Academic Catalog 2020-2021

Slippery Rock University

Political Science (POLS)

POLS 101 -  American National Government  

A survey of American national politics, emphasis on the constitution, parties, interest groups, elections, organization and structure of government.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Every Term

POLS 103 -  International Relations  

An overview of the politics of various governments; the nature of relations among nations; a study of problems such as terrorism and multinationals as political participants.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms

POLS 110 -  Foundations of Political Science  

This course introduces students to contemporary political problems and how political scientists think about those problems. Students will learn the language of political science including the big themes, concepts, and models that span centuries of political science literature and provide insight into global and domestic political conflict. Students will use the lens of political science to explore concepts such as liberty, equality, justice, rights, individual autonomy, democracy and representation, identity and tolerance, the appropriate role and limits of government, and sovereignty of states in the international system. Although non-democratic forms of governance will be examined, this course will focus on democratic governance - why we chose it, what political practices and reforms can improve it, and how citizens through engagement and dialogue can help to strengthen it. This course will emphasize the relevance of the core concepts of political science in relation to important contested political issues in the US and the global community today.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Global Citizenship, Comparative Perspectives of Justice & Society, Fighting Social Problems, Transfer Thread Completion Course

POLS 139 -  University Seminar  

University Seminar serves as the entry point to the Slippery Rock University general education program. With its strong faculty-student interaction, the course promotes intellectual inquiry, critical and creative thinking, and academic excellence. Through varied content, the course introduces students to academic discourse and information literacy while exploring topics such as diversity and inclusion and global awareness. This course will set students along the path to becoming engaged with issues and scholarship important to a 21st century education while they learn about themselves and their place in the world.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Enrollment limited to students with a semester level of Freshman 1 or Freshman 2.
Enrollment limited to students with the ROCK STUDIES STUDENT attribute.

POLS 190 -  Experimental  

A unique and specifically focused course within the general purview of a department which intends to offer it on a "one time only" basis and not as a permanent part of the department's curriculum.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

POLS 195 -  Workshop  

Special topics of interest to undergraduates and selected members of the community. A workshop is a program which is usually of short duration, narrow in scope, often non-traditional in content and format, and on a timely topic.

Credits: 1-6

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

POLS 198 -  Selected Topics  

The in-depth examination of a specific topic to be determined by the department in consultation with the instructor. A Selected Topics course is a normal, departmental offering which is directly related to the discipline, but because of its specialized nature, may not be able to be offered on a yearly basis by the department.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

POLS 200 -  State and Local Government  

Examines state levels of government. Emphasis is on constitutions, parties and interest groups, elections, organization and structure of government.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

POLS 215 -  Introduction to Political Theory  

An introduction to classical and modern theories of politics, governments and ideologies.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Even

POLS 220 -  Foreign Policy  

The study of selected instruments of foreign policy, how it is formulated and implemented; the focus is on the U.S.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Global Citizenship, International Business, Sustainable International Development, Transfer Thread Completion Course

POLS 223 -  Law and Courts  

An introductory examination of the structure of the judicial branch of government; what we mean when we talk about the "law"; how our understanding of what is law has developed and changed throughout our history; how our state and federal courts are administered and structured; the nature of legal education; the work of the Supreme Court, judges, and lawyers; how the criminal justice system chooses juries, tries defendants, negotiates justice through plea bargaining, and depends on its judiciary; and the role of the legal system in resolving private disputes.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Becoming America, Transfer Thread Completion Course

POLS 235 -  Civil Discourse and Democracy  

This course is an introduction to civil discourse, or the practice of constructive dialogues and deliberation, based in mutual respect, which ultimately seeks to advance the public interest. Students will use the lens of political science to explore contemporary political problems and how to approach, discuss, and analyze them.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall & Spring Terms

Enrollment limited to students with the ROCK STUDIES STUDENT attribute.

