Courses in Political Science
PSCI 0103, PSCI 0109, PSCI/IPEC 0304 and three electives in comparative politics or international relations. At least one elective should be a 0400-level senior seminar in comparative politics or international relations. See eligible electives. PSCI/IPEC 0304 must be taken at Middlebury College. Majors are encouraged to take IPEC 0240 prior to PSCI/IPEC 0304.
Courses in Economics
ECON 0150 or ECON 0250 (only one will count towards this requirement), ECON 0155 or ECON 0255 (only one will count towards this requirement), ECON 0210, IPEC0240 (formerly ECON 0240) and two electives with an international orientation. One elective should be a 0400-level senior seminar. See eligible electives. Majors must take a minimum of five courses in economics, regardless of credits earned at the secondary level (see the Advanced Placement policy for detailed information); at least four economics courses meeting the major requirements must be taken at Middlebury College, including the 0400-level seminar. Majors are encouraged to take IPEC 0240 prior to PSCI/IPEC 0304. Majors are strongly encouraged to take ECON 210 prior to any 400-level seminars.
Majors must achieve the language department’s standard of linguistic competence before going abroad or must demonstrate equivalent competence in a language taught at Middlebury College through a language placement exam. Foreign language study while at Middlebury College is strongly encouraged.
Term or Year Abroad
Under normal circumstances, this will be completed at one of the Middlebury schools abroad. Majors should complete PSCI 0103, PSCI 0109, ECON 0150 or ECON 0250, ECON 0155 or ECON 0255, and ECON 0210 before going abroad. Majors are encouraged, but not required, to take IPEC 0240 and PSCI/IPEC 0304 before studying abroad.
Given the extraordinary circumstances around the pandemic, the IPE faculty have agreed to waive the study abroad requirement for the classes of 2021, 2021.5, 2022, 2022.5 and 2023 irrespective of reason. Should the study abroad programs run and IPE majors participate, majors will still be able to apply for transfer credits in the usual manner. Students whose programs are cancelled or who opt to remain at Middlebury are encouraged, but not required, to take courses at Middlebury that might provide some engagement with the region of focus originally intended. This might include taking an additional upper-level language course (e.g., 300 level or higher), a course specifically about the region in any department or pursue an independent study with a regional focus. The IPE program will also consider summer study abroad transfer credits, for the classes of 2021.5 and 2022 only, that meet the College’s requirements for credit and are sufficiently relevant to International Politics and Economics for majors who pursued a study abroad experience in the summer of 2021
Students must take a minimum of 5 courses in each discipline. See the Advanced Placement policy for detailed information.
Winter Term Courses
Winter Term courses count towards the major only if they are listed on the IPEC Courses prior to winter term registration. No more than one Winter Term elective in economics and no more than one Winter Term elective in political science may count toward the major.
Double Majors and Minors
Because of the complex and interdisciplinary nature of the International Politics and Economics major, IPE students are strongly advised not to pursue an additional major. In addition, IPEC majors may not minor in either economics or political science. Students are permitted to major or minor in their language of focus for the IPE major; however, they may not double count courses for the IP&E major and the language major or minor
Declaring a Major
To declare a major, students need to fill out both a major declaration form and an advising wizard form. Discuss your plan for completing the major (outlined on the advising wizard form) with your advisor who can be from either the political science or economics department. Have both your advisor and the Director of International Politics and Economics sign the major declaration form. Turn in one copy of both forms to the coordinator of International Politics and Economics. Turn in one copy of the major declaration form to the Registrar’s Office.
First Semester Senior Year
Early in the first semester of your senior year, fill out both a degree audit sheet and an advising wizard form. Print out a copy of your unofficial transcript and evidence that any courses from abroad have been approved for IPE major credit (such as an email approval from a chair or director, or information from the programs abroad office). Bring these items to the Director of International Politics and Economics no later than a week before registration for classes for your final semester. Once signed, turn in one copy of the advising wizard form and the degree audit sheet to the coordinator of International Politics and Economics. Turn in one copy of the degree audit sheet to the Registrar’s Office.
In addition to their 12 required courses, qualifying students can choose to write a senior thesis. To launch a thesis project, students must obtain a thesis advisor in both political science and economics, and submit to their advisors a thesis prospectus for formal approval. To identify suitable thesis topics, it is highly recommended that IPE thesis candidates begin consulting with the potential advisors during their junior year. For details, deadlines, and a timetable, see the Honors Thesis page.
Honors Thesis Requirements
The determination of honors, high honors, and highest honors is based on the following:
- The level of the grade achieved on the thesis.
- The level of the average grade received in all Middlebury College courses that count toward the IPE major.
Honors candidates must have the following:
- An IPEC course average of 3.3 and a thesis grade of B+ to attain honors.
- An IPEC course average of at least 3.5 and a thesis grade of A- to attain high honors.
- An IPEC course average of at least 3.7 and a thesis grade of A to attain highest honors.
Note: Thesis grades do not count in the calculation of the GPA for honors, and a thesis cannot be pursued as a fifth course during any term.