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Political Scientists

Study the origin, development, and operation of political systems. May study topics, such as public opinion, political decision-making, and ideology. May analyze the structure and operation of governments, as well as various political entities. May conduct public opinion surveys, analyze election results, or analyze public documents.   (O'Net 19-3094.00)

 
Reported job titles:   Deputy Director, Government Affairs Researcher, Government Affairs Specialist, International Affairs Vice President, Local Governance and Citizen Participation Specialist, Policy Officer   (view all job titles)
 
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    Wages
    for Political Scientists
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    No wage data for this occupation.
     


    Employment Trends
    for Political Scientists
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    No trend data for this occupation.
     


    Industries of Employment
    for Political Scientists
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    No industries of employment data for this occupation.
     


    Tasks
    for Political Scientists
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  • Teach political science.
     
  • Disseminate research results through academic publications, written reports, or public presentations.
     
  • Identify issues for research and analysis.
     
  • Develop and test theories, using information from interviews, newspapers, periodicals, case law, historical papers, polls, and/or statistical sources.
     
  • Maintain current knowledge of government policy decisions.
     
  • Collect, analyze, and interpret data such as election results and public opinion surveys; report on findings, recommendations, and conclusions.
     
  • Interpret and analyze policies, public issues, legislation, and/or the operations of governments, businesses, and organizations.
     
  • Evaluate programs and policies, and make related recommendations to institutions and organizations.
     
  • Write drafts of legislative proposals, and prepare speeches, correspondence, and policy papers for governmental use.
     
  • Forecast political, economic, and social trends.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated July 2005
     


    Knowledge
    for Political Scientists
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  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
     
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
     
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
     
  • History and Archeology - Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
     
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
     
  • Communications and Media - Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.
     
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
     
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
     
  • Foreign Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
     
  • Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated July 2005
     


    Skills
    for Political Scientists
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  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
     
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
     
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
     
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
     
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
     
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
     
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
     
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
     
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
     
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated June 2010
     


    Abilities
    for Political Scientists
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  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
     
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
     
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
     
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
     
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
     
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
     
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
     
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
     
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
     
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated July 2005
     


    Work Activities
    for Political Scientists
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  • Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
     
  • Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
     
  • Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
     
  • Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
     
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
     
  • Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
     
  • Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
     
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
     
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
     
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated July 2005
     


    Interests
    for Political Scientists
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  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
     
  • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
     
  • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated June 2008
     


    Work Styles
    for Political Scientists
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  • Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
     
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
     
  • Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
     
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
     
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
     
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
     
  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
     
  • Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
     
  • Innovation - Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
     
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
     
    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated July 2005
     


    State of Vermont License Information
    that may be required for Political Scientists
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    No state licenses listed for this occupation.
     


    Education and Training Requirements
    for Political Scientists
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  • Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed
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  • Education: Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).
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  • Training: Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.
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  • Experience: Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.
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    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists  updated July 2005
     


    Schools
    offering instructional programs related to Political Scientists
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      Related Instructional Programs
     
    • American Government and Politics (United States).
     
    • Canadian Government and Politics.
     
    • International Policy Analysis. (NEW)
     
    • International Relations and Affairs.
     
    • International Relations and National Security Studies, Other (NEW)
     
    • International/Global Studies.
     
    • National Security Policy Studies. (NEW)
     
    • Political Economy. (NEW)
     
    • Political Science and Government, General.
     
    • Political Science and Government, Other.
     
    • Public Policy Analysis, General.
     
     Search for schools offering these programs at
     
     
     
    source: National Center for Education Statistics 2000 Classification of Instructional Programs .
     


    Other Resources
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  • Labor Exchange Information
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  • Look for statewide information over the latest 12 months for Political Scientists.
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  • Occupational Outlook Handbook
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    source: Occupational Information Network: Political Scientists 
     

     
     
     
    Vermont.gov State of Vermont Department of Labor