The term ‘politics’ may bring to mind politicians and corruption, however, the study of political science is a noble field, examining the functioning of politics and the government, leading towards a better understanding of how society works.
The study of political science in India can be traced back to the 2nd century BC to renowned philosopher, economist and advisor, Chanakya, who authored the political treatise the ‘Arthashastra’, which means the ‘science of politics.’
Whether you want to enter the field of politics or simply boost your knowledge, critical thinking, and analytical skills for other careers, the BA (H) Political Science course is a popular course for those interested in the social sciences.
Let’s look at the subjects and colleges for B.A Political Science in India, as well as its scope.
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What is Political Science All About?
The undergraduate B.A (Honours) Political Science degree is a 3-year course that studies the theory and application of politics, political systems, and the government. You will get a chance to study the social, economic and political life of people in the nation and at a global level, learning about political values, processes, policies, and institutions.
Pressing global issues that society struggles with, such as war, freedom, order, justice and equality are studied under political science, as well as the concept of distribution of power and resources.
The study of political science will enhance more than just your knowledge, but will also boost your critical thinking skills, reasoning ability, research aptitude, and analytical capabilities.
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What Will You Study in B.A (H) Political Science?
In the study of political science, you will learn about political systems at national and international levels, famous political thinkers and the Indian constitution. The course will introduce you to the concept of political theory and the basic concepts of comparative politics. You will also learn about how state and power are interconnected and interpreted in different countries.
In the Indian context, you will learn about the impact of colonialism and nationalism on political, social and economic structures, and their contribution to Indian political thought. Apart from the Indian political scene, you will also learn how political thought evolved in the western world, the need for international organisations, as well as the role that such organisations play. You will also study how the modern capitalist world has evolved, and the current political and economic challenges faced at a global level.
Specific topics typically include:
- Principles of Political Science
- Indian Politics
- Contemporary Political Science
- Western & Indian Political Thinkers
- Comparative Politics
- Comparative Constitutions
- International Relations
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Top Colleges for B.A (H) Political Science
Here are some of the top colleges in India that offer a B.A (Hons.) Political Science degree:
- Lady Shri Ram College For Women (LSR), New Delhi
- St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai
- Christ University, Bangalore
- Miranda House, New Delhi
- Presidency College, Chennai
- Hindu College, New Delhi
- Fergusson College, Pune
- Ramjas College, New Delhi
- Jadavpur University, Kolkata
- Loyola College, Chennai
Note – This list is indicative and doesn’t indicate rankings of institutions.
Career Options after B.A (H) Political Science
Political science may not be a professional course, but it will equip you with knowledge and understanding of how the political scenario functions and will groom your critical thinking skills. There are a variety of career paths you can pursue after studying political science, both in government jobs and in the private sector.
Political science also serves as a great base course to expand into other fields at a postgraduate level.
Here are some of the top career options:
1. Civil Services
A career in civil services such as the IAS (Indian Administrative Service) and IFS (Indian Foreign Services) is one of the most popular choices for those studying political science. The role basically involves helping the nation run smoothly, influencing the decision making process and representing India. As many questions from the preliminary and main civil services exams are based on polity, studying political science will give you an edge in the exams.
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A career in politics has been gaining popularity with more young people joining the field in recent times. You can work as a politician directly, or you can also act as a political analyst or campaign manager associated with the government or a political party. There is no formal course to join politics, but a political science degree will help you a great deal. You can enter the field by volunteering and looking into political parties that match your ideologies.
Graduating in political science will have improved your analytical and critical thinking skills which will help you in the field of law. Although there is a graduate level 5-year LLB course to enter the field of law, you can still enter the field after completing BA (H) Political Science by pursuing a 3-year LLB course and passing the All India Bar examination conducted by the Bar Council of India.
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4. Political Scientist
Another application of the field of political science, the role of a political scientist involves the study of various aspects of governmental systems, how cities/countries operate and interact, and the impact of governmental policies. Apart from examining the present situations, political scientists also make recommendations for steps that can be implemented. To become a political scientist, you would need an MA Political Science degree or PhD.
5. Social Service
Social service is another means of helping society and people in need without having to get into actual politics and bureaucracy. The career options have grown with the rise in NGOs, government outreach programmes, and with MNCs establishing Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) departments. To pursue a career as a social worker or in social services, you can pursue a Master’s degree in social work after your B.A degree.
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A vast majority of the news covered in media is related to politics, and increasing public awareness means more people are interested in reading the news. B.A Political Science graduates have a thorough understanding of politics and the political environment which makes them ideal candidates for media roles such as political journalists, editors, and correspondents. To enter the media field, you can pursue a post-graduate course in journalism or mass communication.
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Marketing is an integral part of every business as it connects the supplier with the consumers. Political science graduates have an understanding of how society functions, and the flow of power and political systems which are an asset in the field of marketing. For a career in marketing, you can pursue an MBA or take up short-term courses/diploma courses in marketing after completing your graduation.
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If you enjoy the pure study of political science, teaching may be the right career for you. The popularity of political science as a discipline is growing and you can teach at school or college levels. To teach, you will need a master’s degree in Political Science along with a B.Ed for the school level, or you will need to clear the UGC NET examination for becoming a college professor.
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BA (H) Political Science is an ideal course for you if you are interested in how political systems function. Apart from knowledge, the course will enhance your critical thinking and analytical skills. There are a plethora of career options available for students of BA (H) Political Science that can cater to your preferences and interests while still being financially viable.
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