Please note that this program has two associated honours majors, International Development and International Relations.

General Major: Politics and International Studies (12 courses)

Note: POL-380 may be completed in an approved off-campus program

Minor: Politics and International Studies (6 courses)


Course Details

Introduction to Politics & International Studies

An introduction to the study of politics, including forms of government, the building blocks of politics, and the various visions that people bring to political life.

Introduction to International Development

This course develops a basic level of core leadership and project management competencies for guiding social entrepreneurs to achieve sustainable community development. Classes focus on the community development cycle and principles; analyzing the role of worldview, leadership and global partnerships in a community’s development; and identifying common issues and resources related to food security and agriculture, health and HIV/ AIDS, disaster risk management, justice in gender and environment, and local community governance.


Introduction to International Relations

A study of contemporary relations among states, including an analysis of basic concepts and issues such as power, sovereignty, nationalism, security, diplomacy, war and peace, international law and organization, transnationalism and independence. Attention is also given to different approaches to the study of international relations.


Canada and the World

An introduction to Canadian government and politics, with special emphasis on Canada’s foreign affairs, and its role in the world. Topics covered include the constitution, the role of the executive, legislative and judicial branches, parties, elections, and policy making, both at home and abroad.


Recommended: POL-208

Introduction to International Political Economy

An introduction to how competing political philosophies and ideologies explain different economic practices of states, how political forces and institutions affect the operation of international markets, and how global economic institutions operate. Emphasis will be given to developing world economies and issues of social and political justice.


Human Rights and International Justice

An introduction to the theories, structures, and issues of human rights in global politics, with special emphasis on the role of public justice systems and human trafficking. Practical case studies will be used to facilitate in depth knowledge of particular regions/contexts where vulnerabilities exist, and strategies for the redress of those vulnerabilities will be studied.


Current Issues in Politics & International Studies

A seminar course surveying key, contemporary issues in politics & international studies. The course provides substantial space for independent student research, including the opportunity to develop research questions, with special attention to foundational issues in those questions, that may lead to further study in graduate school. Priority will be given to Christian approaches to perennial issues in politics & international studies such as order and diversity, populism and polarization, neo-liberalism and development, the role of the institutional church, nationalism, humanitarian intervention, and responsibilities in and to the global commons (such as the environment).

Year 4 standingPOL-301/401 is the Capstone Course for the Politics and International Studies program and is required for all majors in the 4th year.

Law and Public Policy

Over 40 years ago, Thomas Dye defined ‘public policy’ as “anything a government chooses to do or not to do.” Though perhaps oversimplified, good public policy and good laws are necessary fellows. Both are the art of developing government responses to public problems. This course will study the public policy process that governments establish within which citizens function, and within which laws are made, challenged, and changed. Issues studied will include approaches to law and public policy, actors, institutions and instruments of policy, agenda setting, public policy formation and decision making, implementation and evaluation. Students will develop research based on a major problem in public policy at any level of municipal, provincial, or federal jurisdiction.


Comparative Politics of the Developing World

A comparative study of the political systems of developing countries, including theories, problems, and vest practices in political and economic development. Example countries studied include Brazil, China, India, Mexico, and Nigeria, with seminar discussion and student research on major themes and issues such as governance, trade, human rights and others commonly arising in the developing context.

HIS-106, POL-121, POL-208

Irenaeus to Grotius: Christian Political Thought

This course provides a broad introduction to great political theory in the Western tradition, with special emphasis on the history of Christian political thought. It will address perennial questions addressed by both Christian and non-Christian political thinkers, such as: What is justice? What is the foundation of political authority? What is the proper relationship of church and state? These questions will be approached more normatively (asking how societies ought answer them) than descriptively (observing how they have answered them).



The internship course is designed to allow senior students majoring in Politics and International Studies the opportunity to apply their skills and knowledge of the discipline in an occupational setting. Internships are completed in corporate, non-profit or governmental organizations and students are required to observe and participate in a job-related capacity under supervision. See page 52 for information on internships.

Year 3 or 4 standing and permission of the instructor

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Politics – International Relations

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