Spring 2020 courses

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The following courses required for the B.S. in Political Science degree are available for the Spring 2020 semester. A full list of courses offered by the department and requirements for the major can be found in the PDF icon Undergraduate Handbook and the Major Requirements [pdf].

Additional course information can be found on Buckeye Link

Do you have questions about courses or scheduling? Make an appointment with an advisor by calling Arts and Sciences Advising at (614) 292-6961. 

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4. Subfield courses: 
 
 

1. Course(s) required to declare the major

*Students must have at least one of these

1100: Introduction to American Politics

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Semester | 3 credit units

This course is an introduction to the institutions, processes, and influences of American government, politics, and political behavior. The first part of the course will focus on political elites, discussing the history and theories of American democracy, as well as its political institutions (Congress, Executive, and Judiciary). In the second half of the course, we will shift gears and focus on mass political behavior and interests (public opinion, contemporary political debates, voting and campaigns and elections).  

This course is available for EM credit. GE soc sci orgs and polities course. SS Admis Cond course.


1200: Introduction to Comparative Politics

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Semester | 3 credit units

This is a course that introduces students to politics as it takes place outside the United States. The emphasis is on the big questions of the day: How should democracy be structured? How do countries confront the challenges of economic development, inequality, ethnic and racial cleavages, or nation building? What are the politics that make possible transitions from authoritarianism to democracy? And how are different authoritarian political systems structured? The class will address questions of this nature in the context of an analysis of selected wealthy and poor countries around the world.

This course is available for EM credit. GE soc sci orgs and polities and diversity global studies course.


1300: Global Politics

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Semester | 3 credit units

What are the causes of war? What are the conditions in which people from different parts of the world can work together to tackle common problems such as climate change? This course provides you with the basic theoretical perspectives to address important issues in world politics such as these, and also covers other topics including economic relations, the role of international organizations, and human rights, so that, at the end of the course, you will be able to critically analyze the phenomena in world politics as an informed citizen.

GEC soc sci human, natural, and economic resources and diversity global studies course.


2150: Voters and Elections

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Semester | 3 credit units

Why do people vote? Are non-voters completely disengaged, or simply engaged in other kinds of political activities that they find more satisfying and more likely to affect their lives? This course examines recent research into voting behavior, the election context of voting, and political participation. We will learn why people are turned off of politics, and consider what kinds of changes might be necessary to rekindle the interest of voters and maintain the legitimacy of elections in the future.  

GE soc sci indivs and groups course. SS Admin Cond course.


2300: American Foreign Policy

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American Foreign Policy

Semester | 3 credit units

Today, the United States possesses unrivaled power and influence in international politics. How is this power used? How is U.S. foreign policy developed and implemented? What interests should the United States pursue in key policy areas like terrorism, economic globalization and weapons proliferation? The goal of this course is to equip students with the knowledge and analytical skills needed to answer these questions and to critically evaluate the role of the United States in the world.

GE soc sci orgs and polities and diversity global studies course.


2400: Introduction to Political Theory

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Semester | 3 credit units

Justice, it is said, requires giving people what they are due – but what exactly are people due? Does justice encompass freedom and equality, or are these often conflicting political values? If so, how do we trade them off against each other? How should a just state distribute the goods that we all need, such as rights and liberties, educational opportunities, and wealth? In addition to studying great philosophical answers to such questions, we will apply those answers to live debates about pressing political questions, for example, regulating sexual conduct, economic markets, affirmative action, environmental sustainability, immigration, and global justice.

GE soc sci orgs and polities course. SS Admis Cond course.


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2. Required core courses in political methodology

*students must have 9 credits

3780: Data Literacy and Data Visualization

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Semester | 3 credit units

Most social science debates can be addressed with data, and sources of data are growing exponentially. This course introduces students to tools of data analysis and principles behind their use in the context of social-science applications. 

GE data analytics course.


4781: Techniques of Political Analysis (Political Analysis I)

graphes and stock chartsSemester | 3 credit units

This course is an introduction to the ways in which social scientists leverage quantitative data to answer questions about human behavior and society. Students will learn how to critically evaluate social scientific research and will get hands-on experience in analyzing data. This course also trains students to use the R statistical software, which is used for all analyses.

Prereq: One course in political science at the 3000 level or above. GE data analytics course.


