POL 205 - Introduction to Political Science 3 credits; Offered fallCourse required of all political science majors.
This course presents an analysis of the basic definitions, concepts and theories of political science emphasizing their relationship to the American political system.
POL 206 - Comparative Government 3 credits; Offered spring Course required of all political science majors.
This course compares institutions and processes in contemporary political systems: democracies, totalitarian regimes and emerging nations. England, France, West Germany, the Soviet Union, China, and the new nations of Africa are examined.
POL 213 - Constitution of the United States 3 credits; Offered fall alternate years
This course presents an analytical survey of the fundamental concepts and principles embodied in the Constitution, especially historical development, the boundaries of power, judicial review, civil liberties, and constitutional law. This course is a critical treatment of constitutional problems with relation to current political and social trends.
POL 215 - Politics of Russia and the Eurasian States 3 credits; Offered upon sufficient enrollment
This course examines the political cultures, the histories, the economies and the social policies of the former republics of the Soviet Union. Emphasis is placed on the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the demise of the Communist Party.
The course employs comparative analysis to investigate the government structures, policies and problems of Russia, Lithuania, Georgia, and Uzbekistan.
POL 230 - Current Events 3 credits; Offered fall and spring
This course asks students to discover what is going on in the world, where it is going on and why. Students study sources of information, identify important stories of the week, trace continuing stories, and review major headline stories of the present year and the last 20 years.
POL 261 - Political Ideologies 3 credits; Offered as needed
This course examines a wide spectrum of political values and beliefs through exploring a plethora of political ideologies. Through their exploration, students come to understand the role that political values play in determining the quality of human actions as well as how different values impact cooperation and conflict.
Students will identify their own political beliefs and critique political ideologies in light of those beliefs. This course also examines the process through which a society socializes its citizens into its mainstream belief system.
POL 265/CCA 212 - International Science and Politics in Society 3 credits; FeeSatisfies part of the Scientific Literacy requirement
This course provides a non-science major with a foundation of scientific knowledge and applies this knowledge to many contemporary science-related policy issues and their impact on the societies in which we live. In addition to some basic chemical principles, lectures may include topics such as the age, composition, and evolution of the universe, climate change, polymers, acid rain, depletion of the ozone layer, drugs and pharmaceuticals and HIV/AIDS.
Students will participate in basic science laboratories for procedures and techniques associated with contemporary experimental chemistry at a level suitable for the non-science major. Basic laboratory skills such as laboratory safety protocol, how to prepare and handle laboratory reagents and solutions, carrying out measurements and analyses using laboratory equipment, and problem solving will be developed.
Students will visit some organizations that are on the cutting edge of science research, education, and policymaking. This course will teach students the basics of how global policy issues are addressed including the role of international organizations, governments, and the private sector in solving issues with global significance.
The nine-day study abroad component to France and Switzerland is part of this course.
POL 269 - Special Topics in Political Science 3 credits; Offered as needed
The instructor selects the content of this course to meet the needs of students and to provide opportunities to experiment in creative teaching.
POL 271 - Politics of Developing Countries 3 credits; Offered fall alternate years
This course examines the issues and problems faced by developing countries in the contemporary international arena. The course content introduces students to different cultures and models of political/economic development while encouraging tolerance and respect for other peoples and their societies.
Students will be exposed to the social justice and human rights issues inherent in development. The course employs an interdisciplinary perspective to investigate and offer solutions to the problems faced by developing countries.
POL 272 - Environmental Politics I: U.S. Policy 3 credits; Offered as needed
This course examines the politics surrounding environmental issues and the process of environmental policymaking. The focus of the course will be at the international level, but U.S. domestic policies and issues as well as U.S. foreign policy on environmental issues play a key role in this agenda.
The course will focus on current environmental issues with a primary focus on climate change. Within this framework, students will learn about the institutions that both influence and negotiate such policies as well as the process by which policies are made.
Using climate change as a model, students will gain a comprehensive knowledge on how environmental issues are perceived and addressed as issues with global impact.
POL 273 - Environmental Politics II: Global Policy 3 credits; Offered as needed
This course is a continuation of Environmental Politics I, focusing mostly on contemporary environmental issues like climate change, climate-induced migration, natural disasters, and the impact of these issues on poverty and meeting global targets.
In doing so, students will examine the roles of international organizations, country governments, and civil society in meeting these targets and addressing these vital environmental issues.
POL 275 - Comparative Economics 3 credits; Offered spring alternate years
This course provides a comparative analysis of the world’s major economic systems and their effects on the political and social structures of individual nation-states. Common global eco-political problems are examined and discussed from both a theoretical and practical framework.
POL 280 - Politics and the Arts 3 credits; Offered as needed
The course is designed as an exploration of how various arts influence and portray politics of their era. As such, the course focuses on three areas within the arts: visual arts, music, and film.
