Political Science and International Relations
The Department of Political Science and International Relations (PS&IR) was created in 2011 as one of the core departments of Antalya Bilim University (ABU). Since its creation PS&IR constantly expands and attracts academics from different countries and disciplines. Today the department has a mix of multinational established and young academics and it is considered as one of the most dynamic departments in Turkey. The department offers a unique interdisciplinary BA degree, which integrates research in political science and international relations. Our faculty covers a wide scope of topics that help students to understand key political ideas and trends that inform domestic and international processes, the role of state and non-state actors, dynamics of global politics, the rise of new powers, the challenges that have emerged due to globalization and various threats to security of states and the global community.
Our department responds to the needs of today’s learners, who live in a globalized world. Our mission is to offer internationally recognized study programs based on critical thinking and openness. Our goal is to equip our students with the skills required to join the global workforce as practitioners of politics and international relations or as academic scholars. Besides offering students the necessary skills for employment, our principle aim is to help our students to become active and engaged citizens who could figure out solutions to problems at local, national and international levels. Our students have so far completed traineeships in foreign embassies, Turkish public services, NGOs and the private sector and they have already secured places in international and domestic agencies and multinational companies. Our graduates have been accepted by prestigious universities in Europe, the US and Turkey to pursue their postgraduate studies.
At ABU we think beyond academic boundaries and our programs are interdisciplinary and flexible. At PS&IR we offer to students the opportunity to design 'major programs' and 'minor programs' by choosing courses from other departments and to tailor their studies according to their particular interests. At ABU students have the option of doing a major program from PS&IR and another department of their choice in order to prepare a strong portfolio that can help them pursue their career path. In addition, our programs pay particular attention on students’ methodological training. At PS&IR we provide advanced qualitative and quantitative data analysis courses and we encourage students to move beyond conventional research methods. During their four years of study our students learn both the theories and analytical frameworks that inform domestic and international politics and policies. Their exposition in different methodological approaches helps them to gain hands-on skills for pursuing original research in different fields of PS&IR.
The advantages of studying PS&IR at ABU
Teaching: At PS&IR we provide research-led teaching with emphasis on practical skills that our students can use later in their life in different work environments. Towards this direction students learn how to analyze different policies of international organizations and domestic agencies. The department also provides guidance and encourages students to do internships in order to apply the knowledge that they gain at ABU. In addition, several courses of the 3rd and 4th year are based on Problem-Based-Learning (PBL). PBL promotes active learning and it is centered on the investigation and resolution of contemporary real-world problems. By the end of their studies, our students develop critical thinking and transfer their knowledge to new situations. The extensive use of social media (e.g. blogging, infographics, data visualization) and project exercises equip them with creative skills.
SEPAM: SEPAM is our Centre for Social, Economic and Political Research and it organizes frequent seminars with guest speakers and specialists, who provide lectures and deep insights in contemporary domestic and international politics. Through the SEPAM seminars our students have the opportunity to meet established scholars and experts in different fields and to start building from their first year at ABU a network of academics and professionals, which can prove useful for their future career.
Exchange programs: ABU is an Erasmus university and PS&IR has established partnerships with many universities across Europe, where students can spend one semester or one year for studying abroad. Our department and international office are continuously working for increasing further our international partnerships and options for our students.
Research: At ABU we don’t treat our students as passive learners, but as emerging researchers and we include them in our active academic research. Our faculty participates in international research networks and our research attracts external funding. In collaboration with our faculty, our students engage in data collection and analysis, interviews and various other research techniques. This summer three of our students have travelled to the Netherlands with one of our faculty members, as junior research assistants for an international research project on immigration, which is co-directed by PS&IR.
Employment: PS&IR prepares students for employment in a very broad range of employers. After their graduation our students can pursue a career in the public sector (e.g Ministry of Foreign Affairs of their country, Foreign Trade Undersecretariat, Undersecretariat of Treasury and other senior government institutions). All our courses are taught in English and the practical skills we offer help students to prepare for national exams in state institutions. Upon their graduation our students have a wide skillset that allows them to offer rapid and comprehensive solutions and to use information technologies and are in high demand by the private sector (e.g banks, journalism, international companies and trade) and by Non-Governmental Organizations.
Friendly academic environment and social life: Our faculty and students come from America, East Asia, Africa, Europe and the Middle East. Our teachers have a culturally responsive pedagogy and embrace students’ different backgrounds. PS&IR helps students to realize the characteristics of different cultures and perspectives. Our faculty supports and participates in extra-curriculum activities, such as film projections, sports contests and music and food festivals. ABU offers a wide range of facilities that allow students to interact in a constructive manner. The strong friendships that our students make at ABU with learners from different countries are an invaluable asset for their future.