Skip to Main Content

Why Choose Saint Rose for Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science?

History and Political Science faculty are dedicated teachers and renowned scholars. Each faculty member has a geographic or content specialty, and our programs ensure that students are exposed to the breadth and depth of the disciplines. Classes are small to provide individual assistance with critical reading, academic writing, persuasive argument, and original research. All of our courses place power at the center of analysis, and students are trained to use scholarly evidence in their own argumentation and research.

Many faculty in the department have published books and articles in professional, peer-reviewed journals. Their dedication to their field, and their experience in it, translates directly to mentoring relationships with undergraduate students.

Program Highlights

  • Students in the Department of History and Political Science are exposed to a wide range of content in their chosen major. History majors study every major region of the globe. Political Science majors study all of the discipline’s traditional subfields. Each of these courses, whether based on geography or subfield, is taught by a dedicated scholar of the field.
  • Talented upper-level students have the opportunity to intern in Albany, New York City, Washington, DC, or other locations. Internships provide extensive hands-on experience combined with academic study, and students can earn up to a full semester’s worth of course credit.
  • All students complete their programs with a senior capstone seminar. This course is designed to allow students to show how much they have learned during their studies, to examine an academic field in great depth, and to produce a significant work of original research. Some students have published their work in the College’s Journal of Undergraduate Research.
  • Three majors are available to fit students’ desired area of study:
    1. History and Political Science: is an interdisciplinary program that promotes analytical proficiency in global relations by exploring the historical and political emergence of democratic and non-democratic political structures.
    2. History: is the study of why and how cultures and systems of exchange have changed over the centuries—and how that change has shaped the contours of today’s society.
    3. Political Science: provides students with a comprehensive knowledge of governmental structures, legislative and judicial processes, political theory, and international relations.

Assembly Internships

Goals, Mission and Learning Objectives

Goals

Our courses are designed to mold students into educated citizens, thinkers, and problem solvers by instilling in them rigorous habits of critical inquiry. Learning objectives are aimed at making students proficient in research and analytical methods –developing skills of close, critical reading, reasoning, written and oral communication and argument. Students taking our courses to meet both liberal education and major requirements refine these skills through various methods. We train them to attend to detail, and to separate the significant from the tangential; to follow instructions and model strategies and solutions for others as potential future leaders and problem solvers. In groups and individually, students learn to closely examine and evaluate different genres of source material and forms of evidence – quantitative and qualitative- and to discern valid knowledge from invalid in digital and physical formats, in order to imbibe a healthy critical outlook, and good judgment by learning to distinguish between fact, perspective, and opinion. They learn to elaborate knowledge, ideas, and claims in convincing ways by refining rhetorical skills.

In this way, our programs prepare students for a wide range of postgraduate paths, including advanced graduate study and a wide array of careers in the public and private sectors: education, law, business, administration, public and private service, government, and non-governmental organizations. Undergraduates can choose from four specialized major degree programs the department offers: History (BA), Political Science (BA), Interdisciplinary History/Political Science (BA), and Social Studies 7-12 Adolescence Education (BA). We also offer an interdisciplinary MA focused on US history and politics in international context which students can pursue part-time or full-time in our evening seminars.

Mission

The Department of History and Political Science supports the cause of human freedom, equality, and dignity. We are a community of scholars committed to seeking truth, producing knowledge, and advancing the education of students dedicated to those pursuits. Students achieve the broad cultural and civic literacy and social awareness needed to communicate and thrive personally and professionally in today’s world.   Our mission is to teach departmental majors to critically examine the forces behind historical change, international engagement, and institutional development, to foster in them an understanding of the diverse historical actors,  events, belief systems, material realities, different perspectives and cultural values that have shaped the world we live in. Our curriculum is designed to give students with a wide diversity of future career and vocational goals – the abilities and outlook of fully educated persons who can understand and navigate the complexities of modern social and economic life. To know the historical processes and events that have produced it and continue to inform its future course, always with a view toward the potential moral and human implications of the pursuit of knowledge and its many possible applications.

Learning Objectives

  1. Content knowledge of History and Political Science
    • contextual knowledge of historical and political conditions and major events
    • knowledge of local/regional/global change
    • Knowledge of individuals, groups, and societies
    • Ability to synthesize primary and secondary source material
  2. Analytic reading and use of evidence
    • Ability to interpret and integrate primary and secondary source material
    • Appropriate selection of source material
    • Sufficient evidence from appropriate documents
    • Ability to formulate questions or problems from critical consultation of related sources
  3. Thesis-driven argumentation/causation
    • Thesis statement – position clearly stated
    • Persuasive logical argument sustained
    • Overall cohesion and flow of argument
    • Introduction clearly stated
    • Conclusion – significance of the argument
  4. Rhetorical skills, citation, and form
    • Paragraph formation, sentence fluency academic language
    • Spelling, punctuation, usage, grammar
    • Pagination, margins, fonts, spacing
    • Proper citation method, length
    • Works Cited page properly formatted
  5. Social studies – integrated knowledge
    • Maps and human interaction with environment
    • Migration and global interconnections
    • National and global economy
    • Economic decisions, exchange, markets
    • Civic/Political institutions, Processes, Rules, Laws
    • Democratic Principles, Deliberation, Participation
  6. Advanced Interpretation of evidence
    • Inference
    • Strategic use of evidence
    • Ability to separate the significant from the tangential
  7. Research skills
    • Ability to independently locate sources
    • Ability to discern valid, scholarly sources
    • Ability to evaluate and distinguish between different genres of sources
  8. Evaluation of scholarly arguments
    • Ability to evaluate competing schools of thought
    • Ability to identify revisionist arguments
    • Ability to identify contributions to existing arguments