The Department of Political Science offers undergraduates the opportunity to study all aspects of politics using cutting-edge technical and theoretical tools. Our courses are animated by longstanding problems related to the use of power, its rightful exercise by governments and individual actors, and the institutions that affect how that power is exercised. Reflecting the breadth of the discipline, we offer a range of classes, including courses on elections and electoral politics; international political economy; justice and the state; and comparative analyses of political institutions across states.
A major in political science thus exposes students to the primary themes of the discipline: American politics, comparative politics, international politics, judicial politics, political methodology and political theory. A major in political science can prepare students well for professional training and advanced study in law, business, education, journalism, policy analysis, political science, public administration, social work and urban planning. Political science graduates enter careers in business; federal, state and local government; the media; and nonprofit organizations.
Because political science is a broad discipline, students often choose to combine the major with such related fields as African and African-American studies; American culture studies; anthropology; economics; environmental policy; history; international studies; Jewish, Islamic and Near Eastern studies; Latin American studies; philosophy; psychology; and women, gender and sexuality studies.
Total units: Students who major in political science are required to complete 30 graded units (10 classes) in political science with a C or better, distributed as follows:
- Substantive Introductory Courses: 6 graded units must come from any two introductory classes. (Note: Students scoring a 4 or 5 on a relevant AP exam may place out of the associated introductory course and replace it with an upper-level course in a related subfield.)
- Methodology Course: 3 graded units must come from Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology. All majors are urged to take this course in the fall of their sophomore year. (Note: Some statistics courses offered in other departments will allow students to opt out of this class, but those credits will not count toward their political science major. These courses include U25 PolSci 323 Introduction to Quantitative Methods [subject to the limit of 6 "outside" credit units], QBA 121 Managerial Statistics II, Math 3200 Elementary to Intermediate Statistics and Data Analysis, and ESE 326 Probability and Statistics for Engineering.)
Distribution Requirement: 18 graded units must come from any six 300- or 400-level classes. Of these 18 units, students must complete at least one 3-unit course in three of the following five fields: American politics, comparative politics, international politics, political methodology, or political theory. (Note: Pol Sci 363 does not count toward this upper-level distribution requirement.)
- Other courses: A student's remaining graded units may be earned by any political science course or independent study. However, credits given for writing a senior thesis (detailed in Senior Thesis section below) do not count toward the major.
No more than 6 units from the following may count toward the major: study abroad, summer school, Pol Sci 419 Teaching Practicum in Political Science, transfer credit, and University College.
Concentrations: Political science majors may concentrate in a subfield of political science by taking (as part of their distribution requirement) three upper-level courses in any one of the five subfields (American politics, comparative politics, international politics, political methodology, or political theory) and submitting a subfield concentration form. Students may earn concentrations in up to two subfields. The successful completion of a subfield concentration will be listed on a student's transcript.
Senior Thesis/Capstone Option: The department encourages serious students to pursue independent research by working toward a senior thesis. Students admitted to this program work closely with a faculty adviser for a full calendar year, beginning at the end of their junior year. Students writing a senior thesis receive 6 units of college credit for two semesters of work by enrolling in Pol Sci 415 Senior Thesis Research; however, this credit does not count toward the completion of the political science major. Although there is no GPA requirement for writing a senior thesis, an application is required. For more information, contact the department office. All majors may apply.
To qualify to write a senior thesis, students must:
- Complete Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology or its equivalent by the fall of their junior year (all majors are strongly urged to take this in the fall of their sophomore year);
- Complete Pol Sci 495 Research Design and Methods in the spring semester of their junior year;
- Complete a second methods course appropriate for their thesis by the start of their senior year. (A complete list of courses can be found on our website; Pol Sci 495 does not count toward this requirement.);
- Complete a subfield concentration (detailed in Concentrations section above) by the end of the fall of their senior year in the subfield appropriate for their senior thesis. At least two-thirds of the concentration must be completed by the end of their junior year;
- Apply during their junior year for admission into the program;
- Students planning to study abroad and write a senior thesis should take Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology in the fall of their sophomore year and should go abroad during the fall of their junior year. Students who wish to study abroad in the spring of their junior year and write a thesis senior year must meet with the director of undergraduate study before the start of their junior year.
Senior Honors: To graduate with Latin Honors, students must successfully complete a senior thesis and have a minimum grade point average of 3.65, as specified by the College of Arts & Sciences.
The Major in Environmental Policy
Required units: 40
Students who major in environmental policy will be required to complete 40 graded units (13 classes) distributed as follows:
- 16 units from required foundation courses
- 9 units from research methods requirements
- 9 units from the list of upper-division courses in political science
- 3 units from a social science breadth requirement
- 3 units from a substantive distribution requirement
At least 24 of those total units must be at the 300-400 level.
We also strongly recommend that students complete a capstone experience. Possible options include a senior honors thesis, the environmental law clinic, or an appropriate internship. We intend to develop more capstone possibilities in the future.
All students take the following five foundation courses (16 units):
|Anthro 361||Culture and Environment||3|
|Biol 2950||Introduction to Environmental Biology||3|
|EPSc 201||Earth and the Environment||4|
|Pol Sci 2010||Introduction to Environmental Policy||3|
|Pol Sci 331||Topics in Politics (Theories of Justice*)||3|
Research Methods Requirements:
Students take three methods courses (9 units)
|Econ 1011||Introduction to Microeconomics||3|
|Pol Sci 363||Quantitative Political Methodology **||3|
|Pol Sci 4043||Public Policy Analysis, Assessment and Practical Wisdom||3|
**Note: Students may opt out of this class if they complete one of the approved courses below; however, students who chose this option must take another upper-level class to complete the 40 required units.
Political Science: Quantitative Political Methodology (Pol Sci 363)
University College: U25 Introduction to Quantitative Methods (PolSci 323)
Business School: Managerial Statistics II (QBA 121)
Math: Elementary to Intermediate Statistics and Data Analysis (Math 3200)
Engineering: Probability and Statistics for Engineering (ESE 326)
Students need 15 additional units of upper-level course work (300-400 level) distributed in the following way:
(1) 9 units (three courses) must come from the following political science courses***:
|Pol Sci 3070||Politics and Policymaking in the American States||3|
|Pol Sci 3171||Topics in Politics (The Politics of Environmental Regulation)||3|
|Pol Sci 3211||Public Opinion and American Democracy||3|
|Pol Sci 3240||The Political Economy of Public Goods||3|
|Pol Sci 332B||Environmental and Energy Issues||3|
|Pol Sci 333||Topics in Politics (International Environmental Politics)||3|
|Pol Sci 340||Topics: Environmental Justice (Environmental Justice)||3|
|Pol Sci 345||Legislative Process||3|
|Pol Sci 349||Politics in Bureaucracies||3|
|Pol Sci 3752||Topics in American Politics: Globalization, Urbanization and the Environment||3|
|Pol Sci 4013||Negotiating Major Legislation in Congress||3|
|Pol Sci 4050||Political Representation||3|
|Pol Sci 4070||Global Justice||3|
|Pol Sci 4731||Global Political Economy||3|
|Pol Sci 4792||Globalization and National Politics||3|
|Pol Sci 480||Topics in International Politics: Growth and Development||3|
|Pol Sci 489||Politics of Regulation||3|
***Note: Students who have not taken Pol Sci 363 will need to complete four courses.
(2) Social Science breadth requirement. Students take at least one offering (3 units) from the following:
|Anthro 3322||Brave New Crops||3|
|Anthro 3391||Economies as Cultural Systems||3|
|Anthro 3472||Global Energy and the American Dream||3|
|Anthro 3612||Population and Society||3|
|Anthro 3616||From Deep Ecology to Indigenous Ecological Identity: Environmental Social Movements and Anthropology||3|
|Anthro 399B||Rich Nations, Poor Nations||3|
|Anthro 406||Primate Ecology and Social Structure||3|
|Anthro 4244||Oil Wars: America & the Cultural Politics of Global Energy||3|
|Anthro 4253||Researching Fertility, Mortality and Migration||3|
|Anthro 4282||Political Ecology||3|
|ARCH 336B||Designing Sustainable Environments||3|
|ARCH 336D||Biomimicry: A Biokinetic Approach to Sustain(Able) Design||3|
|ARCH 336E||Biomimicry, Teleology and Organic Architecture||3|
|ARCH 654D||Metropolitan Landscapes||3|
|ARCH 656||Metropolitan Urbanism||3|
|Econ 1021||Introduction to Macroeconomics||3|
|Econ 403||Economics of Law||3|
|Econ 451||Environmental Policy||3|
|EnSt 3068||The Human History of Climate Change||3|
|EnSt 310||Ecological Economics||3|
|EnSt 380||Applications in GIS||3|
|or the following courses in University College:|
|IA 5421||International Environmental Issues||3|
|IA 5403||Global Collective Action: Why Do Nations Cooperate? Climate Change and Other Cases.||3|
(3) Substantive Distribution Requirement
The environmental policy major provides students with the social scientific tools to address policy problems related to the environment. To supplement this social scientific knowledge, it is also important that students have substantive knowledge of the natural science of the environment itself and/or practical experience in the policy area. All students are therefore required to complete one substantive area course (3 units) with a passing grade.