POLS 255 -  Introduction to Public Policy  

This course introduces students to the idea that private actions create problems for communities that citizens and community leaders must work together to solve. Students learn a universal framework for overcoming community problems as well as the skills needed to recognize the moral and democratic dilemmas inherent in these problems. Students hone their knowledge by gathering evidence, researching, and addressing real community issues.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall & Spring Terms

Thematic Thread(s): 21st Century Healthcare, African-American Studies, Building a Healthy Society, Being American, Comparative Perspectives of Justice & Society, Civil Rights & Social Movements, Demystifying Crime & Justice, Environmental Problems Toolkit, Fighting Social Problems, Transfer Thread Completion Course

POLS 263 -  Introduction to Comparative Politics  

The stress is on descriptions and conceptions of the state and political institutions in the non-Western and Western worlds; with attention on policy-making, national issues, and systems.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Comparative Perspectives of Justice & Society, Sustainable International Development, Transfer Thread Completion Course

POLS 290 -  Experimental  

A unique and specifically focused course within the general purview of a department which intends to offer it on a "one time only" basis and not as a permanent part of the department's curriculum.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

POLS 295 -  Workshop  

Special topics of interest to undergraduates and selected members of the community. A workshop is a program which is usually of short duration, narrow in scope, often non-traditional in content and format, and on a timely topic.

Credits: 1-6

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

POLS 298 -  Selected Topics  

The in-depth examination of a specific topic to be determined by the department in consultation with the instructor.  A Selected Topics course is a normal, departmental offering which is directly related to the discipline, but because of its specialized nature, may not be able to be offered on a yearly basis by the department.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

POLS 301 -  Organized Political Action  

Political parties and interest groups provide crucial linkages between citizens and their government. This course will investigate the nature and origins of organized political groups in American politics, seeking to understand what it takes for political parties and interest groups, which are informal players of American politics, to survive, thrive, and develop a powerful voice in the national political dialogue. While the course focuses on American parties and interest groups, they will be explored in the global and comparative context.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): African-American Studies, Civil Rights & Social Movements, Environmental Problems Toolkit, Political Arts, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 303 -  Seminar in Democracy  

In response to waning public trust in American public institutions and democracy, it is imperative to understand how political systems fail. In this course, students will define democracy, discuss what happens when democracies break down, identify the causes of the breakdown, and find solutions to these problems. Students will also identify those characteristics and behaviors democracy requires of citizens for the system to work well.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): African-American Studies, Civil Rights & Social Movements, Sustainable International Development, Transfer Thread Completion Course

POLS 306 -  Campaigns & Elections  

Elections are the cornerstone of democracy. Without free, fair and frequent elections, there is no popular governance. The United States holds more elections for more public offices and governments than any other nation in the world. The purpose of this course is to examine the key issues, questions, and controversies surrounding campaigns and elections in the United States and compare to campaigns and elections held in other democracies around the world.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Being American, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 310 -  Research Methods  

An examination of the foundations of systematic research, techniques of data collection and methods of data analysis.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 321 -  The Presidency  

The study and evaluation of executive leadership in modern governments; the roles, functions and types of presidential leaders.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Even

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 322 -  The United Nations and International Law  

An examination of the development, structure, and operations of the United Nations system and the fundamentals of public international law.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms

Thematic Thread(s): Environmental Problems Toolkit, Transfer Thread Completion Course, Violence

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 325 -  The Congress  

The study of legislative structures, functions and organizations; focus on legislative elections, committees, and decision-making.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Becoming America, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 327 -  Public Opinion and Political Attitudes  

An examination of the nature, origins, and structures of political attitudes.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Leadership Development, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 328 -  Assessing Public Opinion  

Many careers rely on individuals who have the capacity to create and implement public opinion surveys, and analyze the results of public opinion polls. Urban planning, public administration, and public policy professionals use surveys for program evaluation and democratic accountability, while lobbyists, nonprofit, campaign, and corporate government relations professionals use surveys for assessing public problems and the political environment. Students will gain experience building and fielding surveys that accurately assess public opinion, often while helping community stakeholders with real-world needs.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 329 -  Political Learning  

The course examines the process by which the transmission of political values, attitudes, perceptions and behaviors are undertaken in different political systems.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 333 -  The Political Film  

The Political Film will be presented as an expression of social concerns in our society. Individual films will be evaluated as vehicles, which can influence people by disseminating ideas, convey points of view and comment on matters of political controversy.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms

Thematic Thread(s): Political Arts, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 349 -  Utopian Experiments: Issues of Gender and Power  

This course will examine the various alternative plans for the intentional restructuring of society as exhibited in the works of utopian theorists.

