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Course Catalog

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Course List


POLS 2311 GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES (3-0) (GOVT 2305). The constitution and government of the United States. The organization, procedures, and duties of the branches of the government, together with their accomplishments and defects.

POLS 2312 STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT (3-0) (GOVT 2306). The principles and organization of American state, county, and municipal government, together with current problems and the constitution and government of Texas.

POLS 3303 INTRODUCTION TO PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION (3-0) The scope and development of public administrative organizations; both the traditional and behavioral approaches to the treatment of administrative principles, decision making, and organizational environment.

POLS 3304 INTRODUCTION TO COMPARATIVE POLITICS (3-0) Cross-national and cross-cultural comparisons of political systems. Institutional structure, political process, dynamics of change, and ideology.

POLS 3305 GOVERNMENT IN URBAN AMERICA (3-0) Problems associated with the growth, diversity, and complexity of urban areas and governmental solutions. Urban regimes, neighborhood governments, electoral politics, and intergovernmental relations. Useful for students interested in urban management.

POLS 3306 LEGISLATIVE ORGANIZATION AND PROCEDURE (3-0) Internal and external influences on the U.S. Congress: rules, norms, committees, seniority, political parties, presidents, media, constituents and interest groups.

POLS 3307 COMPARATIVE STATE AND LOCAL POLITICS (3-0) Comparison of state and local political institutions and policy choices in the United States. Useful for students interested in state and local government policy innovations.

POLS 3308 POLITICS OF A TEXAS CITY: ARLINGTON CITY POLITICS (3-0) Describes the political processes over a period of fifty years from the immediate post-World War II years to the present. The outlines of Arlington city government, its structure, the changes, and personalities that have shaped it and held power. This course does not satisfy area distribution requirements.

POLS 3310 RESEARCH METHODS AND POLITICAL ANALYSIS (3-0) How to study politics scientifically, through proper research design, quantitative and qualitative methods. Students are familiarized with a statistical package to analyze political data, which will fulfill the computer competency requirement. Prerequisites: POLS 2311, 2312, Math 1301 or 1302, and Math 1308. Exceptions as approved by the Department.

POLS 3311 PUBLIC OPINION (3-0) Measurement of attitudes, public opinion and ideology, the learning and influencing of public opinion, and expression of public opinion in elections and mass political movements. The logic and practice of survey research.

POLS 3312 INTRODUCTION TO PUBLIC POLICY ANALYSIS (3-0) The American policymaking process from issue creation to program administration and evaluation. Policy models and methods of policy analysis. Oriented toward providing students with skills as a professional policy analyst.

POLS 3313 MODERN CRITICS OF SOCIETY AND POLITICS (3-0) Designed for both political science and other majors. Focus on writers like Banfield, Galbraith, Marcuse, Reich, Revel, Skinner, and Toffler.

POLS 3314 POLITICAL SYSTEMS OF EASTERN AND CENTRAL EUROPE (3-0) POLS 3314 or RUSS 3314. Examination of the political institutions and processes of the former communist systems of Eastern Europe and the Baltics, as well as selected Central European states. Credit will be given in only one department. Students receiving credit in Russian will complete projects using the Russian language.

POLS 3315 VIOLENCE & REPRESSION IN THE AMERICAS (3-0) Examination of extra-legal behavior in the Americas (particularly Latin America). Topics include human rights violations, repression, insurrection, terrorism, and revolution. Analysis of different causes and outcomes of such political participation. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and POLS 2312.

POLS 3316 DICTATORSHIP AND DEMOCRACY IN LATIN AMERICAN POLITICS (3-0) The political development of Latin American nations and various explanations for trends and differences in Latin American politics. Strategies of development; Latin America's relationship with the United States; and contemporary events in Latin America.

POLS 3317 MEXICAN POLITICS AND U.S.-MEXICO RELATIONS (3-0) Current economic and political systems of Mexico and relevant issues in U.S.-Mexico relations. Trade, immigration, economic dependency, energy, contraband, and other topics. Offered as MAS 3317 and POLS 3317; credit will be given in only one department.

POLS 3318 POLITICAL SYSTEMS OF EAST ASIA (3-0) The political institutions and dynamics in the political systems of East Asia including China and Japan.

