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Course Offerings

Updated Fall 2013


American Politics

POLS 6130. American Constitutional Law. (3)
Constitutional structure of the American political system.

POLS 6158. Campaign Organization and Management. (3)
A broad introduction to electoral campaign research, organization, and management.

POLS 6162. Politics and Communication. (3)
An analysis of how political communications affects our relationships with political actors and processes.

POLS 8100. Seminar in American Politics. (3)
Introduction to the major institutions and processes in the national political system. Overview of Congress, the Executive Branch, and the Supreme Court.

POLS 8110. State Politics. (3)
Comparative treatment of institutions, authorities, processes, and policy making in the American states.

*POLS 8139. Studies in Public Law. (3).
Special topics in public law. May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.

POLS 8140. Judicial Process and Policy Making. (3)
Social and political context of judicial decisions with emphasis on Supreme Court decision making. Relation of law to public policy.

POLS 8145. Courts, Law and Policy. (3)
Examines the role courts and judges play in the creation, interpretation and implementation of public policy.

POLS 8150. American Political Parties and Interest Groups. (3)
The nature and role of political parties and interest groups in the American political system.

POLS 8155. Electoral Behavior. (3)
Major theories of voting and electoral behavior as they apply to a variety of political offices.

POLS 8160. Public Opinion and Attitudes. (3)
Analysis of contemporary political attitudes and public opinion.

POLS 8170. American Legislative Process. (3)
An examination of the politics and processes of legislative institutions. This course will focus on the legislative process, elections, apportionment, institutional hierarchy, partisan politics, and legislative leadership.

POLS 8175. African-American Political Participation. (3)
Voting behaviors and ideological orientation of African-Americans. Changes in the nature and effectiveness of Afncan-American participation from the protests of the Civil Rights Movement to the politics of the 1990s.

POLS 8180. Presidential Politics. (3)
A study of presidential politics including administrative decision making, constitutional powers, elections, presidential-congressional relations, and the President as Commander-in-Chief.

*POLS 8190. Studies in American Politics. (3)
May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.
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Comparative Politics

POLS 6220. Comparative Legal Systems and Politics. (3)
Survey of the area of legalization, adjudication, and constitutional development in comparative perspective. After analyzing customary legal systems, as well as the two modern types, adversarial precedent and inquisitorial code systems, comparaisons of judicial institutionalization, independence of lawyers and judges, and constitutional accountabilty are evaluated.

POLS 8200. Comparative Politics. (3)
Concepts, theories and methods in the study of comparative politics.

POLS 8205. Comparative Democratization. (3)
Prerequisite: Pols 8200 recommended.
Theories and problems of emerging transitional democracies around the world.

POLS 8210. Political Development. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8200 recommended.
Theories of the development of political institutions.

POLS 8215. Politics of Peace. (3)
Explores the challenges of building stable political systems in the wake of civil war, using cases drawn from all regions of the world.

POLS 8223. Comparative Electoral Systems. (3)
Examines different election systems used in various democracies. Advantages and disadvantages of particular election systems.

POLS 8228. Comparative Party System Development. (3)
Drawing on both theoretical literature and empirical research, this course provides an introduction to the comparative study of party system development in democratic political systems. The course explores the experiences of newly democratized countries as well as that of established democracies. Insights will be drawn from Europe, Africa, Asia, the United States, and Latin America.

POLS 8235. African Politics. (3)
Comparative theoretical analysis of the politics of Subsaharan African countries.

POLS 8240. European Politics. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8200 recommended.
Comparative theoretical analysis of the politics of European countries.

POLS 8245. The Politics of Russia and Eastern Europe. (3)
Political, economic and social variables explaining change and the current political and economic structures in the region.

POLS 8250. Latin American Politics. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8200 recommended
Comparative theoretical analysis of the politics of Latin American countries.

POLS 8260. Politics of the Middle East and North Africa. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8200 recommended.
Comparative theoretical analysis of the politics of the Middle East and North African countries.