Credits: 3

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 350 -  Transnational Terrorism  

An examination of politics and practice of transnational terrorism, as well as alternative policy responses to transnational terrorism. topics will include an overview of the history and theory of terrorism as a political tactic, the issues motivating its use by contemporary terrorist organizations, the structure and tactics of terrorist networks, and the connections between states, terrorist networks, and transnational organized crime.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Transfer Thread Completion Course, Violence

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 351 -  Politics of Race  

This course is an exploration of the politics and policy issues that disproportionately affect racial and ethnic minorities in the United States. A key objective of this course is to help students understand how the past racial history of the US shapes political and policy outcomes in the US today across a range of issues including income and wealth, employment, education, health, housing, and criminal justice. Students in this course will think and write critically about how the US got to this point and how we can get out of this pattern of persistent racial disparities. Students will be challenged throughout the course to apply concepts of racial justice.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms

Thematic Thread(s): African-American Studies, Becoming America, Being American, Comparative Perspectives of Justice & Society, Civil Rights & Social Movements, Demystifying Crime & Justice, Environmental Problems Toolkit, Fighting Social Problems, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 354 -  Seminar in Religion and Politics  

This course is intended to help students understand the variety of religious voices in American politics and to acquaint students with the significance and variability of religious influence on contemporary American political life, i.e. public policy and individual political choices. The term "religion" is defined broadly to include formal theological creeds as well as the social beliefs, organizations, and subcultures associated with various religious communities. The central goal of this course is to understand how religion affects politics (and vice versa). Specifically, the course will explore the effects of the diverse religious traditions in America on American political history, voting, lobbying, political mobilization, political culture, and international engagement. A sampling of questions to be addressed follows: What has been the relative impact of various religions on American politics? How do religious actors translate their values into action? In what ways is the impact of religion direct? Indirect? How does the nature of the environment (domestic and international) affect the ability of religious actors to wield influence?

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Civil Rights & Social Movements, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 356 -  Gay and Lesbian Politics  

This course will seek to understand how and why the battle over gay rights has come to occupy such a prominent place in our society and what this battle tells us about politics more generally. Although the course is centered on the politics of gay rights in the American context, we will also compare the American experience to those of other nations.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Civil Rights & Social Movements, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 357 -  Civil Liberties and Civil Rights  

A survey of current controversies regarding the rights and freedoms guaranteed to American citizens by the U.S. Constitution.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): African-American Studies, Building a Healthy Society, Being American, Civil Rights & Social Movements, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 359 -  Policy Analysis and Evaluation  

An examination of the ethical, theoretical and practical issues associated with the application of analytic and evaluative techniques to selected public policy problems and programs.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Building a Healthy Society, Environmental Problems Toolkit, Fighting Social Problems, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 364 -  Using Evidence to Solve Public Problems  

Public decision makers increasingly call for evidence-based solutions to public problems. In this course, students will learn to assess and use data and evidence to help solve community problems. These skills provide the foundation of government relations, public service, non­profit, and other careers relying on data-driven decision-making.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Comparative Perspectives of Justice & Society, Civil Rights & Social Movements, Demystifying Crime & Justice, Fighting Social Problems, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 365 -  International Political Economy  

The in-depth analysis of the political relationships among nation-states.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): International Business, Sustainable International Development, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 367 -  National and International Security: Problems and Issues  

National security problems combine aspects of American government, international relations, game theory, and logistical problems derived from research development priorities, economics. The course introduces the major issues of our time such as arms control, disarmament, the nature of war, the reality of decision-making and various case studies.

