Specialist Program in Political Science Specialist (HBA)

Admissions Category: Social Sciences & Humanities

UTSC Politicial Science banner

Program Overview

The Department of Political Science prepares students for thoughtful citizenship in the 21st Century. In classes about globalization and climate change, corruption and violence, international conflict and cooperation, democracy and authoritarianism, ethnic and religious conflicts, ancient and modern philosophy, domestic and global public policy, and other critical areas, our faculty ground students in enduring traditions of systematic thought while equipping them with new tools and insights to make sense of the world. Students learn to see, think, and communicate about the bigger picture within which day-to-day politics play out.

Complementary Programs:

Minor Programs in International Development StudiesPhilosophyEconomics for Management Studies, Applied Statistics.

Check out future career opportunities and skills acquired from completing this program:

Competencies & Skills

  • Gather evidence to advance an argument in a variety of formats, including research papers, policy briefs, case studies, or book reviews
  • Think globally and comparatively about pressing contemporary issues
  • Identify and analyze diverse perspectives that can shape governance
  • Analyze quantitative and qualitative data
  • Design and execute empirical research projects

Careers for Graduates

  • Policy Analyst/Advisor in Government
  • Program Coordinator in Non-Profits
  • Research Analyst in Think Tanks
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Service Rep - Social and Community Service
  • Political Aide/Consultant
  • Lobbyist
  • Public Opinion Analyst
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • Lawyer / Paralegal

Further Education

  • Political Science
  • Public Policy (many varieties)
  • Public Administration/Service
  • Business Administration
  • Law
  • Paralegal Studies
  • Communications or Marketing
  • Public Relations
  • Community Service Management

Program Pathway

Year 1 | Year 2 | Year 3 | Year 4

Year 1
Choose Your Courses Wisely
Develop Your Academic & Research Skills

Your first year courses (POLA01H3 and POLA02H3) are designed to introduce you to techniques of critical reading and analytical essay writing. We encourage you to contact the UTSC Library for assistance when completing your assignments for both courses. Writing support is also available at the CTL Writing Centre.

Apply Theory to Practice
Become an Engaged Citizen (Locally & Globally)
  • Join the Political Science Students Association (PSSA) and attend their activities and events to connect with other students in your field of study.
  • Explore other relevant student clubs on campus.
  • Participate in Department of Student Life’s (DSL) LEAD program to build confidence, self-esteem and resiliency.

Plan for Your Future Career
  • Volunteer with organizations to explore your interests in Political Science; check listings on CLNx (>Jobs & Recruitment).
  • Establish a professional presence on social media (Linkedin, Twitter or blogs).
  • Attend the UTSC Get Experience Fair in September and register with SCSU’s Volunteer Network Program.

Year 2
Choose Your Courses Wisely
Develop Your Academic & Research Skills
Apply Theory to Practice
Become an Engaged Citizen (Locally & Globally)
  • Join one of DSL’s Community Action Projects to apply academic learning and take action for social change through engagement opportunities in the Scarborough Community.
  • Gain international experience by studying at an international host university for one term to one year through the Student Exchange Program through the ISC.

Plan for Your Future Career
  • Gain experience by applying for a summer, part-time or Work Study position via CLNx (>Jobs & Recruitment).
  • Considering grad school? Speak to professors and program advisors early so you are on track.
  • Explore careers through the AA&CC’s Job Shadowing program and In The Field programs.
  • Develop professional skills by joining a conference like TEDxUTSC.

Year 3
Choose Your Courses Wisely
  • Complete your remaining methods course: POLC78H3.
  • Start completing your applications courses within our five areas of concentration of the program: 5.0 credits in POL or PPG at the C- and/or D-level.
  • Use Degree Explorer to ensure you are on track with your degree.

Develop Your Academic & Research Skills
Apply Theory to Practice

Consider contributing in leadership about an issue that is important to you in the UTSC community by running for a seat on the Campus CouncilGoverning Council or the Academic Affairs Committee.

Become an Engaged Citizen (Locally & Globally)
Plan for Your Future Career

Year 4
Choose Your Courses Wisely
  • Complete your remaining applications courses: 5.0 credits in POL or PPG at the C- and/or D-level.
  • Fulfill the depth requirements by taking appropriate number of C- and D-level courses for your degree requirements.
  • Use Degree Explorer to ensure you are on track to graduate.
  • Register your “Intent to Graduate” on ACORN by the deadline.

Develop Your Academic & Research Skills
  • Explore independent research courses such as POLD95H3 to delve deeper into research of interest with a faculty member.
  • Apply for the Academic Travel Fund to conduct research, present at a conference, or engage with the international academic community.
  • Submit your work to Res Publica, UTSC’s official Political Science Undergraduate Journal.

Apply Theory to Practice
  • Consider volunteering in your local MP/MPP’s constituency office, and/or volunteering during an election if you are interested in working for a party as a constituency assistant, legislative assistant, policy advisor, or communications assistant.
  • Explore summer internships or job opportunities in Political Science.

Become an Engaged Citizen (Locally & Globally)
Plan for Your Future Career
  • Attend the AA&CC’s Get Hired job search conference in April/May.
  • Attend the Jobs for Grads orientation for a job search “crash course”. Find job opportunities on CLNx.  
  • If you are considering grad school, discuss your plans early with staff at the AA&CC and your professors.
  • Get your Personal Statement reviewed in the AA&CC.


  • AACC - Academic Advising and Career Centre (www.utsc.utoronto.ca/aacc)
  • CCR - Co-Curricular Record (https://clnx.utoronto.ca/ccr/overview.htm)
  • CLNx - Career Co-Curricular Learning Network (https://clnx.utoronto.ca/home.htm)
  • CTL - Centre for Teaching and Learning (https://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/ctl)
  • DSL - Department of Student Life (https://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/studentlife)
  • ISC - International Student Centre (https://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/utscinternational)
  • LSOU - Law Society of UTSC (https://lawsocietyutsc.ca)
  • PSSA - Political Science Student Association (https://utapss.sa.utoronto.ca)
  • SCSU - Scarborough Campus Students Union (https://www.scsu.ca)
  • UTMP - University of Toronto Model Parliament (https://www.flickr.com/people/utmpfashion)
  • UTMUN - University of Toronto Model United Nations (https://www.utmun.org)


Departmental Contact

Marishka Pereira

E-mail: pol-advisor@utsc.utoronto.ca


Political Science Librarian

Sarah Fedko

E-mail: sarah.fedko@utoronto.ca
Location: ARC main floor
Phone: 416-208-4881


Academic Advising & Career Centre

Location: AC213
Phone: 416-287-7561


Department of Student Life

Location: SL157
Phone: 416-208-4760


Political Science Student Association (PSSA)


Did You Know?

ResPublica Journal Volume 1

In addition to organizing social events, the PSSA works with faculty to organize study sessions before major exams.