Political Science (BA)

Politics is the study of how regions and nations govern themselves. Learn tools and strategies to analyze current events and debates and the practical skills to get involved. Gain invaluable skills, including issue and policy analysis, legal evaluation and argument, public opinion, electoral analysis, advocacy and political communication. Through specializations, options and minors, you can focus your studies on many different topics that interest you.

Apply Your Learning

Make the most out of your university career by taking advantage of all that Laurier has to offer you. Volunteer work, campus clubs, leadership programs, studying abroad, work experience – there are so many ways you can extend your classroom experience into the real world.

Here are just a few examples of the experiences you’ll have access to in the Political Science program:

  • Take advantage of Arts co-op opportunities.
  • Be an instructional assistant in your upper years and help inspire younger Political Science students.
  • Take a semester abroad to gain a fresh perspective on the field and enjoy learning in another culture and environment.
  • Participate in classes and workshops with policy practitioners from the non-governmental sector and from all levels of government.
  • Engage in (and observe) live debates and mock trials in both the classroom and the courtroom.
  • Complete a major research project under the supervision of award-winning faculty.

Check out the Political Science Experience Guide.

 

2020 graduates who secured employment or went on to postgraduate studies

 

Laurier ranks in the top 6 percent of universities worldwide*

 

students who gained hands-on learning experiences at Laurier in 2019/20

*Center for World University Rankings (CWUR)

Admissions

Format: full time or part time      Duration: four years     Start: September (fall term)     OUAC code: UH
Ontario High School Admission Requirements
  • Minimum admission range: low 70s.
  • Competitive admission range based on last year’s admitted students: low 80s.
  • English at 60%.
Canadian Admission Requirements (Outside of Ontario)

Students applying to this program from a Canadian province outside of Ontario are encouraged to review our course equivalents by province chart. This chart will show you what courses from your province are equivalent to the admission requirements listed under Ontario High School Admission Requirements.

International Admission Requirements

Students applying to this program from an international curriculum are encouraged to review our curriculum-specific requirements; you must also meet all program-specific requirements listed under the Ontario High School Admission Requirements section.

English-Proficiency Requirement

Laurier's language of instruction is English, and so we may require you to provide evidence of your English proficiency to help make sure you experience success in your academic courses.

Your three most recent years of full-time education must be in English without taking any ESL (English as a Second Language) courses. If you do not meet this requirement, you must provide evidence of your English proficiency.

We reserve the right to request an English-language test from any applicant.

If you do not meet Laurier's English proficiency requirement but are academically qualified for your program, you may be eligible for a conditional offer of admission.

Laurier English and Academic Foundation (LEAF) Program

The Laurier English and Academic Foundation (LEAF) program is an academic English program for Laurier applicants who have to prove English proficiency. If you have received an offer to Laurier with a condition to meet our English- proficiency requirement, you can meet that condition by successfully completing the LEAF program.

College Pathways

Graduates from a two-year general Arts and Science diploma program can apply to Political Science on Laurier’s Waterloo campus. To be considered for admission graduates must have an overall average of 75% in their program, as well as have achieved a minimum of 60% in a 4U English course or equivalent.

Learn more about our college transfer agreement.

Other Admission Requirements

Visit our admission requirements section to find specific requirements for university students, indigenous applicants, mature learners, homeschooled applicants, senior citizens, refugees, and more. 

Program Details

Political Science at Laurier

A Political Science degree at Laurier gives you the training and tools you need in areas such as political communication, policy and legal analysis, public opinion design and implementation, as well as election analysis. In the process, you'll gain the experience and skills to understand the political events and debates around you, preparing you for a life of engaged citizenship.

Interested in Graduate Studies?

You can apply for our Bachelor of Arts (BA) + master's program to receive two conditional offers of admission: one to undergraduate studies, where you'll earn a BA in Political Science, and one to graduate studies, where you'll earn a Master of Applied Politics (MAP).

