Political Science

Course Name Course Description Syllabus
POLS110: Introduction to American Democracy An introduction to the American political system and constitutional framework. Focus will be on the interplay of various institutions (the Presidency, Congress and the Judiciary) in creating public policies. Contemporary public issues will be discussed, as will the role of political theory in shaping American democracy. Attention will be given to the role of the news media, public opinion, political ideology, political parties and interest groups in the American system. 4 credits POLS110 [PDF]
POLS115: Evolution of the Global System The goal of this course is to introduce the student to the main actors, social facts and processes that shaped the international system in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. By analyzing the spread of industrialization, the race for colonies, the thrust of imperialism, and the rapid growth of nationalism, among other factors, this course explains the contradictory and simultaneous trends of unprecedented levels of prosperity and violence in Europe and beyond. While the course examines the role of the United States in the international system, particularly in light of its dominant role since the early twentieth century, it also emphasizes the developments taking place in other regions such as Asia, Africa and Latin America. This will allow students to understand the global arena as a space of complex interconnections involving varieties of forms of production, national political cultures and idiosyncratic traditions. This course sets the foundations for other courses in International Relations and Regional Studies. 4 credits POLS115 [PDF]
POLS120: Research Methods Students will learn how to read and analyze political science research. Focus will be on the use of the scientific method for research on politics and government. Students will learn how to effectively access information for research in political science and learn the steps in writing a research paper, including developing the research question, writing a literature review, selecting a research design, and how to properly cite sources. Students will develop an understanding of approaches to researching and measuring political phenomena. 4 credits POLS120 [PDF]
POLS261: Theory & Practice of International Relations Review of major approaches to the study of international relations. Definition of concepts such as power, nationalism, imperialism, and dependency. Special attention to the use of force and conflict resolution. Special class project. 4 credits POLS261 [PDF]
POLS308: International Security This course examines the dynamic evolution of the debates on International Security as well as the transformations in the main global and regional security institutions such as UN and NATO. Based upon International Relations perspectives, it analyzes the traditional definitions of security at the national, regional and international levels of analysis since 1945. Likewise, it studies how states and international institutions have revisited the concepts, policies and strategies of security since the end of the Cold War and after the September 11 events, from realist perspectives to the Copenhagen School of security studies. 4 credits POLS308 [PDF]
POLS367: Politics of Spain This course provides students with a basic grounding in political institutions and processes in contemporary Spain. Political developments are presented in their socioeconomic context, with special emphasis on the Spanish transition from a dictatorship to a democracy. Attention is also given to the issue of Basque and Catalan nationalism. 4 credits POLS367 [PDF]
POLS382: Crisis & Integration in Europe Why did 17 European countries surrender the sovereign control of their currency and create the Euro? Will Turkey become a member of the European Union? Will Europeans continue free riding the security protection of the United States? Is the integration process another layer of bureaucracy or an institutional instrument to dean with the permanent crises in Europe? There are some of the questions guiding the discussions in the class. 4 credits POLS382 [PDF]
POLS439: Global Environmental Threats in the 21st Century In the 20th century the general public became aware of the need for following a sustainable lifestyle. Non-governmental organizations, governmental institutions and individuals began to study environmental problems and issues to enhance the concept of conservation of nature and the protection of the planet’s biodiversity among other important concepts. However, as we enter the 21st century, we are finding ourselves involved in new environmental threats such as increasingly disturbing natural disasters, eco-terrorism and endless extreme poverty. This course is aimed at learning the basic environmental aspects that affect society and nature as a whole, along with the new issues that are arising and leading scientists to continue new lines of research in the field of environmental conservation and awareness, knowing also that the key to hope lies in the field of environmental education. 4 credits POLS439 [PDF]
POLS485: Politics of the Middle East Interlocking themes making the contemporary Middle East an area of chronic conflict: Big Power rivalries; social and political change within individual countries; unity and rivalry involved in Arab nationalism; the Palestinian-Israeli-Arab dispute. 4 credits POLS485 [PDF]
POLS521 I: Internship in Political Science This course has two components: an internship of at least 10 hours a week for 12 weeks in a placement that provides a significant learning opportunity related to politics and government, combined with seminar meetings, career development, readings, writings, and oral presentations designed to help you maximize what you learn from your internship and subsequently deepen and leverage these skills in the classroom and beyond Suffolk.