Course Descriptions

Political Science --- POLS

Course Descriptions

POLS 1101  Introduction to Political Science   3.0 cr

Introduces students to major topics, approaches, and methods in Political Science with an emphasis on political idologies, political behavior, comparative government, international relations (including causes of war and peace) and relevant social science theory. The course will also examine power, conflict, ideology, nationalism, and revolution by focusing on structure and change in democratic and non-democratic governments.

POLS 1111  American Government   3.0 cr

Studies processes and policies of United States national government, political parties, campaigns and elections, public opinion, interest groups, media coverage and current political issues. The course will also examine principles of the Constitution, and the structure and behavior of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches.

POLS 1121  State and Local Government   3.0 cr

Examines state and local government political institutions, behavior, public policies, tax and spending problems. The course will also analyze structure and behavior of state legislatures, governors, courts, and political parties, including the nomination and election process of state and local officials. Overall the course emphasis will be on the Minnesota political system.

POLS 1131  World Politics   3.0 cr

Requires you to examine and compare the major issues, conflicts, and challenges facing today's global political environment. The course will focus on the following main topics: (1) causes and consequences of globalization, (2) the politics of intervention, (3) cooperation and conflict in global institutions, (4) development, foreign aid, and trade, (5) the politics of human rights and the environment, (6) the politics of arms races, and (7) contemporary case studies of international conflicts. You will learn about related institutions and processes, public policies, and social scientific theory while examining your own political values, experiences and behaviors.

POLS 1141  Introduction To Environmental Politics   3.0 cr

Requires you to critically consider and address the history, organizations, interest groups, and processes that shape domestic and global environmental issues. The course will focus primarily on the following areas of study: (1) political and policy processes, (2) the public lands debate, (3) the politics of waste and toxins, (4) the politics of energy, (5) the politics of water, (6) the politics of air quality, (7) the politics of endangered species and biodiversity, (8) the politics of global environmental issues, (9) the politics of human population growth, and (10) the politics of environmental sustainability. Using cutting-edge social scientific theory and research, you will be asked to examine your own political values, experiences and behavior regarding contemporary environmental problems and potential solutions.

POLS 1161  Constitutional Law   3.0 cr

Provides students with an overview of the scope and nature of American Constitutional rights and liberties based upon the United States Constitution as interpreted by the United States Supreme Court. Through the study of pivotal Supreme Court decisions, students will examine how interpretations of the Constitution impact Americans individually and as a society today.

POLS 1190  Political Science Field Experience   cr

Combines internship at a public policy-related governmental or non-governmental organization with a research-based examination of power, politics, and leadership. Students spend approximately 3 hours per credit per week at internship location, meet with faculty coordinator at least three times during the semester, develop specific learning goals with both faculty coordinator and internship site supervisor, and submit writing assignments that integrate political science concepts with internship experience. Must arrange internship placement and obtain permission from coordinating faculty member prior to registering for this course. Prerequisite: Permission from faculty field experience coordinator is necessary prior to registration.

POLS 2250  Special Topics   3.0 cr

Teaches the individual and societal benefits of the continued study of political science. Students will learn about political institutions and processes, public policies, and social scientific theory while examining personal political values, experiences and behaviors. This course may be repeated under different topics.