What is political science?

Political science is an extremely diverse field of study that cannot be clearly defined, as it includes many topics, such as the explanation of political behaviour (e.g. voting behaviour or political attitudes), the analysis of various political systems (e.g. party systems, forms of government) or international relations.

All three aspects of political science mentioned above are the focus of the political science studies at the University of Mannheim. To this end, we develop theories and hypotheses, i.e. assumptions that describe the context we expect. We then try to test these theories empirically, mostly on the basis of survey data or time series data. If you are interested in why some people tend to choose populist parties, why a world with nuclear weapons might actually be a safer world or why people in the USA behave so differently when voting, then studying political science is the right thing for you.

studying in mannheim

The political science studies at the University of Mannheim are characterised by several aspects. The University of Mannheim is a smaller university with few courses of study and small classes in political science, which enables good supervision and a pleasant learning environment in small courses. We enjoy first-class statistical training that conveys knowledge that other universities do not focus on. Since there are several social research institutes in Mannheim, there is a close link to research and teaching. On the one hand, we benefit from practical studies and, on the other hand, there are many opportunities for students to apply their knowledge as assistants or interns. If you are planning a semester abroad, you will get your money’s worth in Mannheim and have to decide between partner universities all over the world. In addition, leading international political scientists teach at the university and ensure excellent quality. This is precisely why the social sciences at the University of Mannheim lead the prestigious CHE ranking. Apart from the professional advantages, we also benefit from good supervision by the dean’s office. There you will find contact persons for your study programme, stays abroad and internship opportunities to help you with words and deeds.

Besides studying, there is no shortage of student life in Mannheim. From a wide range of sports, culture and music to awesome university parties, which take place every Thursday open-air in the Schneckenhof. Would you like to volunteer in addition to your studies? Then the University of Mannheim is the right place for you: You can choose between more than 50 initiatives, the political university groups and student representatives!

Please be aware that the BA Political Science requires a good knowledge in German since a good amount of the lectures will be held in German!

Important in your studies

Maths and English

Those two subjects shouldn’t make your hair stand on end. Because through the statistical focus, a basic understanding of mathematics is useful, but don’t worry – it’s not witchcraft. You should also be able to read and understand English texts, since about 90% of the literature is in English and due to the internationality of the university there are also courses in English.

Reading, Reading, Reading

Reading should give you a certain pleasure, as you will read a lot of texts during your studies.


The small courses offer many opportunities for discussion on political topics. So if you enjoy speaking and discussing, the wide range of seminars and the smaller number of lectures is perfect for you.


You wonder if a political science degree is the right choice for you? Would you like to get to know the University of Mannheim and find out more?

Then get in touch with Marlene and Rebecca, our university scouts for political science, who will be happy to show you around the campus and answer any open questions about your possible future course of study. 

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Further information

More detailed information on the course can be found on the faculty’s website.