POLS 3327 AMERICAN POLITICAL PARTIES (3-0) The development and characteristics of the American political party system, including systematic goals, formal organizations, membership recruitment, ideological and issue orientations, electoral and participatory functions, and linkages in the political system.

POLS 3328 INTRODUCTION TO MIDDLE EAST POLITICS (3-0) The historical developments that have led to the current political, social, economic, and security order of the Middle East, as well as the contemporary challenges facing the region and its inhabitants. Prerequisites: POLS 2311 and 2312.

POLS 3329 THE POLITICS OF INTERNATIONAL CONFLICT (3-0) The impact of factors such as national security and political ideologies on international conflict and the role of international organizations in maintaining world peace.

POLS 3330 JUDICIAL BEHAVIOR AND THE JUDICIAL PROCESS (3-0) Decision making, role perception, recruitment and socialization of judges, and the relationship between attitudes and values of justices and their decisions. The judicial process and how courts relate to the larger political system and society. Especially recommended for pre-law majors.

POLS 3331 CONTEMPORARY ISSUES IN CIVIL LIBERTIES (3-0) The status and function of civil liberties in modern America emphasizing problem areas of Equal Employment Opportunity, invasion of privacy by government, obscenity and pornography, and corporate and industrial assaults on civil liberties.

POLS 3333 JURISPRUDENCE (3-0) An empirical and normative examination of the nature of law, legal reasoning, and modern legal systems, particularly in the U.S. Other topics: the origins of American legal concepts as they have evolved from earlier legal systems in the Western world and a comparative treatment of legal systems in the world today. Especially recommended for pre-law majors.

POLS 3334 WOMEN AND U.S. LAW (3-0) An exploration of the status and rights of women under the law in the United States. Examines the changing nature of sex discrimination through Supreme Court cases, federal legislation and other primary source material. Analyzes the impact of the Supreme Court on national policy making in areas such as employment, education, privacy and the family.

POLS 3335 CRIMINAL LAW (3-0) The substantive legal provisions of criminal justice; major crimes prohibited by our legal system with stress upon social values. Texas and Anglo-American criminal laws treated and contrasted.

POLS 3336 STATE JUDICIAL INSTITUTIONS & JURISPRUDENCE (3-0) An examination of state judicial institutions emphasizing the role of processes in determining judicial behavior and the composition of state courts. Examines the role of law and courts, judicial system structures, and judicial policy-making in state government.

POLS 3390 HONORS COLLOQUIUM (3-0) An interdisciplinary course designed to meet the needs of advanced undergraduates in the honors program.

POLS 4101 MOOT COURT (1-0) An understanding of legal debate from the perspective of student competitions, discussions of legal doctrines, and legal research methods. Statewide competitions required. This course does not satisfy area distribution requirements. May be repeated for total of 3 hours credit.

POLS 4102 POLITICAL SCIENCE SERVICE LEARNING (1-0) Students will engage in service learning placements to supplement political science course work with the goal of civic education and community involvement. Placements will be coordinated with the Center for Community Service Learning and students will be required to fulfill not only placement hours, but also additional reflection in writing in consultation with the faculty advisor. This course does not satisfy area distribution requirements.

POLS 4300 POLITICS IN FILM (3-0) Use of film and video in the presentation of political ideas, opinions, and facts. Techniques, subject matter, and alternative forms of presentation. This course does not satisfy area distribution requirements.

POLS 4303 PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION AND THE POLITICAL PROCESS (3-0) The relationships of public administration at all levels with democratic institutions, including its interactions in the formulation and execution of public policies with the chief executive, the legislative and judicial branches, political parties, clientele groups, and the public at large.

POLS 4312 INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS (3-0) This course introduces students to the institutions, decision-making, and activities of the world's leading multilateral organizations. Examples include the United Nations, NATO, the African Union, and the European Union. Students will focus on how organizations respond to contemporary global challenges such as civil wars, terrorism, human rights abuses, and economic crises. The course also teaches students how to apply theories of international relations to real-world policy problems.

