Are you interested in learning about how power shapes our societies? Do you enjoy discussing contemporary events?

Dwight from The Office says,

Political science is the systematic study of governance and society. During your studies, you'll have the flexibility to learn what matters most to you and focus on your specific interests.

The possibilities are endless!

As someone who studied political science and chose a career in education, I gained a wide variety of transferrable skills and knowledge from my degree to prepare me for the future.

Why study political science?

Considering common fields in political science may help you understand if you should choose to study this field.

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Comparative politics

Compares political systems in two or more countries and is interested in forming causal relationships between them. Students who are interested in data and statistics might find this field interesting.

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International relations

Examines how states interact with each other. Includes an exploration of international organizations such as the United Nations, The African Union, BRICS, and more.

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Political theory

Engages with political theories from the past to the present. Explores concepts such as ethics, authority, and the nature of liberty and freedom. This is a reading-heavy field of political science!

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This field focuses on public administration, policy making, and political parties — often in the context of the country you are studying in. For example, universities in Canada will offer a Canadian government focused education.

A zookeeper says,

What you learn in a political science degree will depend on the field you gravitate towards. You don't have to pick one from the start, but thinking in terms of fields will help you choose courses and career paths.

Read more about other specializations in political science here.

What skills will you learn from a political science degree?

Critical thinking

You'll exercise your ability to analyze available information to make an informed decision, which will improve your problem-solving, research, and decision-making skills.

Reading and interpreting data

You will get hands-on experience with datasets, graphs, and more to be able to understand and produce statistics.

Analytical writing

You'll produce research papers, grants, infographics, and presentations as part of your degree, which will allow you to present information effectively and efficiently.

Kermit the Frog frantically typing on a typewriter.

What career paths can you follow?

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The government & legal sectors

  • public policy analyst

  • legislative assistant

  • lawyer, prosecutor, judge

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The private sector

  • marketing

  • media and communications

  • public relations

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  • research

  • teaching

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  • social worker

  • writer — grants, blogs, reports

This list is not exhaustive! There are many other career options to explore with a political science degree. Read more about potential career paths for political science graduates here.


Bri enjoys reading about world events, loves writing, and is interested in a career in activism. She is concerned that a political science degree might be restrictive. Do you think she is a good fit to study political science?

How should you prepare for a degree in political science?

  • Find a program that meets your needs. Research different schools and look into their course offerings to make sure their focus matches your interests.

  • Make sure you can afford it. Tuition fees differ. Some universities will offer scholarships and grants to support your education. Learn about student assistance programs offered in your state/province/city.

  • Get informed by reading magazines and newspapers.

  • Get a head start by reading the essential political theory books. Political theory is challenging! Look into video essays and summaries online to help your learning journey.

Multiple books scattered across a table with their pages open.

How can you succeed in a political science program?

  • Manage your time well. Use a calendar to mark your assignment due dates, exams, and readings.

  • Improve your writing. As a first-year student, visit your university's writing center to improve the quality of your research papers.

  • Be open-minded. Practice active listening and learn from others' experiences. Think before you speak during classroom discussions.

  • Find opportunities and network. Research co-op programs and internships to gain some work experience before you graduate. Check out this Byte for networking tips geared towards students.

A man saying

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As a political science graduate, my interests shifted to education later in life. It happens! I learned so many skills from my degree that I'm able to apply to my current work. Like I said before, the possibilities are endless!

Ursula from The Little Mermaid says, If you think that political science is the correct way forward for you:


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