Majors, minors + certificates

Minor in International Relations (INTLRELMIN)Department of Political Science

Students on Summer 2019, Fall 2019, or Spring 2020 requirements.


In today's world, old alliances are at risk while ones between former foes are taking shape. These changes require an understanding of how nations, people, and other players in the world system interact. The Minor in International Relations focuses on international governmental relations and international efforts to regulate conflict and promote cooperation. The minor includes study of the sources of international political authority, the interaction of markets and politics, the sources of conflict and violence, and international human rights norms.

Minor requirements

The minor requires at least 18 credit hours, including the requirements listed below.

  1. Quantitative Political Analysis. One (1) course from the .
    • Introduction to methods and statistics used in political inquiry, including measures of central tendency and dispersion, probability, sampling, statistical inference and hypothesis testing, measures of association, analysis of variance, and regression. Credit given for only one of ANTH-A 306, CJUS-K 300, ECON-E 370 or ECON-S 370, MATH-K 300 or MATH-K 310, POLS-Y 395, PSY-K 300 or PSY-K 310, SOC-S 371, SPEA-K 300, or STAT-K 310, STAT-S 300, or STAT-S 301. (3 credit hours.)
  2. Electives. Three (3) courses from the International and Comparative Politics area, one (1) course from the Methods and Policy area, and one (1) additional course from either area.
      • Explores the politics of crisis and reform from a comparative and international political economy perspective. In addition to learning general theories of crisis and reform, students will study in-depth case studies of important crisis episodes in the era of industrial capitalism, and seek to understand both the causes and consequences of crisis events. (3 credit hours.)
      • Examines the global challenges faced by democracy, including the difficulties encountered in the effort to build them and the hallowing of mature democracies through challenges posed by the forces of populism, nationalism, and authoritarianism. (3 credit hours.)
      • Examines countries around the world to investigate fundamental questions about politics. Topics include democratic development, promotion of economic prosperity, maintenance of security, and management of ethnic and religious conflict. Critical thinking skills encouraged. Cases for comparison include advanced industrialized democracies, communist and former communist countries, and developing countries. Credit given for only one of POLS-Y 107 and POLS-Y 217. (3 credit hours.)
      • Causes of war, nature and attributes of the state, imperialism, international law, national sovereignty, arbitration, adjudication, international organization, major international issues. Credit given for only one of POLS-Y 109 or POLS-Y 219. (3 credit hours.)
      • Political process and government structure in the Russian state. Political institutions inherited from tsarist empire and the Soviet state (1917–1991), history of subsequent political reform. Political problems of ethnic conflict, creating democratic institutions, and of transition from socialism to market economy. (3 credit hours.)
      • Explores contemporary politics and policy issues in the People’s Republic of China. Influence of revolutionary practice and ideology; analysis of contemporary economic, political and social organizations; examination of policy issues including social reforms, economic growth, and democratization and globalization. (3 credit hours.)
      • Political development of Japan, with emphasis on changing attitudes toward modernization; cultural and sociological factors affecting the functioning of contemporary political institutions; and the implication of Japanese experience in modernization of other developing societies. (3 credit hours.)
      • Development, structure, and functioning of political systems, primarily in France, Italy, and Germany. Political dynamics of European integration. (3 credit hours.)
      • Covers the governmental organization, and the political behavior and traditions, of countries in the South East Asian region. Addresses regional issues of political and economic development, and international issues regarding the relationship of the region to the rest of the world. (3 credit hours.)
      • Comparative analysis of political change in major Latin American countries, emphasizing alternative explanations of national and international developments; examination of impact of political parties, the military, labor and peasant movements, Catholic Church, multinational corporations, regional organizations, and United States on politics; public policy processes in democratic and authoritarian regimes. (3 credit hours.)
      • Explores politics in Sub-Saharan Africa. Examines relevance of "traditional" political systems; impact on colonialism; building new nations and states; authoritarian regimes; process of democratization; management of ethnic, regional, religious and class conflict; political challenges of economic development; role of international actors, including the United States, United Nations, World Bank, and non-governmental organizations; and globalization. (3 credit hours.)
      • Political culture and change in selected Middle Eastern and North African countries. Topics include political elites, traditional cultures, modern political ideology, institutions of political control, conflict management, and social reform policies. (3 credit hours.)