POLS 4313 POLITICAL DEVELOPMENT (3-0) The concept of political development, political values, structures, issues, and patterns of political processes in the pre-industrial, industrial, and post-industrial political communities.

POLS 4314 SEPARATION OF POWERS AND AMERICAN INSTITUTIONS (3-0) Theories behind institutional design and development of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches in the United States. Emphasis is placed on interactions of these units of government.

POLS 4316 WOMEN IN THE POLITICAL PROCESS (3-0) This course introduces students to the unique experiences of women in the political process, the impact of these experiences on the political system, and theories of gender and politics. Offered as POLS 4316 and WOMS 4316; credit will be granted only once.

POLS 4317 ETHNIC GROUP POLITICS IN THE UNITED STATES (3-0) The influence of selected major ethnic groups with special attention given to organizational development, participation in political parties, leadership, ideology, immigration policy, current issues, and relations with the dominant culture and other ethnic groups. Offered as AAST 4317 and POLS 4317; credit will be granted in only one department.

POLS 4318 POLITICS OF AFRICAN AMERICANS (3-0) The influence of African-American politics on United States government and policies with special attention given to organizational development, participation in political parties, leadership, ideology, the Civil Rights movement, current issues, and relations with other ethnic groups. Offered as AAST 4318 and POLS 4318; credit will be granted in only one department.

POLS 4319 POLITICS OF MEXICAN AMERICANS (3-0) The influence of Mexican-American politics on United States government and policies with special attention given to organizational development, participation in political parties, leadership, ideology, the Chicano Movement, current issues, and relations with other ethnic groups. Offered as MAS 4319 and POLS 4319; credit will be given in only one department.

POLS 4322 ISSUES IN POLITICAL THEORY (3-0) Each time this course is offered it will focus on one particular issue central to the study of political theory for example, authority, justice, citizenship, methodology of the social sciences. May be repeated for credit when content varies.

POLS 4323 FEMINIST POLITICAL THOUGHT (3-0) Issues raised by the feminist critique of political theory; the exclusion of women from the political sphere until the 20th century; Marxist, liberal, and radical feminist political thought; alternative feminist conceptions of the political. Offered as POLS 4323 and WOMS 4323; credit will be granted only once..

POLS 4324 ELECTORAL BEHAVIOR (3-0) Major theories of candidate strategy and voter choice, including rational behavior and empirical democratic theory. Introduction to voting behavior analysis in contemporary elections.

POLS 4326 ELECTION STRATEGY AND CAMPAIGN MANAGEMENT (3-0) Strategies relating to elections and various aspects of managing campaigns, including the techniques of demographic survey, voting behavior analysis, opinion survey, issue research, and candidate research.

POLS 4327 POLITICAL IDEAS OF THE ANCIENT WORLD (3-0) Principal theorists and schools of political thought prior to 1500, with emphasis upon those making significant contributions to the political heritage of Western Europe.

POLS 4328 MODERN POLITICAL IDEAS (3-0) The development of political thought from Machiavelli to Marx. Emphasis on the Renaissance, Classical Liberalism, French Radicalism and Marxism.

POLS 4329 CONTEMPORARY CONTROVERSIES IN POLITICAL THEORY (3-0) Examination of twentieth-century approaches to political thought and central controversies in the field. Topics may include: liberal, conservative, and socialist theories; critical theory; communitarianism; postmodernism; feminism; and identity politics.

POLS 4330 THE U.S. PRESIDENCY (3-0) The U.S. Presidency, including sources of power, changes in the office over time, and the relationship between the individual and the institution.

POLS 4331 U.S. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: GOVERNMENT POWER (3-0) U.S. Supreme Court decisions regarding the structure of government in the United States. Focus on Congress, the President, Federalism, and the relation of the judicial process to these topics. Recommended for pre-law majors.

POLS 4332 U.S. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS (3-0) U.S. Supreme Court decision making involving the Bill of Rights and other fundamental rights. Especially recommended for pre-law majors.

POLS 4333 PRESIDENTIAL LEADERSHIP IN DOMESTIC POLICY MAKING (3-0) Explores the policy process from the perspective of the U.S. president, examining the president's influence through the policy stages. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and POLS 2312.

