UMBC Political Science

Permanent URI for this collection

Students who major or minor in Political Science can expect to receive excellent instruction and training from the Political Science faculty, both on the main campus and on our campus at Shady Grove. Our students excel in the classroom and are involved in many different extracurricular activities, such as internships, research, study abroad, and participation in our clubs. Upon graduating our alumni have worked for local and state governments, the federal government, legal offices, and in the civil service. Others have gone on to law school or graduate school for some aspect of political science or public policy. Some alumni become teachers, with several beginning their teaching careers with the Teach for America program. We also have an excellent record in statewide and national competitions. For example, Political Science students from UMBC have served as the University of Maryland student regent, have received Fulbright grants for teaching and research around the world, and have won the highly selective Truman Scholarship for outstanding public service leadership. Furthermore, Political Science students have led UMBC’s Mock Trial team to national prominence and have placed exceptionally well at Model United Nations conferences. We also provide opportunities for students to interact with each other in the Department through the Council of Majors, politically-oriented clubs, and Pi Sigma Alpha, the national honor society for Political Science. Beyond regular coursework, there is a lot to do in the Department and we are proud that our students are leaving their mark in various ways both while at UMBC and after graduation.

Our faculty represent most of the subfields in Political Science, from political philosophy to American politics and public policy to law, international relations and comparative politics. Political Science faculty conduct innovative research and have written books and articles for top publishers and journals in the field. They have also won or been nominated for numerous teaching awards. We are known as being strong teachers and researchers at UMBC and, along with our wonderful staff, we enjoy working with our students both in and out of the classroom.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 327
  • Item
    MoCoShow Makes the News
    (I Hate Politics, 2023-11-24) Dasgupta, Sunil; Tsironis, Alex
    In the general despair over the decline of local news, a homegrown, social media-driven, local news company, The MoCoShow, is not only commercially profitable but also turning on its head some central principles of journalism. Sunil Dasgupta talked to MoCoShowe founder Alex Tsironis about his vision and how he turned a snow reporting social media handle to over hundred thousand followers and millions of unique hits across his various platforms. Music from Oren Levine: Local area nonprofits tell their stories and pitch for your support: Community FarmShare, Friendship Place, MoCo Pride Prom, Montgomery County Special Olympics, MoCoPAAN
  • Item
    Life in the HOTTER Lane
    (I Hate Politics Podcasts, 2023-11-17) Dasgupta, Sunil; Decorla-Souza, Patrick
    As the Moore Administration in Maryland wrestles with its plan to toll highways in the Washington DC suburbs, Sunil Dasgupta talks with transportation planner Patrick Decorla-Souza about the history of congestion pricing and his new idea, HOTTER Lanes, which gives carpoolers cash rewards from the revenue generated by tolls. Local news re dedicated bus lanes, security camera program, MCPS hires a former councilmember, counties want a hand in shaping school budgets. Music from Oren Levine: HOTTER Lanes: Bus Lanes: Camera Rebate:
  • Item
    The Doughnut Hole of Political Accountability
    (I Hate Politics Podcasts, 2023-11-10) Dasgupta, Sunil; Rogers, Steven
    How we hold politicians accountable is an enduring challenge in democratic societies, but a new book, Accountability in State Legislatures, argues that voters are uniquely unable to punish state legislators. Sunil Dasgupta talks with author and political scientist Steven Rogers about the connections of his research to political polarization, one-party rule, gerrymandering, barriers to challenger entry, and the decline of local and state news coverage. Local news about Rockville and Gaithersburg city elections and the continuing local fallout of the War in Gaza: immigrant rights group CASA missteps and a rally in Rockville is met with nasty rhetoric. Music from Oren Levine: Accountability in State Legislatures:
  • Item
    Coping with Cross-Pressures: Electoral Choice and Political Perceptions among American Catholics
    (2014-08-21) Antkowiak, Laura; Layman, Geoffrey C.
    American Catholics are often described as a “cross-pressured” constituency, pulled toward Democrats on social welfare issues but toward Republicans on cultural issues like abortion. While research suggests that this image does not fit most Catholics, we know little about the characteristics and political behavior of Catholics that do share their bishops’ pro-life, pro-welfare views. This paper addresses that gap. Using the American National Election Studies pooled over 1992-2008, we first show that commitment to the Catholic faith increases the likelihood that Americans profess pro-life, pro-welfare policy preferences. We also describe the presidential voting of pro-life, pro-welfare Catholics and test hypotheses regarding how they cope with cross-pressures. We find that the relative salience of abortion and social welfare is an important predictor of the presidential votes of the most religiously committed among them. We also find that many appear to rationalize their votes by misperceiving their candidate’s policy position on the issue where they disagree.