Government or political science in the broadest sense is the study of how governments work and how they affect people (and how people affect them) on the local, national, and international levels. Political scientists are concerned with the structures of governments, the decision-making process in governments, the policy governments make, and the cultures in which governments function. Some specific topics that can be studied at Gallaudet include political parties, the legislature, political theory, the presidency, interest groups, civil rights and liberties, the governments of Europe and developing nations, international relations, American foreign policy, and others. The department emphasizes both knowledge in the area of government and current events, and skills in research, communication, and critical thinking.
A government major is often seen as a useful preparation for law and teaching, journalism, federal government service, state and local government, and good citizenship. The skills and knowledge emphasized are useful in many other fields. Washington, D.C., is an ideal place to study politics, and students are helped and encouraged to make extensive use of the city's academic, cultural, and governmental resources. The department also uses the University's work-study program to find work placements that will broaden students classroom experience. Pre-law advising is offered to students who wish to attend law school.
Declaring a Major: Requirements for Admission to a Major in Government
The Department of Government and Public Affairs only requires the signature of the Department Chair. Students who wish to major in Government must maintain a 2.0 GPA in Government courses with no more than two grades of D+ or lower in major courses.