Political Science

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Professor of Political Science teaching classroom of students

Welcome to Political Science

Program Description

The study of politics is the study of how people are governed and how they govern themselves, and this process involves, among other things, the decision to allocate scarce resources to an expanding population with ever-increasing demands.

As a discipline, in the West, political science originated with the Greeks. Following their lead, as part of our major and our discipline of political science, we examine the views of political philosophers, from Plato and Aristotle to the present, on the question of which type of government is most conducive to human fulfillment and why.

Given that we are a department of political science at an American institution of higher learning, we therefore study the American political experience as a unique experiment in “self-government,” but we also go beyond studying how America is governed to look at other political systems with a view to realizing the differences and commonalities between these political systems. We examine these differences in our attempt to understand something about the degree to which one system is better suited to a country than another, and whether or not one can indeed speak of one type of political arrangement as the “best.” Our discipline also seeks to understand the causes, dynamics and possibilities of conflict and conflict resolution in the international arena, by studying the interactions of states, international organizations, non-governmental organizations, and non-state actors on the global scene.

In addition to the two Political Science Associate Degrees available, our department also offers several additional degree emphases, such as the Associate Degrees in Economics, Global Studies, Law and Society and Middle East Studies, in order to allow students to focus more specifically on areas of interest, both nationally and internationally

Economics Program
Santa Barbara City College will provide you with a solid foundation from which you can build analytical skills.  These skills will improve your decision-making processes in many aspects of your life: as a consumer, an employee, an employer, a voter, etc.  Courses in economics will offer the transfer student both theoretical and empirical foundations which will prepare you for further study in many fields, including environmental studies, sociology and history, as well as economics.

Global Studies Program
Enables students to understand how globalization continues to evolve, and to provide an academic background which prepares them for today's many career fields that require a global perspective.  Reflecting the complexity of today's world, global Studies is an interdisciplinary major.  It integrates the following disciplines:

Law and Society Program
Involves the study of law and legal systems as they relate to the larger societies of which they are a part.  While the program is of special interest to students who plan careers in government service or law, many of the majors simply share a desire to understand the role of law in society.

Middle East Studies

Involves the study of the history, politics, cultures, religions and languages of one of the most complex and critical regions of the world. While the program is of special interest to students who plan careers in government service or business, majoring in Middle East Studies meshes with and complements well other areas of study, such as International Relations, Global Studies, Political Science, History and International Business, to name a few.
Political Science courses help prepare students for specific careers. For example, Political Science is often used as a pre-law major or for other related professions, such as careers in government at the federal, state or local levels. Our discipline is also appropriate for a number of careers at the international level, such as international diplomacy or international business, as well as other professions in non-governmental sectors both nationally and
internationally, and our faculty invite your questions about such opportunities.

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students majoring in Political Science should, at the end of their two years of study at the college, be able to achieve the following level of proficiency in this field. This measure is referred to as Student Learning Outcomes, and they are as follows for the Political Science Department:
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of how people are governed and how they govern themselves.
  3. Analyze the role of government institutions in contemporary society.
  4. Demonstrate knowledge of key terms and core concepts of political systems

Faculty & Offices

Economics: Collette E. Barr (IDC-353, ext. 2245)
Global Studies: Andrea B. Haupt (IDC-351, ext. 3735)
Law and Society Studies:  Joseph Martorana (IDC-349, ext. 4277)
Middle East Studies: Manoutchehr M. Eskandari-Qajar (IDC-352, ext. 2435)
Political Science: Manoutchehr M. Eskandari-Qajar (IDC-352, ext. 2435)


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