GLNS Course Descriptions

HIS 221 World Wars, Cold War, and Beyond, 3 credits
This course examines different thematic and analytical frameworks to understand the political systems, policy outcomes, and socio-economic divisions in several foreign countries. Key topics may include: classification of political regimes and electoral systems; types of economic systems and outputs; and the explanation of socio-economic divisions and their impact on political and economic stability. Prerequisites: POL 100 and 103 (old prerequisites: Two semesters of History/Political Science core sequence)

HIS 354 Culture and National Security, 3 credits
This course presents an overview of the ways in which culture may shape national security policy-making. Topics covered will include the historical creation of an American identity as well as a variety of case studies in post-World War II American history. The course will consider the ways in which often unexamined assumptions about race, gender, and religion have helped to define the United States’ interactions with the world.

POL 100 American National Government, 3 credits
A study of the American political system with emphasis placed on the structure and operation of the national government; the constitution; citizenship and democratic processes.

POL 103 Global Politics, 3 credits This course examines the nature, character and dynamics of global politics. Emphasis is given to the political development, institutions, processes and policies, problems and prospects of key areas, regions, and nation-states in the contemporary global system.

POL 208 Comparative Politics, 3 credits
This course examines different thematic and analytical frameworks to understand the political systems, policy outcomes, and socio-economic divisions in several foreign countries. Key topics may include: classification of political regimes and electoral systems; types of economic systems and outputs; and the explanation of divisions and their impact on political and economic stability. Prerequisites: POL 100 and 103

POL 210 Introduction to the American Legal System, 3 credits
This course is designed to provide students with a working introduction to law in the United States. Broadly speaking, the course will cover the foundations of the legal system, the major substantive areas of the law, the legal process, and the effects of legislative and administrative developments in the law. Students will learn how the many components and varied processes of the legal system work together to form a coherent whole. In addition to gaining a solid understanding of the organization and structure of the legal system, students will also be introduced to methods of evaluating legal controversies, analyzing issues, and making clear and persuasive written arguments.

POL 211 The Trial in American Life, 3 credits This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to the fact-finding apparatus of the American legal system and the application of law and legal principles to a wide range of issues. By studying a series of actual trials—from the Salem Witch Trials to contemporary cases—students will gain a knowledge of the mechanics of advocacy; the legal, social, political, and cultural effects of particular trials; the historical circumstances that informed the conduct and outcomes of particular trials; and the art of persuasion. Students will also be introduced to methods of evaluating legal controversies, analyzing issues, and making clear and persuasive written and oral arguments.

POL 222 The U.S. National Security System, 3 credits
The course examines the agencies of the federal government that conduct foreign missions and activities to ensure U.S. national security. Specific focus is on the Office of the President of the United States, CIA, Department of Defense, and State Department. Using case studies of diplomacy, intelligence, and military uses of force, this course analyzes the structure, function, and policy-making processes of the national security system course. The course assesses intra-agency and inter-agency strengths and weaknesses in the formulation and implementation of national security policy. Congress’s roles in the operations of the national security system is also discussed.

POL 223 The U.S. Homeland Security System, 3 credits
The course provides an overview of the government structure, organizational mission, and policies associated with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and other key federal agencies and metropolitan areas with homeland security functions. Together these agencies constitute the homeland security system. From the founding of DHS post September 11th and the expanded missions and resource allocations to other key federal, state, and local agencies, the roles of DHS and other agencies in overseeing aspects of intelligence, emergency management, border security and immigration, transportation, and public health are described, analyzed, and evaluated. This course will provide students of homeland security with an overall understanding of the system’s vast role in the United States.

POL 230 Introduction to Public Policy and Public Administration, 3 credits
This course introduces an understanding of U.S. public policy making and public administration including identifiable steps in the policy process such as political policy openings, policy stream convergence, policy implementation and the administration of policy ideas. Students will learn how to identify a policy problem, map the political opportunity, incorporate evidence-based social science research to address the problem, and assess the positives and negatives associated with a particular policy adoption.

POL 330 Urban Policy: Disadvantaged Youth, 3 credits
Who are the disadvantaged youth (aka “at-risk youth”) and what unique challenges do they face? The factors that might limit an at-risk youth’s ability to succeed are identified so that policies, programs, and projects may be better designed to assist. Students are invited to investigate a range of policy solutions to challenges facing at-risk youth including food insecurity, parental support, health care, housing, drugs/crime/violence, foster care, the working poor and child care, primary/secondary education, and higher education/vocational training.

POL 332 U.S. Homeland Security Issues: Threats, Challenges, and Solutions, 3 credits
This course provides an overview of the key homeland security issues facing the United States. Topics covered may include terror, risk, border security, public health, natural disaster, intelligence, and other contemporary issues. Solutions emphasized include dismantling agency silos, communicating across boundaries, a commitment to public service, an emphasis on lessons learned, planning and prevention, leadership from public managers, and other potential solutions.

POL 333 U.S. National Security Issues: Threats, Challenges, and Solutions, 3 credits
This course presents an overview of the key national security issues facing the United States. Topics covered may include international terrorism, great power rivalry, failed and rogue states, competition for scarce resources, global economic changes, environmental issues, and/or other issues that may arise in the global system and threaten the United States. The course will analyze the effectiveness of competing national security strategies to manage or solve national security issues that confront the United States.

POL 340 Russia and the Near Abroad, 3 credits
This course offers a comparative analysis of the politics of the countries of the former Soviet Union. A number of important themes will be explored using the Russian Federation and several of the countries that were formerly part of the Soviet Union. First, the course briefly examines the history of the Tsarist and Soviet periods to determine to what extent, if any, these legacies have impacted political and economic development of the post-Soviet countries. Second, the course investigates the economic and political development of each country. Finally, the course analyzes important issues in the foreign relations of each country, including the effects of lost superpower status, the nationalities question, and relations with the West.

POL 407 Public Management and Leadership, 3 credits
This course is designed to strengthen a student’s theoretical and practical understanding of public management and leadership so that they might be better positioned to create public value for their community. Designed to introduce the student to public management from a political science and public administration perspective, they will learn leadership principles via a public manager’s interaction with various institutions, the public manager’s ability to court various constituencies, and the public manager’s entrepreneurial inclinations to solve problems.

POL 410 American Constitutional Law, 3 credits
This course examines the federal system of government and the civil rights and liberties established by the U.S. Constitution, and presents a case method survey of the organic role of the United States Supreme Court in the total process of the American constitutional system. The first half of the course will examine governmental structures federalism, and separation of powers as established by Articles 1-7. The second half of the course will focus on civil rights and civil liberties primarily as established by the Bill of Rights.

POL 411 Constitutional Encounters, 3 credits
This course presents a series of case studies examining recent and contemporary controversies involving principles of American constitutional law. While the majority of case studies will involve civil rights and liberties as established by the Bill of Rights, issues of federalism, separation of powers, commerce, contract, and property may also be examined depending on the selection of contemporary issues.

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