Bachelor of Arts, Major and Minor in Political Studies

Political Studies

  • Program Length 
    4 Years
  • Credential 
    Bachelor Degree
  • Options 
    Major, Minor
  • Location Offered 
    Nanaimo

The Program

Politics can be understood as a community's deliberations about such fundamental matters as justice and injustice, freedom, human rights, democracy, law making, dispute settlement, governance and citizenship. Political Studies addresses critical questions such as: Who gets what, when, and how? Who can do what to whom? What is the point or objective of political action or inaction? The study of these questions and others provides students of Political Studies with a grasp of political issues and solutions at the domestic level and international level.

The civic and political life of Canadians is rapidly becoming more diverse and more global. Yet timeless political questions also lie below the changing surface. An awareness of what is possible and even desirable in the future depends upon familiarity with the history of political thought. New opportunities are opening to those who are equipped to meet the challenges of a changing Canada and a changing world. Political Studies helps students be a part of those new opportunities by providing them the intellectual tools needed to understand and analyze real world problems, conduct research, and be more informed citizens.

Political Studies prepares students for jobs in rewarding career areas such as public service in local, provincial or federal levels of government; international affairs; international organizations or non–governmental organizations; teaching; journalism; social research; and consultancy. A Bachelor of Arts, Major in Political Studies from VIU prepares students to pursue graduate degrees in Political Science (MA), International and Global Studies (MA), Public Policy and Administration (MPA), Business (MBA), interdisciplinary studies, or Law (LLB).

VIU offers undergraduates the option of studying Political Studies as a Major or as a Minor in a 4–year Bachelor of Arts degree program. The B.A. Minor and Major in Political Studies are designed around four fields of political inquiry that together represent a core range of the discipline: international relations, comparative politics, political theory, and Canadian politics. Students are exposed to a representative range of this core in their choice of lower level courses, but are then given the opportunity to more freely choose field specializations in their choice of upper level courses.

The B.A. Minor and Major in Political Studies at VIU also provide students the opportunity to complement their degree in Political Studies with a select number of courses in other disciplines. This interdisciplinary element of the B.A. in Political Studies enriches the study of politics and gives students the option of completing a Minor or joint Major in a related field of study.

Program Outline

Requirements for a Major

Students must fulfill all the Institutional B.A. degree requirements, including Degree English Requirements and courses listed below:

Years 1 and 2

Credits

Select eighteen credits of 100-200 level POLI courses as follows:

First-year Core Requirements:

Select three credits from the following list:
POLI 100 - (Identities and Communities: An Introduction to Politics) or
POLI 151 - (Law and Politics in Canada)

3

Second-year Core Requirements*:

Select at least nine credits from the following list: 
POLI 200* - (International Peace and Security) or,
POLI 201* - (An Introduction to International Political Economy)
POLI 221 - (Canadian Politics and Government) or,
POLI 222 - (Governance and Public Policy in Canada)
POLI 231 - (Comparative Politics) 
POLI 260 - (Justice and the Good Life: an Introduction to Political Thought) or,
POLI 265 - (Freedom and Authority: Introduction to Modern Political Thought)

9

Methods Course Requirement**:

Select three credits from the following list:
SOCI 250 - (Introduction to Social Research) or
SSID 250 - (Introduction to Social Research) or,
CRIM 220 - (Research Methods in Criminology)

3

Select three additional credits of 100-200 level POLI courses or PHIL 231 - (Social and Political Philosophy).

6

* Students may take both POLI 200 and POLI 201, but only one can be used to meet the Second Year Core requirement.

* Students may take both POLI 221 and POLI 222, but only one can be used to meet the Second Year Core requirement.

* Students may take both POLI 260 and POLI 265, but only one can be used to meet the Second Year Core requirement.

** The prerequisite for SOCI 250 is SOCI 111 or SOCI 112 (recommended); or any 100-level course in Psychology, Geography, Anthropology, Criminology, or Political Studies; the prerequisite for SSID 250 is any 100-level course in Psychology, Geography, Anthropology, Sociology, Criminology, or Political Studies; the prerequisite for CRIM 220 is CRIM 101.