|Biol 381||Introduction to Ecology||3|
|EECE 210||Introduction to Environmental Engineering||3|
|EECE 311||Green Engineering||3|
|EECE 518||Sustainable Air Quality||3|
|EECE 591||Energy and Buildings||3|
|EnSt 405||Sustainability Exchange: Community and University Practicums||3|
|EnSt 406||Urban Ecosystem Principles Integration||3|
|EnSt 539||Interdisciplinary Environmental Clinic||var.|
|EPSc 429||Environmental Hydrogeology||3|
|MEC 400J||Markets, Business and the Environment||1.5|
The Minor in Political Science
Units required: 15
Required courses: Students must take a minimum of 15 graded units of course work with a C or better, including at least 9 advanced units.
No more than 3 units may be counted from among the following: Pol Sci 412 Directed Readings, Pol Sci 413 Directed Research, Pol Sci 419 Teaching Practicum in Political Science, summer school, University College courses or credits from another institution including study abroad.
Visit online course listings to view semester offerings for L32 Pol Sci.
L32 Pol Sci 101B American Politics
This course provides an overview of the politics of the American system of government. Among the topics covered are the historical developments of American politics, federalism, political participation (voting, interest groups, parties), institutions (congress, the courts, the president and public opinion. A theme underlying our examination of these and other topics is the fact that political actors are purposive in their strategic pursuit of various objectives. We explore the many ways in which this aspect of political behavior impacts institutions and the interactions between political actors throughout the American political system.
L32 Pol Sci 102B Introduction to Comparative Politics
One of the primary goals of a course in comparative politics is to familiarize students with a broad array of political systems. The approach taken in this course can best be characterized as the active acquisition and use of a set of tools for looking at the political world. In other words, instead of putting emphasis on what textbook writers think political scientists know, in this course the emphasis is on "how we know what we know" and on building knowledge. This approach equips students with a set of tools to use long after the course is over. These comparative tools are focused on historical, recent and current events, and students are provided the opportunity to delve more deeply into a study of the parts of the world they find most interesting.
L32 Pol Sci 103B International Politics
Globalization, the accelerating rate of interaction between people of different countries, creates a qualitative shift in the relationship between nation-states and national economies. Conflict and war is one form of international interaction. Movement of capital, goods, services, production, information, disease, environmental degradation, and people across national boundaries are other forms of international interactions. This course introduces the study of global political-economic relations. We focus upon building a toolkit that will help us understand the micro-foundations of the globalization of material and social relations.
L32 Pol Sci 1041 Freshman Seminar: Introduction to Political Theory I
Why is democracy a good form of government? What if a benevolent dictator arose who wrote and enforced laws that were just and equitable? What if she honored the sanctity of human life and its flourishing, guaranteed a full range of liberties to her citizens — including political ones, such as the right of free speech and organization (but not including the right to rule)? Given the problems of most living democracies, why wouldn't this be a better regime than a democratic one? And are people really capable of governing themselves anyway? Why should we trust them so? In short, what's so special about "democracy" and its corresponding idol, "public opinion," that people bow to them as hallowed virtues of a good society? In this class we provide a framework in which these and other central questions of political theory have been and can be addressed. This course is designed to introduce students to the main theoretical issues of Western political theory, including but not limited to the following concepts: justice, legitimacy, equality, democracy, liberty, sovereignty and the role of history in the political and social world. In short, the questions are meant to explore the underlying assumptions and themes of contemporary politics and political science research today. The course is designed around the careful reading of primary text materials and engagement with contemporary problems of politics available on the front pages of any daily newspaper. Although designed as a two-semester class, students may enroll in either one or both. In this first semester, we lay out the fundamental themes of political theory in Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Politics asking, among other things, what justice is and what place democracy has among other forms of government. Passing briefly onto Augustine and Aquinas' struggles with religion and civil society, we emerge in modernity with Machiavelli's Prince and question whether the "good" and the "political" are or ought to be different aims. We conclude the semester with the social contract theory of Hobbes and Locke in which political legitimacy is based on the terms familiar to citizens of modernity: the right to rule is somehow related to a citizen's consent to be governed. In the spring semester, we turn to the struggle that modernity and the Enlightenment raised for issues of politics, including that of history, nature, institution building and economics, guided by the texts of Rousseau, Hamilton and Madison, Tocqueville, Mill, Marx, Nietzsche, and Weber.
L32 Pol Sci 2001 The Great Economists
Examination of the great economic thinkers, the problems they sought to solve, the historically conditioned assumptions they bring to their work, and the moral issues they raise. The class reads from the works of Adam Smith, Ricardo, Malthus, Marx, Veblen, Keynes, Schumpeter, Galbraith and others as well as commentary from Heilbronner. These readings are paired with selected texts on the social and moral issues of their times. Open only to participants in Text and Tradition.
Same as L93 IPH 201B
L32 Pol Sci 2010 Introduction to Environmental Policy
This course provides an introduction to and overview of environmental policy. Subjects covered include the policy process, the behavior of interest groups and political parties, and the actions of policymakers like Congress and the President. We'll also examine issues such as pollution control, climate change, and biodiversity.
L32 Pol Sci 226 The Immigrant Experience
This course explores the history and politics of immigrant groups in the 19th- and 20th-century United States. Topics include legislation, patterns of migration, comparisons of different waves of immigration, and changing social attitudes. This course is a core requirement for the ethnic studies concentration in American Culture Studies.
Same as L98 AMCS 202
L32 Pol Sci 227 Just Do It! Skills That Turn Passion Into Policy
The course focuses on skills related to the democratic expression of political rights and responsibilities. The course balances background knowledge of the issues with application. Students explore how to use coalition building and advocacy skills to relate to personal issues to public issues. Students research a current Missouri bill, create a strategic plan for its passage or failure, and prepare to give testimony on such bill in a mock House of Representatives committee hearing. Students also learn about ethical dilemmas in policy and politics and create a plan for turning their passions into policy.
L32 Pol Sci 240 Jewish Political Thought
This course uses the concepts of political theory to explore the diverse Jewish political tradition. While this tradition includes writing from and about the three historical periods of Jewish self-rule (including the modern state of Israel), most of the Jewish political tradition comes from the understanding of politics as viewed from outsiders to mainstream communities. Additionally, Jewish political thought can be found through a Jewish community's self-understanding based on its interpretation of Jewish text and law by which it bound itself. Because we span over 2,000 years of recorded history, we will not attempt to discern a single "Jewish political thought" but rather look at JPT through the lens of familiar concepts of political theory. The fundamental questions we will explore are the relationship of the Jewish tradition to concepts such as authority, law, consent, sovereignty and justice. We will ask how the Jewish tradition views government and the relationship between the authority of God and the authority of temporal powers. We will explore these questions through a range of materials that include both primary and secondary literature.
Same as L57 RelPol 240
L32 Pol Sci 245A Fair Division in Theory and Practice
The concept of fair division is a central tenet in the design of procedures aimed at generating equitable social outcomes and mitigating conflict. At the national level, such procedures include systems of apportionment, voting, and legislative districting, to name a few. On a smaller scale, these procedures could govern how assets are divided in a divorce, or how to divide a cake. While "fairness" in theory is indisputably a good thing, in practice the courts, politicians, and even mathematicians have grappled with the question of what it means for a procedure to be fair. This course examines algorithms and applications of procedures that aim to divide or allocate resources fairly. Some of these procedures were developed by mathematicians looking for formulas that satisfy mathematical properties such as envy-freeness and equitability. All of the procedures we consider are examined in terms of the fairness goals they aspire to achieve, the mechanisms they employ to achieve those goals, and the shortcomings of the procedures.
