AB Political Science Program


Program Title Bachelor of Arts major in Political Science (AB-POM)
Awarding Institution De La Salle University
Program Accreditation Philippine Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU), Level III Status

Program Overview


The AB Political Science program aims to provide students with the essential theoretical and methodological background for the study of politics. It is designed for students to acquire proficiency in political science theory and practice, critically examine real-world problems, find informed and innovative solutions to these problems, and become well-rounded professionals in their chosen careers.

In line with these objectives, the program combines coursework with field training. It offers courses in the major fields of the discipline: political theory and methodology, comparative politics and government (including Philippine politics and government), public policy and governance, and international relations. It also offers elective and seminar courses dealing with special topics and issues such as e-governance, political marketing, corruption, law and society, and environmental governance. In their final year, students take a series of culminating courses in which they plan and implement either academic or action-research projects demonstrating the application of knowledge and skills gained in the program in the examination of real-world political problems and their potential solutions.


Program Goals and Objectives


In line with the vision-mission of the university and the ELGAs identified by the department, the AB Political Science program is designed to equip students with the fundamental knowledge, skills, and values that are critical in various careers (whether in the public or private sector) where interactions with “the public” and involvement in “the political” are common. This includes careers in government agencies, non-government organizations, private think tanks and research-based institutions, development-oriented organizations, journalism, and even most private profit-oriented organizations. The program likewise prepares students for further studies in political science, law, and other related fields.


Political Science Major Courses


The sixty (60) units of political science major courses consist of forty-two (42) units of required courses, six (6) units of elective courses, three (3) units of practicum/on-the-job training, and nine (9) units of research-related courses. Required courses provide students exposure to the discipline’s four fields: political theory and methodology, comparative politics and government (including Philippine politics and government), public policy and governance, and international relations.

The distribution of courses and units for the major program is as follows:



Major Program Courses No. of Units Total Units
1. Introduction
Fundamentals of Political Science

3
3
2. Political Theory and Methodology
Political Theory I (POLTHE1)
Political Theory II (POLTHE2)
Qualitative Research Methods (POLQUAL)
Quantitative Research Methods (POLQUAN)
Political Research (POLLRES)

3
3
3
3
3
15
3. Comparative Politics
Introduction to Comparative Politics and Government (COMPOLG)
Philippine Politics and Government (POLGOVT)
Comparative Politics & Government of Southeast Asia (POLLSEA)
Comparative Politics & Government of Democracies (POLIDEM)
Introduction to Political Economy (POLIECO)

3
3
3
3
3
15
4. Public Policy and Governance
Introduction to Public Administration (PUBLIAD)
Policy Analysis and Design (POLDESI)
Seminar in Governance (GOVESEM)

3
3
3
9
5. International Relations
Introduction to International Relations (INTTREL)
International and Regional Organization (INTLORG)

3
3
6
6. Political Science electives
Political Science Elective 1 (POMELE1)
Political Science Elective 2 (POMELE2)

3
3
6
7. Integration requirements
Political Science Practicum 1 (PRCPOMA)
Political Science Practicum 2 (PRCPOMB)
Political Science Senior Seminar 1 (THSPOM1)
Political Science Senior Seminar 2 (THSPOM2)

1.5
1.5
1.5
1.5
6
Total units for major courses   60

Description of Courses


Political Theory and Methodology


Fundamentals of Political Science (FUNPOLS). 3 units
This course provides an introduction to the discipline of political science for students who are beginning the undergraduate major program. It provides an in-depth examination of the basic concepts, theories and approaches in the discipline at two levels. First, it explores how these concepts, theories and approaches have evolved as part of the development of the discipline. Second, it introduces to students how these concepts, theories and approaches have been used and applied in the four major fields in political science.

Political Theory 1 (POLTHE1). 3 units
This course provides a survey of the political thoughts on the establishment, maintenance and transformation of social and political order, including theories of state, democracy, justice, political development, political economy and revolutions.

Political Theory 1 (POLTHE2). 3 units
This course provides a survey of political thoughts focusing on critical, post-modern and contemporary theories on politics, including theories on identity such as feminism and post-feminism, queer theory, theories on culture studies, post-colonialism and indigenous theories, and political ecology.

