What is Political Science about?

Monday, 03 October 2022

The whole world of politics is very complex and hard to understand, but professionals are very good at doing their jobs. To be that good, they have to get a degree that ratifies their knowledge. In this article, we will explain what political science is about and the requirements needed to get a Master’s degree.

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There are many different degrees you can choose from. But you have to choose the one that is more related to your likes and dislikes. It takes a lot of time to figure out what your interests are and what you are good for. In fact, at the moment of picking a career, you might be interested in more than one. If one of the several options you have in mind is political science, but you are not sure what political science is about, we are here to help you. Find out more about this degree and choose whether you like it or not. 

Definition of Political Science

Political science can be defined as the scientific study of politics from different perspectives. It deals with the theory and practice of governmental activities. According to the Legal Encyclopedia, political science focuses on the “knowledge of every form of organisation and government that human society has had and has nowadays,  the unfolding of institutions and examination of thought, and the doctrines, facts and events of power between the members of a community and the community itself.”

 Its main focus is to analyse political activities, thoughts, behaviour, and governance through different methods. Political science is a social science and thus, its main aim is human behaviour, whether it is individual or collective.

Politics is not only about government. It studies many other areas of study such as economics, sociology, philosophy, and more. This field is in charge of taking all of these areas of study and analysing how they work together with the government. The main focus of political science is studying and analysing the political systems of governance and their effects, studying the social human behaviour and how people react to the system of government, and observing them so that they can suitably perform their actions.

In the essay Dividing the Domain of Political Science: On the Fetishism of Subfields, the author explains that political science is divided into “four specific subfields: political theory, American politics, comparative politics, and international relations." We will explain three of them. Comparative politics has different aims: comparing different modern political systems to judge what is better, explaining how political institutions develop, and finding theories that will explain human political behaviour. Political theory focuses on how political communities and institutions are founded. And, international relations focuses on how international governments interact with themselves. 

Degree in Political Science and Requirements

If this information has made up your mind and you became more interested in getting a degree in political science, you can do it at Stellenbosch University. This university offers a full-time programme of 2 years which includes different modules and a thesis. This 2-year programme aims at getting a deep understanding of political events and processes based on methodological analysis and research. Besides, you will become a professional researcher and will be able to make contributions to Political Science.

The requirements to graduate with a Master’s degree in Political Science are that the student has an Honours degree in Political Science or an equivalent approved by the Senate and an average mark of 65% of the course.  

All in all, the definition of political science is wide, but, in short, it can be defined as the scientific study of politics. Political science is a social science, so it focuses on how humans behave related to politics. This area of study aims at analysing the different political systems on how they affect people. 

If you have decided you want to get a degree in political science, you can get more information about this degree by filling in the form on this site. 

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