UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES

What is Political Science?

Politics is a central element of human society, the forum where our largest issues and concerns are addressed. It's where complex, diverse modern cultures identify shared values and make decisions about rules to live by, and how goods will be distributed. Indeed, political scientist Harold Lasswell aptly described politics as the process of answering the question: "Who gets What, When, How?"

Political scientists make a systematic study of this political process, using statistics, historical analysis, and a range of other methods to explain the causes and consequences of decision-making and policy choices. They analyze the behavior and values of individuals and institutions, and governmental and non-governmental organizations, including corporations, advocacy groups, parties, and many others. Our faculty members — acknowledged leaders in their fields — carry out this work both domestically and internationally, on a wide-range of issues from domestic voting concerns to international nuclear security.

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UNDERGRADUATE QUICKLINKS

FOR INFORMATION

Tobie Weiner
Undergraduate Administrator
617-253-3649
iguanatw@mit.edu

Scott Schnyer
Undergraduate Administrator's Assistant
617-258-5883
sschnyer@mit.edu

Undergraduate Office
E53-484
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