Quantitative Research Methods (POLQUAN). 3 units
The course provides an introduction to methods of univariate and multivariate data analysis applied to various topics of concern to political scientists. In particular, it covers techniques for summarizing, describing, analyzing, and presenting univariate and multivariate data. The course likewise emphasizes the philosophical underpinnings of the use of quantitative methods, in order to develop a greater appreciation for the functions and limitations, the strengths and weaknesses, and the validity and appropriateness of various quantitative tools for the purpose of political science research.

Qualitative Research Methods (POLQUAL). 3 units
This course introduces students to the various analytical traditions in the study of politics, and then focuses on the application of qualitative research designs and tehniques in the inquiry into and analysis of political phenomena, including their limitations.

Research Methods in Political Science (POLLRES). 3 units.
Examination of methodological issues involved in the study of politics, society and government, as well as the scientific method and the logic of social inquiry. Students are expected to formulate a research proposal. Prerequisites: QUALPOL and QUANPOM.


Comparative Politics and Government


Introduction to Comparative Politics & Government (COMPOLG). 3 units
This course provides a general introduction to the concepts, methods and substance of comparative politics. Comparative politics, in a general sense, is described as the cross-national study of political systems and of the social variables which condition their formation and operation. Its intellectual premise is that our general knowledge of domestic political dynamics may be enhanced by comparing the political systems of different countries (or sub-units of different countries). The course thus encourages students to deepen their understanding of politics by using theories to explain individual cases and using cases to refine our theories of political behavior.

Philippine Politics and Government (POLGOVT). 3 units
This course focuses on a systematic and nuanced examination of the Philippine political experience from a comparative perspective. Through the course, students learn to use analytic frameworks in understanding contemporary issues in Philippine politics, government and society, integrating a critical review of the Philippine Constitution and political law.

Comparative Politics & Government of Southeast Asia (POLLSEA). 3 units
This course aims to deepen the understanding of students of both the Southeast Asian region and some of the core concerns in the study of politics. The first is accomplished through a critical examination of the political systems in the different countries in Southeast Asia. The second is developed through the generation of theoretical insights emerging from a comparative study of these political systems. Aside from the domestic politics, the course also covers a critical analysis of political, economic and social ties among countries in the region.

Comparative Politics & Government of Democracies (POLIDEM). 3 units
In this course, students engage in a deeper examination of the meaning of "democracy," and of its multiple expressions in institutional form and practice. Democratization movements, democratic transitions, and democratic consolidation are critically analyzed from a comparative perspective. The course also encourages a thougthful appraisal of various forms of democracy, including their limits and potentials.

Introduction to Political Economy (POLIECO). 3 units
This course introduces students to various concepts, principles, and theories of political economy, including the dynamic interplay between political and economic forces and processes. Focusing on the arguments that have fuelled the debates around the role of state and market in wealth creation and distribution, the course covers both political and economic theories, as well as pioneering studies on advanced and developing countries' experiences.


Public Policy and Administration


Introduction to Public Administration (PUBLIAD). 3 units
This is an introductory course on the theory and practice of public administration with particular emphasis on the Philippine experience. It introduces students to the processes and techniques of public organizations and management with focus on its operations and dynamics, especially in the context of the changing role of national units of government in Philippine development. Special emphasis is placed on the undertaking and delivery of significant government programs and services in the context of a developing country.

Policy Analysis and Design (POLDESI). 3 units
The course introduces students to public policy concepts, models and theories, and equips students with the tools and techniques for the analysis and design of public policies. It aims to examine the three major aspects of public policy study; government institutions and the policy-making process, the concepts and methods of policy analysis, and the identification and selection of policy alternatives. Specifically, the course studies the interrelationship of government institutions, the interests and motivations of policy actors, and the role of policy analysis in defining public problems and policy alternatives.

Seminar in Governance (GOVESEM). 3 units.
This course focuses on a study of modern patterns of interaction between the State, the Market and Civil Society that have resulted from renewed consensus on the importance of non-state actors in addressing public concerns and their critical participation in the public policy process. New modes of interaction aimed at discovering alternative ways of coping with greater public demands or of creating new possibilities for governing are examined within the context and challenges of contemporary Philippine society.


International Relations


Introduction to International Relations (INTTREL). 3 units
This course provides theoretical tools and analytical frameworks that allow a better understanding of the international system. Students are exposed to the historical development of and contemporary issues in international relations, including the formation and emergence of states, foreign policy-making, international conflict and cooperation, and the roles of international organizations and non-state actors in the international system.