Same as I50 InterD 245A
L32 Pol Sci 2500 Zionism
Zionism is often thought of as a commitment to the principle that the Jewish People, as a distinct "people," has a right to self-determination in its own historical land of the biblical Palestine. Yet the history of the term and the set of ideologies show a much more complex understanding. In this course we trace the emergence of a number of different "Zionisms" that would lead to the creation of the modern state of Israel. And we explore how the political principles at the core of these ideologies have fared in the 65 years since the founding of the modern Jewish state. The course is at its heart applied political theory: a case study of the way that ideas emerge from historical events, take on a life of their own, and then shape real outcomes in the world. The readings will weave together history, philosophy, literature and government.
Same as L57 RelPol 250
L32 Pol Sci 258 Law, Politics and Society
This course is an introduction to the functions of law and the legal system in American society. The course material stresses the realities of the operation of the legal system (in contrast to legal mythology), as well as the continuous interaction and feedback between the legal and political systems. There are four specific objectives to the course: (1) to introduce legal concepts and legal theories; (2) to analyze the operation of the appellate courts, with particular emphasis on the U.S. Supreme Court; (3) to analyze the operation of American trial courts, especially juries and the criminal courts; and (4) to examine the linkages between culture and law. Not open to students who have previously taken Pol Sci 358.
L32 Pol Sci 260 Game Theory in Science and Culture
Introduces the major intellectual insights of game theory in a nontechnical fashion, and examines the influence game theory has had on geopolitics, social philosophy, psychology, art and the humanities. In addition to covering the basic machinery of the theory, the class participates in numerous illustrative classroom games; examines game theory in film, literature and literary criticism; sees how game theory has contributed to social theory; and learns about the background of game theory and its history and perception as a hoped-for tool in the Cold War. Grades based on problems, short essays, two short essay exams and participation.
L32 Pol Sci 3010 Gender and Politics
This course surveys central topics in the study of gender and politics, covering such issues as women's participation in political parties and social movements, women as voters and candidates in political elections, feminism and the state, and gender and international politics. It draws on examples from various world regions and time periods to analyze similarities and differences across cases around the globe.
L32 Pol Sci 3011 Computational Modeling in the Social Sciences
This course introduces students to the theory and practice of computational modeling in social science. Computational modeling allows us to explore topics — including complexity, emergence and dynamics — that are difficult to study using traditional analytic methods. This course covers the theoretical foundations behind computational modeling in addition to offering an introduction to the design and programming of such models.
L32 Pol Sci 3012 Advanced Modeling in the Social Sciences
This course explores advanced topics and issues in the building and validation of models in the social sciences. The principal component of the course is the design and development of an individual research project by each student. The conclusion of the course involves a public research symposium with a poster session in which all students present their models and findings to the broader campus community. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 3011 Computational Modeling in Social Science.
L32 Pol Sci 3024 International Institutions
This course surveys in historically and theoretically informed fashion the role of various international institutions in international relations. It addresses the fundamental question of the contribution of international institutions to world order. The course first traces the historical evolution of international organizations before turning to international institutions since World War II. It then focuses on the following: the most important regional international organization, the European Union; the most important international organizations dealing with the issues of peace and security, the United Nations and NATO; and the major international economic institutions, the WTO, the IMF and the World Bank. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 103B Introduction to International Politics.
L32 Pol Sci 3031 Race and Ethnicity in American Politics
This seminar discusses the continuing importance of race and ethnicity in American politics and the politics of racial minority groups in America. It examines the disadvantage minorities have in the American political structure, including problems with political participation. It examines how the structure and functions of the branches of government and its bureaucracy affect the aspirations of minorities. The role of pressure groups on political structure is discussed. Additional discussion focuses on urban politics and tensions.
L32 Pol Sci 3044 Foundations of American Democracy
Since its founding, the United States of America has been strongly identified with principles of democratic rule. This course provides an introduction to some philosophical and historical foundations of American democracy. Over the course of the semester, we ask what democracy means and what it requires. We examine thinking about political rights and liberty at the American founding. We ask what democratic inclusion and political equality entail. We ask what democracy means, and what it should mean, in the American context, and whether and to what extent American institutions embody democratic ideals.
L32 Pol Sci 3055 The Comparative Study of Legislative Institutions
This course focuses on understanding the variation in legislative institutions around the world.
L32 Pol Sci 306 American Political Thought
This is a course on American political and constitutional thought. The main theme is the problem of freedom: how it should be understood, and the constitutional and other conditions which sustain it. We also touch on questions of leadership, class and foreign policy as they relate to the main theme. We begin with the political thought of the American colonists, then turn to the Federalist/Anti-Federalist debate on the constitution, and trace these lines of thinking to a point just before the outbreak of the Civil War. Apart from writings of prominent American political thinkers such as Madison, Jefferson, Adams, Hamilton and Calhoun, we also consider the work of the foreign observer of American life and honorary American, Alexis de Tocqueville.
Credit 3 units.
L32 Pol Sci 3070 Politics and Policymaking in the American States
The American federal system is often overlooked in discussions about politics in the United States; however, state governments unquestionably touch the lives of Americans every day. As such, an education in American politics is not complete without serious examination of state governments and their political institutions. This course illuminates the importance of the American states in U.S. politics and policymaking by critically examining topics such as intergovernmental relations; the historical evolution of American federalism; the organization and processes associated with state legislative, executive and judicial branches; state elections; political parties; interest groups; and specific state policy areas such as budgeting, welfare, education and the environment. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 101B.
L32 Pol Sci 3073 Global War on Terrorism
This course presents an historical assessment of the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) from the perspective of its major participants: militant Sunni Islamist jihadists, especially the Al-Qaeda network, and the nation-states that oppose them, particularly the United States and its allies. The course then concludes by analyzing the current state and future of Islamist jihad and the GWOT.
Same as L22 History 3073
L32 Pol Sci 3090 Civil War and Peace
This course examines the causes and consequences of intrastate conflict as well as the potential solutions to it, drawing on examples from countries throughout the world, including Bosnia-Herzegovina, India, Iraq, Russia, Rwanda, Spain, etc. We consider many potential causes of intrastate violence, including ethnic and religious identities, economic and security concerns, elite manipulation, and international diffusion. In order to understand the challenges countries face recovering from violence, we subsequently examine different ways in which conflicts are conducted, as well as their consequences, including economic underdevelopment, rape, child soldiers and disease. Finally, using what we have learned about the causes and consequences of conflict, we analyze the utility of different tools for managing intrastate conflict, including, but not limited to, minority representation, consociationalism, decentralization and partition.
L32 Pol Sci 3103 Topics
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic of this course varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests.
L32 Pol Sci 3115 Indian Barbie, Asian Tigers and IT Dreams: Politics of Globalization and Development in South Asia
This course explores how South Asia is at the heart of current debates about globalization, development, empire, gender, sexuality and ethnic identity. We raise questions such as: What has lead to sex trafficking in Nepal? Can information technology solve India's social problems and unemployment? What is biopiracy and how are South Asian activists challenging the global corporatization of world food and water supplies? Readings, films and discussions take us to countries such as Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India.
Same as L97 IAS 315
L32 Pol Sci 316B African-American Politics
This course examines the historical and contemporary efforts by African Americans to gain full inclusion as citizens in the U.S. political system. The course focuses on topics such as the politics of the Civil Rights Movement; African-American political participation; and the tension between racial group politics and class politics.
Same as L90 AFAS 3161
L32 Pol Sci 3171 Topics in Politics
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic of this course varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests.
L32 Pol Sci 3180 Democracy: Causes and Consequences
This course examines the major international and domestic causes and consequences of democracy worldwide.
L32 Pol Sci 320A Religious Freedom in America
This interdisciplinary course, co-taught by a law school professor and an American historian, concerns the intersection of religion, liberty and law in American culture. It introduces students to the major texts and historical issues concerning religious liberty, using legal history and case law, intellectual and social history, and political philosophy. It will address issues of significant contemporary debate — from the role of religious groups on college campuses to bakers and gay weddings — along with the deep historical background, from English settlement of North America and the making of the Constitution, through the Civil War, to the Cold War and the recent political developments.
