Department of Political Studies and Governance

Political Science modules are offered in various undergraduate qualifications such as Bachelor of Arts (Extended and Mainstream) and Bachelor of Social Sciences (Extended and Mainstream).

Knowledge of political science can help us to gain insight into questions such as:

  • Is the African Union – similar to the European Union – is moving towards political and economic integration on the African continent?
  • Is the United Nations is a world government?
  • What exactly are foreign policy and diplomacy?
  • Is Marxism still relevant in the 21st century?
  • What tools and methodologies could we use in political risk forecasting and strategic planning?
  • What do the concepts of good governance and accountable government mean for South Africa?
  • Should public participation be more than casting your vote during the general elections every five years?
  • What could be done to ensure better service delivery at local government level?
  • Is peace and sustainable development in Africa a feasible ideal?
  • What political role is South Africa playing in Africa and internationally?
  • How do authoritarian regimes work? Where do they come from?
  • How does presidential leadership style affect South Africa’s foreign policy?
  • Is South Africa a democracy? How do we know?

What do we stand for?

The department is pursuing excellence through quality teaching, research and community engagement. As far as tuition is concerned, we are committed to innovative and relevant programmes on national, regional, African and global issues.

What areas do we focus on?

Political Dynamics

Political theory and ideology; government systems, processes and regimes; governance; electoral politics; local government and service delivery; co-operative government; political development and transformation; democratisation; political economy; gender politics; strategic political planning; and political risk analysis.

International Relations

International Relations theory; globalisation and world politics; foreign policy and diplomacy; international organisations; international law; international political economy; African politics; and international conflict, security and strategic studies.

What career opportunities do these courses present?

Courses in Political Science in combination with other subjects offer career opportunities in the following sectors or institutions:

Journalism; public sector (eg. the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, Department of Trade and Industry); security and intelligence community; Independent Electoral Commission; provincial and local government institutions; non-governmental organisations and development sectors; research institutions (eg. Human Sciences Research Council, Africa Institute of SA); political parties, trade unions and community based organisations; private sector (eg. political analysis, security analysis, political risk consultancy).

Contact Us

The Department of Political Science
University of the Free State
PO Box 339


Prof Hussein Solomon
Tel: +27 51 401 9454


T: +27 51 401 2240 or

Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Neliswa Emeni-Tientcheu: +27 51 401 2536
Phyllis Masilo: +27 51 401 9683

Humanities photo next to contact block

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