Interested in Law?

You can combine this program with a law degree (LLB) from the University of Sussex, United Kingdom. Our Bachelor of Laws (University of Sussex, UK) and Bachelor of Arts (Laurier) program can be completed in six years.

You'll complete your first two years in the Political Science program at our Waterloo campus. Students who meet the GPA and progression requirements may then apply to the UK law program and are guaranteed an offer of admission to the University of Sussex law school; there is no requirement to write the LSAT entrance exam.

After three years of studying abroad in the UK and completing an LLB, you'll return for one final year at Laurier to complete your Laurier BA.

Program Options and Courses

Specializations

Our program allows you to concentrate your studies in topics ranging from international governance and global trade, Canadian politics, comparative politics (e.g., the U.S. and Europe), public policy, area studies (Africa, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East), to refugees and migration and political research methodology.

Options and Minors

These are a few of the many popular academic opportunities which allow you to dive deeper into your major area of study or broaden your knowledge:

  • Management Option
  • Legal Studies Option
  • International Public Policy Option
  • Research Specialization
  • North American Studies Minor
  • Global Studies Minor
  • History Minor

Check out other options to enhance your degree.

First-Year Courses

  • Politics Within Borders
  • Politics Beyond Borders
  • 4.0 elective credits in courses that interest you

Sample First-Year Electives

  • Introduction to Sociology I: Critical Foundations
  • The Greatest Party in the World
  • Film and Genre

Sample Upper-Year Courses

  • Theories of Justice
  • International Law
  • Legal Advocacy Skills

Co-op

Co-op is a way to integrate what you are learning in the classroom with practical experience in your field of study. Build your resume, earn money, develop your network, and graduate with work experience.

You can apply for admission to co-op in your first year and may be eligible for an admission interview early in your second year. As a student in this program, you will be eligible to complete paid work terms lasting 12 to 16 weeks.

Interested? Learn more about co-op.

Tuition and Scholarships

Getting a university education is an investment in your future.

At Laurier, we take financial health seriously by providing a wide variety of funding opportunities for you throughout your degree, such as scholarships and bursaries, and by equipping you with the skills to manage your finances effectively in the years to come.

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"I really enjoyed in-class conversations about current issues. This program allows you to take control of your own learning and learn about why politics have worked the way they have in the past and why it is going this way now."

Jordan Baechler, Political Science graduate

"In my third year of studies, I was able to work for the Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C. as a policy intern. The work experience was ultimately elevated by my knowledge of politics taught at Wilfrid Laurier University."

Nicholas MacDonald, Political Science graduate

Your Career Awaits

It’s not only about the journey; it’s about the destination. Let us help you get to where you’re going.

Here are just some examples of our graduates' destinations. What’s yours?

Sample Career Options

Note: Additional training and education may be required.

  • advocacy-government relations
  • immigration officer
  • intelligence agent
  • international aid worker
  • journalist/reporter
  • lawyer/paralegal
  • policy advisor/researcher
  • political strategist
  • public opinion analyst

Explore more careers.

Support After Graduation

Alumni for life means that you have access to Career and Employment Support offered at Laurier for your entire career.

Waterloo Campus

The Waterloo campus is tucked into about one city block, so you’re steps away from your classes, food and your new favourite study spot.

There are many ways to tour our Waterloo campus, whether that's on a guided tour with one of our Laurier student ambassadors, on your own using virtual reality, or even on-demand through one of our pre-recorded tours. See our campus spaces and start to picture yourself at Laurier.

"I have taken classes on Canadian foreign policy, the politics of the Middle East, and international law. I have also completed the Research Specialization, which gave me the opportunity to design and complete a major research project. I would highly recommend this program because of the courses offered, professors who are committed to student learning, and experiential learning opportunities!"

Hillary Kendrick, Political Science graduate

Interested in More Info?

Email chooselaurier@wlu.ca, call 519.884.0710 x3385 or see all contact information.