Same as I50 InterD 320
L32 Pol Sci 321 Comparative European Politics
This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to politics in Europe, with a focus on national politics. The course has two main goals. One goal is that students acquire a general understanding of the institutions of democratic governance and how they affect how voters' preferences are translated into government policy. As most European states are variations of parliamentary democracies, we pay particular attention to the connection between voters and policymakers through parliamentary institutions. The second goal is that students achieve a basic understanding of specific political systems in Europe and appreciate current political issues particularly those related to democratic transitions in Eastern Europe. Prerequisites: Pol Sci 102B Intro to Comparative Politics; Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology (can be taken concurrently).
L32 Pol Sci 3211 Public Opinion and American Democracy
This course is about the salience of public opinion and its influence on American Politics. Topics covered include many of the theories developed to explain how public opinion is formed, if and why it changes, and the relationship between public opinion and the political behavior of citizens and elites. Therefore, the course describes and analyzes many of the factors that influence the formation, structure and variation in public opinion: information processing, education, core values, racial attitudes, political orientation (ideology and party identification), political elites, social groups, the media and religion. Additional topics include presidential approval, congressional approval and the relationship between public opinion and public policy. The course also trains students in several concepts of statistical analysis (assuming no prior knowledge) so that students can use these tools as part of their own research projects. Prerequisite: previous course work in American politics or communications.
L32 Pol Sci 3240 The Political Economy of Public Goods
This course explores the nature of public goods by investigating the economic and political rationales for providing them. We explore the endogenous creation of public goods, such as the formation of mutually agreed upon constitutions to protect property rights and the exogenous imposition of public goods, such as the regulatory framework that provides clean air. Through the use of efficiency analysis, we explore the costs and benefits to alternative institutional arrangements, such as private property or market exchanges, to the government or voluntary provision of public goods.
Credit 3 units.
L32 Pol Sci 326B Latin American Politics
This course is an introduction to the politics in Latin America, focusing on the trend toward the establishment of democracy. We examine the impact of political culture, economic development, and the legacy of authoritarian regimes on contemporary politics. The course also reviews many of the most pressing challenges confronting Latin American governments: the role of the military in politics; the reform of political institutions; threats from radical guerrillas and drug traffickers; debt and economic restructuring; and relations with the United States. Country studies focus on Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Mexico and Nicaragua. Prerequisite: 100-level introductory course in political science or its equivalent in history or international and area studies.
L32 Pol Sci 327B African Politics
A survey of politics in the states of sub-Saharan Africa. Major themes include the givens of African politics; the colonial inheritance; ethnicity, race and politics; religion and politics; forms and styles of rule and governance; pathologies and nonformal politics; and the international relation of African states. Requirements include two short papers and a written briefing on an assigned country.
L32 Pol Sci 3292 Topics in Politics: Modern South Asian Politics
This course focuses on the recent political history and development of South Asia. It begins with a review of the British colonial period and the Independence movement. The remainder of the course examines different political issues in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Topics include political mobilization; land reform; law and politics; social movements; religious and caste politics; the rise of religious nationalism; and political control of the economy.
L32 Pol Sci 3296 Race and Ethnicity in the United States
This course is designed to explore relations within and between the racial and ethnic groups of the United States. We examine the social, economic, and political similarities and differences of African Americans, Asian Americans, Latinos, and New Immigrants that distinguish their American experience. Of particular interest are their respective experiences in relation to one another and the majority population for understanding the origins of conflict and unanimity within and between the different groups. We pay specific attention to events in Ferguson, Missouri, and the tensions between political leaders, policing and minorities more generally, the disproportionate levels of poverty experienced by African Americans and Mexican Americans, and the vilifying of certain minorities by the majority population.
Same as L98 AMCS 3296
L32 Pol Sci 3302 Politics and Policies of Immigration in the United States
This class examines the history and politics of American immigration from colonial times to the present. It begins with an overview of the colonial period, then discusses the immigration waves of the 19th and early 20th centuries, and concludes with an examination of current topics and debates about immigration. Issues include racial, ethnic and class relations among groups; changes in immigration policies over time; comparative group experiences; transnational issues in immigration; and the impact of immigration on other American social and political processes and events. This class is a writing-intensive and modified version of Pol Sci 226/AMCS 202. Students who have taken that course should not take this course. Because this is a writing-intensive class, we also spend time studying research paper design and writing.
L32 Pol Sci 331 Topics in Politics
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests.
L32 Pol Sci 331B Gender and American Politics
This course examines the ways in which issues pertaining to gender are salient in U.S. politics. The course is divided into four parts. First, we examine theoretical approaches to the study of gender and politics, including the use of gender as an analytical category and the relationship between gender, race, ethnicity and power. Second, we study gender-based social movements, including the suffrage and women's rights movements, women's participation in the Civil Rights Movement, the contemporary feminist and anti-feminist movements, the gay rights/queer movement and the women's peace movement. Third, we examine the role of gender in the electoral arena, in terms of how it affects voting, running for office and being in office. Finally, we examine contemporary debates about public policy issues, including the integration of women and gays in the military, sexual harassment, pornography and equal rights.
L32 Pol Sci 3321 Topics in Politics: Constitutionalism and Democracy
An introductory analysis of a range of issues related to constitutions and democratic government. The main focus is on such theoretical questions as: Why do societies produce constitutions? Why do subsequent generations abide by them? What is the relationship between constitutional principles and democratic decision making? Who benefits from constitutional constraints?
L32 Pol Sci 3323 The Democracy Lab
The U.S. states are often called laboratories of democracy because the lessons learned from an "experiment" in one state or city can inform other governments. This course embraces the idea that we can act as scientists in the laboratories of local government. The course teaches students about research design. We also help them design their own experiments and then give students the opportunity to work with local officials to help design, conduct and analyze an experiment relating to governance.
L32 Pol Sci 3325 Topics in Politics: Constitutional Politics in the United States
The principal purpose of this course is to introduce students to the politics of constitutional interpretation. We first discuss the origins of the Constitution; the structure, operation and work of courts; and judicial decision making. Afterwards, we examine various areas of the law relating to institutional powers and constraints (e.g., federalism, presidential powers, Congressional authority). In so doing, we develop an understanding for the legal doctrine in each area of the law and also examine explanations for the legal change we observe.
L32 Pol Sci 332B Environmental and Energy Issues
This course considers the major issues in these increasingly important areas of public policy. We will discuss the importance of political processes and actors on such phenomenon as pollution, global warming and wilderness protection. This course emphasizes the American experience but also considers international implications. Two lectures and one section meeting each week.
L32 Pol Sci 333 Topics in Politics
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic of this course varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests.
L32 Pol Sci 336 Topics: American Elections and Voting Behavior
L32 Pol Sci 3363 Interchangeables, Influentials, and Essentials
Do you want to know how to obtain power? How to influence the powerful? Or even how to unseat those in power? In this course, we focus on how leaders, of all types, get and keep their jobs. Regardless of setting — democratic or dictatorial (or corporate, for that matter) — it is all about those whom the leader finds to be interchangeable, those the leader finds influential, and those who are essential. Students learn the "Rules to Rule By" and why, when leaders follow them, they often behave badly causing those they govern to suffer.
L32 Pol Sci 3381 Topics in Politics
L32 Pol Sci 340 Topics: Environmental Justice
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests.
L32 Pol Sci 3400 Social and Political Philosophy
Study of certain fundamental issues concerning government, society and culture. For example: What are the nature and limits of legitimate political authority? Are ordinary human beings capable of governing themselves justly? Do citizens have a duty to obey the state? If so, to what extent, if at all, is that duty grounded in consent or contract? Should the state limit or regulate the personal relationships of citizens, such as marriage, family and sexuality? How should social institutions rectify a history of political or social injustice against oppressed groups? Readings from historical and contemporary sources. Prerequisite: one course in Philosophy at the 100 or 200 level, or permission of the instructor. Priority given to majors in philosophy and PNP.
Same as L30 Phil 340F
L32 Pol Sci 3401 Topics in Political Thought
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests.
L32 Pol Sci 3403 The Politics of Congressional Elections
This course introduces students to the study of American legislative elections. The first part of the course focuses on congressional election campaigns, in which we discuss who runs for office, the incumbency advantage, campaign finance, congressional primaries, electoral competition, voter turnout, and vote choice. The second part of the course examines how electoral factors affect legislative politics, focusing on questions involving representation, accountability and lawmaking. Prerequisite: L32 Pol Sci 101B Intro to American Politics.