POLS 8270. Comparative Political Economy. (3)
Analyzes the linkage between economic performance conditions and political behavior in Western developed political systems. Focus covers multiple approaches to political economy: public choice, macroeconomic policy, economic influences on democratic behavior, Marxist political economy, and comparative public policy.

POLS 8273. Political Economy of Development. (3)
Comparative analysis of theoretical and historical perspectives on the politics of economic growth and development in the developing world.

POLS 8299. New Controversies in Comparative Politics. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8200. Course focuses on recent (and, in many cases, award winning) books in Comparative Politics. It has multiple goals: 1) to read a series of excellent recent books, and, by doing so, to fully engage some of the major theoretical innovations and currents in the field; 2) to engage some important theoretical arguments (often times in dialogue with each other); and 3) to provide an opportunity for discussing what makes a good book.

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International Relations

POLS 6420. International Law. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8200 recommended
Analysis of origin, principles, enforcement, and adjudication of international law.

POLS 6425. Politics of International Criminal Justice. (3)
Politics of international crimes such as drugs and other contraband fissile materials, internet fraud, and war crimes and the national and transnational conspiracies and organizations that commit or control these crimes.

POLS 8400. International Politics. (3)
Concepts and theories in international politics.

POLS 8421. International Organizations. (3)
Analysis of formation, role, process and politics of international organizations.

POLS 8422. NGOs and World Politics. (3)
Survey of the current state of the literature on non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and global civil society, exploration of the various roles NGOs play in several of the policy areas including the environment, human rights, international development, trade, humanitarian crises, women's issues, and security.

POLS 8427. Politics of Human Rights. (3)
Survey of the literature on the theory and politics of human rights. Explores the causes of extreme violence and human rights abuses, including state terror, sexual violence, and genocide, and examines existing international tools to prevent and address human rights abuses.

POLS 8430. International Political Economy. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8400 recommended.
Analysis of contending theoretical approaches in explaining the politics of the international political economy.

*POLS 8435. Studies in International Political Economy. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8400 recommended.
Topics may include theoretical analysis of trade, monetary and financial regimes, and North-South relations.

POLS 8450. United States Foreign Policy. (3)
Substance and process of U. S. foreign policy.

*POLS 8459. Studies in Foreign Policy. (3)
Topics may include theories of foreign policy making, U. S. national security policy, U. S. foreign economic policy, and comparative foreign policy. May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.

POLS 8465. International Relations of East Asia. (3).
Examination of East Asia (Northeast Asia and Southeast Asia) as a regional subsystem in the international system, focusing on security, economic and transnational societal relations in the region. Analysis of conflict and cooperation in the region, using various theoretical frameworks from the international relations literature.

POLS 8470. Military Conflict / International Security. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8400 recommended.
Conditions affecting the prospects for war and conflict within and between nation-states.

POLS 8475 War and Public Opinion. (3)
Prerequisite: POLS 8400 recommended. Examines public opinion about war and international relations. Topics include public preferences surrounding issues of war and peace, how public opinion responds to war, and how the public opinion shapes and constrains the choices of leaders and foreign policy makers in democratic states. 

POLS 8480 Transitional Justice. (3)
The course will provide a philosophical and theoretical framework for thinking about memory and transitional justice. It focuses on specific transitional justice institutions such as the Nuremberg Trials, the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, the International Criminal Court, as well as selected domestic and hybrid trials and truth commissions in many regions of the world.

POLS 8485 Ethics of International Relations. (3)
Course provides a survey of contemporary ethical questions in international relations. Among the questions considered: What significance do ethical considerations have in international affairs? Is ethical conduct in international relations possible, in the world of nation states with national interests and power politics? And how, in normative terms, should we evaluate international acts? Focus is on contemporary debates about just and unjust war, use of force, humanitarian intervention, treatment of civilians in war, human rights, democratization, and development.
*POLS 8490. Studies in International Relations. (3)
Prerequisite: PolS 8400 recommended
Topics may include international organization and law, human rights, international social movements, nations and nationalism and international conflict resolution.
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Political Theory

POLS 6510. Feminist Political Theory. (3).
The treatment of women in Western political thought. Various strands of feminist thinking: liberal, Marxist, socialist, radical, and postmodern.