POLS 4334 PRESIDENTIAL LEADERSHIP IN FOREIGN POLICY (3-0) The roles, powers, and expectations of the presidency in crafting and implementing foreign policy. By analyzing how presidents utilize the tools of foreign policy available to them, an understanding of broader social and political forces shaping the formulation and implementation of foreign policy is gained. Prerequisite: POLS 2311, POLS 2312.

POLS 4335 LEADERSHIP IN AMERICAN (U.S.) POLITICAL DEVELOPMENT (3-0) This course critically examines the tension between democracy and leadership in the development of American (U.S.) politics. By analyzing the role of political leaders in American political development, an understanding of the dynamics that drive change in American politics is gained. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and POLS 2312.

POLS 4336 CONTEMPORARY UNITED STATES FOREIGN POLICY (3-0) Theories and analytical structure for understanding United States foreign policy. Policy examined from theoretical, structural, regional, and topical perspectives.

POLS 4340 FEDERAL SOCIAL POLICY (3-0) This course examines public policies, including Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and various public assistance programs that emerged from the federal government's attempts to create a "safety net" for American citizens beginning in the 1930s, and from attempts to confront poverty during the 1960s. This course also considers the importance of federal "tax expenditures" in prompting private actors to provide services, such as employer-sponsored health insurance. The course also examines attempts to alter, roll back, or expand the federal role in social policy over recent decades.

POLS 4350 HEALTH POLITICS AND POLICY (3-0) Debates over the role of government in providing access to health care have been a prominent feature of American politics for the past century. This course examines the politics of health care debates in America as well as major features of federal health policy. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and POLS 2312.

POLS 4351 ENERGY POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (3-0) Basic issues underlying the politics, economics, and administration of energy policy within the United States. Emerging energy sources, such as solar and geothermal.

POLS 4352 U.S. IMMIGRATION POLICY AND THE AMERICAN DREAM (3-0) Focus on American identity through the examination of immigration to the United States, past and present, and the evolution of U.S. immigration policy. Topics include U.S. attitudes and policy responses to European, Asian, and Latin American immigration and to the incorporation of the descendants of African slaves and Native Americans. Emphasis on the decline of the melting pot idea and the incorporation of recent immigrants. Offered as MAS 4352 and POLS 4352. Credit will be granted only once.

POLS 4353 PUBLIC BUDGETING AND TAXATION (3-0) The concepts, processes, and policy impacts of taxation and public budgeting. Individual, group, and institutional roles in taxes and budgeting are emphasized. Introduction to current research techniques in political economy.

POLS 4354 THE POLITICS OF REFORM POLICY (3-0) Current and past efforts to change the way American government functions. Sources of reform, consequences of reform, and case studies of current reforms.

POLS 4355 INTERNATIONAL POLITICS (3-0) The background, principles, practices, risks, and problems of international relations and politics in the world composed of nation-states; international conflicts, their bases, and mechanisms for their solution.

POLS 4360 THEORIES OF THE INTERNATIONAL SYSTEM (3-0) Major theories and approaches to the international system. Traditionalist, behavioralist, and post-behavioralist theories rather than institutional, legal, or topical considerations.

POLS 4361 THE POLITICAL ENVIRONMENT OF RUSSIA AND THE SUCCESSOR STATES (3-0) The domestic political systems of Russia and the other former Soviet republics. The communist state in retrospect. Development of political actors, institutions, and parties. Offered as POLS 4361 and RUSS 4361; credit will be given in only one department. Taught in English; for Russian language credit, research will be done in Russian.

POLS 4362 RUSSIA AND THE SUCCESSOR STATES TODAY (3-0) The metamorphosis of the Communist Party and the current political philosophies of the post-Soviet states. Examination of attitudes and self-perceptions of citizens of these states in the post-period. Emphasis is on area studies and culture. The course will be taught in English, but for Russian language credit; research will be done in the Russian language. May be repeated for credit as topics change. Offered as HIST 4362, POLS 4362, & RUSS 4362. Credit will be granted in only one department.