4782: Research Methods in Political Science (Political Analysis II)

Research Methods in Political Science ImageSemester | 3 credit units

Our focus in this course will be on research questions and the methods we can use to answer them. Key to understanding the “how” of research is a good grasp of basic statistics and probability theory, which we will review briefly, and model estimation, on which we will spend several weeks. The second section of the course is meant to illuminate research methods at work. We will do this through reading and discussion of political science articles that apply the methods we’ve discussed in class and through your development and presentation of an original research project to address a research question of your choosing. The overall goal is that by the end of the course you will have learned the mathematics and assumptions that underpin social science models, allowing you to be a more critical consumer of published information both in the social sciences and in the world at large.


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3. Required specialized courses in political methodology

*Students must have 3 credits

3549: Survey Research Political Science

Semester | 3 credit units

The conducting of public opinion polls.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 449, 581, or Comm 449.


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4. Subfield courses

4A. American Politics

2150: Voters and Elections

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Semester | 3 credit units

Why do people vote?  Are non-voters completely disengaged, or simply engaged in other kinds of political activities that they find more satisfying and more likely to affect their lives?  This course examines recent research into voting behavior, the election context of voting, and political participation. We will learn why people are turned off of politics, and consider what kinds of changes might be necessary to rekindle the interest of voters and maintain the legitimacy of elections in the future.  

GE soc sci indivs and groups course. SS Admin Cond course.


2367: Contemporary Issues in American Politics

Semester | 3 credit units

Discussion of and critical writing about controversies in contemporary American politics; aimed at fostering analytical abilities in reading comprehension, oral, and written expression.
Prereq: 101 or 300, and English 110 or 111, and Soph standing; or permission of instructor. Not open to students with credit for 367.01 or 367.01H. GE writing and comm course: level 2 and soc sci orgs and polities course.


3115: Introduction to Policy Process

someone highlighting the word policySemester | 3 credit units

This course provides students with an introductory overview of the policy-making process, paying particular attention to the actors who play a pivotal role in crafting public policies and the institutions through which they interact. Note that this is not a course on policy analysis. Rather, it is a course about the politics behind successful policy change (and the pitfalls of policy failure). The objective of the course is to encourage students to think like strategic political operatives, who can take idealistic policy goals and design strategies to translate these goals into law.


3905: Political Manipulation

man in a suit with an Amican Flag tie and money in his breast pocketSemester | 3 credit units

Examines how political actors manipulate the rules and the salience and availability of information to shift political outcomes in their favor.


4125: American State Politics

American State Politics ImageSemester | 3 credit units

States play a critical - although often underappreciated - role in American democracy. They help pay for essential public services, administer safety net programs for vulnerable residents, and often serve as a source of innovation in public policy, generating new ideas that eventually become adopted by the national government. In this course, we will examine state politics and policymaking in a comparative context, paying particularly close attention to the importance of state institutions, the role of voters, and the intergovernmental dynamics across and within states.

Prereq: 1100 (101) or 3100 (300) or permission of instructor. 


4136: Civil Liberties

Flags waving in front of the Capital BuildingSemester | 3 credit units

An examination of the civil liberties decisions by American courts, their legal and political bases, and their effects on government and society.


4138: Women and the Law

Woman on a poster saying "We can do it"Semester | 3 credit units

This course examines legal issues that are especially relevant to women, issues that range from abortion to employment discrimination. We will consider this set of issues because of their importance in themselves and as a means to illuminate the workings of government and politics. The course material will focus on three aspects of these issues: the content of major legal rules affecting women and the development of those rules over time; the forces that shape those legal rules; and the impact of those rules on the situations of women and on society generally. 


4139: Gun Politics

a gun an bullets sitting on an American FlagSemester | 3 credit units

 The phrase “gun politics” refers to the views of different people within a particular country as to what degree of control (increased gun rights vs. greater gun control) should be enforced upon the private ownership and use of firearms, to what extent firearms ownership influences crime, and how best to achieve a balance of power between the individual and the state.
In America today there are some 300+ million firearms in private hands, amounting to one weapon for every American. Two in five American homes house guns. On the one hand, most gun owners are law-abiding citizens who believe they have a constitutional right to bear arms. On the other, a great many people believe gun control to be our best chance at reducing violent crime.
This course will examine gun control through historical, legal, and sociological lenses.  Upon completion of the course students will have a better understanding of how truly multi-faceted and complex the issue is and, thus, why consensus is so difficult to achieve.


