Political Science (POLS)

POLS 2304. Intro to Political Science. 3 Hours.

Students explore the discipline of political science, including the discipline's subfields, literature, major theories, research methodology, and major debates within the discipline. Students apply the tools of the discipline to analyze contemporary issues in governing, policy, and political behavior.

POLS 2305. American Government. 3 Hours.

Students examine American government at the national level and develop the knowledge to engage in political and civic life. Topics may include the origin and evolution of the U.S. Constitution, political behavior and attitudes, political parties, interest groups, the media, and the three branches of government - Congress, the Executive Branch, and the Judiciary.

POLS 2306. Texas Government. 3 Hours.

Students examine Texas government and politics. Topics may include the Texas Constitution; Texas' role in the federal system; political culture; individuals' political values and participation; interest groups; parties; elections and campaigns; the legislative, executive, and judicial branches; and fiscal, social, and economic policies.

POLS 3302. Introduction to Public Policy. 3 Hours.

Students explore how governmental entities in the U.S. make public policy. Using various policy models, students analyze the effect of policy environments, actors, processes, policy characteristics, and politics on the nature of policy outputs. Students learn to evaluate policies using a variety of program evaluation methodologies.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3331. Local Political Systems. 3 Hours.

Students examine the structure, process, and politics of local governments in Texas and the nation. Local governments may include metropolitan governments, special districts, county governments, rural and small town politic, and urban and suburban political structures. At each level, topics may include home rule, leadership recruitment and behavior, local elections, budgeting, services, and intergovernmental relations.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3332. State Political Systems. 3 Hours.

Students compare state-level politics in Texas with others in the U.S. Topics may include the legislative, executive, and judicial branches; the states? roles in the federal system; political culture; individuals' political values and participation; interest groups; parties; elections and campaigns; and fiscal, social, and economic policies.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3334. Judicial Systems. 3 Hours.

Students examine the development of judicial systems and the policy making role of courts. This course is an orientation course for pre-law students and others interested in the legal aspects of government.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3335. Pol Ethnic Minorities & Gender. 3 Hours.

Students examine the ways in which political theory, behavior, beliefs, and public policy relate to race, ethnicity, and gender in the U.S.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3336. The Presidency and Executives. 3 Hours.

Students examine the executive offices of the President, state governors and the heads of local governing bodies in the United States. Topics may include comparative institutional development, roles, structures, processes, and functions.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3337. The Congress and Legislatures. 3 Hours.

Students examine the powers, organization, procedures, and operations of legislative bodies in the United States. Topics may include selection of legislators, legislative leadership, influence of lobbyists, political parties, legislative committees, executives, and legislative roles and norms.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3338. Victims Rights Politics & Plcy. 3 Hours.

Students examine the politics and policies of victims' rights, exloring the emergence of victims' rights as a political issue and as a social movement. Students study victims' rights policies and programs at the local, state, national, and international level and analyze their development, their implementation, and their impact.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3339. Nonprofit Organizations. 3 Hours.

Students gain an overview of the development of nonprofit organizations, examining their history, roles, and types. Topics may include nonprofit and government relations, nonprofit and business relations, nonprofit and policymaking, nonprofits in an international context, and organizational issues.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3360. Political Parties-Interest Grp. 3 Hours.

Students examine political parties and interest groups in U.S. politics, exploring their development and evolution, their organization and functions, and their role in politics. More specific topics may include the influence of parties and interest groups on political values, participation, voting, campaigns and elections, governing, and effects on policy.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3361. Cent & Eastern European Politi. 3 Hours.

Students compare the political systems of Central and Eastern European states, including the European portions of the former Soviet Union, with emphasis on the problems of transition from communism to democracy and market economy.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3364. Politics and The Media. 3 Hours.

Students examine the role and impact of the media (the Internet, radio, television, and the various forms of print media) on U.S. politics. Topics may include the impact of the media on campaigns and election outcomes, the media as a source of political information, the agenda setting power of the media, the role of the free press in a democracy, and citizens? relationship to the media. The course may also consider the relationship between the media and politics in other nations. The course makes use of textbooks but also relies heavily on contemporary media.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3365. Intro to Comparative Politics. 3 Hours.