L32 Pol Sci 342 The American Presidency
Consideration of part played by the president in American politics and public policy. The powers of the president; the staffing and organization of the executive office; the relations of the president with Congress, the bureaucracy and other participants in American politics; presidential elections. Recommended: Pol Sci 101B.
L32 Pol Sci 3422 Americans and Their Presidents
How have Americans understood what it means to be President of the United States? This seminar uses that question as a point of departure for a multidisciplinary cultural approach to the presidency in the United States, examining the shifting roles of the chief executive from George Washington through Barack Obama. In addition to a consideration of the President's political and policymaking roles, this course examines how the lived experiences of presidents have informed the ways Americans have conceived of public and private life within a broader political culture. In the process, this course uses the presidency as a means to explore topics ranging from electioneering to gender, foreign policy to popular media. Readings are drawn from a broad range of fields.
Same as L98 AMCS 3422
L32 Pol Sci 3431 Constitutional Law
Introduction to constitutional law and practice in the United States. Emphasis on the role of the U.S. Supreme Court as an interpreter of the Constitution.
L32 Pol Sci 344 Courts and Civil Liberties
This course focuses on constitutional law principles in the Bill of Rights, and examines how Supreme Court decisions influence these principles in everyday life. We explore how the courts, and particularly the Supreme Court, have interpreted these rights in light of changing times and emerging issues. Topics include the First Amendment; free exercise of religion and the establishment clause; freedom of speech, assembly and association; freedom of the press; the Fourth Amendment and the rights of those accused and convicted of crimes; the right to privacy, including reproductive freedom and the right to die; equal protection and civil rights, including race, gender, sexual orientation; immigrants' rights and voting rights; and civil liberties after September 11. Recommended for the Liberal Arts and Business (LAB) Certificate.
L32 Pol Sci 3441 Defendant's Rights
This course explores the operations of the American criminal justice system. Substantial emphasis on the constitutional rights accorded to the criminally accused. Readings consist primarily, but not exclusively, of Supreme Court cases.
L32 Pol Sci 3462 The Politics of Privacy in the Digital Age
This course explores the changing nature of privacy in contemporary society.
L32 Pol Sci 349 Politics in Bureaucracies
Focuses on politics and political conflicts involving bureaucratic organizations, primarily but not exclusively those of the federal government. Attention given to the characteristics of bureaucratic organizations and their members; their relations with one another as well as with other participants in policymaking also considered. Major activities within bureaucracies — planning, program development, organizing, budgeting and service delivery — discussed with a view to clarifying their political implications and consequences; problems associated with controlling and changing bureaucracies.
L32 Pol Sci 3507 Legal Conflict in Modern American Society
Thousands of lawsuits are filed daily in the state and federal courts of the United States. The disputes underlying those lawsuits are as messy and complex as the human, commercial, cultural and political dynamics that trigger them, and the legal processes for resolving those disputes are expensive, time-consuming and, for most citizens, seemingly impenetrable. At the same time, law and legal conflict permeate public discourse in the United States to a degree that is unique in the world, even among the community of long-established democracies. The overarching objective of the course is to prepare our undergraduate students to participate constructively in that discourse by providing them with a conceptual framework for understanding both the conduct and resolution of legal conflict by American legal institutions, and the evolution of — and values underlying — the substantive law American courts apply to those conflicts. This is, at core, a course in the kind of legal or litigation "literacy" that should be expected of the graduates of first-tier American universities. Some of the legal controversies that are used to help develop that "literacy" include those surrounding the permissible use of lethal force in self-defense, the constitutionality of affirmative action in university admissions, contracts that are unconscionably one-sided, sexual harassment in the workplace, the duty of landlords to prevent criminal assaults on their tenants, groundwater pollution alleged to cause pediatric cancers, and warrantless searches of cellphone locator data by police.
Same as L98 AMCS 3507
L32 Pol Sci 3510 Topics in American Politics: The Supreme Court
L32 Pol Sci 3551 The Welfare State and Social Policy in America
How can we understand the recent debate about fundamental health care reform? Should social security be partially or wholly privatized? Was the 1996 welfare reform a success? Contemporary political questions frequently focus on the American welfare state and the social policies that compose it. The first half of this course describes the American welfare state broadly construed, places it in a comparative context, and elucidates major political science explanations for the size and scope of American social policy. We touch on several areas of social policy while constructing the generalized lenses through which particular political outcomes can be understood. The second part of the course then focuses on three major aspects of the American welfare state: health care, old age pensions and policies related to work, poverty and inequality.
L32 Pol Sci 3552 Political Economy of Democracy
In the past few years, a number of important books have appeared that combine elements of economics reasoning and political science, in an effort to understand the wide variation in economic development in the world. This course deals with the logic apparatus underpinning these books. In addition, the course introduces the student to the theoretical apparatus that can be used to examine democratic institutions in the developed world, and the success or otherwise of moves to democratization in the less-developed world.
L32 Pol Sci 3561 Topics in Politics
L32 Pol Sci 3575 US Foreign Policy: Theory and Practice
In this class we focus on the procedures and institutions that shape U.S. foreign policy decisions. This is neither a course on international relations theory nor a history of U.S. foreign policy. Rather, this course examines the domestic politics surrounding U.S. foreign policy decisions. How do public opinion, electoral politics, and interest groups shape foreign policy? Which branch controls foreign policy — the president, Congress, the courts? Or is it ultimately the foreign affairs bureaucracy that pulls the strings? We examine these topics through reading and writing assignments, class discussion, and simulations to promote deeper understanding and build practical skills.
Same as L97 IAS 3575
L32 Pol Sci 358 Law, Politics and Society
This course is an introduction to the functions of law and the legal system in American society. The course material stresses the realities of the operation of the legal system (in contrast to legal mythology), as well as the continuous interaction and feedback between the legal and political systems. There are four specific objectives to the course: (1) to introduce students to legal concepts and legal theories; (2) to analyze the operation of the appellate courts, with particular emphasis on the U.S. Supreme Court; (3) to analyze the operation of American trial courts, especially juries and the criminal courts; and (4) to examine the linkages between culture and law.
L32 Pol Sci 359 The Mathematics of Elections
Voting procedures provide the most common means of aggregating the preferences of individuals into societal outcomes. These procedures play an integral role in our daily lives, from having a show of hands to decide which type of pizza to order for a club meeting, to electing a president. This course examines the effects that different voting procedures have on how groups make decisions. We evaluate electoral systems mathematically, by considering the various properties that procedures may or may not satisfy. A classic example is Arrow's Impossibility Theorem, which tells us that every electoral system must fail to satisfy one or more criteria of fairness or sensibility. In addition to Arrow's claim, we examine other legislative paradoxes and learn why the choice of electoral procedure is critical to our understanding of how "good" and "bad" decisions can be made. We also discuss the comparative properties of electoral systems in operation, such as fairness, proportionality, representativeness and legitimacy.
L32 Pol Sci 3610 Legislative Politics
This course is an introduction to the politics of the U.S. Congress and the federal lawmaking process. We focus on the behavior of individual legislators and the role they play in crafting federal legislation in policy areas such as health care, civil rights and the environment. In general we examine questions such as: Why do legislators behave as they do? Whose interests are being represented?
L32 Pol Sci 362 Politics and the Theory of Games
This course is intended to cover through analytical discussion and illustrations the basic concepts and major achievements of Game Theory in different subfields of research in the social sciences today. We discuss examples of the usefulness of cooperative and noncooperative game theory to the study of human behavior in general and political science and political economy in particular.
L32 Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology
This is an introduction to research methodology and quantitative analysis for social scientists. Students are introduced to the logic of social scientific inquiry, and to the basic statistical tools used to study politics. Students learn and apply the following to answer substantive questions: measurement, descriptive analysis, correlation, graphical analysis, hypothesis testing, confidence intervals, analysis of variance and regression analysis. Major components of the course include learning how to collect, manage and analyze data using computer software, and how to effectively communicate to others results from statistical analyses. Students work collaboratively on research projects in which they pose their own questions, design a study, collect and analyze the data, and present their findings in a research paper.
L32 Pol Sci 3680 The Cold War, 1945-1991
This course presents an assessment of the Cold War from the perspective of its major participants. Topics include: the origins of the Cold War in Europe and Asia; the Korean War; the Stalin regime; McCarthyism and the Red Scare; the nuclear arms race; the conflict over Berlin; Cold War film and literature; superpower rivalry in Guatemala, Cuba, Vietnam, Africa, and the Middle East; the rise and fall of detente; the Reagan years and the impact of Gorbechev; the East European Revolutions; and the end of the Cold War.
