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The Department of Political Science and International Studies was established on October 6th 1945 concurrent with national liberation. At that time, the Department of Political Science and Department of Diplomacy were established separately in Yonhee College and were the beginning of what came to be the Department of Political Science and International Studies (PSIS).
When Yonhee College was promoted to Yonsei University in August 1946, it was established as a department of political science and international studies at the Munhakwon (now the college of liberal arts) and started its new career. Since then, the Department of Political Science and international studies has been reorganized several times, and now it has become a major department of college of social science.

Yonsei PSIS strives to foster budding talent in a wide stretch of fields, through teaching the theories and practice of politics in general, and advancing research on rapidly changing domestic and international issues.
Our educational raison d'etre lies in furnishing systematic training in various methodologies and theories that scientifically explore and interpret political phenomena, not only for prospective researchers, but also aspiring professionals in the fields of practical politics and diplomacy.
Therefore, the undergraduate program’s educational direction and purpose is to cultivate in its students the insight and professional capacity for analyzing political phenomena. In order to effectively achieve this educational purpose, Yonsei PSIS critically examines existing theories on domestic politics and international phenomena, in addition to espousing an unwavering commitment to introducing and exploring new theories.

Department of Political Science and International Studies was beginning with 47 students on november 26 1945 right after national liberation. and 4 years later 1950 we produced 44 of first graduates, and in the meantime department of political science and international studies have been producing about 3,600 outstanding graduates. The graduates of this department are leading academic circles in various fields such as politics, officer, media, legal and business circles.

In the immediate wake of national liberation, the Department of Political Science and International Studies accepted its first class of 47 students on November 26th 1945. Four years thereafter, in 1950 we produced the first graduating class of 44 students, and since that time the Department of Political Science and International Studies has produced about 3,600 outstanding graduates.

The graduates of this department are leading members of academic domains in various fields to include politics, civil service, media, legal and business circles. Currently, the department consists of 16 professors, 400 undergraduate students, and about 150 graduate students including Master and Ph.D. courses. In particular, the department has established and supported the ‘Hwabaek-sil’ (화백실- a dedicated study class for those preparing to take the examination for entrance into the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) to improve the learning ability of students who want to be diplomats, and has since boasted a high acceptance rate. In addition, we hold an annual community retreat to foster the community spirit that lives on in our department’s half-century of tradition. There are also autonomous student organizations, such as the student council, academic society activities, and various club activities.

Details and Areas

In our department, the comprehensive and extensive education of political science is divided into five sub-domains, including political ideology and theory, comparative politics, international politics, foreign policy and diplomatic history, and Korean politics. The five fields are inextricably linked together to form a systematic synthesis. However, students are encouraged to focus on exploring one or two of the five sub-fields.

Political Theory
This course discusses the political ideologies of East and West by period and issue using political thought and theory fundamental to political science in general while also learning the specifics of measurement and investigative methodology.
Comparative Politics
Comparative Politics focuses on the theory and methodology used in comparative political research and the political economy, regional politics, and electoral politics in detail.
International Relations
IR covers basic theories of international relations, international politics, international law, international organizations, and international conflict in detail. It also covers the theory and history of foreign policy, regional and international topics, international organizations, and international conflicts from a diplomatic point of view.
Korean Politics
Korean Politics deals with the overall political landscape of Korea and teaches Korean political parties, parliamentary makeup, elections, political economy, and North Korean politics based on historical review.

Prospects and Career paths after graduation

Upon completion of this course, you will receive a degree in political diplomacy, and after graduation, you will be able to work in a wide range of fields to include academic, political, diplomatic, and international organizations, journalism, government service, law, and business. More than 80% of the Yonsei graduates in the National Assembly are from this department, and during the election for the 16th National Assembly, 12 of 17 electees from Yonsei University were from this department. Also more than 70% of the Yonsei alumni in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade are from this department. 170 PSIS graduates are also active in the media world, which has recently been receiving spotlight. Above all else, this department has been a leader in the academic world having produced 190 political scientists.

Student Activities

The existence of student autonomous groups and activities such as the Korean Politics Society, Political Economy Society, Philosophy Society, Political Thought Society, International Politics Society, PSIS Press Corps, PSIS Community Retreat, and the Korea/Japan Interaction Society (Yonsei University & Waseda University) contributes greatly to the development of students’ well rounded refinement and knowledge. In addition, to assist in PSIS students entrance into civil service, we operate an exam research room, hwabaek-sil, for those students who are preparing to take any of the three civil service examinations.