Public Service (BA)


Southern New Hampshire University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Public Service  for individuals who have completed an Associate's Degree in Fire Science, Human Services, Criminal Justice or Paralegal Studies. This two-plus-two degree program transfers in 60 credits of the Associate’s degree as a block, and is designed to be completed in two years of full-time study.

Students pursuing this degree have the opportunity to prepare for a variety of public service careers while concentrating on various social science disciplines.  The program is directed towards students who wish to acquire the skills to pursue an entry-level position on a local, state or federal level; and for public professionals who wish to gain the confidence and education necessary to advance in their chosen careers.

The university offers an array of concentrations, allowing students to tailor programs of study to best suit their career goals and to prepare them for leadership positions. Options include accounting, business, communication, leadership, law and politics, psychology and education.

Evening and weekend courses are available.

Required Core Courses

General Education Program

Public Service Major Courses

POL-210: American Politics
This course offers a broad introduction to the structure and function of the American political system at the national level, including the roles played by the president, Congress, the courts, the bureaucracy, political parties, interest groups and the mass media in the policy- making and electoral processes. This course places special emphasis on how the efforts of the framers of the Constitution to solve what they saw as the political problems of their day continue to shape American national politics in ours.
POL-305: State and Local Government
This course explores the structure and function of state and local governments in the United States, with an emphasis on their roles as partners with the federal government in a system of cooperative federalism. Students spend much of the course playing and critiquing their own performance in Camelot, a role-playing simulation game in which they assume the roles of civic leaders, representatives of organized interests, and other interested parties in a hypothetical city to try to resolve controversial policy dilemmas like the ones with which local communities are confronted routinely in the United States. This course is not offered online.
GOV-110 or POL-210
PSY-108: Introduction to Psychology
This course provides students an introduction to the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Students prepare for more advanced concepts in upper-level Psychology courses by learning the basics of how to evaluate research and exploring various areas of specialization within the discipline. Offered every semester.
SOC-112: Introduction to Sociology
Is one's identity individually or socially constructed? Are all stereotypes invalid or can there be value in generalizations? Is globalization widening the gaps or homogenizing the world? In this course, students will grapple with these essential questions in examining the world through the lens of a sociologist. Sociology offers an empirically-based methodology for critically evaluating society-from issues of individual agency to the roots of global institutions. Culture, norm stratification, systems, structure, social institutions, social change, the organization of social behavior and its relationship to society and social conditions are emphasized. Students will challenge their own preconceived notions and evaluate these constructs in terms of their relevancy to contemporary issues and problems.
SOC-213: Sociology of Social Problems
Students in this course analyze contemporary social problems in America and other societies. Issues include economic limitations, class and poverty, race and ethnic relations, sexism, ageism, and environmental and population concerns. Offered every year.
SOC-318: Sustainable Communities
How do we build a society fit for living? This course looks to the field of environmentally sustainable community development (ESCD) for answers to this question. Students explore the principles and practices of ESCD using pattern-mapping of community needs, site visits, and other experiential learning tools that turn communities into classrooms, and bring the challenge of building environmentally sustainable communities to life. In the process, students identify assumptions that lead to unsustainable social practices, and develop the skills necessary to help create livable local landscapes and sustainable local futures through individual and community action.
ENV-219 or SCI-219 or SOC-112

SCI ELE - One Science Elective
LIT ELE - One Literature Elective (200 Level)
FAS/LIT/PHL ELE - Choose one elective from FAS, LIT or PHL courses

POL ELE - Politics Elective (300+) Minimum Credits: 3
Four Social and Behavioral Science Electives (Choose from ECO, POL, PSY or SOC) Minimum Credits: 3 *

*All courses must be in the same discipline (i.e. all ECO)

History Electives (Select one)

HIS-109: Western Civilization to 1500
This course offers an overview of the major developments in Western history, from antiquity to the discovery of the New World. Students will examine the ancient world, Greece, Rome, the European medieval period and the Italian Renaissance. Required for majors in history and social studies education with a concentration in history. Writing Intensive Course.
HIS-110: Western Civilization since 1500
This course traces the growth of Western history from the 16th century and the rise of the nation-state through the modern era. The ideologies and political developments that shaped modern Europe receive careful study. Required for majors in history and social studies education with a concentration in history. Writing Intensive Course.
HIS-113: United States History I: 1607-1865
The first half of the United States history survey courses covers the period from the founding of Jamestown to the end of the Civil War. The development of regionalism and its effect on the coming of the Civil War provides the framework for the investigation. Required for majors in history and social studies education with a concentration in history.
HIS-114: United States History II: 1865-Present
The second half of the United States history survey course covers the period following the Civil War. The economic, political and ideological developments that allowed the United States to attain a position of the world leadership are closely examined. Required for majors in History and Social Studies Education with a concentration in History.

Fine Arts Elective (Select one)

FAS-201: Introduction to Humanities I
This course offers vocabulary, understanding and appreciation of the visual arts in their cultural contexts in history, religion, literature, music and ideas. It focuses on the achievements of ancient Greece and Rome, the medieval period and the Renaissance while also exploring related issues in non-European cultures. May be taken independently of FAS-202.
FAS-202: Introduction to Humanities II
This course offers vocabulary, understanding and appreciation of the visual arts in their cultural contexts in history, religion, literature, music and ideas. It focuses on the cultural periods of the Baroque, the Enlightenment, Romanticism and Early Modernism while also exploring related issues in non-European cultures. May be taken independently of FAS-201.
FAS-370: American Art
This is a course will introduce students to the unique artistic tradition of the United States from Colonial times to World War II. In addition to studying masterworks by the likes of Copley, Cole, Church, Homer, Sargent, and Hopper, students will engage with issues such as the construction of an American identity, the role of the fine arts in American society, and the tensions of class, gender, race, and ethnicity in American art. As such the course will function as a vibrant retelling of American history as revealed in its visual production.
MUS-223: Appreciation and History of Music
This course introduces students to the scope and history of Western art music, with emphasis on music of the Baroque, Classical, Romantic and Modern periods. It provides vocabulary, concepts and aural skills that allow listeners to hear with greater discernment and appreciation. Topics include composers, styles, instrumentation, form, texture and cultural contexts.

Economics Elective (Select one)

ECO-201: Microeconomics
This course examines the role of economic systems in allocating scarce resources to satisfy the needs and wants of individual members of a society. After a brief exposure to alternative economic systems, the focus becomes the nature and performance of American capitalism. Primary emphasis is placed upon the development of models that explain the behavior of consumers, producers and resource suppliers in various market structures.
MAT-130, 140, 210, 240 or MAT-106 & MAT-206
ECO-202: Macroeconomics
This course explores the manner in which the overall levels of output, income, employment and prices are determined in a capitalist economy. The focus is on the forces that act to shape these factors and determine their fluctuations. The role of government fiscal and monetary policy in influencing the level of economic activity is also a major area of study. The impact of international transactions on the domestic economy also is discussed.
MAT-130, 140, 210, 240 or MAT-106 & MAT-206

University Accreditation

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Contact Us

Office Hours
Monday - Friday: 8 am to 4:30 pm

Phone: 603.645.9611
Fax: 603.645.9693