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PSCI 101: Introduction to Political Science

Joe Rollins

(Submission #29)

Course Description

Political Science 101 is designed to introduce students to the discipline itself and therefore approaches its subject matter broadly. The discipline is traditionally subdivided into the following categories: American Politics (AP), International Relations (IR), Comparative Politics (CP), and Political Theory (PT). In most departments, each of these subfields is further divided to focus on specific institutions and methods. For example, AP is normally comprised of the following: The Presidency, Congress, Courts/Public Law, Public Administration and Public Policy, State and Local Government; CP breaks down by region of the globe. Because the discipline also splits between scholars with different methodological talents and interests (i.e., quantitative or qualitative), an introduction to the discipline, such as PS101, is, by necessity, interdisciplinary, satisfies multiple PLAS goals, and will change emphasis depending upon the instructor. All iterations of the course, however, will touch upon textual exegesis as well as qualitative research, and introduce students to the building blocks of quantitative reasoning. This latter element will, in most instances, be as basic as instructing students on the basic elements of logic (e.g., the rhetorical strategy commonly used in legal opinions), or, in other instances, students will be introduced to the fundamentals of research design (e.g., formulating research questions, thinking about how to answer those questions, how to gather the information required, and how to draw analytic conclusions from the material collected). These elements of the course are intended to introduce students to the theoretical, abstract reasoning, and quantitative methods of the discipline.


Area of Knowledge and Inquiry: Analyzing Social Structures (SS)
Context of Experience: United States (US)
Extended Requirement: Not Applicable

Additional Course information

Credits: 3
Prerequisites: None
Existing Course: Existing
Existing Course Number: PS 101
Course Anticipated to be offered: Every Semester
Other (if specified): 
Number of Sections: 6
Number of Seats: 40


[Justification, Materials, Assessment, Administration (DOC)]   [Syllabus/Syllabi (DOC)]  

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