Same as L22 History 3680
L32 Pol Sci 3690 Politics of International Trade
In this course we study the relationship between international trade and domestic politics. We cover the basic models of international trade, the distributional consequences of international trade, the relationship between trade and economic development, an analysis of the trade protectionism (causes and consequences) and an analysis of international organizations related to international trade (special focus on the World Trade Organization). Prerequisite: Pol Sci 103B.
L32 Pol Sci 373 International Political Economy
Analysis of the interplay of economics and politics in the world arena, focused primarily on the political basis of economic policies in both advanced and less-developed societies. Treating differing perspectives on the international economy, production, trade and finance, and international economic relations. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of instructor.
L32 Pol Sci 374 Contemporary American Foreign Policy
This course surveys post-war American foreign policy in historical perspective. It begins by evaluating the rise of the United States as a world power during the 20th century, its current position of primacy and its consequences in the post-Cold War period, and the distinctive traditions and institutions shaping the making of American foreign policy. It then examines the origins of the strategy of containment in the early Cold War period before considering how these debates animated the changing course of American foreign policy through the various phases of the Cold War conflict. The course concludes by analyzing American foreign policy since the end of the Cold War, up to and including debates about the consequences of September 11, 2001, for the United States' position of primacy, the Bush Doctrine and the American-led intervention in and subsequent occupation of Iraq.
L32 Pol Sci 3781 Topics in Politics: Israeli Politics
L32 Pol Sci 3782 Topics in Comparative Politics: Terrorism and Political Violence
L32 Pol Sci 381 The Politics of Electoral Systems
It is impossible to appreciate the variety of electoral systems used to select legislative bodies without taking a comparative perspective. We begin this course with a brief consideration of what goals political founders and reformers are pursuing when they design an electoral system. Then we define the conceptual dimensions along which electoral rules can vary. With these basic concepts in hand, we then study specific national cases to assess the impact of electoral laws on party systems, legislator behavior, and interbranch relations. After completing a series of case studies, we return to a comparative perspective to discuss recent scholarly research in this field. This research conceives of electoral systems as incentive structures for voters, candidates, parties and politicians. To wrap up the course, we return to the question of what founders and reformers can hope to achieve when selecting electoral systems.
L32 Pol Sci 389 Power, Justice and the City
This course examines normative theoretical questions of power and justice through the lens of the contemporary city, with a particular focus on American urban life. It explores urban political economic problems, questions of racial hierarchy and racial injustice in the modern metropolis, and the normative and practical dilemmas posed by "privatism" in cities and their suburbs. In addition, the course devotes considerable attention to honing students' writing skills, through class assignments that stress rewriting and revising, and also through four in-class writing workshops devoted to formulating a thesis and making an argument; revising and rewriting; writing with style; and peer consultation.
L32 Pol Sci 389A Power, Justice and the City
This course examines normative theoretical questions of power and justice through the lens of the contemporary city, with a particular focus on American urban life. It explores urban political economic problems, questions of racial hierarchy and racial injustice in the modern metropolis, and the normative and practical dilemmas posed by "privatism" in cities and their suburbs.
L32 Pol Sci 391A Democracy and Citizenship Seminar II
What does it mean to be a citizen in a democratic society? What are the rights of citizenship and what are its responsibilities? How are the answers to these questions different for citizens of the United States of America, with its particular history, values and status in the world? Enrollment in this seminar is limited to freshmen who have been admitted to the Democracy and Citizenship Focus program.
Credit 1 unit.
L32 Pol Sci 393 History of Political Thought III: Liberty, Democracy and Revolution
How, if at all, should the political institutions of the modern state express and secure the liberty and equality of citizens? What is the political significance of private property? Is world history to be understood as progress toward one best form of government — capitalist democracy, perhaps, or communism? What forces drive history? We address these and other timeless political questions through close reading and rigorous analysis of classic texts in the history of Western political thought. Authors studied include Kant, Hegel, Marx, Tocqueville, John Stuart Mill and Nietzsche. Prerequisite: one previous course in political theory or political philosophy. The course is designed to be the third in a three-semester sequence on the history of political thought, and students are encouraged but not required to take the courses in chronological sequence.
L32 Pol Sci 4001 American Democracy and the Policymaking Process
This course is part of the Semester in DC Program.
Credit 3 units. EN: S
L32 Pol Sci 4010 Pluralism, Liberalism and Education
How should liberal democratic states respond to religious and cultural pluralism? In what ways is pluralism different from mere disagreement, and what normative implications does pluralism have for public policy? How can liberal states justify using their coercive power against a background of pluralism and in ways that systematically disadvantage certain religious and cultural groups in society? In particular, what is to be done when religious parents and the liberal state make conflicting judgments about the proper education of children? When should the state defer to parental judgments and what are the grounds for legitimately refusing to do so? Readings are taken from contemporary political philosophy. Prerequisites: Pol Sci 106, Pol Sci 107, Phil 340 or permission of instructor.
L32 Pol Sci 4013 Negotiating Major Legislation in Congress
This course examines the outcomes of the legislative process in the United States. The first third of the course examines key concepts and major determinants of the negotiation process: majority rule instability, agenda control, political parties, the amendment process and the uncovered set. The rest of the course examines the negotiations that led to some of the most significant legislation in the past 100 years, from the Federal Reserve Act of 1913 through the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the immigration bill of 2006. Along with other assignments, each student writes several drafts of a major research project on a major piece of legislation. Each research project examines the amendments offered, the strategic intentions of the amendments' sponsors, the agenda process and the role of party. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 101B.
L32 Pol Sci 4024 The Meaning of National Security in the 21st Century
The 21st century has brought with it new challenges to national security. Standard assumptions about nations and the borders that separate them have been brought into question, and one of the results of this is that the very meaning of national security is undergoing change. Instead of threats to security coming from outside national boundaries, they now often exist within and across borders. This course focuses on contemporary ideas about these issues. It includes a brief overview of current discussions of national security, but it is primarily devoted to examining the conceptual resources we have for making sense of national security in a new world.
Same as L97 IAS 402
L32 Pol Sci 4025 Experiments in Politics
This is a lab-style seminar in which we design, field and analyze an experimental study on political attitudes or political behavior. Our ultimate goal is to publish a scholarly article in a peer-reviewed journal in political science. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology (can be taken concurrently).
Credit 3 units.
L32 Pol Sci 4030 Political Theory of Education
This course explores issues of authority, legitimacy, citizenship, freedom and equality through contemporary readings in the political theory of education. What is to be done when parents, citizens and educational experts make conflicting judgments about the proper education of children? When should the state defer to parental judgments and what are the grounds for legitimately refusing to do so? How should public schools aim to equip their students for the responsibilities of citizenship in a diverse liberal democratic state? What do the concepts of equality and equality of opportunity mean in the context of education, and (how) should governments pursue these values through education policy? We explore these issues through contemporary works of political theory as well as through considering a number of important U.S. court cases, including those dealing with the schooling of children from minority religious and cultural groups, affirmative action in university admissions, and school desegregation plans. Prerequisite: one previous course in political theory or political philosophy.
L32 Pol Sci 4040 Capstone Seminar in International Politics: Public Policy Responses to Global Poverty
This course is designed for senior political science majors with a background in international politics (refer to prerequisites). In this course we examine the theoretical and empirical literature on the causes of global poverty and evaluate public policy responses from the international community. Topics include: foreign aid (including micro finance), debt relief, trade reform, global health initiatives and private-public partnerships. Students are expected to have a strong theoretical background in the tools and concepts in political science and a strong interest in development topics. As a capstone class, the teaching style focuses on a student-centered classroom, where students run the class and help moderate discussions with outside speakers. Prerequisites: Pol Sci 103B, one advanced course in international politics, and a second advanced course in either international or comparative politics.
L32 Pol Sci 4043 Public Policy Analysis, Assessment and Practical Wisdom
This course provides an introduction to the study, professional practice, ex-ante and ex-post assessment of public policy and the professional practice of public analysis. We rely heavily on David L. Weimer and Aidan R. Vining's text, Policy Analysis: Concepts and Practice. This course covers a series of critical concepts in the understanding of practicing, analyzing and assessing public policy.
