Undergraduate Political Science Courses

POLS 2304. Introduction to Political Science. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

An introduction to the discipline of political science, with particular emphasis devoted to its development in the modern era. Topics include degree concentrations available in the program, types of political institutions, uses of political science, participation by political scientists in public affairs and public policy, an introduction to research and writing in the discipline, political theory and other discipline theories, and career options available to political science majors. Prerequisites: ENGL 1301 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3301. Political Economy of Globalization. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This class introduces students to the political system that manages the global economy. The class looks at theoretical approaches to economic conflict and cooperation, global trade, and global finance. Students will also study problems associated with the global economic system including poverty, inequality, and environmental externalities. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or GOVT 2306 or POLS 2304 or ECON 1301 or ECON 2301 or ECON 2302 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3302. Elections and Political Parties. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of the electoral process in American national, state, and local political systems. Emphasis will be placed on the evolution of the structure and functions of political parties, interest groups, the news media, and other participants in the electoral process. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3303. Comparative State and Local Government and Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Variations and similarities in the practice of politics and in the administration of government in the states. Particular attention is given to local government and state-national relations. Prerequisite: GOVT 2306 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3304. The Executive. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of the organization of executive power in American national, state, and local systems. Emphasis will be placed on the evolution of the structure and functions of the Presidency of the United States and national, state, and local bureaucracies, and the role of parties, legislatures, courts, interest groups, and other participants in the executive process. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3305. Legislation. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of the legislative process in American national, state, and local political systems. Emphasis will placed on the evolution of the structure and functions of the Congress and the state legislatures, and the role of executives, courts, parties, interest groups, and other participants in the legislative process. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3307. Public Administration. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

A survey of the concepts and practices of American public administration. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3308. International Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course introduces students to concepts and theories of international politics. It covers the evolution of the contemporary nation-state system, the role of international governmental institutions, and conflict and cooperation among states. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3309. The Judiciary. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of the organization of the judiciary in American national, state, and local systems. Emphasis will be placed on the structure and function of the courts, plus the roles of the executive and legislative branches in selecting judges and checking the power of the courts, and the roles played by interest groups and others in influencing the courts. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3310. Environmental Policy. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

An introduction to the politics of environmental protection in America. The focus of the course is upon domestic environmental policy with particular attention paid to traditional media - air, water, and hazardous waste. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305.

POLS 3311. Political Philosophy I. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Philosophical ideas concerning basic political problems from the Classical period to the Renaissance. Credit for both PHIL 3311 and POLS 3311 will not be awarded. Prerequisite: PHIL 1301 or GOVT 2305 or POLS 2304 or approval of instructor.

POLS 3312. Political Philosophy II. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Philosophical ideas concerning basic political problems since the Early Modern period. Credit for both PHIL 3312 and POLS 3312 will not be awarded. Prerequisite: PHIL 1301 or GOVT 2305 or POLS 2304 or approval of instructor.

POLS 3314. Comparative Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course introduces students to the politics of several nations in Europe, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle east. The course focuses on the analysis of major political developments in the post- World War II era leading to the present. Topics discussed include: the legacy of the past, governing structures and processes, and contemporary political debates. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3315. Sustainability. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Explore the varied perspectives of sustainability and analyze factors that contribute to or decrease system sustainability. Investigation of the social, economic, and environmental barriers to achieving sustainable systems and options for overcoming these barriers. Credit will be awarded only for POLS 3315, ENVS 3315, or WSES 3315. Prerequisites: GOVT 2305 or GOVT 2306 or POLS 2304 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3316. Political Science Research Methods. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

This course introduces students to the process of conducting research in the social sciences. Material will focus on developing research questions and extrapolating hypotheses from them, correctly and accurately reviewing prior relevant literature and how/when to cite it, applying qualitative and quantitative methods, finding sources of data and developing a case study, understanding the IRB process, and preparing a research proposal that can be reviewed and refined in preparation for a Capstone project. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 (Political Science majors) or Junior standing (all other majors) or approval of the instructor.

POLS 3323. Political Communication. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Analysis of political campaigns in modern society, including history, design and effects of campaigns. Students will study the uses of different media for campaign purposes, working in teams to achieve common goals.

POLS 4084. Internship. 3-6 Credit Hours (Lecture: 0 Hours, Lab: 16-30 Hours).