Years 3 and 4

Credits

Select thirty* credits of 300-400 level POLI courses.

30

* Up to nine of the required thirty minimum credits may be taken from courses in other departments. Please check the departmental website or with the department chair for a current list of courses, or check with the department chair to determine other suitable courses within these areas.

Note: These credits may not be used for more than one Major or Minor. 
Note: Not all Political Studies courses are offered every year. Students are advised to see a BA Advisor early in their program to ensure timely completion. 
Note: Students who completed FNAT 220, FNAT 223, FNAT 350, FNAT 425, or FNAT 450 prior to May 2013 and who have not graduated may still apply these credits toward the completion of their Political Studies Major.

Requirements for a Minor

Students must fulfill all the Institutional B.A. degree requirements, including Degree English Requirements and courses listed below:

Years 1 and 2

Credits

Select fifteen credits of 100-200 level POLI courses as follows:

First-year Core Requirements:

Select three credits from the following list:
POLI 100 - (Identities and Communities: An Introduction to Politics) or
POLI 151 - (Law and Politics in Canada)

3

Second-year Core Requirements:

Select three credits from the following list: 
POLI 200 - (International Peace and Security)
POLI 201 - (An Introduction to International Political Economy)
POLI 221 - (Canadian Politics and Government)
POLI 222 - (Governance and Public Policy in Canada)
POLI 231 - (Comparative Politics) 
POLI 260 - (Justice and the Good Life: an Introduction to Political Thought)
POLI 265 - (Freedom and Authority: Introduction to Modern Political Thought)

3

Select nine credits of 100-200 level POLI* courses.

9

Methods Course Requirement:
Select three credits from the following list:
SOCI 250* - (Introduction to Social Research) or,
SSID 250* - (Introduction to Social Research) or,
CRIM 220* - (Research Methods in Criminology)

3

* The prerequisite for SOCI 250 is SOCI 111 or SOCI 112 (recommended); or any 100-level course in Psychology, Geography, Anthropology, Criminology, or Political Studies; the prerequisite for SSID 250 is any 100-level course in Psychology, Geography, Anthropology, Sociology, Criminology, or Political Studies; the prerequisite for CRIM 220 is CRIM 101.

Years 3 and 4

Credits

Select eighteen* credits of 300-400 level POLI courses.

18

* Up to six of the required eighteen minimum credits may be taken from courses in other departments. Please check the departmental website or with the department chair for a current list of courses, or check with the department chair to determine other suitable courses within these areas.

Note: These credits may not be used for more than one Major or Minor. 
Note: Not all Political Studies courses are offered every year. Students are advised to see a BA Advisor early in their program to ensure timely completion. 
Note: Students who completed FNAT 220, FNAT 223, FNAT 350, FNAT 425, or FNAT 450 prior to May 2013 and who have not graduated may still apply these credits toward the completion of their Political Studies Minor.

 

Updated 
Tuesday, August 28, 2018
Domestic Fees | International Fees

Domestic Fees

Tuition Fee Schedule

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees for One Year*

Amount

Tuition (30 credits x $147.76 per credit)

4,432.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

177.31

Student Services fee (30 credits x $6.53 per credit)

195.90

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Approximate cost for books and supplies for one year

1,500.00

Total

6,736.45

Notes

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full–time students at the Nanaimo Campus.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

International Fees

Tuition Fee Schedule

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees for One Year*

Amount

Tuition (2 semesters x $7620 per semester)

15,240.00

Ancillary Fee (2 semesters x $374.4 per semester)

748.80

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Approximate cost for books and supplies for one year

1,500.00

Total

17,919.24

Notes

The above table is based on 15 credits or less per semester. Additional fees of $635.00 per credit will be applied if taking more than 15 credits per semester.

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full–time students at the Nanaimo Campus.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

Updated
Sunday, April 1, 2018
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