- Course Descriptions
- Mock Trial
- Moot Court
- Program Goals and Outcomes
- Student Acceptances
- U.S. and Mexican Border Project 2006
- Four-Year Academic Plan
POL 1 - American Government and Institutions (3)
An introduction to the principles and problems of government, with particular emphasis on the formation and development of the national and state administrative, legislative, and judicial systems and processes. GS-IIIG
POL 2 - Introduction to World Politics (3)
An investigation of the concepts and techniques which enable the student to compare divergent political systems, focusing upon both traditional and innovative concepts such as power, ideology, decision making, elitism, and the structural-functional approach. Particular attention is devoted to political systems. See HIS 26. GS-IIIC,IIIF,VI
POL 5 - Business Law (3)
An introduction to the development of legal principles for business activity, as found in common law, statutory laws, and the Uniform Commercial Code. Use of case studies for practical applications. Also see BUS 05.
POL 10 - Political Concepts (3)
The aim of this course is to acquaint students with the scope and techniques of political science by relating major concepts in political theory to current problems and issues. Major political theorists such as Plato, Aristotle, Locke, Hobbes, Hegel, and Marx are the focal points of analysis. In this way the contribution of political science to the understanding and clarification of political phenomena can be exemplified. GS-II, IIIF
POL 101 - Research Methodology
An examination of modern research and writing methods emphasizing needed skills in conducting political science research and preparing research papers, including working with statistical data bases, using libraries and archives, and evaluating, citing, and presenting evidence. Required for political science majors. See HIS 101
POL 102 - Women and the Law (3)
This course analyzes the relationship between gender and the law and how it has evolved over time. It covers the landmark cases that have shaped women's rights in American including abortion (Roe v. Wade), freedom from sexual harassment in the work place (Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins) and equal access to education (the case of the Virginia Military Institute). This course will also examine the works of leading scholars including Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who as a litigator was a leading advocate for women's rights and now sits on the U.S. Supreme Court. GS-IIIG
POL 103 - Legal Reasoning (3)
An examination of the methodologies of legal reasoning. The course studies rationales and insights to be gained from approaching problems with legal emphasis. A major research paper is an important component of the class. Required for Pre-Law Minors. Restricted to juniors and seniors with a Pre-Law Minor.
POL 106 - Real Estate Law (3)
Business and legal aspects. Estates in land, purchase and sales contract, conveyances, mortgage and trust deed transactions, property taxes, landlord and tenant, wills and inheritance. Prerequisite: BUS 5. Also see BUS 171.
POL 107 - Criminal Law (3)
An examination of the elements of the criminal law with emphasis on crimes against the person as well as crimes against property. The standard defenses will also be considered.
POL 109 - Individual Rights (3)
Emphasis on the Bill of Rights as applied to both federal and state jurisdictions. Also includes examination of both substantive and procedural due process. Consent of instructor necessary for non-majors and non-minors. See HIS 180. GS-II, IIIC, IIIG
POL 110 - Political Behavior (3)
This course explores the political behavior of American citizens. Students will examine citizens' participation in elections, issue advocacy and protest movements. The examination will include a comparison of political behavior and preferences among differing socioeconomic groups, minorities, and women.
POL 112 - Healthcare Law and Policy (3)
This course examines federal and state law governing healthcare; analyzes competing policy preferences pertaining to healthcare; and explores the political implications of the development and implementation of healthcare law and policy. This course may be taken as upper division credit toward the Political Science major, and the Pre-Law minor. This course is cross-listed as HCP 112 and is required for the Healthcare Policy major.
POL 116 - Democracy and Democratic Theory (3)
A critical examination of the major theorists of democracy in the twentieth century and preconditions of democratic government and society; in particular, insights derived from psychology and sociology are utilized. Consent of instructor necessary for non-majors and non-minors.
POL 117AB - History of Political Theory (3,3)
An examination of the major theorists of political theory from antiquity to the middle of the nineteenth century. Special emphasis will be placed on the writings of such seminal figures as Plato, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke and Rousseau. (See HIS 115 AB) GS-IIIC
POL 118 - American Presidency (3)
This course examines the powers of the office of the President of the United States. Students will analyze the President's formal constitutional powers, informal powers of persuasion and the impact of personal styles of those who have held the office. The role of the White House staff, institutional resources, and the dynamic relationship between the President, Congress, and the courts will be considered in determining the ability of Presidents to successfully achieve their political agendas and affect public policy.