POLS 4365 FOREIGN POLICIES OF RUSSIA AND THE SUCCESSOR STATES (3-0) The foreign policies of Russia and other former Soviet republics. Development of their policymaking structures and the major issues confronting them. Emphasis on Russia and the superpower relationship, European security and cooperation, relations with developing states, and the interactions of the former Soviet republics. Also listed as RUSS 4365; credit will be given in only one department.

POLS 4370 INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS OF THE MIDDLE EAST (3-0) This course will focus on the international interactions among actors in the Middle East. Topics to be covered include: theoretical and conceptual approaches to understanding regional politics; main conflicts in the region; contemporary challenges and issues; and a survey examination of the foreign policies of select countries.

POLS 4371 THE POLITICS AND FOREIGN POLICY OF ISRAEL (3-0) This course will examine the domestic politics and foreign policies of Israel. The course will be divided into two sections. The first section will focus on the domestic institutions and politics of Israel, while the second section will focus on Israel¿s foreign policies and the impact of domestic politics on them. Topics to be covered include: the rise of Zionism; the pre-state period in Palestine; efforts at state-building and institutional development; domestic politics (including institutions, parties, electoral system); divisions in Israeli society; and determinants and examples of foreign policy. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and 2312.

POLS 4372 HUMAN SECURITY, VIOLENCE, AND SCARCITY (3-0) This course explores patterns of violence, scarcity, and norms in world politics, particularly as they pertain to the emerging paradigm of human security. This approach calls into question conventional notions of national and international security by focusing on the security of people rather than states. It explores challenges to basic human needs and desires which undermine the ability to be safe, free, and secure -- such as infectious disease, genocide, environmental degradation, migration, and transnational crime. It also examines international responses to such problems.

POLS 4389 BEYOND CONGRESS AND THE WHITE HOUSE (3-0) An examination of power in Washington, focusing on what lies outside the Executive and Legislative branches. Students visit and study significant institutions and monuments in the city as windows into complex political and social issues. Enrollment is restricted to designated Archer Fellows.

POLS 4390 POLICYMAKING IN WASHINGTON (3-0) An analysis of the central role of Congress in shaping public policy. Emphasis on real-world policymaking. Students play the role of legislative assistants to members of Congress and produce analyses of the public policy issues. Enrollment is restricted to designated Archer Fellows. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and 2312.

POLS 4392 SPECIAL TOPICS IN POLITICAL SCIENCE (3-0) May be repeated for credit as topics change.

POLS 4393 PREPARING FOR CAREERS IN POLITICAL SCIENCE (3-0) Supervised employment in a government or government-related organization with the student performing duties related to the academic curricula of political science. Students are required to submit a term paper, case study, or an approved academic project related to the work performed. Work is generally graded pass/fail. A maximum of six semester hours of credit in Political Science Internship may be used to satisfy a political science elective requirement for graduation. Students must be classified as juniors or seniors, be political science majors or minors, and have a minimum 3.0 GPA in their major and overall. Majors must have completed 21 hours of political science; minors must have completed 12 hours of political science. Contact the Department for a complete description of requirements. Departmental consent required before enrollment.

POLS 4394 HONORS THESIS/SENIOR PROJECT (0-0) Required of all students in the University Honors College. During the senior year, the student must complete a thesis or a project under the direction of a faculty member in the major department.

POLS 4395 CONFERENCE COURSE READINGS IN POLITICAL SCIENCE (3-0) Designed for the advanced undergraduate student who is capable of independent study. An in-depth examination of one area of political science not necessarily covered in regular course work. May be repeated for credit when the subject matter varies, but only with permission of the department . Only two such courses will be counted on a student's degree plan. Prerequisites: permission of the undergraduate advisor; appropriate previous coursework; written consent of the instructor. Students must be Political Science majors or minors, have a minimum of 60 credit hours/junior status, have a 3.0 grade point average, and have completed at least 9 hours of Political Science.

POLS 4691 ARCHER PROGRAM INTERNSHIP (6-0) One-semester work experience in Washington, DC carried out during the student¿s tenure of an Archer Fellowship. The internship is custom-designed with the assistance of the director of the Archer Program based on the student¿s academic and professional goals. Enrollment is restricted to designated Archer Fellows. Prerequisite: POLS 2311 and 2312.

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