers who understand the rigorous standards of research, are intelligent consumers of political information, and are able to understand and weigh multiple perspectives and interpretations.
  • Communication Skills: Another aim is to enhance the written and oral communication skills of our students. We support the goals of the writing intensive requirement and expose students to different genres and conventions in academic writing. Most 500 and 700-level courses emphasize cultivating strong writing and reading skills, while at the 700-level, student engagement in sustained discussion becomes the centerpiece of instruction in many seminars. Writing instruction includes emphasis not only on research papers but on short analytical essays, and reviews that ask students to synthesize complex information, develop arguments, and delve more deeply into interpretation. In some courses, part of this work includes iterated practice of grammar and stylistic choices through revision and proposal assignments.
  • Professional Socialization and Support for Post-Graduate Training and Placement: The sixth aim of the program is to give students the requisite skills, preparation and knowledge base to become capable and responsible political actors in their chosen professional careers and future goals. We expect our students to be exposed to the ethics and organizational culture of political science specifically and the social sciences generally. We aim to provide a foundation of professionalism for students who enter both the private and public sectors upon graduation and for those who continue their studies beyond the B.A.
  • Inspire Curiosity and Enthusiasm for Inquiry: A final goal is to foster a spirit of inquiry. Faculty in the Department hope to stimulate curiosity about the political world and inspire life-long learners who are engaged in the political process at the local, national and global levels.