Free Online Introductory and General Political Science Courses from Top Universities

About this article
Yale University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of California at Berkeley are just some of the universities that offer free online general political science courses. Topics covered include political science research skills, political thought, game theory and early feminist thinkers.
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Free Introductory and General Political Science Courses

Introductory and general political science courses are offered online for those interested in learning about the social sciences of geopolitics, political philosophy, nationalism, and more. There are text-based courses, while others revolve around video lectures.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Political science courses at MIT cover subjects such as quantitative research, comparative politics, and geopolitics. Also, students can study pluralism, sustainable development, and industrialization. These courses are offered at both the undergraduate and graduate level.

Yale University

Yale's intro to political philosophy course explores various political philosophies, through the study of major political texts and a look at various thinkers in the political field. Students will have access to previously filmed video lectures on topics such as philosophers and Kings, Constitutional government, democracy and participation, and Socratic citizenship.

University of California, Berkeley

UC Berkeley offers a political science course in the format of ten video lectures, available on YouTube and iTunes. These lectures are given by professor Alan David Ross.

The University of Notre Dame

This course centers around the relationship between the author of Frankenstein and her mother. Required textbooks include Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley: An Introduction and Vindication: A Life of Mary Wollstonecraft, by Lyndall Gordon.

Open University

These courses from Open University cover things like nationalism, secession, and crime. Students will learn about the uses of CCTV as a surveillance tool, how the United Kingdom is governed, nation-states, and national self-determination.

Free Online Introductory and General Political Science Courses At a Glance

Course & School Program Level Format Assignments Quizzes & Exams Downloadable
Quantitative Research in Political Science and Public Policy course from MIT Graduate Texts/lecture notes/study materials Yes Yes Yes
Quantitative Research Methods: Multivariate course from MIT Graduate Texts/lecture notes Yes Yes Yes
Introduction to Comparative Politics course from MIT Undergraduate Texts Yes Yes Yes
Political Science Laboratory course from MIT Undergraduate Texts/lecture slides/tools Yes Yes Yes
Reading Seminar in Social Science: The Geopolitics and Geoeconomics of Global Energy course from MIT Undergraduate Texts/lecture notes Yes Yes Yes
Introduction to Political Thought course from MIT Undergraduate Texts/lecture notes Yes Yes Yes
Citizenship and Pluralism course from MIT Graduate Texts Yes No Yes
Integrating Doctoral Seminar on Emerging Technologies course from MIT Graduate Texts/lecture notes Yes No Yes
Justice course from MIT Undergraduate Texts/reading questions/lecture notes/recitations Yes Yes Yes
Sustainable Development: Theory and Policy course from MIT Undergraduate/graduate Texts/lecture notes Yes No Yes
Environmental Politics and Policy course from MIT Undergraduate Texts/lecture notes Yes Yes Yes
The Rise and Fall of Democracy/Regime Control course from MIT Undergraduate/graduate Texts/videos/study materials Yes No Yes
Game Theory and Political Theory course from MIT Undergraduate/graduate Texts Yes Yes Yes
Economic Development, Policy Analysis and Industrialization course from MIT Graduate Texts Yes Yes Yes
Introduction to Political Philosophy course from Yale University Unspecified Video lectures No No Yes
Political Science 179 course from UC Berkeley Unspecified Video lectures No No Yes
Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley from the University of Notre Dame Unspecified Textbooks/weekly discussion questions Yes No Yes
Nationalism, Self-Determination and Secession course from Open University Intermediate Text Yes No Yes
The Politics of Devolution course from Open University Intermediate Text Yes No Yes
The Technology of Crime Control course from Open University Intermediate Text Yes No Yes

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Johns Hopkins University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MA in Public Management
      • Master of Arts in Government
      • Master of Liberal Arts
  • Online Programs Available
    2. American University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Public Administration and Policy
  • Online Programs Available
    3. Colorado Technical University

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • Doctor of Management - Global Leadership (Executive Format)
    Master's
      • Master of Business Administration - Global Leadership
      • Master of Science in Management - Public Administration
    Bachelor's
      • BS - Business Administration - Public Administration
  • Online Programs Available
    4. Kaplan University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MPA in Governmental Management
      • Master of Public Admin
      • MPA in Health Care Management
      • MPA in General MPA
    Bachelor's
      • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership
  • Online Programs Available
    5. Concordia University Portland

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Science - Social Studies
  • Online Programs Available
    6. University of Delaware

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Public Administration
  • Online Programs Available
    7. Northcentral University

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology - Therapy with Military Families
    Master's
      • Master of Science in Organizational Leadership - Public Administration
  • Online Programs Available
    8. Penn Foster High School

    Program Options

    High School Diploma
      • Penn Foster High School with Early College Courses
      • HS Diploma
  • Online Programs Available
    9. Southern New Hampshire University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MBA in Public Administration
      • International MBA in Criminal Justice
      • MA in History
      • MA in History: American History
      • MA in History: Public History
      • MA in History: Military History
    Bachelor's
      • BA Political Science
      • BA in Public Administration
      • BA in History - American History
      • BA General Studies
      • BA in History
      • BA in History - European History
    Associate's
      • AA in Liberal Arts
  • Online Programs Available
    10. Grand Canyon University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Public Administration - Government and Policy
    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor of Arts in History for Secondary Education (ITL)

Featured Schools

The schools and programs listed below are popular educational options, and tuition varies based on program and location

Johns Hopkins University

  • MA in Public Management
  • Master of Arts in Government
  • Master of Liberal Arts

What is your highest level of education?

American University

  • Master of Public Administration and Policy

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Colorado Technical University

  • Doctor of Management - Global Leadership (Executive Format)
  • Master of Business Administration - Global Leadership
  • BS - Business Administration - Public Administration

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Kaplan University

  • MPA in Governmental Management
  • Master of Public Admin
  • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership

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Concordia University Portland

  • Master of Science - Social Studies

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University of Delaware

  • Master of Public Administration

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Northcentral University

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology - Therapy with Military Families
  • Master of Science in Organizational Leadership - Public Administration

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Penn Foster High School

  • Penn Foster High School with Early College Courses
  • HS Diploma

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