Department of Political Science

Political Science Undergraduate Lower-Division Courses

Introductory analysis of the contemporary international system and major state and non-state actors in world politics. Considerable attention is given to internal political features and to the problems/perceptions of the various actors that shape their external behavior. Approved for LAS Social Science area and Global Awareness requirements.

  • 3 Credits

A general introduction to the American political system with emphasis on the inter-relations among the various levels and branches of government, formal and informal political institutions, processes, and behavior. Required of all majors. Not open to those who have had other beginning courses in American government. Approved for LAS Social Science area requirement. Approved for Compass Curriculum requirement: Explore-Society, Health and Behavior. GT-SS1.

  • 3 Credits

In order to better understand the relationship among international actors, this introductory course covers theories and concepts essential to help us comprehend the world in which we live. We analyze ideas and learn to apply the theories to further our knowledge of war, human behavior, economics, international organizations, and law, to name only a few. Approved for LAS Global Awareness requirement.

  • 3 Credits

Comparative politics, unlike any other subfield in political science, is both a subject of study and a method of study. The course introduces students to both. As method of study, comparative politics focuses, not surprisingly, on comparison. As a subject of study, comparative politics helps students understand and explain political phenomena that take place within a state, society, country, or political system. Approved for Social Science area and Global Awareness requirements.

  • 3 Credits

Conflict is part of political, social, and economic life. Human conflict today is different from the past in terms of its nature, scope, and scale. Some of the most important characteristics of political conflict are covered, primarily from an international relations perspective. Uses both historical and theoretical frameworks to help interpret conflict. Approved for LAS Global Awareness requirement.

  • 3 Credits

Focuses on regional, state, and local government where politics is face to face and where political decisions regularly affect our daily lives. The political systems that teach children, issue building permits, collect garbage, determine welfare eligibility, operate parks, issue drivers licenses, and enforce traffic rules. Approved for LAS Social Science area requirement.

  • 3 Credits

History and development of American political theories and ideas from colonial period to present.

  • 3 Credits

An introduction to the basic methods and tools of research in political science. Topics will include discussions of the resources available for political research, the study of politics as a science, common techniques of political analysis, the development of research designs, research report writing, and the ethics of political research. The course will be largely experiential, directly involving students in research experiences.

  • 3 Credits
 
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