      • Compares political change in the East European states, and emphasizes the legacies of authoritarianism and communism and the post-communist transition to democracy. Topics include the building of political institutions, the inclusion of citizens into the polity, the reform of the economy, the management of ethnic and social conflicts, and integration into the European Union. (3 credit hours.)
      • Comparative study of Fascism, Nazism, and communism as institutional arrangements for governing modern societies. The political process in the one-party "movement regime." (3 credit hours.)
      • A survey of human rights: their content and recognition, protection in national and international laws, and their violation by state and nonstate actors. The effectiveness of political and judicial institutions in curbing these violations is also considered, as is the global diffusion of norms in support of essential human rights. May be repeated once for a total of 6 credit hours. (3 credit hours.)
      • Examines the key debates and issues regarding how "poor" countries develop economically and socially. Analyzes the interactions between politics and economics in the development process at the global, national, and local levels. Cases for comparison will include countries from Africa, Latin America, Asia, and the Middle East. (3 credit hours.)
      • Analysis of major modern revolutions. Focus on the social, economic, and political causes of revolutions; the rise of revolutionary movements; and the strategies for gaining and consolidating power. (3 credit hours.)
      • Focuses on politics in the developing world (Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East). Comparison of political history; experiences of colonialism and post-colonial authoritarian systems; political economy; development and globalization; democratization and management of protest and conflict; and interactions with international actors and transnational social movements. (3 credit hours.)
      • Survey of the German political system including governmental institutions, the origins and role of political parties, opportunities for citizens to participate in politics, and current political culture. Special attention is paid to the question of how well Germany's democracy functions after experiencing several regime changes. (3 credit hours.)
      • Comparative study of major twentieth-century genocides. Examines the political conditions, ideologies, and movements leading up to mass murder, and the ethnic and global context of genocide. Focuses on the question of responsibility and accountability from the viewpoints of perpetrators, victims, and bystanders in the national and international communities. (3 credit hours.)
      • Study of the politics of the European Union (EU). Assesses past and present dynamics of economic and political integration in Europe, the structure and work of European Union institutions, and EU public policies such as the Single Market, the common currency, common foreign and security policy, and trade. (3 credit hours.)
      • May be taken alone or in conjunction with related political science courses. A course tied to simulations of international organizations such as the European Union, the United Nations, or the Organization of American States. May be repeated for a maximum of 3 credit hours. (1–3 credit hours.)
      • Examination of the socioeconomic conditions and political ideologies leading up to the Holocaust, and the political, administrative, and social context for the genocide from the vantage of perpetrators, victims, and bystanders. Focus on the individual, national, and international responses to and responsibilities for the Holocaust. Consideration of the Holocaust's legacies for the postwar world. (3 credit hours.)
      • Exploration of how different social, economic, and political practices have influenced the construction of gender and sexuality outside of the United States. Examines the interplay between gender relations and characteristics of public and private institutions. May be repeated with a different topic for a maximum of 6 credit hours. (3 credit hours.)
      • Introduction to the legacy of British colonialism in South Asia, to the development and decay of political institutions, to questions of economic growth, to social movements, and to regional conflicts. (3 credit hours.)
      • Analysis of institutions and processes involved in the formation and implementation of American foreign policy. Emphasis is on post-World War II policies. (3 credit hours.)
      • Theories used in the study of international politics: systems theory, field theory, conflict theory, alliance and coalition theories, balance-of-power theories, and an introduction to game and bargaining theory. (3 credit hours.)
      • The region studied will vary with the instructor and the year. Current information may be obtained from the Department of Political Science. May be repeated once for credit, with permission of the departmental undergraduate advisor. (3 credit hours.)
      • Compares factors that influence foreign policy and the foreign policy process. Focuses on domestic or internal sources of foreign policy behavior, including impact of individual leaders, group decision-making processes, bureaucratic politics, ideology and political culture, historical experience, and type of political system. Classroom simulations are central to the course. (3 credit hours.)
      • International organizations as lateral extensions of the Western state system, exercising influence in accordance with a variety of strategies. Strategies employed by the United Nations in the political and security area. (3 credit hours.)
      • Critique of foreign policy issues: communism, containment, imperialism, and others. Research papers and classroom presentation for critical discussion. (3 credit hours.)
