PS 3113 Formation of Public Policy
Welcome to the world of public policy. The field of public policy is distinguishable from other fields in political science because most policy analysts examine the major aspects and institutions involved in the development of public policy in the context of particular substantive policy areas. In this course, we will look at several examples of policy arenas, including educational, environmental, social, and foreign policy, ranging from the international to the local level. Our case studies provide an opportunity to better understand and apply political science theories about policies and policymaking and gain valuable knowledge of substantive policy issues being discussed and debated in government today. As such, relevant examples and discussions of the current political and policy environment are encouraged and will constitute part of the class. Students are therefore strongly encouraged to read newspapers and newsmagazines for information about current issues.
PS 3023 Public Opinion
Welcome to the world of public opinion. In many ways, public opinion is a critical aspect of representative democracy because public opinion is the expression of what people expect, desire, and think of their government. The course is concerned with the methodological, practical, and substantive issues associated with public opinion. We will examine the methods that underlie public opinion research, which include data collection, probability sampling, survey design, and statistical analysis. Furthermore, we will consider how public opinion data are used by various levels of government, political candidates, and the media. Any course of public opinion must provide information on what the public believes. Accordingly, we will discuss the American public's views on a series of substantive topics, including social welfare issues, racial questions, cultural issues, and foreign policy issues. Finally, we will assess public opinion in the context of democratic government and how public opinion influences public policy.
PS 2793 Research Methods in Political Science
Welcome to the world of science and politics. This introductory course is concerned with the conduct of political science research. Our concerns will be addressed by considering how political scientists conduct research. The focus will be on learning about the scientific method and designing research projects. Relying on qualitative and quantitative methods in political science, particularly those which could be used in upper division political science courses, you will learn how to use scholarly research to write research papers in political science. Moreover, the qualitative and quantitative skills you will learn in this class will prepare you well for both graduate school and the job market. Your grade in this course will be based primarily on your ability to successfully understand and apply the following: 1) the scientific method in relation to political science research, 2) qualitative and quantitative methods of political science research and 3) understanding and using scholarly research in political science.
PS 1113 American Federal Government
Welcome to the world of American Federal Government. This course provides a college level introduction to the American political system at the national level. While it is an introduction course, it will be challenging. The American political system demands that its citizens be informed and knowledgeable on issues concerning government, since the people are the government in the United States. Principal areas of examinations include the historical and political foundations of the United States as a nation and the meaning of the basic constitutional rights. Within the context of the political and policy processes, this course also focuses on the role and significance of political parties, the media and the branches of government. Some of the major questions this course addresses are: What is the role of citizen? What do citizens need to know? Who is responsible for the actions of the United States' government? What is Federalism? What is the role of the Supreme Court?
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