Political Scientists

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics > Science and Mathematics

Projected Growth: Average

Projected Job Openings

Extensive Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Study the origin, development, and operation of political systems. May study topics, such as public opinion, political decision-making, and ideology. May analyze the structure and operation of governments, as well as various political entities. May conduct public opinion surveys, analyze election results, or analyze public documents.

Common job titles of Political Scientists include:

Experience and Education

Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.

  • 73.33% said they needed a Doctoral Degree.

  • 13.33% said they needed a Master's Degree.


    Maintain current knowledge of government policy decisions.

    Teach political science.

    Interpret and analyze policies, public issues, legislation, or the operations of governments, businesses, and organizations.

    Identify issues for research and analysis.

    Provide media commentary or criticism related to public policy and political issues and events.

    Consult with and advise government officials, civic bodies, research agencies, the media, political parties, and others concerned with political issues.

    Forecast political, economic, and social trends.

    Evaluate programs and policies, and make related recommendations to institutions and organizations.

    Collect, analyze, and interpret data such as election results and public opinion surveys, reporting on findings, recommendations, and conclusions.

    Develop and test theories, using information from interviews, newspapers, periodicals, case law, historical papers, polls, or statistical sources.

    Disseminate research results through academic publications, written reports, or public presentations.

    Write drafts of legislative proposals, and prepare speeches, correspondence, and policy papers for governmental use.


Overhead display projectors

Laptop computers

Handheld calculators

Digital video disk DVD players

Digital audio recorders

Desktop computers

Conference phones


IBM SPSS Statistics

Microsoft SharePoint


Bare Bones Software BBEdit

CQ Press Political Reference Suite

DataMystic TextPipe Pro

EBSCO Publishing Academic Search Premier

All Technologies

EBSCO Publishing Political Science Complete

Email software

Europa World Plus


Gale Expanded Academic ASAP PLUS

IDM Computer Solutions UltraEdit

Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) database

JSTOR database

JudgeIt II

Library of Congress E-resources Online Catalog

Oxford Reference Online

ProQuest Public Affairs Information Service (PAIS) database

ProQuest Worldwide Political Science Abstracts

Sage Reference Online

StataCorp Stata



Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.


Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.


Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Learning Strategies

Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.


Teaching others how to do something.

Systems Analysis

Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.


Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.


Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.


Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.


Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Expression

Combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Inductive Reasoning

Speak clearly so others can understand you.

Auditory and Speech Abilities › Sensory Abilities › Speech Clarity

Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Deductive Reasoning

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