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The Department of Political Science offers a broad-spectrum of courses designed to build a solid foundation of knowledge and experience.

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Core Courses

Core Courses

Conceptual problems of political analysis; empirical research strategies and philosophy of science.

Introduction to quantitative techniques in political science. Selected topics include set theory, probability distributions, estimation and testing. Emphasis will be placed on establishing the mathematical prerequisites for doing more advanced quantitative work in political science.

Introduction to the use of formal mathematical models in political science. Discussion of current modeling techniques and overview of applications in American politics, comparative politics, and international politics.

Review and analysis of major literature of American politics, stressing comparative, systemic, and behavioral studies.

Current approaches to comparative analysis of political systems; special attention to conceptual and other methodological issues.

Emphasizes various approaches to the study of international politics.

Same as ENGL:6635 , ARTH:6635 , HIST:6635 , GEOG:6635 , 045:285, CINE:6635 , ANTH:6635 , AFAM:6635 . Political Science graduate students should register for 4 s.h.

Advanced Graduate Courses

Analytical techniques of data analysis; statistical models, and relationship of models to hypotheses to be tested. Prerequisite: one semester of intermediate statistics.

Exercises in planning and completing political inquiries, with an emphasis on writing for scholarly publication. Students refine prior research projects for submission to disciplinary journals, then draft dissertation proposals. Open only to doctoral students in political science or to others with consent of instructor.

Introduction to the methods and techniques used in political science experiments.

Application of advanced statistical techniques in political science; limited dependent variable regression techniques, simulation methods, missing data techniques, history/rare event analysis and maximum likelihood, and topics tailored to students’ research; focus on learning how and when to apply these techniques. Repeatable with consent of instructor.

Introduction to regression techniques for limited dependent and qualitative variables in political science. Topics include logit, probit, multinomial logit and probit, ordered logit and probit, event history models and event count models. Emphasis will be on understanding how and when to apply these models when doing quantitative work in political science.

Introduction to qualitative methods in political science research; interviewing, ethnographic research, process tracing, comparative historical analysis, content and discourse analysis, fuzzy set theory.

Main questions to be explored in this course: How well do formal models explain the real world? In what ways can the fit between formal models and the real world be improved?

Analysis of the American chief executive: history, recruitment, behavior, roles, responsibilities, powers and relationships with other institutions.

Selected problems in the study of the American political system, including structures, functions, and behavior. May be repeated with consent of instructor.

Systematic analysis of legislative institutions, processes, and behavior, which may focus on United States, Europe, or developing countries. May be repeated with consent of instructor.

The study of political phenomena from a psychological perspective. The individual level political behaviors examined will include decision making by elites and masses, evaluations of political candidates, mass mobilization, and response to the mass media. A number of psychological theories previously employed to explain these behaviors will be discussed. Among the psychological concepts examined are stereotyping, social cognition, attitude, group identification, and attribution.

Analysis of political attitudes and beliefs in mass publics; voting behavior, functioning of electoral systems.

Selected problems of prescriptive and explanatory political theory. May be repeated with consent of instructor.

The course examines politics of the European Union. It begins by focusing on the European Union’s institutional characteristics, and builds on the institutional discussion with an examination of major political issues in the European Union, including popular and national responses to European integration.

Rival understandings and practices of democracy and authoritarianism, including challenges of quantifying them for comparative analyses; major theoretical and empirical approaches to studying democratization and other forms of regime change.

Survey of theories and empirical work on the relationship between religions and politics, including issues of law and political behavior. Review of the development of theoretical models in the study of ethnicity, and nationalism. Topics include: religious and national identities in modern society; and opportunity structures and resource mobilization in the context of religious and national movements.

Comparative study of democratic, transitional, and totalitarian types of government in Asia; special emphasis on leadership recruitment, social control, political participation.

The state has been called “the vexed institution that is the ground of both our freedoms and our unfreedoms.” In this and countless other respects, the apparatus of government remains a central concern in our discipline, as it has been for political thinkers from Socrates and Aristotle to the postmodernists. This graduate seminar surveys major theoretical and empirical work on the state, drawn especially from comparative politics. Topics include state-building, bureaucracy, “developmental” and “predatory” states, state-society relationships, failed states, and more.

Provide students with a thorough introduction to the important questions and puzzles in the study of political parties. Topics to be covered include: party formation and development, the role of parties in society, how parties are organized, party systems, electoral systems, party strategy and behavior, the development of new parties, whether parties are still relevant, the regeneration of communist parties in post-communist regimes, ethnic parties, and the failure of party consolidation.

Selected problems in comparative analysis of politics. May be repeated with consent of instructor.

Foreign policy making & international behavior in relation to theories and findings from selected countries.

Overview of several dynamic modeling techniques used to study international relations; modeling assumptions, the kinds of information models can provide, evaluation of models.

Literature of international systems and international organization; major schools of thought in international relations theory, their utility in explaining evolution of the international system and recent developments in international organization and global governance.

Recent theoretical and empirical debates in international relations literature; emphasis on formal and quantitative research.

An examination of various theories focusing on the international system, the state, bureaucracies, interest groups, international organizations, bargaining processes, and distributive norms.

Intensive examination of selected issues of international politics, emphasizing problems of theoretical analysis. May be repeated with consent of instructor.

Independent individual study. Prerequisite: consent of supervising faculty member. May be repeated.

Individual training in applied research. May be repeated with consent of instructor. Consent of supervising faculty member required.

Consent of supervising faculty member required.