Philosophy and Mission

The mission of the Political Science and Law Department is to educate about both politics and law within the context of a thorough liberal arts education. The various curriculums are pathways to student knowledge of government, politics, public affairs, and the legal process emphasizing the responsibilities of participatory citizenship. Course work examines core methodologies of our disciplines emphasizing the close relationship between politics and law. Students develop abilities: to reason logically, to analyze complex ideas involving abstract concepts and intricate interrelationships, to read with understanding and accuracy, and to write with clarity and precision.

Programs in the Department

At the undergraduate level, the Department of Political Science and Law offers two majors and three minors. The thirty-three credit (33) Political Science major explores American Government and Politics, International Relations, Comparative Politics, and Political Theory and Philosophy. An eighteen (18) credit Political Science minor exanines the fundamental aspects of the discpline. The Public Administration minor is the gateway to internships and employment in internation, federal, state and local government. 

The Jurisprudence major is an interdisciplinary program focused on law within liberal arts. As a program with selective admissions criteria, students are introduced to essential concepts leading to understanding legal ideas and philosophy of law as they affect institutions and social processes. A Pre-Law Studies minor is also available for students who wish to perpare for law school by combining law-related study, drawn from several other academic disciplines.

The Political Science curriculum includes five required courses: Introduction to Politics, American Government and Politics, Development of Political Thought to Machiavelli and International Relations. Students may also choose from among multiple electives to fulfill requirements for the major. Our law curriculum includes a Pre-Law minor and the recently created Jurisprudence major.  

Political Science and law merged in fall 2006 expanding and enriching the curriculum. The admixture of faculty and students, and courses such as Constitutional Law, Law and Society, United States Legal Systems, United States Immigration Law, Ethnic Politics created a stronger alloy, as a mixture of copper and zinc produce brass, a mixture yet equisitely attractive and more useful.

College and Program Resources

Montclair State University is committed to excellence in technology. A majority of faculty use Canvas. Both class instruction and individualized support are provided, usually with great alacrity. University Hall, the newest building on campus, has excellent technological resources. Individual computers, mini-labs, college and university labs and Smartboard are available to students.

In the last five years the Department has moved to web-based support for students and faculty. We have our own server and web master, Tia Hanks, MBA. We use the Web to provide a wealth of information, linkages, resources, advising assistance and help with coursework. Student research assignments often include the use of reliable sites on the Internet for research purposes.

New classrooms in the School of Business and University Hall provide excellent technology to support mediated presentations. The rooms have fixed projectors, DVD, VHS, lectern projection capability, full sound, and SmartBoards that allow capture of electronic class notes for uploading to a technology blackboard.