L32 Pol Sci 405 Topics in Political Thought
L32 Pol Sci 4050 Political Representation
In this class we study the concept of representation. Historically, how has representation been conceived? Conceptually, what should count as political representation, and must it always be democratic? As a normative problem, what should representatives do? And how should institutions be designed to foster these normative ends? Readings provide a broad overview of the subject and address enduring questions, including problems of minority representation, voting rights and redistricting. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 106 or Pol Sci 107.
L32 Pol Sci 406 Topics in Political Thought
Questions regarding the relationship between the state and civil society are among the most enduring in political science — and the most pressing in contemporary political practice. This course examines an array of texts in political theory and recent empirical studies of the relationship between state and civil society. Among the questions we address are the following: What kinds of groups "count" as being part of civil society? What is the relationship between the state and civil society in a democracy? Can we meaningfully distinguish between political associations and economic associations? What is the relationship between voluntary associations and the market? What is the purpose of civil society? This course focuses on close readings of the assigned texts and consideration of contemporary understandings of the topic. It is aimed at students interested in comparative politics, political philosophy and political economy.
L32 Pol Sci 4070 Global Justice
This course examines contemporary debates and controversies regarding global justice. Seminar discussions are arranged around significant issues in the current literature. For example: What (if anything) do we owe to the distantly needy? Do we have special obligations to our compatriots? Do political borders have normative significance? And so on. This course is of interest not only to political theorists, but also students in other fields interested in social justice or international relations generally.
L32 Pol Sci 412 Directed Readings
This is a course of readings in political science taken under the direction of an instructor in the department.
Credit variable, maximum 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 413 Directed Research
Research activities or project in political science done under the direction of an instructor in the department.
Credit variable, maximum 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 4131 Intolerance and Prejudice
Consideration of selected contemporary topics in social psychology. Participation in a research project of appropriate scope. Prerequisite: Psych 315.
Same as L33 Psych 413
L32 Pol Sci 414 Directed Fieldwork
This course is a fieldwork project carried out under the direction of an instructor in the department.
Credit variable, maximum 9 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 415 Senior Thesis Research
Intensive research, conducted under the supervision and guidance of a faculty sponsor of the thesis.
Credit variable, maximum 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 419 Teaching Practicum in Political Science
This course is an opportunity for undergraduates to assist in course instruction, tutoring and preparation of problems, readings and exam materials with permission and under supervision of instructor. This course counts toward up to 6 hours of credit in an advanced field for the political science major.
Credit variable, maximum 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 4212 Elections
This course examines how politicians and policies are selected by citizens in democracies. The literature exploring the rules and procedures that govern elections is perhaps the most theoretically and empirically sophisticated body of knowledge in the study of politics. We explore how differences in these institutional rules across a variety of democracies shape the types of strategic choices voters make, the coalitions that legislators form, whose interests are represented, the structure of parties, the career paths of politicians, and the policies that governments pursue. We further investigate how, when and why electoral rules are changed with reference to several recent cases of electoral reform.
L32 Pol Sci 4231 Contemporary Issues in Latin America
How do the institutional designs of contemporary democratic governments help us understand the nature and quality of representation? We concentrate on variations in the powers granted presidents by constitutions as well as the institutional determinants of whether executives are likely to find support for their policies in the legislature. In addition, we explore how incentives established by electoral laws influence the priorities of members of congress. Given all these variations in democratic institutional design, can voters go to the polls with the confidence that politicians will implement the economic policies for which their parties have long stood or which they promised in their campaigns?
L32 Pol Sci 4241 Topics in American Politics: Race and Politics
From the moment enslaved Africans were brought to American shores, race and racism has been central to the American political project. In this class we examine how notions of race and racism inform conceptions of citizenship, the allocation of state resources, the development of political parties, and political participation. We also examine the way that race and racism influence public opinion.
Credit 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 425 Law, Religion, and Politics
What is the role of religious argument in politics and law? What kinds of arguments are advanced, and how do they differ from one another? Are some of these arguments more acceptable than others in a liberal democracy? This course will explore these questions through the work of legal scholars, theologians and political theorists. Our topics include the nature of violence and coercion in the law, constraints on public reason, the relationship between religion and government, and the nature of religious practice and tradition.
Same as L57 RelPol 425
L32 Pol Sci 426 Topics in American Politics: Politics of the Civil Rights Movement
This course is intended primarily for sophomores and juniors. The topic of this course varies by semester, dependent on faculty and student interests. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 101B.
L32 Pol Sci 4260 Writing about Civil Rights
The substantive goal of this course is to study the civil rights movement in order to learn more about the role of social movements, federalism, the legislative process, the presidency, political parties and the courts in American politics. This is a writing-intensive seminar, limited to 18 students, each of whom write three essays. Each student submits an early draft of each essay, which is edited and returned to the student for polishing. There are review sessions on grammar, punctuation, word usage and paragraph construction. The readings for the course include some of the best essays on the subject of civil rights by W.E.B. DuBois, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr. and others. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 101B.
L32 Pol Sci 4280 Political Intolerance in World Politics
This course is an investigation into the meaning, causes and consequences of political intolerance. Our goal is to expose students to contemporary research on: a) how political intolerance is conceptualized and understood, especially within the context of theories of democracy; b) how political intolerance can be measured, both at the level of the individual and the institution/society; c) where intolerance originates, both in terms of individual psychology and system-level politics; and d) what consequences flow from intolerance, especially in terms of legal and extra-legal political repression, as well cultural consequences (e.g., a "culture of conformity"). The course makes little distinction between American politics and politics in other parts of the world (although no knowledge of specific non-U.S. systems is required as a prerequisite).
L32 Pol Sci 4281 Comparative Political Parties
An introduction to theories and concepts used in the analysis of political parties in democratic regimes, with emphasis on the classic literature covering West European advanced industrial democracies and the more recent scholarship on Latin American party systems. The course illuminates the complex aims, consequences and characteristics of modern party politics.
L32 Pol Sci 4291 Polarization in American Politics
This course examines the political polarization of the American political parties and explores its effects on the mass public and American democracy more generally. We examine what exactly is polarization, how it is measured, historical changes, potential causes, and its potential effects on the mass public and governance. Prerequisites: L32 Pol Sci 101B Intro to American Politics, L32 Pol Sci 363 Quantitative Political Methodology or equivalent.
Credit 3 units.
L32 Pol Sci 4373 Immigration, Identity and the Internet
This class examines a critical issue in contemporary societies: How do changes in technology affect the process of immigration and how immigrant identity is shaped?
L32 Pol Sci 4400 Advanced Social and Political Philosophy
A selective investigation of one or two advanced topics in the philosophical understanding of society, government and culture. Readings may include both historical and contemporary materials. Possible topics include: liberalism, socialism, communitarianism, citizenship, nationalism, cosmopolitanism, social contract theory, anarchism, and the rights of cultural minorities. Prerequisites: one course in philosophy at the 300 level, graduate standing, or permission of the instructor.
Same as L30 Phil 4400
L32 Pol Sci 4402 Topics in Political and Social Theory: Constitutionalism
L32 Pol Sci 4451 Contemporary Politics in India
This seminar examines current topics and controversies in contemporary Indian politics. The course has three main foci: the links between politics and economic liberalization over the past two decades; the links between ascriptive identities such as religion, caste and gender and contemporary political processes, including ethnic and gender quotas; and the changes in party politics at the national and state levels that have accompanied the decline of Congress party dominance. Specific topics include the role of caste and religion in contemporary politics; the rise of state parties and its effects on federal relations; the effects of economic reform and globalization on economy and society; urbanization and migration flows; the rise of modern Hindu nationalism; and the links between collective violence and electoral politics.
L32 Pol Sci 4504 Contemporary Democratic Theory
Contemporary debates in democratic theory have produced a number of challenging and provocative accounts of how democratic institutions can and should work. In this course we analyze a number of competing theories of democracy and assess the similarities and differences among them. Although the course focuses primarily on theoretical issues, special attention is given to how empirical research in the social sciences on democratic institutions and procedures informs and clarifies these debates.
Credit 3 units. A&S: SS, WI
L32 Pol Sci 4505 American Political Parties
This seminar introduced students to core literature on political parties with a strong bias toward recent research.
L32 Pol Sci 451 Topics in American Politics: Supreme Court
This seminar has two purposes: to introduce students to the state of the art in studies of the Supreme Court and to cover a series of particular topics with emphasis on the major controversies within the field of law and the courts.