POLS 6550. Liberalism and Its Critics. (3)
A look at the theoretical foundations of America's most prominent public philosophy: liberalism. Reviews the work of nineteenth and twentieth century British, French and American theorists.

POLS 8510 Theories on Democracy. (3)
What is Democracy? This course considers a variety of contending answers to this question. In particular, we will review representative, deliberative, agonistic and radical theories of democracy ? and chart disagreement on the meaning of democracy both within and across these approaches.

POLS 8520. Political Theory of Economic Justice. (3)
Focuses on the proper role of government in the economy. Readings from both classical and contemporary sources about laissez-faire, mixed economy, and democratic socialism.

POLS 8555. Contemporary Political Philosophy. (3)
This course examines contemporary thinking in political philosophy. Particular emphasis is placed on debates within the discipline over matters such as the ethics of war, abortion, civil rights, income distribution, judicial interpretation, and homelessness.

POLS 8560. Classical/Early Modern Political Thought. (3)
Survey of the great writings in political thought from Plato to Hobbes. Examines the contributions these works made to Western conceptions such as democracy, equality, human nature, citizenshipA survey of the historical writings in political thought from Plato to Marx. Special emphasis on the contributions these thinkers made to Western conceptions of democracy, equality, human nature, citizenship, etc., as well as the continuing relevance of the texts for explaining contemporary political phenomena.

POLS 8570. Modern Political Thought. (3)
Survey of the great writings in political thought from Machiavelli to Marx. Examines the contributions these works made to Western conceptions such as democracy, equality, human nature, citizenship, liberty, as well as their continuing relevance for understanding contemporary moral and political dilemmas.

POLS 8580 American Political Thought. (3) 

Course considers three major themes in American political thinking, conceptions of self-government, the kinds of values conducive to a democratic community, and how religion helps or hinders democracy.
*POLS 8590. Studies in Western Political Theory. (3)
Analysis of a particular concept or period of political theory. May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.

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Research Methods

POLS 8800. Elements of Research Design. (3)
Introduction to major research methodologies. Course will examine components of research design as well as how to collect and analyze data.

POLS 8805. Introduction to Quantitative Analysis. (3)

Introduction to fundamentals of quantitative analysis, including sampling, distributions, hypothesis testing, confidence intervals, and other topics.
POLS 8810. Uses of Intermediate Statistical Methods in Political Science Research. (3)

Intensive examination of quantitative statistics, ranging from classical regression to maximum likelihood models

*POLS 8820. Studies in Research Methodology. (3)
*May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.
Intensive examination of a particular methodological skill or skills.

POLS 8830.Advanced Quantitative Methods. (3)
Advanced examination of quantitative statistics, with an emphasis on maximum likelihood estimation models.

POLS 8840.Qualitative Methods. (3)
In-depth examination of qualitative methods of social science analysis.

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Research, Teaching, and Internships

*POLS 8900. Comprehensive Readings. (3)
For students preparing for master's or doctoral examinations. To be taken in the quarter in which the examinations are taken.

*POLS 8980. Directed Reading in a Special Area. (3)
Prerequisite: consent of instructor. May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.

*POLS 8990. Directed Research in Political Science. (3)

Pols 8995. Administrative/Policy Internship. (3 or 6)
Assignment to a staff, high-level administrative, or policy position for pre-service and in-service students pursuing management careers.

*POLS 8996. Research Internship. (1-15)
Prerequisite: Consent of Graduate director.
Assignment to a research project under direction of a faculty member. May be repeated for credit.

POLS 8997. Seminar in Effective Teaching - Post Secondary. (3)
Philisophy andTechniques of teaching at the college level. (NOTE: This course is to be cross-listed with course taught by Academic Foundations for graduate students in Arts and Sciences.)

*POLS 8998. Teaching Internship. (1-15)
Prerequisite: Consent of graduate director
Assignment to an undergraduate or graduate course under the supervision of a faculty member. For pre-service and in-service students interested in college-level teaching. May be taken more than once for credit.

*POLS 8999. Thesis Research. (1-15)

*May be repeated for credit



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