Ahmedabad University - A Liberal Education

Social and Political Sciences

The major in Social and Political Sciences or SPS at Ahmedabad University is envisioned as a truly interdisciplinary programme that goes beyond traditional disciplinary categories such as history, politics, sociology and economics. It is designed to train students to critically analyse the relationships between contemporary society, politics, economy and culture. The SPS major addresses the urgent need for well-informed professionals with the societal insights, historical consciousness, critical analytical skills and methodological training required to engage meaningfully with complex socio-political realities of the 21st century and to design and implement solutions.

Students will explore rich theoretical questions with an eye towards applying their insights to the problems of contemporary society, such as: What is the responsibility of the modern state towards its citizens? What are the values of a liberal democracy, and how are they realized or undermined? How do social structures influence individual experiences of power and inequality? How are social identities constructed and how do they shape understandings and contestations relating to gender, race, class and caste? In what ways have new media technologies redefined the construction of the self and society? What are the connections between the processes of globalization, transnational institutions and local phenomena? What are the claims of a free market society and how does it operate in practice? Is inequality an inevitable outcome of modern capitalist societies? By engaging with such questions, the coursework will take students through key themes, influential thinkers and crucial debates in various social science disciplines. Students will be equipped with skills in quantitative and qualitative methods of data analysis, case study and comparative research, archival and document analysis, and participant observation. Furthermore, course activities and assignments will require students to examine how abstract ideas specifically relate to the worlds they inhabit, and the possibilities that exist for engaging with the forces that are shaping their society. 

 will take eight theory courses, a sequence of three methods courses, and six Major electives.

The Social and Political Sciences Major (which includes  GER courses, eight theory courses, a sequence of three methods courses, and six major electives) is designed to equip students with a basic understanding of how to apply social science analysis to contemporary economic, political and social problems:

Domain Knowledge and Application:

On completion of the major, the student will be able to:

  • analyse intersections of society, state, culture, and economy;
  • understand how the contemporary world is shaped by historical processes;
  • demonstrate familiarity with key social science concepts and frameworks;
  • analyse the relationship between knowledge production and power relations in society;
  • identify and analyse social processes, mechanisms and institutions; and
  • frame a research question, identify suitable types of evidence, gather and interpret quantitative and qualitative data.

Engagement with society:

On completion of the major, the student will be able to:

  • use problem-solving approaches to bridge the gap between knowledge and application; and
  • connect their personal experiences with larger social structures and phenomena.

Personal skills:

On completion of the major, the student will be able to:

  • design and carry out independent study and collaborative projects;
  • engage in academic reasoning and argumentation, and present their analysis using both conventional and digital modes of presentation.

Ahmedabad University also recognises that career options for young graduates are becoming more diverse, and therefore places emphasis on the skills required to innovate and succeed in a fast-changing economy. Students majoring in SPS will be able to pursue higher studies in disciplines such as anthropology, development studies, international studies, political science, sociology and urban planning. In addition to academics, students will have acquired the required skills to pursue careers in journalism, law, new media, the development sector and in civil services.  
 

Major Must Knows

Offered by School of Arts and Sciences
Programmes Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
Degree Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
Minimum Programme Credits 120
Minimum Major Credits 60
   
Social and Political Sciences is also offered as a MINOR


Curriculum Structure (Bachelor of Arts Honours Programme)