      • Sources and consequences of international law; relationship to international organizations and world order; issues of national sovereignty, human rights, conflict resolution, international property rights, world trade, environmental change, and other topics. (3 credit hours.)
      • R: POLS-Y 332. Behavior of Russia and U.S.S.R. in world affairs from 1945 to the present. Emphasis on impact of geographic assets and vulnerabilities, historical experience, domestic politics, and the changing international environment. (3 credit hours.)
      • R: POLS-Y 109 or equivalent. Introduction to the systematic study of international politics, focusing on the major approaches of decision making (microanalysis) and the international system (macroanalysis) and on a number of specific methodologies, such as game theory, content analysis, simulation, and quantitative/ statistical techniques. (3 credit hours.)
      • Examines assumptions about the causes, functions, results, and structures of international (intergovernmental) organizations. Theory is combined with case study of the United Nations particularly. The European Community and regional organization examples provide a basis for understanding an evolving phenomenon. (3 credit hours.)
      • The nature of war. Theories and evidence on the causes of war. Discussion of the ways in which war has been conceived and perceived across time and of methods employed to study the phenomenon of war. (3 credit hours.)
      • Theories about the interaction between the international economic and political systems are the subject of this course. Works from each of the main traditions—liberal, Marxist, and statist—will be assigned. Specific topics covered will include (among others): the politics of trade, aid, foreign investment, and international monetary affairs; theories of dependency and imperialism; the politics of international competition in specific industries; the stability/ instability of international economic regimes. (3 credit hours.)
      • Origins and evolution of the UN; principal UN bodies, how they operate and what they do; who finances the UN; controversies and voting patterns in the UN; attitudes toward the UN and debates within member countries regarding its role; impact of UN activities and programs (e.g., conflict resolution and mediation, peacekeeping and peace enforcement; nation building, development aid, weapons proliferation, human rights, health, environment). Credit given for only one of NELC-N 398 or POLS-Y 399. (3 credit hours.)
      • Introduces the design and development of political, economic, and social institutions that support democratic governance or its alternatives. Uses theory to understand connections among individual choice, collective action, institutions, and constitutional order. Institutional analysis as a mode of reasoning about contemporary policy problems, law, and public affairs. (3 credit hours.)
      • Introduces the approaches and techniques used to study politics. Includes an introduction to social science language, concepts, and critical research skills. Overview of political science research approaches, including case study, surveys, and model-building. Emphasizes skills such as interpreting the presentation of data in charts, graphs, and tables, and elementary analysis of qualitative and quantitative data. (3 credit hours.)
      • Compares public policies and policy making among both advanced industrial democracies and the developing world. Surveys policy areas such as immigration, health care, education, and workers' rights. (3 credit hours.)
      • R: POLS-Y 109 or equivalent. Introduction to the systematic study of international politics, focusing on the major approaches of decision making (microanalysis) and the international system (macroanalysis) and on a number of specific methodologies, such as game theory, content analysis, simulation, and quantitative/ statistical techniques. (3 credit hours.)
      • P: One course in political science at the 200 level or above. R: ECON-E 201. Introduces collective choice and game theory for understanding how societies make political decisions. Examines how institutions, or the political context in which decisions are made, affect group choices. Theories of individual and group decision making, collective choice, and social dilemmas. Applications to congressional politics, intergovernmental relations, and parliamentary democracies. (3 credit hours.)
  3. GPA, Minimum Grade, and Other Requirements. Each of the following:
    1. At least 9 credit hours in the minor must be completed in courses taken through the Indiana University Bloomington campus or an IU-administered or IU co-sponsored Overseas Study program.
    2. At least 9 credit hours in the minor must be completed at the 300–499 level.
    3. Except for the GPA requirement, a grade of C- or higher is required for a course to count toward a requirement in the minor.
    4. A GPA of at least 2.000 for all courses taken in the minor—including those where a grade lower than C- is earned—is required.
    5. Exceptions to minor requirements may be made with the approval of the department's Director of Undergraduate Studies, subject to final approval by the College of Arts and Sciences.


  • * Students pursuing a major in Political Science may also complete either the World Political Systems Minor or the International Relations Minor offered by the Department of Political Science as long as they follow the College policy on Counting a Course toward Multiple Degree Objectives.
  • * Non-majors may complete up to two minors offered by Political Science as long as they follow the College policy on Counting a Course toward Multiple Degree Objectives.