Freshmen Advising

Hello Class of 2024,

Welcome to Boston University’s Department of Political Science. Below are several resources to help acquaint you with the department’s programs as well as help you register for courses!

The Undergraduate Academic Advisor for Political Science is Jess Kupczak. You can schedule an appointment with her here or email her directly at with any questions you have about the majors, minors, advanced programs, internship opportunities, study abroad experiences, or career goals.

Class Registration:

  • Please be sure to read through the CAS Registration Checklist
  • Familiarize yourself with your major requirements for either the Political Science major or the Philosophy and Political Science joint major
  • Sign up for 4 academic courses worth 4 credits each
    • Be sure to balance your schedule with your major, minor, HUB, foreign language, and writing requirements
    • A typical schedule for a first-year student looks something like:
      • PO Intro (ex. PO 111, 141, 151, 171, 191)
      • WR 120 (or First-Year Writing Seminar equivalent)
      • Foreign Language course (ex. LS 111)
      • HUB course of interest (ex. SO 100 – Intro to Sociology, EC 101 – Intro to Microeconomic Analysis, PS 101 – Intro to Psychology)

This summer, we will be hosting two live Zoom sessions, “Information and Insights: Political Science” where you can learn more about the department’s offerings and hear from current students.

These sessions will be held:

  • Wednesday, June 17, 2020 @ 2 pm  – Link will come out soon
  • Wednesday, July 8, 2020 @ 11 am  – Link will come out soon


Pre-Law Students:

Pre-Law track students do not need to take any specific courses to be considered “pre-law”

  • Please sign up for pre-law advising’s mailing list
  • Please make an appointment with pre-law advising by contacting



My writing seminar is full, how do I sign up?

Please be sure to check all WR 120 sections offered in Fall 2020. To do this, go to the Student Link, click the orange “Academics” tab, click “Registration,” go to the Fall 2020 part of the page, click “Reg Options,” click “Register for Class,” type in CAS WR 120, and hit “go”. The first page of WR 120 sections may be full, but there are plenty more available seats. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Continue Search From” to find a section with open seats.


I’m registered for a lecture section, am I all set?

It depends, some courses will require a lecture and a discussion section, while other courses are labeled independent and do not need any other sections. When registering for some classes, you will see this note:

What is the difference between a lecture and a discussion section?

Lectures are usually held in bigger classrooms with 100+ people where the professor will conduct the class and present, discussions are held in smaller classrooms, are split into smaller sections of about 20-30 people, and are typically taught by advanced graduate students where there might be supplementary material, reading assignments, or quizzes.


What is FY101, should I sign up for it?

Yes! FY101 is a 1 credit (non-academic) pass/fail course that is intended to introduce you to Boston University, the city of Boston, and the college experience. You will get to know the other students in your class through a variety of activities and games, and your instructors and peer mentors will provide you with the resources you need to navigate your time at BU!


I heard about the BA/MA in Political Science program, how can I apply?

Great! You can read about the requirements for the program here. Students apply to the program in the fall of their junior year and need to have at least 112 credits before entering their senior year. Typically, if you take 4 courses (4 credits each) each semester, you will need to take 4 extra courses (either by overloading, taking summer classes, or using your AP exams) to be on track with the BA/MA program. You can set up a meeting with the undergraduate academic advisor, Jess Kupczak ( to discuss this further.