History & Political Science Department

Academic Programs

Departmental Majors

American Studies

The American studies major is an interdisciplinary approach to the study of American culture. Students engage in the disciplines of culture, economics, ethnicity, history, literature, politics, race and religion in an effort to trace the influence and interconnection of the American experience. This eye-opening liberal arts education gives majors many facets of expertise that can be parlayed into a variety of professions. 

History 

The history major is a study of the places, people, populations and processes of the past. The keener awareness of the past that comes through the study of history provides students with an understanding of important figures within their own historical context. Through the study of culture, economics, politics and religion, history majors acquire a firm knowledge of the past and a greater understanding of the present world.

Political Science 

The political science major provides students the opportunity to study political behavior and institutions at the local, state, federal and international levels. Students will experience a broad selection of courses focused on American politics, international relations and comparative politics. A political science degree is designed to prepare students for a broad range of potential career paths in government, the private sector and nonprofit organizations.

Public Administration 

Public administration is what happens when the elections are over and the governing begins. It is the accomplishing side of all levels of government and is a field devoted to the implementation, evaluation and analysis of public policies and their outcomes. A degree in public administration allows students to take an interdisciplinary approach to a very practical profession. Students within this major will complete courses in political science, business, economics and other fields. With this major, students develop critical thinking, oral communication, writing, qualitative research and quantitative methodological skills in order to pursue a host of different career opportunities, both in the public and private sectors.

Social Science 

The social science major with licensure is for students who plan to teach civics, history and social science at the secondary level. They will take a variety of courses in history, political science, geography, sociology and economics as well as courses within the College of Education. Students who complete this program may receive certification to teach grades 7-12 in the state of Arkansas, a license that easily transfers to many other states.


Students who major in social science without licensure achieve a deep understanding in responsible and engaged citizenship through interdisciplinary study. Through the mastery of topics in economics, geography, global studies and history, social science majors will acquire a broader perspective of society and the human condition. They will also develop critical thinking skills perpetually in demand by employers.

See the Catalog for Course Descriptions.

Departmental Minors

History Minor

Political Science Minor

Social Science Minor

Pre-Law Program

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A strong liberal arts education, which is considered by law schools to be the best preparation, provides a stable foundation for future law school success. Harding University offers such preparation through its preprofessional program in law which is directed by the Department of History and Political Science.  Because law schools generally do not require specific undergraduate majors, you can major in any undergraduate field you desire. Harding graduates with degrees ranging from business to social sciences have been admitted to law school. However, future benefits can be gained by concentrating studies in such areas as Political Science, Public Administration, History, Accounting, Bible, Communications, Criminal Justice, Economics, English, Management, or Social Science. Courses for majors in these departments require a higher degree of written work, reading comprehension, critical thinking skills, and group discussion, thus preparing students for the nature of law school courses.

Students, upon entry into a law school, must have mastered expression, comprehension and fluidity of the English language, and be thoroughly acquainted with American institutions, values and culture. The Law School Admissions Test, required by most law schools, stresses creative thinking skills and writing ability.

Harding's challenging, Christian liberal arts curriculum, along with the extensive number of undergraduate law classes and other unique opportunities that pre-law students enjoy, entwine to provide a solid background to students desiring careers in law.

Your pre-law advisor will be assigned from the Department of History and Political Science. For further information contact Dr. Steven Breezeel, the departmental pre-law advisor at sbreezeel@harding.edu.