Skip to main content

Independent Study

Independent Study Guidelines

PLS and IR 399 and 499

PLS 399 Readings in Political Science
PLS 499 Independent Research
IR 399 Independent Readings
IR 499 Independent Research

1. General guidelines.

Taking an independent study (PLS 399, PLS 499, IR 399 or IR 499) class is a privilege to be granted at the discretion of the faculty. Independent studies are reserved for advanced work with a professor after a student has taken previous coursework in the relevant area of study, to be determined at the discretion of the sponsoring professor. It is possible that professors may offer readings courses open to major/minor students in general, or major/minor students of a certain class standing. Independent studies are not to be taken in duplication of an existing course or based on convenience for a student's schedule.

All independent studies are taken CR/NC (credit or no credit).

PLS major and minor:
Independent studies do not count for the 300-level requirement of the major and minor. Independent studies do not count for the requirement that students take two courses in American politics, one in international relations, one in comparative politics and one in political theory. A total of no more than nine credits of internship and independent study may count toward the major, with no more than six credits in either category. No more than six credits of internship or independent study may count toward the minor.

IR major and minor:
Independent studies do not count for the requirement that students must take one 300-level course in each of these three categories:
A. Economics and Business
B. History and Geography
C. Political Science

Spotlights

Lyndsey Kitson

Lyndsey Kitson

Attorney for Employee Benefit, Labor and Employment Law

Abby Oliver

Abby Oliver

Abby Oliver Presents Honors Thesis Research at MPSA

Erin (Meteer) Hendges

Erin (Meteer) Hendges

Campaign Fundraiser Founds Consulting Firm

Rebekah Bailey

Rebekah Bailey

Attorney for State and Federal Employment Law

Robert Monaghan

Robert Monaghan

Corporate Executive and Nonprofit Leader

View More Spotlights

2. Faculty and student have a discussion to identify topic, reading assignments, and type of work to be produced. The normal equivalency would be six books and 25 pages of written work for 3 credits (or 2 books and eight pages of written work per credit), to be determined at instructor's discretion. Reading material includes books, journal articles and other published scholarly materials, with the assortment of assignments to be determined at the discretion of the instructor. Research such as data collection and analysis may be performed in place of some requirements, determined at instructor's discretion.

Student writes independent study plan and emails it to sponsoring faculty for review. Plan includes:

Readings
Assignments
Course program and number (e.g. PLS 399) with number of credits
Student name and G#
Student email address
Semester work is to take place

3. Upon approval of independent study plan, faculty sends email to PLS chair or IR director, CC to department coordinator, attaching plan and noting permission to register. Department coordinator logs plan.

4. PLS Chair or IR director grants override in Banner and notifies student via email of permission to register.

5. Upon completion of plan or before semester grades are due, whichever is sooner, sponsoring faculty emails PLS chair or IR director with grade for course (CR, NC or I). I (incomplete) would be reserved for extraordinary circumstances, not just because the student didn't complete the work in a timely manner. PLS chair or IR director is responsible for entering grade.

 

News

Jessica Baniukaitis Wins PLS/IR Outstanding Paper Award

Jessica Baniukaitis Wins PLS/IR Outstanding Paper Award

April 10, 2017

Jessica Baniukatis's paper, "Saakashvili the State-Builder: Establishing State Capacity and its Consequences for Democratization in Georgia" has been selected as the Outstanding Paper written in 2016.

Abby Oliver Presents Honors Thesis Research at MPSA

Abby Oliver Presents Honors Thesis Research at MPSA

April 10, 2017

Abby Oliver presents her Honors thesis research at the recent Midwest Political Science Association conference in Chicago

PLS 339 Fall 2017

PLS 339 Fall 2017

March 15, 2017

PLS 339 Democracy and the Authoritarian Challenge: Mondays/Wednesdays 4:30-5:45 p.m.

PLS 312 Summer 2017

PLS 312 Summer 2017

March 13, 2017

PLS 312 01 - U.S. FOREIGN POLICY Tuesday/Thursday, 8:30 - 11:45 a.m.

PLS 103 Summer 2017

PLS 103 Summer 2017

March 13, 2017

PLS 103 ISSUES IN WORLD POLITICS Tuesday/Thursday, 12-3:20 PM

View More News

Events

Warner Norcross & Judd LLP - 2017 LSAT Preparation Course Scholarship Program

Warner Norcross & Judd LLP - 2017 LSAT Preparation Course Scholarship Program

April 30, 2017 All Day

As part of our ongoing commitment to promote diversity within the legal profession, Warner Norcross & Judd LLP announces the 10th annual LSAT Preparation Course Scholarship program. The program...

Miller Johnson Pre-Law Student Intern

Miller Johnson Pre-Law Student Intern

May 3, 2017 All Day

Miller Johnson Pre-Law Student Intern – Fall 2017 Program Description Miller Johnson partners with Grand Valley State University to provide an academic semester-long internship opportunity...

GVSU Dinner in Albania

GVSU Dinner in Albania

May 13, 2017 All Day

Join current GVSU President Tom Haas, his wife Marcia, and other GVSU alumni in Tirana, Albania on 13 May, 2017. Fellow GVSU alumni are eager to welcome you to the lovely capital...

View all Events