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Field Work

Field Work and Internships

The department encourages students to pursue their individual interests outside the classroom. Field work offers a wide variety of choices away from campus for those interested in learning through a combination of theoretical reading and first-hand experience.

Internships can offer majors a unique opportunity for first-hand experience in the political world which surrounds us. Most internships for political science majors are arranged through the Office of Field Work with academic credit arranged through a faculty supervisor in the Department of Political Science. Some other internship programs, including the Washington Semester Program, are arranged through the Study Away Office or the Center for Career Development.

Field Work Requirements

Political Science 290a or b for One-Half Unit

The following components are required for one-half unit of field work credit:

  • Approximately 40 hours of work in the field per semester.
  • Reading in theoretical material related to the field work - specific assignments to be determined in consultation with the instructor.
  • A 10- to 12-page paper analyzing the field work in the context of the reading. Papers are due on the last day of classes. Unexcused late papers are subject to penalty and may be unacceptable. Field work is graded "SA" or "UN."
  • Periodic conferences with the instructor - at least one conference every three weeks. Some instructors may require more frequent conferences. Students must consult with their instructors about readings and paper topics within the first three weeks of class. These conferences constitute an important dimension of the field work experience and are necessary to receive academic credit.
  • Individual faculty members may establish additional requirements for field work that they supervise.

Political Science 290a or b for One Unit

In unusual cases, a full unit of field work may be elected. The following components are required for a full unit of field work credit:

  • Approximately 80 hours of work in the field per semester.
  • Reading in theoretical material related to the field work - specific assignments to be determined in consultation with the instructor.
  • A 20-25 page paper analyzing the field work in the context of the reading. Papers are due on the last day of classes. Unexcused late papers are subject to penalty and may be unacceptable. Field work is graded "SA" or"UN."
  • Periodic conferences with the instructor - at least one conference every three weeks. Some instructors may require more frequent conferences. Students must consult with their instructors about readings and paper topics within the first three weeks of class. These conferences constitute an important dimension of the field work experience and are necessary to receive academic credit.
  • Individual faculty members may establish additional requirements for field work that they supervise.

Read more about field work and internships in the Majors' Handbook.