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Political Science Advising

Our academic advising program is designed to assist political science majors in selecting courses and activities that will best empower them to achieve their long-term goals. Advisors provide information about majors, careers and university policies. They prompt students with questions and suggest resources to help them explore their interests.

All political science majors are assigned to one of three advisors, who will help their advisees plan courses as well as support and assist them in succeeding academically. Sophomores, juniors and seniors will also receive support and advice from an assigned faculty mentor.

FAQs: Political Science

You have an assigned academic advisor in each declared academic major(s) and/or minor(s). Your assigned Political Science (PS) advisor and faculty mentor will be listed in the Student Center in MyPack under “Advisor” (on the right side of the page) and on your degree audit.

Your PS academic advisor is available to:

  • Explain university policies and procedures
  • Provide an overview of major curriculum and minor options
  • Guide you in developing academic goals
  • Help you work through academic issues
  • Release your term advising hold
  • Your faculty mentor is available to discuss any substantive questions you may have concerning political science, including but not limited to:
  • Learning more about the discipline
  • Researching opportunities
  • Deciding whether and when to pursue internship and study abroad opportunities
  • Post-graduate plans

We encourage you to call or email your assigned advisor to determine their availability.

In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), students must initiate and assign Parent/Guardian Access through MyPack. This access gives the parent/guardian the ability to view student information online, which includes transcript and billing information.

Any schedule adjustments should be discussed with your advisor but if it is before the official last day to drop a course, you may do so in MyPack, provided that you are not dropping below full-time status. If dropping your classes will put you below full-time status or if it is after the official last day to drop, contact your advisor. Check the academic calendar on the Student Services Center website for important dates and regulations.

Census Date/Official Enrollment Date is the last day for undergraduate students to:

  • Qualify for tuition refunds due to dropping a course or changing a course from credit to audit
  • Drop below 12 hours or drop a course without a W grade*
  • Add a course with the permission of the instructor.

*Please be advised that there are different deadlines for 8-week session courses. Please consult the academic calendar.

The Drop/Revision Deadline is the final day for student-initiated schedule revisions in MyPack (closes at 11:59 p.m.). All schedule revisions made after this date will require a Schedule Revision form for processing. It is also the last day to change to credit-only.

No, you do not have to declare a concentration. However, you have the following options for a B.A. in Political Science:

  • American Politics
  • International Politics
  • Law and Justice
  • Public Policy

Students also have the option of earning a B.S. in Political Science.

If you are interested in declaring and/or changing a concentration or changing from a B.A. to a B.S. (or vice versa), talk with your advisor.

Once you are admitted to the university, your transcripts will be evaluated for credit that is transferable to NC State. The College of Humanities and Social Sciences will determine the exact amount of credit that will apply towards your degree. Only courses in which you earned a ‘C-‘ or better will be considered for transfer.

If you are a current PS major and want to take courses at another institution, we encourage you to talk with your advisor. Together, you will determine transferable courses via the NC State Transfer Course List. Upon successful completion of the course(s), you must send the official transcript to Undergraduate Admissions to have the credit applied to your degree. Students must also be sure to meet university residency requirements.

Each year incoming freshmen receive credit for such courses. For AP courses, an exam score of 3 or better is generally required. For IB, a score of 5 on the higher level exam is generally required. See the Undergraduate Admissions website for more AP and IB information. For dual enrollment, a grade of ‘C-‘ or better must be achieved in each class in order to receive credit and an official transcript must be sent from the college/university attended to Undergraduate Admissions.

If you are considering auditing a course, you should meet with your academic advisor. For more information visit the Policies, Regulations & Rules webpage.

In order to have your degree audit amended, please contact your advisor for assistance.

To register for classes, you must first have your term advisement hold removed by your advisor from your account. The matter in which a hold is removed is determined by your advisor so stay tuned to your NCSU email for specific instructions. You will typically meet with your advisor for pre-registration advising in the fall semesters following Fall Break and in the spring semester following Spring Holiday.

An Enrollment Wizard tutorial can be found here. Contact your advisor with any specific questions.

To maximize your appointment time with your advisor, we encourage the following:

  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor before your enrollment appointment (assigned date and time that you can register independently – found in MyPack).
  • Review and/or print your degree audit in MyPack. For more information on using the degree audit, refer to this tutorial.
  • Use Enrollment Wizard or Class Search to determine course availability for the upcoming semester. Typically, the course schedule becomes available in the months of October for fall semesters and March for spring semesters.
  • Develop a tentative list of courses (and alternates), create a tentative schedule (preferably in your shopping cart in Enrollment Wizard), and/or plan courses in the degree planner.
  • Come prepared with a list of questions or concerns for your advisor.
  • Adhere to the specific instructions/requests related to pre-registration advising as outlined by your advisor.
  • Plan ahead!