POL 120 - Legislative Process (3)
This course examines legislative process, organization, and structure. Students will analyze committee structure, the impact of House and Senate rules, and the electoral motivations of the members of Congress. The roles of constituents, interest groups, party politics and the dynamic relationship among the branches of government will all be considered in assessing the law and policy making function of the US Congress.
POL 121 - Judicial Politics (3)
This course examines the role of the courts in American government and politics. Students will explore the structure of the American judicial system, judicial processes, the nature of judicial decision-making and the increasingly contentious judicial appointment process. The relationship of the courts to the other branches of government will also be considered in determining the courts' impact on major substantive policy areas.
POL 122 - Middle East Politics (3)
An analysis of political societies in the Middle East and of the many ways in which they were transformed into nation states. Issues addressed include nationalism, religious political activism, colonialism, regional conflicts, revolutions, and the position of women.
POL 123 - African Politics (3)
Provides an understanding of the historical, economic, and social variables that shape modern African politics. Central themes will include nation-building and democratization, the international relations of Africa, issues of peace and security, and Africa's political economy.
POL 124 - Latin American Politics (3)
A comparative analysis of Latin American political systems. Emphasis on the politics of development, the problems of leadership, the military in politics, legitimacy, and regime continuity.
POL 126 - Politics of the former Soviet Union (3)
An examination of the revolutionary origins, development and dissolution of the Soviet Union followed by a discussion of the issues confronting Russia and the new republics. Issues include political economic transformation, ideological transitions, and the proliferation of weapons.
POL 127 - Politics of the Global Environment (3)
Examines the environmental implications of the international political economy. The focus is on the changing role of the state and the politics of industrial development including the tragedy of the commons, sustainable development, global warming and environmental security.
POL 128 - Politics of Globalization and Interdependence (3)
An assessment of globalization and interdependence, and the challenges they pose to the governments of nation-states since the end of World War II. Topics the global economy and trade; the challenges to national cultural identities and sovereignty; the role of technological advancements; and integration.
POL 129 - Regionalism and International Politics (3)
Explores the institutional features of regional organizations. Issues addressed include political and economic integration, regional versus multilateral approaches, and the challenges posed to state sovereignty.
POL 130 - International Political Economy (3)
Examines approaches to the international political economy (IPE) including the liberal, economic nationalist, and the neo-Marxist perspectives. Topics include the Bretton Woods institutions (World Bank, IMF, and GATT/WTO), international trade and development, foreign debt, poverty and global inequality.
POL 131 - International Relations (3)
A general survey of the institutions, considerations, and ideologies involved in the formation and execution of foreign policy within a world context. Special attention is placed upon international agencies, including the United Nations. May be taken for lower division credit. GS-IIIG
POL 132 - Political and Economic Development (3)
An analysis of the major explanations for underdevelopment and alternative strategies for development. Topic discussed include colonialism, nationalism, the Third World in the international system, state-building and political change, and gender perspectives on underdevelopment.
POL 133 - Moot Court (3)
This course will teach students the fundamental skills of legal and oral advocacy. Students will receive training in case analysis and development, rules of evidence and basic trial and appellate court techniques. Students will participate in appellate moot court competitions and, based on class performance, may be chosen to compete in national mock trial competitions. This course may be repeated once for credit.
POL 135 - Selected Problems in International Organization (3)
Particular emphasis is placed on the role of international organizations and the maintenance of world peace. May be taken for lower division credit. GS-IB, IIIG
POL 136 - Revolutions in World History (3)
This course focuses on the social, political, economic and ideological forces that promote and sustain political revolutions. Case studies may include French, American, Russian, and Chinese revolutions as well as revolutionary groups and individuals.
POL 137 - Ethnic Conflict and Civil War (3)
Examines discord within multiethnic societies by analyzing how nationalist, racial, ethnic and/or religious identities serve as sources of internal conflict. Issues addressed include communalism, civil strife, systematic violence, and genocide. GS-IIG
POL 138 - International Law (3)
The study of the development of international law through the primary sources. Special emphasis will be placed on the development of international law under the aegis of international organizations.
POL 139 - Women in International Politics (3)
This course examines the interaction between gender and international politics. Topics include gender biases in international relations, women's relationship to the nation-state, gender analysis of war and peace, and global women's issues including development, human rights, and socioeconomic and political rights.
POL 140 - North-South Relations (3)
Examines the political, social and economic issues that often create tensions between developing (South) and developed (North) countries. Issues include sustainable development, foreign debt and investment, term of trade, political hegemony, and cultural relativism.
