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Course Descriptions and Learning Outcomes

Course Descriptions

... see Current University Catalog.

 


Political Science Learning Outcomes

(reviewed and revised Fall 2008)

POLS 1101: American Government:

Students will be able to:

  1. Define democracy and note variations in democratic systems, such as direct democracy and pluralist, elitist, and participatory theories of democracy.
  2. Illustrate knowledge of the powers allocated to each branch of government and/or the important civil liberties and rights granted to all citizens.
  3. Describe the influence of political parties and interest groups on politics.

POLS 2400 Global Issues:

Students will be able to:

  1. Identify and describe some major political, economic, social and environmental issues confronting the global community.
  2. Evaluate major threats to peace and stability in the world today, and be able to discuss the underlying reasons for a lack of resolution.
  3. Evaluate the demographic, economic, and/or ethno-national dimensions to issues of development.

POLS 2801 Comparative Politics:

Students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate the value of comparative study in the evaluation of cross-national political phenomena, institutions, and behavior.
  2. Evaluate the major strengths and weaknesses of presidential and parliamentary systems, focusing in particular upon the American and British cases.
  3. Understand the important distinctions between the opposing regime types of liberal democracies and totalitarian states, while discussing how the Marxism-Leninist ideology informed the development of the latter regime type.
  4. Differentiate between the newly industrializing countries (NICs) and the less developed countries (LDCs), while demonstrating an awareness of the different theories that help explain the developmental progress (or lack thereof) in the economic and political realms of such states.

POLS 3101: International Political Economy:

Students will be able to:

  1. Compare and contrast the major theoretical frameworks in international political economy, while being able to discuss certain major international economic concepts and institutions.
  2. Evaluate one of the important debates in international political economy in today's world, i.e. free trade vs. protectionism, the pros and cons of globalization, development and dependency, etc.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of the major integrationist impulses extant in the world today, which have led to the creation of important new regional trading blocs, e.g., the European Union, N.A.F.T.A., A.P.E.C., etc.

POLS 3201 Constitutional and International Law:

Students will be able to:

  1. Examine the evolution of the United States' constitutional system of government from its inception to the present.
  2. Discuss the formation of the 1787 Philadelphia Constitutional Convention. 
  3. Critique the U.S. Supreme Court's authority in terms of its review powers of Congressional Acts, state laws, and state court judgments, jurisdiction and practice, and conditions for adjudication.
  4. Explain the significance of the post-Civil War constitutional amendments and Civil Rights legislation.
  5. Evaluate the role of international law in world politics.

POLS 3301 Modern Political Theory:

Students will be able to:

  1. Discuss the role of ideology in political life.
  2. Differentiate the various conceptions of democracy and freedom.
  3. Compare and contrast the competing idea systems such as liberalism, conservatism, communism, and fascism. 

POLS 3401 Regulatory and Environmental Law:

Students will be able to:

  1. Describe the history of and reasons for environmental regulations.
  2. Discuss the impact of constant change and lack of certainty, which are inherent aspects of the U.S. legal system.
  3. Brief environmental law cases using the IFRAC (issues, facts, rule, analysis, and conclusion) method.

POLS 3501 Intellectual Property Issues:

Students will be able to:

  1. Trace the origins and principles of intellectual property law.
  2. Discuss the principles of international patent law.
  3. Examine intellectual property law and its relevance to the Internet.
  4. Brief cases using the IFRAC (issues, facts, rule of law, analysis, and conclusion) method.

POLS 3601 Contemporary World Politics:

Students will be able to:

  1. Identify and describe the major security issues facing the world today.
  2. Analyze scholarly research on international security problems and present information orally in an effective manner.
  3. Conduct research that is methodologically sound, analytical, and reveals critical thinking skills.

POLS 4101 Political Economy of Post-Communist Transformation:

Students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the communist political, economic, and social systems of countries in the former Soviet bloc and evaluate how these characteristics may conflict with the requirements of a market economy and a liberal democracy.
  2. Evaluate the varied progress in political democratization and market reform, across the countries of the former communist world, identifying specific variables inhibiting or encouraging change.
  3. Discuss the economic and political problems associated with benefits reform corruption, and corporate governance issues in the post-communist realm, especially as they affect economic growth and foreign direct investment in the region.