International and Regional Organizations (INTLORG). 3 units
This course provides a critical examination of the origins, developments, and prospects of international and regional organizations as mechanisms for global collective action. Students are exposed to the institutional operation of these organizations, with the goal of extracting theoretical insights about international cooperation and the political dynamics that underpin such cooperation. Special emphasis will be given on the United Nations system and the Association for Southeast Asian nations.


Integration Courses


Political Science Practicum 1(PRCPOMA). 1.5 units
The practicum is designed to give students the opportunity to experience the dynamics of governance and the policy process. Students are required to undergo 200 hours of practicum work in a department-approved public or private organizations during their final two terms in the major program. They then produce a Final Practicum Report based on guidelines issued by the department.

Political Science Practicum 2 (PRCPOMB). 1.5 units
The practicum is designed to give students the opportunity to experience the dynamics of governance and the policy process. Students are required to undergo 200 hours of practicum work in a department-approved public or private organizations during their final two terms in the major program. They then produce a Final Practicum Report based on guidelines issued by the department.

Senior Research in Political Science 1 (THSPOM1). 1.5 units
Students plan and implement either academic or action research projects that demonstrate intensive knowledge of a specific topic, as well as the skills to pose relevant questions and apply the appropriate social science research methods in providing answers to these questions. Over the course of one academic year, students earn research credits through the preparation of a research proposal, the presentation of a data-gathering report, and the submission & presentation of a final Senior Research paper based on departmental policies and guidelines.

Senior Research in Political Science 2 (THSPOM2). 1.5 units
Students plan and implement either academic or action research projects that demonstrate intensive knowledge of a specific topic, as well as the skills to pose relevant questions and apply the appropriate social science research methods in providing answers to these questions. Over the course of one academic year, students earn research credits through the preparation of a research proposal, the presentation of a data-gathering report, and the submission & presentation of a final Senior Research paper based on departmental policies and guidelines.


Political Science Electives (POMELE1 and POMELE2)


Cinema and Politics (CINEPOL). 3 units.
The course explores the close relationship between cinema and politics. Since its invention, cinema has endeavored to capture the various aspects of social reality. One of its primary sources of inspiration has been the political world – from the historical, biographical and metaphorical. This course will sample some of the works that have attempted to merge cinema and politics.

Critical Political Theory and Analysis (CRITPOL). 3 units.
Our understanding of politics has always been in the context of the public and of the state. This course goes beyond this traditional view of politics. There is politics beyond the state, and the private and the personal is also political. Politics is seen not only in the grand structures of governance and the big issues of the day, but also in the way we live our everyday lives. In order to analyze these non-traditional domains of politics, in addition to the mainstream domains of public policy and governance, as well as political economy, one has to be equipped with a new analytical lens, a critical one. This course introduces students to the various conceptual and theoretical foundations, as well as to the framework for critical political analysis.

Culture and Politics (CULPOLI). 3 units.
The course provides a survey of theories, concepts and methodologies in Culture Studies, in the context of the interactions between cultural production in various cultural media (print, music, film, TV, new media, performance and other forms of creative arts) and power relations in formal political processes, as well as in everyday and ordinary political contestations.

E-Governance (EGOVERN). 3 units.
This course examines how new information and communication technologies contribute to social and political change. It is concerned with an assessment of how digital tools are utilized to foster effectiveness, transparency, accountability, participation and predictability in governance.

Environmental Governance (ENVIGOV). 3 units.
The course provides an overview of the various theoretical approaches in the study of sustainable development. It focuses on the principles and practices of environmental governance that facilitate an understanding of the complex and dynamic interface between the environment, development, and governance. It examines the issues resulting from the interactions between ecosystems, economic sectors and society in general, and the responsiveness of existing policies to immediate needs and realities.

Law, Politics and Society (LAWPOLS). 3 units.
LAWPOLS introduces the student of political science to the complexities of law, society, and politics; how these forces interact and interrelate; and their relevance to our current legal, political and sociological milieu. Specifically, the course aims to increase students’ appreciation and comprehension of the fundamental concepts, theories and methods in the study of law, politics and society. Through the course, students will be apprised of their rights, as well as their obligations, so that they can effectively participate in the democratic processes.

