Internships in Political Science

Internships give students opportunities to strengthen and diversify their academic preparation by working in complementary professional environments.

political science internship opportunity


Students may benefit from internships in numerous ways, the most important of which is gaining firsthand experience about how their academic preparation relates to actual work settings. Through internships, students may discover new areas of interest, and can gain insights about subject matter in which they wish to advance their academic study. Some internships may qualify students for academic credit applicable toward the bachelor's degree.

Internship Credit Enrollment Information

During the Academic Year (Fall, Winter, and Spring quarters), students can earn internship credits through a faculty-supervised internship course (POL 192A or 192B). Enrollment in POL 192A or 192B is based on approval of your application materials. You must secure an internship independently before applying. The application is due the first week of instruction for the quarter (see below for the Spring 2022 deadline) in which you plan to earn internship credits. 

Internship credits cannot be given retroactively for past internship experiences.  POL 192A/B are not repeatable for credit.  Per the College of Letters and Science, a maximum of six units may be counted towards major requirements. Not all majors accept internship units. Please check with your major advisor before engaging in any programs that affect your degree progress

Applications are reviewed by the Faculty Supervisor. If approved, you will receive registration information from your advisor. Once registered, you'll be added to a Canvas page with your course assignments and the Faculty Supervisor will connect with you. You will also need to select the appropriate number of units through Schedule Builder. There is no weekly course (in-person or virtual) that you need attend for POL 192A or 192B. The workload will be adjusted appropriately to fit the number of units being completed at the time. Both POL 192A and 192B are P/NP (Pass/No Pass) grading. By completing assigned work of passing quality, you will earn a 'P' grade.

Internship Enrollment Eligibility
  • Please check-in with a Political Science advisor to learn about how your internship may apply towards your major. Eligibility criteria for enrolling in POL 192A/B are as follows:

  • Completed 84+ units (upper division standing).
  • Secured internship related to Political Science/Public Service – we will let you know if your internship is not eligible based on the job description.
  • Be interning for the appropriate number of hours-to-units as detailed above, PPS students are required to complete 6+ units of internship total.
  • Submit completed application to be reviewed by Faculty Supervisor, including a job description
Internship Credit Qualifications

Per UC Davis Academic Senate, an internship may qualify for academic credit if:

  • Students are able to apply the concepts and methods of one or more academic disciplines to an appropriate work experience or field setting;
  • Students are able to grow intellectually by extension of the general intellectual tools of one or more academic disciplines to the workplace;
  • The Faculty Advisor is able to assess the quality of academic work that the student completes; and
  • Work that is clerical in nature or involves routine maintenance or service responsibilities does not qualify for academic credit.
What's the difference between 192A and 192B? 

POL 192A and 192B allow students to earn a range of units for participation in an internship, for up to two quarters. Students earning internship credit for the first time will enroll in POL 192A. Internship units are based on the number of hours worked per week in one quarter. Currently, both POL 192A and 192B are set to variable units, meaning students will need to work for 3 hours a week for each unit of internship earned.

POL 192A - 3 units= 9 hours a week, 4 units= 12 hours a week, 5 units = 15 hours a week, 6 units = 18 hours a week

POL 192B - 1 unit= 3 hours a week, 2 units = 6 hours a week, 3 units= 9 hours a week

Political Science- Public Service Students Major Specific Information

Political Science - Public Service students are required to complete an internship and research experience as a part of the major requirements. 6 internship units are required in total. 6 units of internship equals 18 hours/internship work per week for one quarter OR split between two quarters utilizing POL 192A and 192B.

  • POL 193 (2 units) - Political Science-Public Service students also have a required research component; only PPS students can complete POL 193. POL 193 is recommended to be completed in conjunction with POL 192A/POL 192B but can be completed in the term following. Please indicate on your form or in email if you would like POL 193 credits! POL 193 will require academic assignments to be completed throughout the quarter. There is no in-person course for POL 193; assignments will be monitored through Canvas. The Faculty Supervisor will assign and grade these assignments. POL 193 is offered for a letter grade.
Internship Application Information

If you are aiming to enroll in POL 192A/B or POL 193 credits this Spring 2022, the due date for applications is Friday, April 1, 2022. Submit your completed applications on-before the deadline. Please review this carefully and contact the Political Science Department, at poladvising@ucdavis.edu, if you have any questions.

To apply for this class, please email the following documents as attachments to POL_192.1l3dii850rtpzhum@u.box.com.  Remember to include your name in the subject line and on the attached file titles.

  1. POL 192A/B application
  2. Description of the Internship organization
  3. Description of the assigned job duties, AND
  4. number of hours planned to intern

All four items must be submitted in order to review your application.

Alternative Internship Programs

Another way to earn internship credits are through University programs such as the UC Center Sacramento Program (UCCS) and the Washington Program (UCDC). Please check in with a Political Science advisor to learn how these programs may count towards your major or minor requirements prior to your participation. If you have any direct questions about the programs, we recommend reviewing their websites and connecting with their staff.  If you are enrolled in UCCS/UCDC you do not need to submit an application to the Department for these credits.

Students who wish to participate in an internship and not earn academic credit may apply for transcript notation through the Internship and Career Center. The ICC’s requirements are different; please refer to the ICC website for more information.