Within each of these areas, the course familiarizes students with the major political issues of various time periods including the American colonial period, the Romantic Era, the Twentieth Century, and the Contemporary Period.
H-POL 301 - Honors Political Science: Terrorism 3 credits; Offered spring
This course offers an investigation and analysis of the role and functions terrorism plays in contemporary society. This course examines the historical roots of terrorism and attempts to define the differences between terrorists and freedom fighters as well as between state-sponsored acts of violence and those performed by non-state groups and individuals.
Emphasis is placed on the causes of terrorism, the impact of terrorism on international politics and evaluating the strategies of dealing with acts of terrorism. The ethics and justification of terrorism also are critically appraised.
POL/BUS 307 - Public Finance 3 credits; Offered spring in odd-numbered years
This course deals with public finance at the federal, state, and local level. It is an introductory course into the main issues facing the public arena, such as tax equity and incidence for all types of taxes, allocation and efficiency of public goods, and the budgeting and allocation process of the Fiscal Federalism system in the United States.
POL 315 - Introduction to International Relations 3 credits; Offered spring alternate years
Students address dynamic forces of international politics concentrating on those factors that affect relations among nations such as the balance of power, diplomacy, war and peace, sovereignty, and international organization and law.
POL 316 - The American Presidency 3 credits; Offered spring alternate years
This course offers a description and analysis of the basic roles and functions of the president.
Special attention is paid to the evolution of the Executive Branch and especially the presidential role in foreign policy decision-making.
POL 317 - American Political Parties 3 credits; Offered as needed
This course addresses the evolution, organization, function, and purposes of American political parties on the national, state, and local levels.
POL 318 - The Federal Judiciary 3 credits; Offered fall alternate years; Lecture-discussion
Students learn about the federal court system and its relation to public policy formation. Topics include jurisdiction and access, judicial decision-making, the relationship of statutory and constitutional interpretation to policy, and the compatibility of judicial review and democracy.
POL 324 - Public Administration 3 credits; Offered spring alternate years
This course presents an overview of the scope and functions of public administration as well as a developmental history of the discipline.
There will be an extensive analysis of the concepts and theories of public administration including systems theory, decision-making theory, typologies of organizational theory, conflict theory, and clinical approaches to administration analysis. Students also examine the major public and private institutions forming the environment with which public administration must interact.
POL 325 - Health Politics 3 credits; Offered as needed
This course examines the politics surrounding health issues and the process of making health policy in the United States and through global entities.
The course will begin with a history of health politics in the United States including the origins of our health system, the changes that have occurred over time and the issues that are relevant to today’s health politics such as the national health care coverage debate.
From there, students will also learn how select case countries different from the United States in their provision of health care as well as learn about the various international organizations that work on health care globally.
POL 330 - State and Local Government 3 credits; Offered as needed
The course is designed as an overview of the role of the states in the broader American political experience and familiarizes students with the major issues surrounding American state politics.
Using a comparative analysis of the general structure, politics, and policy across the fifty states, the course focuses on U.S. state politics, as a whole, rather than on specific states. Some states, such as Pennsylvania, are highlighted as cases throughout the course.
POL 340 – US Constitutional Law 3 credits; Offered as needed
This 3-credit undergraduate course is intended to familiarize the student with the development and substance of US Constitutional Law, and important constitutional issues impacting the body politic today. Issues such as equal protection law, issues related to criminal law and procedure arising under the Bill of Rights and the developing right of privacy will be emphasized.
Students will study portions of the actual text of cases that have been decided by the US Supreme Court. A case on the current Supreme Court docket will also be tracked and studied. Students will read the briefs filed in the case, will listen in class to MP3/audio files of the actual oral argument, and each student will write an opinion ‘deciding’ the case as if they were a Supreme Court Justice.
Sophomores and freshman may take the course with consent of their academic adviser.
POL 400 - Special Topics in Political Science 3 credits; Offered as needed
The instructor selects the content of this upper-division course to meet the needs of students and to provide for experimental coursework at the advanced level. For specific information about course content each semester, consult the department chair.
POL 487 - Political Science Methods 3 credits
The focus of this course is on qualitative methodologies and mixed methodologies for political science. The course explores the techniques, strengths, and limitations of such methodologies as it applies to political science research. Theoretical as well as practical case examples are explored to demonstrate various methods to the student researcher.
Case studies are drawn from American politics, international relations, comparative politics, and public policy. The goal of the course is to prepare undergraduate students for study at the graduate level and generally improve research techniques and understanding for the social sciences.
POL 488 - Internship Credit to be arranged; Offered fall and spring
Students may participate in an internship in career or graduate school-oriented field. This course is graded on a pass/fail basis only.
POL 499 - Independent Study 3 credits; Offered fall and spring; Fee Prerequisite: Approval of instructor, department chair and dean for academic affairs
This course offers independent but directed study of a special topic of interest to the student, not generally included in the regular course offerings.