POL 141 - Global Governance (3)
The course will examine ways in which international peace and security are achieved in the world. Topics include traditional peacekeeping, multidimensional peace operations, preventive diplomacy, peace enforcement, and humanitarian intervention.
POL 142 - International Conflict and Cooperation (3)
Focuses on the various types of international conflict and ways in which cooperation manifests in international politics. Topics include the management and prevention of conflict, regional and global conflicts throughout history and the causes of conflict.
POL 143 - Causes of War and Political Violence (3)
In this course, the origins, purposes and types of war and violence throughout history including terrorism are analyzed. Topics include just war theory, theories of war and terrorism, and the social and political consequences of political violence.
POL 144 - Politics of Europe and the European Union (3)
Analyzes the political, social and economic development of modern European nation-states and the evolution of the European Union. Topics include the political and economic integration of Europe since the end of World War II.
POL 145 - Southeast Asian Politics (3)
Provides an understanding of the historical, economic and social variables that shape modern Southeast Asian countries including Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, Myanmar, Brunei, the Philippines, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. Central themes include nation-building and democratization, peace and security, and political economy.
POL 146 - Military in Politics (3)
Focus on relations between the military and politics. Emphasis on the varieties of military involvement in politics, cases of direct military intervention in political systems, and the consequences of military influence over political decisions.
POL 147 - Women and Development (3)
Analyzes the impact of development policies on women in developing countries. Topics include the status of women in traditional societies, the gendered allocation of resources, and illegal immigration including the international trafficking of persons.
POL 148 - Refugees and International Migration (3)
Examines the politics of mass migration across state borders or within nation-states. Cases studied included forced relocation, refugees of war, and different forms of legal and illegal immigration including the international trafficking of persons.
POL 149 - Comparative Foreign Policy (3)
Comparative study of foreign policy making in different political systems. Issues include economic, military, and political relations among countries, and foreign policy actors such as heads of state and bureaucrats.
POL 150 - International Security (3)
Analyzes the factors surrounding security studies in international relations. Topics include the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction, deterrence, arms races, the security dilemma, and domestic threats to global peace.
POL 151 - Humanitarian Intervention (3)
An analysis of the issues that provoke humanitarian concerns such as civil strife, poverty, epidemics, and famine. The development of norms of humanitarian intervention will be a focus on this course.
POL 152A - Advanced Studies in the History of Modern Japan (3)
An examination of the rapid transition of the feudal Japan of the Shogun to the modern technological state. This course will probe the events that brought changes in government, family, religion, education, industry, and foreign relations from 1600 to 1952. (See HIS 151.) GS-IIIC
POL 152B - Advanced Studies in the History of Modern China (3)
An emphasis on the development of Modern China through a biographical approach. Personalities such as the Empress Dowager, Sun Yat-sen, Mao Tse Tung, and others will provide insights into the evolution of the Chinese State. (See HIS 152.) GS-IIIC
POL 171H - Presidents and Personality (3)
An attempt to illuminate and characterize the contributions of American presidents to American politics by an examination of the writings of psycho-historians and others emphasizing psychological insights. Open only to students admitted to the Honors Program, or with consent of instructor. GS-IIIG
POL 176 - Public Policy (3)
This course considers major public issues in American politics within a framework that emphasizes analysis, social configurations, and resolution of conflicts. The particular issue will be announced in the schedule of classes for the appropriate term.
POL 180 - State and Local Government (3)
A study of state political systems, including their administrative and local sub-systems; intergovernmental relationships; policy outputs. Consent of instructor necessary for non-majors and non-minors. GS-IIIG
POL 185 - Public Personnel Administration (3)
The process of formulating and administering public personnel policies; concepts and principles utilized in selected governmental personnel systems. Special emphasis on collective bargaining in public employment.
POL 186 - Introduction to Public Administration (3)
The executive function in government; principles of administrative organization, personnel management, financial administration, administrative law, and problems and trends in government as a career. GS-II
POL 187 - Organizational Theory and Governmental Management (3)
Organizational structure, human factors in organization, dynamics of organizational change, internal adaptability to external environment; problems, limitations, and trends in governmental organization and management.
POL 188 - Administrative Law (3)
Introduction to administrative law and its impact on the American political and bureaucratic landscape. Regulatory agencies, procedural due process and their interface with vested and individual rights are the focal point for discussion on constitutional and legal precedents in a case study context.
POL 192 - Plays and Politics (3)
A study of selected plays from antiquity to contemporary times in which the insights of the playwright and the conclusions of the political scientist are interrelated. A multidimensional and interdisciplinary approach is utilized. May be taken for lower division credit. GS-IIIG,VI