Students examine important issues and trends in world political systems that places American government and politics in a comparative context. Students learn the terminology, concepts, and methods of comparative politics. Topics may include institutions, behavior, constitutional processes, political parties and interest groups, public policy, political development, transitions from authoritarianism to democracy and from statist to market economies, sources of domestic violence, and other major concerns of the field.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3366. Public Administration. 3 Hours.

Students explore national public administration with emphasis on the political processes within the surrounding administrative agencies. Topics may include development of the administrative function, policy formulation and budgeting, the relations of administrators to Congress, interest groups, courts and the public. The course may include coverage of state and local topics related to public administration.
Prerequisite: POLS 2301.

POLS 3368. Asian Politics. 3 Hours.

Students compare contemporary politics and governments in Asia. Students examine the history and culture of each country as well as the dynamics of change in the region. The course encompasses most of the countries of East Asia and Southeast Asia, including China, Japan, the Koreas, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam and Cambodia. Time permitting, the course may include India and South Asia.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3369. Religion and Politics. 3 Hours.

Students examine the historical and contemporary relationship between religion and politics. Topics may include politics and religion in the United States, the proper role of religion in American public life, the relationship between religion and state in the Islamic world, religion and conflict situations, and the role of religion in conflict resolution.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3370. Western European Politics. 3 Hours.

Students compare contemporary politics and governments in Western Europe. The course typically concentrates on Britain, France, Germany, and Italy but usually includes other important and interesting countries, such as Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, and the Scandinavian countries. The course also covers the European Union - its policies, institutions, and expansion.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3373. Ideologies and Democracy. 3 Hours.

Students investigate the meaning of the term 'ideology' and the various ideologies that have informed political life in the modern world. Students examine liberalism, conservatism, socialism, communism, feminism, environmentalism, and radical Islam. Students study democracy in its various modern conceptions along with the question: Is democracy an ideology?
Prerequisite: 6 hours in POLS.

POLS 3374. Quantitative Methd for Pol Sci. 3 Hours.

Students study research design and the quantitative methods used in contemporary political science research. Students apply the tools of social science inquiry in a series of projects designed to examine phenomena such as political attitudes and behavior. The course emphasizes, descriptive statistics, tabular and graphic presentation of data, measures of association and correlations, and multivariate analysis in political research.
Prerequisite: POLS major, 6 hours POLS, and permission of the department.

POLS 3375. Politics of The Middle East. 3 Hours.

Students examine contemporary patterns of government and politics in the Middle East. The course encompasses most of the countries of the Middle East, including Egypt, Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, Iraq, Iran, and Turkey. North Africa may also be included. Students study the historical legacies and continuing impact of colonialism and nationalism, political Islam and secularism, challenges of authority, and legitimacy. Students also explore the ways in which the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and regime change in the region impact U.S. foreign policy and the region more broadly.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3377. Survey of Political Theory. 3 Hours.

Students examine the political ideas, philosophers, and relevant historical events in Western Europe over the past two thousand years. Students study the representative political writings from the time of Plato to Nietzsche, addressing political values and ideas in their original historical context as well as independently of any particular historical or cultural limitations.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3378. American Political Thought. 3 Hours.

Students study American political ideas and movements from colonial times to the present.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3379. Research & Writing in Pol Sci. 3 Hours.

Students gain knowledge of basic research methods and design in the social sciences, with particular attention to survey research. Students develop research and writing skills including, how to locate, evaluate, and cite electronic and printed sources; how to conduct a literature review; how to write proposals, reports, and research papers; and how to edit proposals, reports, and papers.
Prerequisite: POLS major, 6 hours POLS, and permission of the department.

POLS 3380. Intro International Relations. 3 Hours.

Students examine the relations between nation-states in the international system and the factors influencing their behavior. Topics may include the changing nature of the international system; the political and economic sources of tension, war and diplomacy; international law and organization; and the bases of power.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3381. American Foreign Policy. 3 Hours.

Students examine the domestic and international forces which influence the development of American foreign policy. The course emphasizes the post-World War II era and may include discussion of U.S. foreign policy at the settlement of World War II, the politics and crises of the Cold War, and America?s role in the post-Cold War world order.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3385. International Law & Org. 3 Hours.

