Political Theory is the study of political philosophies and their application to politics in today's world.
111 Modern Political Thought
Works by modern masters of political theory from the Protestant reformation up to the contemporary era are compared and contrasted. Topics include the alternative theoretical foundations of modern political movements and regimes. Students learn to evaluate and criticize political ideas and gain insight into contemporary political problems.
112 American Political Thought
This course seeks to illuminate the philosophical antecedents to the foundations of the American government as well as the thought of the Founders themselves, and concludes with a review of some of the diverse views regarding the American political order.
113 Political Psychology
This course surveys the relationship between psychological and political phenomena. Attention is given to classic works which have significantly shaped the field. Topics include theories of human nature, personality and politics, the nature of political beliefs and values, the psychology of political conflict, political leadership, and decision-making. Psychoanalytic, behavioral, cognitive and humanistic perspectives are examined.
114 Topics in Political Thought
A detailed investigation of selected problems in political thought. Topics such as freedom, equality, justice, authority, ideology, violence, political economy and political psychology are explored. May be repeated for credit as content varies.
115 Theories of Justice
The course examines different theories of justice based on concepts such as “fairness”, “equal treatment”, and “getting 1 ’s due”. These alternative theories are then applied to contemporary controversies concerning racial, sexual, and environmental justice and to current debates about such issues as immigration, euthanasia, and abortion.
116 Political Polling and Survey Research (Community Based Research)
It is often said that the president has the power of the bully pulpit, but that’s not as true if his poll numbers are in the gutter. Given the strong role they play in political life, this course explores the basic methodology, uses, and abuses of political polling. We examine how we can arrive at political knowledge through the proposal, creation, implementation, and analysis of survey techniques. In other words, what do the polls really say (or not say)? We seek to understand the relationship between posing important political questions and arriving at firm answers through the formulation and testing of hypotheses employing survey data. Throughout the semester, students work in groups to complete a real live survey research project for a local non-profit organization or local government agency.