Political Science Minor

Our mission in the Hardin-Simmons Political Science program is to prepare graduates with the knowledge and skills necessary to lead in civic and professional life in a manner enlightened by Christian faith and values. We strive to be a home for students who, through the study of government both inside and outside of the classroom, are transformed into graduates known for their tenacity, creativity, intellectual rigor, and servant leadership.

We intend for each of our graduates to grow in the knowledge of their field, develop the skills necessary to compete after graduation, and know how their values matter as they lead in their communities. Our political science curriculum is built with these things in mind.

Program Contact

Stephen Cook-Dean and Professor at the Cynthia Ann Parker College of Liberal Arts

Dr. Stephen Cook

Dean, Cynthia Ann Parker College of Liberal Arts and Professor



  • Political Science Minor (B.A., B.B.S.)

Why study Political Science at HSU?

Student teacher speaks to young children taking notes

Hands-on Experience

Political Science students at HSU have many opportunities to receive hands-on experience in matters relevant to their studies. In fact, we require it. Students are encouraged to enhance their critical thinking ability through the simulations of Model U.N. HSU Moot Court offers outstanding practical training for students with an interest in law. Our students have interned with our local member of Congress, with nearby attorneys, and assisted refugees with a nonprofit organization.

1800's conference hall

Innovative Curriculum

Our curriculum is constantly progressing to embrace the most relevant, current matters from the global to the local level.

Grad School Ready

More than half of our recent graduates have been admitted to, or are currently attending, law or graduate school.

Program Details

All courses and course descriptions for the Political Science Minor (POLS) can be found in the Undergraduate Catalog.

All HSU students are eligible for this program.

Most students with a political science minor will attend law or graduate school at some point in their careers. Many graduates with a political science minor  work in political campaigns or serve in federal, state, county, or municipal government. Students with a political science minor often teach in high school. The skills obtained with a political science minor are demonstrably valued throughout the private sector, particularly when graduates are able to analyze data, write and communicate with excellence, utilize social media professionally, and comprehend the intersection of politics and the global economy.

Moot Court consists of simulated appellate court argumentation where students compete as individuals and teams. As with real appellate court hearings, there are no witnesses or juries. Advocates (student participants) debate with each other and attempt to win favorable decisions from their judges, who may ask questions of the advocates throughout the contest.

The focus of arguments are major constitutional issues, such as the following:

  • Has a student editor been deprived of his rights when the university revokes his scholarship because he writes a pro-Christian editorial?
  • Is a city acting constitutionally when it passes a minor curfew ordinance applying only to high school students?
  • Are male students discriminated against when a university executes a series of dorm room searches which are not extended to female dorms?

Advocates have the opportunity to argue in a variety of forums, such as intramural contests, intercollegiate tournaments, programs before civic groups, classes, and more.

Moot Court offers students exciting hands-on learning opportunities to develop skills such as critical thinking, written and oral expression, and an extended understanding of the American legal system. It also stimulates keener interest and deeper involvement in the legal life of our nation.

Moot Court meets a minimum of regularly scheduled periods which are specified in the Hardin-Simmons Catalog printed each term.

Any interested student may participate, regardless of his or her major or career objective. A student may become involved by securing approval of Dr. Sandy Self or by registering each semester for  POLS 2105: Laws in Action Workshop which may be repeated for credit each semester.

  • Law Office of Whitten, Hacker, Hagin, Anderson, Allen & Self
  • Law Office of Mehaffey & Watson
  • Law Office of Lynn Ingalsbe
  • Law Office of McMahon, Surovik, & Suttle
  • Federal District Court, Abilene Division
  • Taylor County District Attorney’s Office
  • Law Office of Vickie Carter
  • Law Office of Gravley and Leggett
  • Texas State Representative Susan King
  • Former Texas State Representative Bob Hunter
  • Texas Attorney General’s Office
  • Texas Department of Family and Protective Services
  • The Blackstone Foundation
  • Abilene City Attorney’s Office
  • Eastland Court of Appeals (11th)
  • United States Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison
  • United States Congresswoman Kay Granger
  • United States Congressman Mike Conaway
  • United States Congressman Randy Neugebauer
  • United States Congressman Pete Sessions
  • Eastland County Criminal District Attorney’s Office
  • Eastland County Court
  • Big Brothers/Big Sisters of West Texas
  • International Rescue Committee
  • Lead America
  • Taylor County Democratic Party
  • Preemptive Love Coalition
  • Christian Life Commission
  • Texas Baptist Offering for World Hunger
  • Abilene Police Department