International Relations Major Requirements

International Relations Major Requirements (40 units)

In addition to the major requirements below, all majors must take two core curriculum courses: ECON 1050 Introductory Economics (Understanding Human Behavior) and HIST 1XXX except 13XX and 14XX (lower level non-US History; Explorations). 

Students may not double-major in International Relations and Political Science. However, students may choose to major in International Relations, while minoring in the Political Science (or vice versa). In this case, students may only double-count one of the 1000-level courses and none of the upper division courses towards the minor. 

With regard to successful completion of this major or minor, an average grade of C (2.0) must be obtained in these courses.  

Lower Division* (4 courses)

  • POLS 1600 Intro to International Relations
  • POLS 1400 Intro to Comparative Politics
  • POLS 2100 Empirical Approaches to Politics
  • Choose one in Political Theory: POLS 2000 OR POLS 2001 Foundations of International Political Theory or specially designated sections of FFYS 1000 with normative theory content. 

Upper Division (6 courses)

  • POLS 3620 International Security
  • POLS 4650 Politics of the Global Economy
  • 3 upper-division Electives (courses with international focus from POLS, ECON, SOCL or HIST[1], or one advanced methods course[2])
  • 1 5000-level International Relations or Comparative Politics (POLS) seminar OR POLS Honors[3] (2 semesters)

Other Requirements:

  • An average grade of C (2.0) must be obtained in courses included in the major.
  • Lower Division requirements must be met before pursuing upper division requirements.
  • 2 semesters foreign language, or proficiency[4]
  • International Experience through either:
    • Internship with international focus (120 hours): Local internship at an international agency/organization; an international internship; an internship through the Washington Center; or:
    • Study Abroad (Semester or Summer)[5]

[1] In POLS, any upper division comparative politics or international relations course. Other POLS courses with significant global perspectives or international politics course content may count towards the major at the discretion of the faculty director, and in consultation with the professor. In Economics: ECON 3700 International Trade (prerequisite is ECON 1050); ECON 3720 International Finance Theory (prerequisite is ECON 1050); ECON 4740 Economic Development (prerequisite is ECON 3100). In History: HIST 3XXX and 4XXX except 33XX, 34XX, 43XX and 44XX; these include HIST 3600 Conflict and Genocide in Africa, HIST 3702 Latin America: Women, Gender and Sexuality, HIST 3704 Latin American Revolutions in Film, HIST 3860 Popular Culture in East Asia, HIST 4010 Pirates and Piracy, HIST 4200 Early Modern Europe, HIST 4205 Europe in the Long 19th Century, HIST 4206 20th Century Europe, HIST 4215 European Imperialism, HIST 4225 Gender in European History, HIST 4250 Modern Britain and the British Empire, HIST 4251 Victorians to Moderns, HIST 4272 20thCentury Eastern Europe, HIST 4281 Modern Russia, HIST 4282 Multiethnic Diversity in Russia, HIST 4402 The Politics and Culture of the Cold War, HIST 4510 Star, Cross and Crescent, HIST 4520 The Ottoman Empire, HIST 4540 The Palestine/Israel Conflict, HIST 4640 Colonial Africa, HIST 4800 Asian Empires, HIST 4810 Imperial China, HIST 4820 Modern China, HIST 4830 Women in East Asian History, HIST 4840 Modern Japan. In Sociology: SOCL 3310 Demography and Population Analysis, SOCL 3370 Sociology of Globalization, SOCL 3371 Gender and Global Migration, SOCL 3372 Sociology of U.S. Immigration, SOCL 3998 - Blacks in Latin America. Any other non-POLS courses must be approved by the faculty director prior to course enrollment.

[2] Students interested in graduate studies are strongly encouraged to take an advanced methods course.

[3] Students must write an internationally-focused thesis.

[4] Language proficiency will be assessed via the Modern Languages’ online placement tests. In the event the test is not offered, the student must go to a language department in a university that does offer that language and have an instructor there assess proficiency and provide a letter as evidence. Although Level 2 proficiency is the required minimum for the major, we strongly encourage students to continue to more advanced levels.

[5] The Study Abroad experience must be an LMU or LMU-approved semester or summer program. The summer program must be at least 6 semester hours. Ideally, this requirement should enhance a student’s language skills and cultural awareness that she is focused on in courses at LMU. A maximum of two courses from study abroad may count towards the major, while one course from study abroad may count towards the minor.

[6] International students may explore the possibility of having the foreign language and/or international experience waived, in consultation with the IR faculty director.