Jul 21, 2024  
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Political Science

Chair: Tony Robinson
Program Assistant: Kelly Stritzinger
Undergraduate Advisor: Karen Breslin
Pre-law Advisor: Glenn Morris
Graduate Advisor: Michael Berry
Director, New Directions Program: Minsun Ji
Office: : Student Commons, Room 3212
Telephone: 303-315-1770
Fax: 303-315-1780


Christoph Stefes, PhD, Denver University

Associate Professors:
Glenn T. Morris, JD, Harvard University School of Law
Tony Robinson, PhD, University of California, Berkeley
Bassem Hassan, PhD, University of Denver
Stephen C. Thomas, PhD, Stanford University
Michael J. Berry, PhD, University of Colorado
Betcy Jose, PhD, University of Pittsburgh
James Walsh, PhD, Regis University
Thorsten Spehn, PhD, University of Denver

Assistant Professors:
Sasha Breger-Bush, PhD, University of Denver
Chad Shomura, PhD, Johns Hopkins University

Senior Instructors:
Harvey Bishop, MA, University of Colorado

Karen Breslin, JD, University of Denver

Adjunct Faculty:
Minsun Ji, PhD, University of Denver
Charles Norton, JD, University of Chicago


Political science is the study of people, power and the public good. Looking at a variety of societies, institutions and interpersonal situations, the discipline asks who has power, where this power comes from, how it is used, how it promotes or impairs the public good and how the public good is defined. Political science draws from other fields, such as psychology, philosophy, economics, sociology and world literature. Finally, it explores the relationship between idealism and realism, between theory and practice, between political thought and personal action.

Opportunities for students with a BA in political science include careers in business, teaching, journalism, community organizing and government service. A political science degree also serves as good preparation for professional training in law and public administration. Students’ internship experiences increase their job opportunities. Students with an MA in political science may find careers in such areas as business, government research and administration and teaching at the community college level.

Please visit the Political Science Department website for detailed information on programs, faculty, students, courses and syllabi, community involvement and service learning, internships and photographs.

Undergraduate Information

Click here  to learn about the requirements for the Major in Political Science.

Click here  to learn about the requirements for the Minor in Political Science.

Click here  to learn about the Undergraduate Certificate in Democracy and Social Movements.

Click here  to learn about the Public, Non-Profit and Community Leadership Undergraduate Certificate.

Click here  to learn about the 4+1 BA to MA program.

Departmental Honors

Requirements for honors in political science are an overall GPA (in all courses, not just political science courses) of 3.65 or better and the preparation and defense of an honors paper. Honors graduates with an overall GPA of 3.75 to 3.84 may graduate with high honors, and those with GPAs of 3.85 and higher may graduate with highest honors. Level of honors granted depends upon both the GPA and the quality of the honors paper. Students interested in departmental honors must secure a full-time faculty sponsor for their honors paper early in the semester in which they intend to graduate. For details, please contact the department undergraduate advisor.

Fourth World Center for the Study of Indigenous Law and Politics

Executive Director: Glenn T. Morris
Telephone: 303-315-1762

This center provides a research clearinghouse to students and faculty at CU Denver on legal and political issues that affect indigenous peoples (the Fourth World). In addition to supporting a modest library of rare books and periodicals on indigenous issues, the center also stocks video and audio resources on subjects of indigenous politics and a substantial news file archive on current developments in the Fourth World. The center has produced curricular materials, including the Fourth World Bulletin, for use in international relations and area-studies courses.

Center for NEW DIRECTIONS in Politics and Public Policy

Director: Minsun Ji

This center provides academic programs, courses and research focused in the areas of politics and public policy with the purpose of developing the leadership capacities necessary to address changing public priorities for the 21st century within neighborhoods, communities, governmental jurisdictions, labor organizations,and nonprofit entities. Students in the Center’s academic programs include working professionals in public and non-profit sectors;  elected officials; community activists; interest-group stakeholders; educators from a wide range of demographic, occupational, and personal backgrounds; and simply concerned citizens. The New Directions program offers professional internships with a wide variety of political jurisdictions, community-based groups, and labor organizations across Colorado, including several funded internships.

The center offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees in political science with emphases in public policy and administration.

Graduate Information

Please go to the Graduate catalog to read about our graduate programs.