POLS101 Introduction to Political Science (3 semester hours)

Introduction to Political Science explains foundational principles of the field. Students will learn the purpose of political science, common terms and concepts, and subfields. Among these are introductions to political philosophies and ideologies, comparative systems of government, and international relations. The course also examines the professional and academic fields to which a political science degree is relevant.

POLS210 American Government I (3 semester hours)

This is the first course in a two-course sequence in American Government. The course is designed to convey basic facts about the structure and functioning of the American political system. The philosophical foundation of the U.S. Constitution is explored and the federalist construct is examined. The functions of the three separate branches of government and their roles in policy making are a major focus.

POLS211 American Government II (3 semester hours)

This is the second course in a two-course sequence in American Government. The course is designed to provide research tools and writing skills that will build on the academic knowledge acquired in POLS210. The student will investigate issues in American government in greater detail through use of Internet-based research, seminar discussions, and point papers. (Prerequisite: POLS210)

POLS213 Political Theory (3 semester hours)

This course offers an overview of Western political thought from the Ancient Greeks to contemporary political theorists. It follows the rise of secularism and modernity through an Enlightenment tradition of social contract theory, shaping debates on human nature, equality, liberty, rights, and justice as the basis for civil society and democratic governance. This course is an essential foundation for the political science major.

POLS301 Ethics in Politics (3 semester hours)

This course focuses on providing students a study of ethics as it relates to government. Students will be presented with readings, case studies, and insightful information that will provide them the opportunity to analyze topics that will enable student discussions pertaining to ethical dilemmas in politics.

POLS311 Political Parties and Interest Groups (3 semester hours)

This course is a study of the various roles of political parties and interest groups in the American democratic process. Issues covered include the ideological differences among parties, the role of third party candidates, mobilization of voting blocks, the formation and types of interest groups, and political agenda development.

POLS312 State, Local, and Community Politics (3 semester hours)

Comparative analysis of state and local political systems in the United States. Emphasis is placed on the contemporary role of states and localities in the development and implementation of public policies. Additionally, there is an examination of the role of grass roots social movements in shaping local politics.

POLS401 The Psychology of American Politics (3 semester hours)

This course is an overview of the psychological study of American politics. Various topics and issues are covered throughout the course to include the personality, leadership style and decision making of presidents, voter choices and preferences, the influence of the media and political attitudes of different groups.

POLS410 Public Policy (3 semester hours)

Analyzes the formulation and execution of public policy in America. Includes study of decision-making theory, bureaucratic politics and other models that seek to explain how policy is made. Issues explored include social, environmental, economic, homeland security, defense, and foreign policy. Additional issue areas may be covered depending on contemporary significance.

POLS496 Portfolio and Critical Reflection in Political Science (3 semester hours)

The course is tailored specifically to political science bachelor’s program. This course may be taken only after the completion of all other coursework. Students must successfully complete this requirement before the awarding of a degree. The portfolio will consist of artifacts demonstrating competency in each of the program objectives. Students are expected to retain these artifacts as they progress through their program to prepare for this course. The portfolio contains a substantive analysis that contextualizes each artifact, articulates how the artifact demonstrates mastery of the learning outcome, and evaluates the student’s intellectual growth through the bachelor’s program in political science.

POLS497 Senior Seminar in Political Science (3 semester hours)

Analyses of specific issues addressed at the national level that would include a review of American political institutions and decision-making; policymaking in the economic, social, and security arenas; instruments of foreign and defense policy; federalism and democratic political theories; and the electoral process. This capstone course will provide students with the opportunity to complete an approved academic research exercise that demonstrates their knowledge of their selected field of study. (Prerequisite: Completion of a minimum of 105 hours towards your program)