4175: Women, Government, and Public Policy

Semester | 3 credit units

An examination of policymaking on gender-related issues and the impact of women in government.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 513 or WGSSt 4513 (513). Cross-listed in WGSSt 4513.


4891: Topics in American Politics

Semester | 3 credit units

Selected topics in American politics; topics vary by section and instructor.
Repeatable to a maximum of 6 cr hrs.


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4B. Comparative Politics

3220: Politics of the Developing World

a tibe carring containers on their headsSemester | 3 credit units

The international system is characterized by tremendous inequality, and the gaps between the poorest and wealthiest countries commonly grow larger and larger.  This class asks, given this, what is a developing country to do?  That is, what are the political strategies, institutions, and problems that shape whether rapid economic and social development is possible, or whether poverty, marginalization, and malgovernance are likely to remain endemic.  The course covers experiences selected from around the developing world (from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and even the European periphery), and is organized around three periods: (1) the post-war boom from the 1945 to the mid-1970s, (2) the return of free-market economics in the 1980s-90s, and (3) the contemporary era for financial globalization and crisis.  This is a class about the politics of development, and no formal economics training is presumed.

GE soc sci human, nat, and econ resources and diversity global studies course.


4240: Latin American Politics

Latin American Politics ImageSemester | 3 credit units

This course serves as in introduction to Latin American politics, and it is organized thematically to cover a broad swath of countries. The course provides a historical overview and theoretical debates surrounding many political, economic, and social actors and events in the region. It also analyzes the quality of democracy and the current problems and political developments Latin America. Students will engage critically, analytically, and thoughtfully with theories in political science and developments in the scholarship of Latin American Politics.


4270: The Canadian Political System

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Semester | 3 credit units

The Canadian political system, including institutional, behavioral, socio-economic, cultural, and ideological components, often in comparison with the United States' political system.

 

4285: Comparative Politics of the Welfare State

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 Semester | 3 credit units

Analyzes different kinds of welfare capitalism including social, economic, and political considerations shaping welfare policy; and contemporary welfare reform as an exercise in reallocation, reorganization, and budget-cutting.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 578.


4940: Politics of Immigration

Semester | 3 credit units

Provides overview of international migration phenomenon: patterns of international migration, reasons for immigration, acceptance of immigrants by governments and public, dynamics of anti-immigrant sentiment.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 543.


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4C. International Relations

2300: American Foreign Policy

President Obama shaking hands with a leader of a Middle Eastern Country.Semester | 3 credit units

Today, the United States possesses unrivaled power and influence in international politics. How is this power used? How is U.S. foreign policy developed and implemented? What interests should the United States pursue in key policy areas like terrorism, economic globalization and weapons proliferation? The goal of this course is to equip students with the knowledge and analytical skills needed to answer these questions and to critically evaluate the role of the United States in the world.

GE soc sci orgs and polities and diversity global studies course.


3310: Defense Policy and National Security

Semester | 3 credit units

This course addresses some of the basic issues surrounding national security policy. The primary focus is on policy issues related to the use of force between and within countries. The goal of the course is to provide the analytical tools and factual knowledge that are necessary to identify and assess current and future threats to national security.


3910: Identity Politics

Semester | 3 credit units    

Explores who controls the meaning of identity in society; examining identity from the perspective of liberal, sociological, and social psychological, structuralist, and institutionalist theories.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 547.


4305: International Theory

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Semester | 3 credit units

 

‘International theory’ is concerned with theoretical reflection on the explanatory, ethical, and legal aspects of international politics.  In this course we will focus initially on the explanatory aspect, but with growing emphasis on ethics and law as the semester progresses.  Part I deals with the traditional problem of international life, of maintaining peace in an anarchic system among states relatively equal in power.  Part II calls the assumption of anarchy into question by looking at hierarchical structures in the international system between the North and South.  Part III addresses the rise of the individual as a subject of world politics, and especially the ethical challenges of global governance that this creates.  Throughout, an effort will be made to illustrate the relevance of theoretical debates for the real world, but in the end this is a course about ideas not information, and students will be evaluated accordingly.


4315: International Security and the Causes of War

International Security and the Causes of War ImageSemester | 3 credit units

This course examines various issues regarding international conflict and cooperation, including theories of strategic interaction and the causes of war.