Credits: 3

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 369 -  Politics of Developing Areas  

A developmental approach to the comparative study of the primary functions, structures and capabilities of various industrializing political systems such as India, China, Mexico, Brazil, Tanzania.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms Odd

Thematic Thread(s): Sustainable International Development, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 370 -  Latin American Politics and Development  

This is an interdisciplinary course designed to give students a broad understanding of the historical, contemporary social (including gender, race, ethnicity, religion, etc.), economic, and in particular, political forces that shape Latin America. A number of different perspectives will be utilized to understand and explain the current state of Latin American political and economic development.

Credits: 3

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 372 -  Campaign Management & Strategy  

This course will provide a very practical, hands-on blueprint for students who wish to run effectively and successfully for public office, or for students who hope to be effective and successful campaign managers or staffers. This course will consider campaigning from the perspective of both the candidate and the campaign manager, with a focus on developing and implementing a comprehensive campaign strategy.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 375 -  Women and Politics  

The course will examine the effect of socialization and the impact of culture on women, gender differences in patterns of political participation; legal, political and social rights of women; and the effects of the political system upon the lives of women and their families.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Thematic Thread(s): Civil Rights & Social Movements, Gender and Diversity, Transfer Thread Completion Course

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 390 -  Experimental  

A unique and specifically focused course within the general purview of a department which intends to offer it on a "one time only" basis and not as a permanent part of the department's curriculum.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 395 -  workshop  

Special topics of interest to undergraduates and selected members of the community. A workshop is a program which is usually of short duration, narrow in scope, often non-traditional in content and format, and on a timely topic.

Credits: 1-6

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 398 -  Selected Topics  

The in-depth examination of a specific topic to be determined by the department in consultation with the instructor.  A Selected Topics course is a normal, departmental offering which is directly related to the discipline, but because of its specialized nature, may not be able to be offered on a yearly basis by the department.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 403 -  Constitutional Law  

The case study and analysis of the development and growth of constitutions through judicial interpretation.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Spring Terms Even

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 444 -  Capstone: Political Analysis  

An examination of the theoretical and practical issues associated with the application of analytic and evaluative techniques to selected political institutions, behaviors, or policies. Students will be assessed on their accomplishment of outcomes expected of Political Science graduates.

Prerequisite: POLS 310D
D Requires minimum grade of D.

Credits: 3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered Fall Terms

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 450 -  Internship  

Varies

Credits: 1-12

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 451 -  Harrisburg Internship  

Assignment as an intern with a governmental agency in the state capital in Harrisburg, Pa. Open to all students at Slippery Rock University.

Credits: 1-9

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 452 -  Harrisburg Internship Project  

A research project developed by the intern and approved by the Harrisburg internship coordinator on some aspect of government activities or public policy.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 454 -  Harrisburg Internship Seminar  

Weekly seminar composed of all interns in the program and taught by the Harrisburg internship coordinator. Speakers from state government will address the seminar and the seminar will participate in several exercises designed to increase skills in governmental processes.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 490 -  Independent Study  

In-depth reading and research in an area of particular interest to the student, with the guidance of a faculty member. Independent Study courses give students the opportunity to pursue research and/or studies that are not part of the university's traditional course offerings. Students work one on one or in small groups with faculty guidance and are typically required to submit a final paper or project as determined by the supervising professor.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 495 -  Workshop  

Special topics of interest to undergraduates and selected members of the community. A workshop is a program which is usually of short duration, narrow in scope, often non-traditional in content and format, and on a timely topic.

Credits: 1-6

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.

POLS 498 -  Selected Topics  

The in-depth examination of a specific topic to be determined by the department in consultation with the instructor.  A Selected Topics course is a normal, departmental offering which is directly related to the discipline, but because of its specialized nature, may not be able to be offered on a yearly basis by the department.

Credits: 1-3

Term(s) Typically Offered: Offered as Needed

Students with a semester level of Freshman 1, Freshman 2 or Sophomore 1 may not enroll.