Ellen Seljan

Associate Professor of Political Science and Department Chair

Ellen Seljan teaches courses on American politics, Congress, parties and interest groups, public policy, and research methods. Her research examines trends in public finance at the state and local levels of government. Her ongoing work analyzes the effects of fiscal institutions on state and local finances, as well as municipal tax capacity. She has published articles in State Politics and Policy Quarterly and the National Tax Journal. She previously taught at the University of South Carolina. 

Academic Credentials

PhD in Political Science, University of California, San Diego (2010), BA, Drew University (2004)



Spring 2021

POLS 350: Congressional Politics

T/TH 11:40 am - 1:10 pm

Constitutional foundations and the unfolding of various concepts of legislative power throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, and into the 21st century. The dynamics of Congress, its staffing, and how it and individual members manage different visions of legislative power. Other branches of government examined to illuminate the functioning and malfunctioning of the legislative branch.

Prerequisites: POLS 103 recommended

Restrictions: Sophomore standing required

POLS 400: Senior Thesis

Choosing a definitive topic and narrowing it; developing a research design, doing the research, submitting drafts, revising drafts, polishing final copy. Presenting thesis to political science faculty and seniors for critique, rewrite of thesis. Final form due at end of semester. Normally taken for 2 credits in both fall and spring semesters of senior year for a total of 4 credits. A deferred grade will be issued for the first semester of the yearlong series. When the full sequence is completed, the given grade applies to both semesters.

Prerequisites: POLS 102, POLS 103, and POLS 201

Restrictions: Sophomore standing required

Location: J.R. Howard Hall