Local Politics and Governance (LOCALGO). 3 units.
The course introduces students to the theory and practice of local politics and governance. The first part of the course examines some of the fundamental concepts and theories on local governments, including their nature, structure and functions. Studies on the dynamics of local politics are also given attention. The second part of the course examines important contemporary issues in local politics and governance. The primary focus is on analyzing the extent to which efforts at decentralization and devolution contribute to good governance in the country.

Philippine Political Economy (PIPOLEC). 3 units.
The course studies social relations in the process of production, distribution, exchange and consumption, with specific focus on the Philippine experience.

Philippine Political Issues (PIPOISU). 3 units.
The course deals with contemporary issues in politics, governance and development. Inasmuch as political issues cannot be treated in isolation from socio-economic and cultural dimensions, the course will touch on issues which are of concern to the nation. External factors that have direct or indirect impacts on domestic affairs shall be the subject of the study.

Political Ecology (POLECOL). 3 units.
The environment is a domain within which power is exercised, and wherein political struggles exist. The interplay between the state, the market and civil society defines not only how the environment is governed, but also its quality. Such interplay occurs at various levels, from the local to the global. The environment becomes a terrain for domination and resistance, even as it also enables the development of alternative social and political thought and the emergence of new social movements. The course therefore focuses on understanding the concepts, theories and principles operating in human-environment interactions.

Political Marketing (POLMARK). 3 units.
The end of the current century has been marked by sweeping transformations that have altered traditional structures of power relations. This power shift is enhanced by socio-economic and political changes, such as globalization and recent advancements in information technology. As a result, traditional assumptions about electoral competition are continuously being rewritten. Thus, the challenge of capturing the electorates’ imagination and support necessitates the need to effectively identify and target segments of the political market.

Political Parties and Party Systems (PARTIES). 3 units.
Party politics is an integral part of liberal democratic polities. Political parties provide an avenue for the articulation of the demands of diverse groups and interests in society and the legitimation of the state. This course examines the two major components in the study of political parties. First, parties are examined as discrete entities (e.g. various social bases, histories, goals and appeals, formal organizations and actual power structures). Second, competitive interaction patterns among parties, called party systems, are critically analyzed.

Politics of Culture and Media (POLICUM). 3 units.
The course introduces the students to the political implications of culture and media, including the theoretical, conceptual, and analytical frameworks used in the analysis of the interactions between politics, culture and media.

Politics of Education (POLEDUC). 3 units.
The course surveys the history, theory, policy and practice of education, with particular emphasis on the Philippine experience, and defines in the process the political aspects of formal education in a so-called developing nation. Course discussions revolve around a critical analysis of Philippine educational reforms and initiatives. At the end of the term, students should be able to identify key issues and concerns in various attempts to improve the access to, quality and relevance of formal educational systems in the Philippines.

Politics of Migration, Identity and Space (POLMIGR). 3 units.
The current explosion of migrants in various parts of the globe has led to several tensions on multicultural diversity, state sovereignty and belonging. This course is concerned with the role of theories of space and place in the formation of identities of migrants. The course explores particular issues that illustrate the agential capacity of migrants to transform space as a challenge to the nation-state, and how space could construct identities through new forms of belonging.

Postcolonialism, Politics and Development (POSTDEV). 3 units.
The course is a survey of theories and key concepts in Postcolonial Studies and their relationship to development discourse. It focuses on the significance of meanings and representations in the production of identities as well as the contemporary theoretical debates and their implications in the developing world.

Public International Law for Political Science (INTLAWS). 3 units.
Public international law represents an attempt by sovereign states to articulate key principles that guide and govern inter-state relations. This course introduces students to the fundamental principles of international law, the major international problems it attempts to address, and the important issues that emerge. The course focuses on selected international legal instruments in order to analyze the roles and application of international law in governing inter-state relations.

Seminar in Legislation (LEGISLA). 3 units.
This course provides a detailed and comprehensive but non-technical study of the background and phases in the making of Philippine statutes, starting from the origin and development of an inchoate idea into a legislative proposal through its enactment into a statute and its approval by the President or Chief Executive, including its publication.

Women and Politics (WOMEPOL). 3 units.
The course discusses the major debates concerning gender scholarship in general, and the role women play in politics and development in particular. It intends to trace the beginnings of the feminist discourse, contemporary feminist theories, and their relevance to emerging gender perspectives in the field of politics.