Credit 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 4513 Topics in Politics: Criminal Law and Criminal Justice: Homicide
Seminar investigates current controversies surrounding the homicide laws. Topics include the definitions of homicide and claims of self-defense, the controversies about admissions of evidence at various stages of prosecution, and the debates about the use of capital punishment (including the capital punishment of youths). Includes general academic readings, readings of recent court opinions, and guest discussants from the legal community.
L32 Pol Sci 4522 Topics in American Politics
Credit 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 4551 Seminar in Political Economy
This research seminar introduces the student to recent work on the political economy of democracy. We start with a historical account of the development of democratic institutions in Britain and the United States, and then continue with recent work on modeling elections. We compare elections in countries that make use of proportional electoral systems, such as Israel, with those like the United States and Britain that are highly majoritarian. Finally, we discuss the forces of democratization and globalization. The required work for the seminar is a research paper approximately 20 pages (double-spaced) in length.
L32 Pol Sci 4552 Comparative Political Economy
This seminar introduces the student to aspects of social choice theory, applied to themes to do with the economic origins of democracy, democratization and the stability of social orders. We read and discuss a number of recent books: Acemoglu and Robinson on Economic Origins; North, Weingast and Wallis on Violence and Social Order; Przeworski on Democracy and Development; Ferguson on Money; Collier on Wars, Guns and Votes. If time permits, we discuss recent work by Stern on the Economics of Climate Change. Students are expected to work on two short research papers, either empirically or theoretically based, and make a presentation of their work near the end of the semester.
L32 Pol Sci 4621 Politics and the Theory of Games
This course covers basic primitives and more sophisticated tools of game theory as they are used in contemporary political science. It covers some issues of the forefront of contemporary research in game theory as the central analytical tool in studying the science of politics. The main substantive issues are the emergence of law and order in society, markets vs. political mechanisms, and the distinctive characteristics of parliamentary vs. presidential democratic systems. The course also includes some real case studies, basic experiments and, in general, a lot of fun.
L32 Pol Sci 4625 Topics in Politics
L32 Pol Sci 4626 Applied Statistical Programming
Statistical computing is a quickly changing field. Standard techniques of today would have been difficult to execute 15 years ago and impossible in the early 1990s. Rapid improvements in computing power have been accompanied by swift changes in standard statistical methods. In just the last decade, techniques ranging from Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) simulation, randomization inference, network analysis, and non-parametric matching have moved from being novel, advanced applications to commonplace across the social sciences. This class is designed to achieve two broad objectives. More narrowly, it aims to guide students as they learn the specifics of the R programming language, a powerful statistical computing environment widely used in the fields of political science, network analysis, machine learning, and statistics. Achieving this goal will require students to learn commands, best practices, and work-arounds specific to the sometimes idiosyncratic R language.
Same as L32 Pol Sci 5625
Credit 3 units.
L32 Pol Sci 464 Topics in American Politics: The United States in Vietnam: Origins, Developments and Consequences
This course focuses on America's involvement in Vietnam from the era of French colonialism through the collapse of United States intervention. Special attention is given to political, military, economic, and cultural aspects, as well as to international relationships, and the significance of the experience and subsequent developments upon both American and Vietnamese societies.
Same as L22 History 4894
L32 Pol Sci 4730 Political Economy of Multinational Enterprises
In this class we explore the literature in political science and economics on the relationship between multinational enterprises and domestic governments. The four main themes of the course are: 1) defining and understanding multinational enterprises, 2) governments attracting and competing for multinationals, 3) the impact of multinationals on economic development and groups within society, and 4) attempts to regulate multinationals both domestically and internationally. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 102 or 103B.
L32 Pol Sci 4731 Global Political Economy
This course will borrow on the insights of international relations scholarship and economic theory to develop a broad understanding of international economic relations. Specifically, this course attempts to address the following two sets of questions: 1) How do global economic relations fit into the broader category of international relations? How do the existing theories in international relations (liberalism, realism and Marxism) help us understand international economic relations between nation-states? 2) What are the effects of these international economic forces (trade, finance and multinational production) on domestic governments and societies?
L32 Pol Sci 475 Topics in International Politics
L32 Pol Sci 4761 Politics of International Finance
In this course we examine the complex relationship between international finance, economic development, and domestic politics by drawing on the recent scholarly literature in economics, political science and finance. The focus is on the theoretical literature on both the determinants of international financial flows and its effects on domestic societies. Specially, we focus on five forms of international finance: (1) international equity markets (stocks), (2) flows of foreign direct investment (multinational corporations), (3) currency markets (with a special focus on currency crisis), (4) international debt and (5) international aid.
L32 Pol Sci 4792 Globalization and National Politics
This seminar examines globalization and its interaction with national politics. The movements of ideas, capital, goods, services, production and people across national borders provide a skeletal framework for the global political economy. Politicians, policymakers and societies discover new opportunities, but also dilemmas, as expanding interdependence challenges traditional notions of sovereignty and national policy autonomy. Prerequisite: Pol Sci 102 or Pol Sci 103.
L32 Pol Sci 480 Topics in International Politics: Growth and Development
L32 Pol Sci 4861 Seminar on American Election and Voting
Survey of major contributions to the study of American elections and voting behavior; patterns of voting through time as well as contemporary cross-sectional patterns.
Credit 3 units. A&S: SS
L32 Pol Sci 489 Politics of Regulation
Events such as the Gulf oil spill and the economic meltdown have dramatized the importance of regulation in the United States, and at the same time called into question the most fundamental beliefs about the nature of the regulatory process. This course reviews the notion of market failure as basic to understanding the rationale for government regulation; it also examines theories of governmental failure as a source of skepticism and concern regarding impediments to effective regulation. Much of the course reviews the development of regulatory machinery in the 20th century. We examine the political forces that have resulted in expansion of the institutions of regulation — interest groups, partisan conflict, legislative negotiation, and executive leadership. We examine these forces in detail in examining the political and legislative response to recent financial and environmental crises.
L32 Pol Sci 491 Collection and Analysis of Qualitative Data
This course covers basic techniques for collecting, interpreting and analyzing qualitative data. Students select a research project, collect appropriate qualitative data and conduct a preliminary analysis. Students learn how to gather several types of qualitative data, including participant observation and open- and closed-ended interviews. In addition, they evaluate and analyze primary data collected by others including oral histories, archival records, interview transcripts. We consider the advantages and disadvantages of non-randomly collected data, such as those gathered though ethnographic and archival methods. We assess the utility of building statistical datasets from such data, and students learn the basic techniques of using computer programs such as Nvivo and Atlas.ti for qualitative data. Biweekly assignments that focus on different aspects of collection and analysis are designed to help students produce a research paper as a final project.
L32 Pol Sci 495 Research Design and Methods
This course provides an introduction to qualitative and quantitative research methods in political science. Topics address issues related to theory building as well as theory testing. Technical issues related to these methods are not the focus of this course, as are theoretical issues regarding the advantages and disadvantages of the different approaches. Ultimately, the goal of this course is twofold: (1) to instruct students to critically analyze scholarly articles with particular attention to research design; and (2) to guide students in how to design an original research project. Both the reading assignments, including methodological and applied readings, and the written assignments are directed toward these goals.
L32 Pol Sci 496 Game Theory and Collective Choice
An introduction to models of collective choice important in political science, including game theory, the spatial voting model and axiomatic social choice theory. The course concentrates primarily on noncooperative game theory, whose main topics include: strategic and sequential forms, Nash equilibrium, solution by backward induction, imperfect information, repeated games; and applications to voting, campaigning, public goods, agenda design, bargaining and collective action. With noncooperative games as a foundation, the course then examines cooperative game theory (games in coalition form), voting as a social choice mechanism (including the median voter theorem and global cycling theorems), and social-choice possibility theorems (such as Arrow's Theorem). Prerequisite: Math 131 Calculus I or Pol Sci 5052 Mathematical Modeling, or equivalent.
L32 Pol Sci 49PK The Founding Fathers' Government in an Electronic Age
This is a research seminar that examines how Americans sought to translate their notions of government into a realistic set of priorities and a functioning set of public institutions. Extending from 1789 through the 1820s, this course investigates how the federal government came into being, what it did, and who populated the civilian and military rank of American officialdom. This is also a course in digital history. Students create new knowledge through their own contributions to an ongoing digital project that seeks to reconstitute the early federal workforce. In the process, students learn a variety of digital techniques, ranging from encoding languages to electronic systems to software packages.
Same as L22 History 49PK