Students examine the role of international organizations and law. Topics may include the evolution of the United Nations (UN) and its precursors, UN structure and governance, the UN?s role in international peace and security, emerging human rights law, laws governing war, and issues related to economic development and the global environment.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3386. International Political Econ. 3 Hours.

Students examine the interplay between states and markets and the interaction of the world economy and international politics. Students study the nature of political economy, the major ideologies and approaches, and specific topics that may include the political ramifications of international trade, investment, debt and financial markets and the impact of globalization on the human condition and the environment.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3387. Latin American Politics. 3 Hours.

Students examine contemporary patterns of government and politics in Latin America with emphasis on institutions, processes, behavior. Students study the historical, social, and economic background factors affecting the region, along with major issues of U.S.-Latin American relations. For selected nations, topics may include problems of democracy, authoritarianism, and political development.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3391. Govrnmt Organization & Mangmt. 3 Hours.

Students compare governmental organizations within society and analyze their impacts upon practices of administration in public agencies. Students explore the management tools available to governmental agencies and their capabilities and limitations.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3392. Economic Policy. 3 Hours.

Students examine the roles of modern government in the economy and society, including regulating and promoting business activity.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3393. Social Policy. 3 Hours.

Students examine of the roles, actions, and problems of modern governments in dealing with social issues such as education, health, housing, transportation, and welfare services.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 3395. Environmental Policy. 3 Hours.

Students examine major environmental issues and policies affecting the United States and the rest of the world. Topics may include clean air and water, endangered species, invasive alien species, public land management, ecosystem management, the conservation of biodiversity, nuclear power, waste disposal and energy production and use.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4081. Problems in Political Science. 1-3 Hours.

Students examine a single special topic which cuts across the usual subfields of political science. Topics may include political socialization, ethnic politics, crises in political systems, research techniques, and other subjects. Students may repeat this course when the topic varies. They may earn between 1 and 3 hours credit. Variable Credit (1-3).
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4094. Political Science Internship. 1-6 Hours.

Students gain professional field experience through department-approved internships in public sector organizations. Students work under the supervision of an on-site coordinator and a political science faculty member. They may earn up to 6 hours of internship credit. Variable Credit (1 to 6).
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS and the permission of the department.

POLS 4095. Independent Studies. 1-3 Hours.

Advanced students in Political Science, who are capable of independent study, engage in advanced readings and directed research. Registration is upon the approval of the Chair of the Department of Political Science and the instructor directing the course. This course may be taken for Academic Distinction Credit. Variable Credit (1-3).
Prerequisite: 6 hours of Political Science and departmental permission.

POLS 4334. Const Law I:Civ Rights& Librts. 3 Hours.

Students study the opinions of the U.S. Supreme Court and examine the development of rights and liberties through the Court?s interpretation of the Bill of Rights.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4335. Const Law II:Gov Pwr/St-Fed Rl. 3 Hours.

Students study the opinions of the U.S. Supreme Court and examine the development of government powers at the state and federal level through the Court?s interpretation of the Constitution.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4372. Political Attitudes & Behavior. 3 Hours.

Students examine political socialization, political recruitment, voting behavior, and public policy outputs. Students study a variety of analytical approaches include role, group, political culture, systems analysis, and functional analysis.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4383. International Human Rights. 3 Hours.

Students examine the theory and practical meaning of human rights. Issues covered may include the definition of human rights; the relationship between civil and political rights and economic, social and cultural rights; the meaning and impact of humanitarian and international human rights law; the impact of cultural relativism in the definition and assessment of the promotion and protection of human rights; the significance of different religious perspectives; the question of the legitimacy of humanitarian interventions; and the effects of globalization on human rights perceptions and practices.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4384. Conflict Studies. 3 Hours.

Students examine the causes of international conflict and the path to international peace. Topics may include changes in the nature of war, theories of the onset of interstate war, and the various methods of achieving peace.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.

POLS 4385. Political Violence & Terrorism. 3 Hours.

Students examine political violence that occurs within states, including violence perpetrated by the state against its own citizens and violence that accompanies anti-government movements. Students study cases and theories of political violence, as well as methods of their resolution. Specific topics may include state repression, domestic and transnational terrorism, guerilla warfare, civil wars, and revolution.
Prerequisite: 6 hours of POLS.