Application and integration of academic study and development of skills in a field setting. Field projects include direction of a political campaign, internship in a city or county administrative office, or in a not-for-profit organization for analyzing or carrying out governmental policy. Minimum of 200 hours of work required for 3 hours of credit. Prerequisites: 2.5 overall grade point average, advanced standing, and approval of department head. Field experience fee $50.

POLS 4086. Problems. 1-3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 0 Hours, Lab: 1-3 Hours).

Independent reading, research and discussion. Entry into this course will be arranged with the political science counselor.

POLS 4301. Constitutional Law. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

An introduction to the principles of American constitutionalism, specifically, the prerogatives of American political institutions. The subject is approached by close study of the documents which outline these principles, the four Organic Laws of the United States, Supreme Court cases, and political speeches. Prerequisites: GOVT 2305, HIST 1301, and HIST 1302; or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4302. Constitutional Law II. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

The origin and development of constitutional prohibitions as shown by leading U.S. Supreme Court decisions on civil rights, contracts, due process, economic regulation, eminent domain, labor relations, obscenity, political utterance, and religion. Prerequisite: POLS 4301.

POLS 4306. European Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Comparative examination of European politics and government, with particular attention to the European Union and policy processes at the nation-state and EU levels. This course may be conducted either as a regular seminar on campus or as part of a study-abroad opportunity. Students who take the course on campus may repeat it once for credit as a study-abroad opportunity, or vice versa. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4307. Nationalism. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Examination of theories of nationalism and national identity, origins of ethno-centric conflict, and impacts of national identity on political issues. Prerequisite: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4308. Politics of Latin America. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course provides an analysis of contemporary political issues, economic development, militarism, and democratization in Latin America. In attempting to explain these phenomena, the course will focus on the shaping influences of such key factors as religion, gender, race, ethnicity, and the impact of external powers in shaping political events in the region. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4309. Politics of the Middle East. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course focuses on the history and politics of the Middle East in the 20th century. Specifically, this course will analyze such critical political, social, intellectual, and economic themes as colonialism, Arab nationalism, secular modernism, military conflict, the rise of political Islam, the status of women, and the oil revolution. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4310. International Environmental Issues. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

An introduction to environmental politics and policy at the international level. The focus of this course is upon global environmental policy with particular attention paid to the processes that create and shape global environmental policy. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4311. Environmental Law. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

Focuses on US environmental law and regulations including administrative law and common law. Major laws dealing with air, water, and hazardous waste will be assessed, including citizen participation within the legal process Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or GOVT 2306 or POLS 2304 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4312. Religion and Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

An examination of the major theories of the relationship of religion and politics and a survey of this relationship in the United States with a focus on religious liberty, church-state relations, and religious advocacy. Additional focus on Christian-majority states in Europe and the Americas and Muslim-majority states and the relationship of Islam and government, as well as critical contemporary issues. Students cannot receive credit for both POLS 4312 and RELI 4312. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or PHIL 3304 or RELI 3304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4313. East and South Asian Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

Government organization and functions, political processes, and major developments in the political systems of Japan, China, Korea, India, Pakistan, and other states in East and South Asia from the 20th century to the present. Prerequisites: POLS 2304 or Junior standing or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4314. African Politics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

This course introduces students to the major political issues and dynamics in sub-Saharan Africa, including traditional political systems, the effects of colonialism, political culture, public policy, the role of the military, domestic conflict, corruption, institutionalization, democratization, development, foreign aid, and regional integration. Prerequisite: Junior or Senior status or POLS 2304.

POLS 4315. Foreign Policy. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of America's role in the modern world. Particular emphasis is placed on the policy makers, for example, the President, Congress, the State Department, and the Department of Defense, and on external factors such as other nations. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or POLS 3308 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4340. US Public Policy. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course provides an overview of the development of public policy in the United States and offers students the opportunity to understand this process in relation to their research interests. A major research project on a specific policy issue is developed over the course of the term. Credit will not be awarded for both POLS 4340 and POLS 5340. Prerequisite: GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor.

POLS 4385. Political Science Seminar. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Independent reading, research, discussion, and paper writing, under personal direction of instructor. Prerequisite: POLS 2304 or GOVT 2305 or approval of the instructor. May be taken more than once for credit.

POLS 4390. Political Science Capstone Course. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

This course requires students to integrate and use fundamental concepts learned in previous political science courses to research and analyze real-world political phenomena and problems. Students will present oral and written reports on their research, supplemented by appropriate internet and multimedia materials, as well as portfolios documenting their research. Prerequisite: POLS 3316 or SOCI 4302 or permission of the instructor.