Proficiency through FL 201 (Intermediate level) is required for the B.A. degrees in Political Science. The NC State Placement Test determines your beginning foreign language level. Placement tests are offered M – F from 8 am – 5 pm in the Laundry lab (Old Laundry building, near Poe Hall, at the corner of Current and Stinson). The test takes approximately 30 minutes and you will receive your placement immediately. If you place into the beginning level (FL 101), you must complete the entire sequence of courses (FL 101, FL 102, FL 201) to fulfill the foreign language requirement. Accelerated language courses are available to those who place into that level.

If English is your second language, you may have your Native Fluency certified by contacting Dr. Dudley Marchi ( or Susan Navey-Davis ( in the Foreign Language department. If you earn Native Fluency you will have met your foreign language requirement but you will not receive credit hours for FL 201. You must plan for 3 additional Free Elective credits (this applies to students who also place above the FL 201 level and choose not to take another foreign language course).

FL 101 will not count towards the 122-hr graduation requirement, if you studied the same language in high school. If you take a foreign language other than the one you studied in high school, FL 101 and 102 may be applied towards free electives.

A free elective is any course beyond what is required to fulfill degree and graduation requirements (i.e., 122 credits). You should think about courses that you are interested in and use this opportunity to take those classes. If you are struggling to find classes outside of Political Science, we encourage you to consider adding a minor and/or speak with your advisor.

Political Science students may take up to 12 credit hours of credit-only courses to fulfill free elective credits only (exclusive of Health and Exercise Studies (HES*) activity courses and other courses authorized to be graded on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis). Students should check with their advisor if the course will count toward the major, minor, or GEP.

A “C- Wall” class is a course that requires a C- or better in order to take the next level of the course and/or have this course meet graduation requirements for a specific curriculum. Political Science majors must earn a C- or better in all Political Science courses fulfilling a major requirement.

Remember, your cumulative GPA and major GPA must be at least a 2.00 in order to qualify to graduate (in Good Standing).

Students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.0 or be on Academic Warning or Academic Probation status in order to continue enrollment. Students are considered to be in Good Standing if they are eligible to continue enrollment. If you are placed on Academic Warning or Suspension and/or have general questions about academic standing, contact your advisor. Please refer to the Continuation of Undergraduate Enrollment (Suspension Regulation) for more information about academic standing.

Yes. Undergraduate students may select up to two NC State courses with posted grades of C- or below to be excluded from the calculation of their cumulative grade point average (GPA). If you are considering grade exclusion consult with your advisor. Additional information on the policy can be found here.

Students must apply for graduation online through MyPack. The graduation application should be submitted as soon as the student has finalized their final semester or summer schedule. Applications will first be reviewed by the department. Applicants will only be contacted if there are any discrepancies. If a student is pre-approved by the department their application will then be reviewed by the Dean’s Office for pre-clearance. Students will be officially cleared once their semester grades have posted. Please be advised that graduation applications will be denied if there are any Incompletes present on the degree audit and/or if any outstanding requirements remain. Please submit any relevant comments on the application that may rectify any foreseeable inconsistencies.

To graduate with honors you must have completed at least two semesters, at least 30 credits at NC State, and meet these GPA standards:

Cum Laude: 3.25 – 3.449

Magna Cum Laude: 3.500 – 3.749

Suma Cum Laude: 3.750 and above

If you are interested in graduating with departmental or university honors, contact your advisor.

Internships are highly encouraged and credit may be earned through PS 391. Students can earn up to 6 credit hours for internships but may only apply 3 credits to the PS major (the rest will go to Free Electives). Contact Shannon Carey or your advisor for additional information.

The Progress Toward Degree policy encourages students to be in a degree granting major before entering their fifth term (fall or spring) and maintain continuous enrollment in a minimum of 15 hours toward a degree every fall and spring term to promote a timely graduation.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is evaluated at the end of each academic year (May) and is measured by meeting the following three standards:

  • Pace of Completion: Students must pass at least 2/3 of all hours attempted each academic year (summer term – spring term).
  • Maximum Timeframe: Students must graduate before attempting more than 150% of the hours required for their degree program (i.e., 180 hours for a 120 hour degree program).
  • Degree Status: Students must have an academic standing that allows for continued enrollment.

Students who fail to make Satisfactory Academic Progress and/or Progress Toward Degree may be placed on Progress Deficiency by their college.

Please refer to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Regulation for more information and contact your advisor with any questions or concerns about Progress Toward Degree and/or Satisfactory Academic Progress.

Leadership in the Public Sector Advising

Have questions about the leadership in the public sector degree completion or certificate programs? Contact program advisor LaShica Waters at or visit the LPS frequently asked programs page.

Headshot of LaShica Waters