4318: The Politics of International Terrorism

The Politics of International Terrorism ImageSemester | 3 credit units

Examines international terrorism's concepts and actors, the motivations and causes of terrorism, the experience of the United States, and tensions between freedoms and security.


4327: Politics in the Middle East

Politics in the Middle East ImageSemester | 3 credit units

Politics of Arab-Israeli relations, Perisan Gulf, Islamic fundamentalism, and oil; processes of change and their effects on governments and international relations.


4330: Global Governance

Global Governance ImageSemester | 3 credit units

In the past two decades, global governance has emerged as a central challenge in world politics. This course will examing the emergence and various forms of global governance, including questions of legitimation, democratization, and enforcement; as well as collective security, humanitarian intervention, and proliferation. The course will focus particularly on the ways in which global governance relates to violence and the use of force. 


4331: UN Systems

Semester | 3 credit units

Activities and potential of the United Nations system in promoting economic well-being, environmental management, resource sharing, social justice, and control of violence.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 551.


4381: Comparative International Political Economy

Comparative International Political Economy ImageSemester | 3 credit units

A survey of foreign economic policies followed by European and other advanced industrial economies since the Napoleonic Wars, with a special emphasis on Britain, France, Germany, the United states, and Japan.


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4D. Political Theory

2400: Introduction to Political Theory

a bust Semester | 3 credit units

Justice, it is said, requires giving people what they are due – but what exactly are people due? Does justice encompass freedom and equality, or are these often conflicting political values? If so, how do we trade them off against each other? How should a just state distribute the goods that we all need, such as rights and liberties, educational opportunities, and wealth? In addition to studying great philosophical answers to such questions, we will apply those answers to live debates about pressing political questions, for example, regulating sexual conduct, economic markets, affirmative action, environmental sustainability, immigration, and global justice.

GE soc sci orgs and polities course. SS Admis Cond course.


3430: Political Theories of Freedom

protester holding up a sign that says "Freedom"Semester | 3 credit units

This course provides a survey of the various ways in which the value of human freedom has been invoked and pursued in political life. Topics of discussion will include the relationship between freedom and democracy, between “political” and “market” freedom, and between freedom and the necessary conditions for its enjoyment. Anarchist, feminist, liberal, libertarian, postmodern, republican and socialist perspectives will be considered.


3450: Ethics and Public Policy

a bronze scale sitting on an ethics bookSemester | 3 credit units

Contemporary approaches to public policy evaluation and their ethical foundations, including efficiency, security, rights, welfare, and equity. This course will give students the basic knowledge of contemporary public policy approaches and will provide critical tools to evaluate the ethical implications of specific policy positions. 


3460: Global Justice

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Semester | 3 credit units

Is it possible to achieve global justice? What would such a world look like and what does this tell us about how to live today in our own unjust world? These important questions motivate this political theory course about the possibility of justice between states and among the people of the world. Our first unit considers leading analytic frameworks, starting from Kant’s influential 1795 essay Perpetual Peace before considering a variety of contemporary approaches. To show that these questions are not idle or utopian, the course examines particular issue areas relevant to political debates today. Subsequent units look closely at poverty, trade, and sweatshops; global environmental issues; immigration, indigenous people, and the legacy of colonialism; and global governance and accountability. Throughout, we will connect these issues to each other as well as to newsworthy developments in global politics today.


4465: Feminist Political Theory

Semester | 3 credit units

Examines concepts in feminist political theory including the articulation of feminism, the subjects of feminist theory, the relation of race, class and sexuality to gender experience, and the use of feminist theory to transform conceptions of justice.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for WGSSt 4465. Cross-listed in WGSSt.


5414: Liberalism, Totalitarianism, and Empire: 20th Century Political Thought

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WWII

Semester | 3 credit units

 

The 20th century was a time of unprecedented transformations: world wars, genocide, the collapse of colonialism and the spread of capitalism. This course examines the political theories that contributed to these developments as well as efforts to understand these changes.
Prereq: Not open to students with credit for 4414 (473) or 6414 (673). 

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5. Other Courses

3191: Political Science Internship

4191: Political Science Internship

4193: Individual Studies

4998: Undergraduate Research in Political Science

4999: Undergraduate Thesis Research

4999H: Honors Thesis Research

5797: Study at a Foreign Institution

 

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