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Fall 2007 Political Science Courses

Brief descriptions of some courses as offered by instructors in Fall 2007 are presented below. These are available for reference purposes only -- past information does not necessarily reflect future course delivery.

Introduction to Politics
POSC 1000, section 2
Class Time: Mondays, Wednesday and Friday, 3:00pm-3:50pm
Description: This course offers an introduction to basic concepts in the study of politics, emphasizing the Canadian system of government and its relationship with the Canadian society.
Course Organization: There will be three lectures each week.
Required Text: E. Mintz, D. Close and O. Croci, Politics Power and the Common Good - An Introduction to Political Science, (Pearson - Prentice Hall, 2006).
Course Evaluation: Mid-term exam 25%, Essay 30%, Final exam 40%, Term Paper Outline 5%


Introduction to Politics

POSC 1000, section 3

Instructor: Dr. Michael Temelini

This course is an introduction to the vocabulary of politics and to the different ways of studying political science. The format is primarily lectures but there will also be opportunities for class discussions.
Lectures will be based on the textbook and a review of current political events. The lectures will include the following topics: society, government and politics; power and authority; sovereignty, state and citizenship; the concept of a nation; types of law and constitutions; international relations; types of political systems (liberal democracies, autocracies); comparison of parliamentary and presidential systems; the concept of federalism; electoral systems.

Mark O. Dickerson and Thomas Flanagan An Introduction to Government and Politics, 7th Edition Scarborough, Ontario: Nelson Thomson Learning, 2006. (Selected Chapters)


Canadian Political Problems

POSC 1010, section 1
Time Slot 19, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:00pm - 3:15pm
Classroom: ED-2018A
Instructor: Alex Marland
Description: This course provides students with an overview of the operation of the Canadian political system by reviewing various political issues. At the end of the course, students should have a more informed position on questions such as, what’s the best political party to support in Canadian politics, is Canada’s political make-up flawed, and what is the Canadian government doing to keep us safe? Political Science 1010 is recommended as one of the first courses in political science, particularly for 1st or 2nd year students who are considering studies in Canadian politics or Canadian history.
Textbook to purchase: The Language of Canadian Politics: A Guide to Important Terms & Concepts, 4th edition, by John McMenemy (Wilfred Laurier Press, 2006)
Grade breakdown: Tuesday quizzes 20%, midterm test 35%, final exam 45%


Problems in World Politics
Political Science 1020
Instructor: B. McGrath
Course Description: This section of the course will focus on the problem of global security. Part one will provide a framework for the understanding of developments in world politics and will introduce students to an ongoing debate concerning globalization and its consequences. The second part of the course draws attention to the dangers posed by failed and fragile states. In this part of the course, violent conflict and international intervention in Afghanistan will be examined.
Textbooks: David Held and Anthony McGrew, Globalization/Anti-Globalization Cambridge, Polity Press, 2002; Khaled Hosseini, The Kite-Runner, Toronto: Anchor Canada, 2003; Amalendu Misra Afghanistan. The Labyrinth of Violence Cambridge: Polity Press, 2004
Grade Breakdown: Quizzes-10%, Mid-Term-30%, Term Paper 20%, Final Exam-40%

Introduction to Political Thought
Political Science 2000

Instructor: Dr. Michael Temelini

This course is an introduction to the field of political theory (political philosophy) - the political ideas of the past and present. Students are introduced to the way political theorists reflect on, clarify, criticize and justify political activity. The course proceeds by examining the concepts and major ideas of politics and the way they shape the real-life struggles of our world. Students should come away with an understanding of the range of problems addressed by political theorists and the range of approaches to them, and so with a preparation for upper level courses in political theory. This term the course will examine political ideologies: liberalism, conservatism, socialism, Nazism/fascism, feminism, and environmentalism. We will also consider multiculturalism.

REQUIRED READINGS (copies on reserve at QEII Library)

Selected Chapters from: Roger Gibbins and Loleen Youngman Mindscapes Political Ideologies Towards the 21st Century Canada: McGraw-Hill Ryerson Limited, 1996.(Selected Chapters)

Mark O. Dickerson and Thomas Flanagan An Introduction to Government and Politics, 7th Edition Thomson Nelson, 2006, Part II: Ideology - Chapters 9-15 (pages 113-227).


Introduction to International Politics

POSC 2200

Instructor: Osvaldo Croci

Class time: Tuesdays and Thursdays: 14:00 – 15.15

Description: This course introduces students to the basic conceptual tools needed to examine international politics in a rigorous and systematic way. It focuses primarily on the political-security (as opposed to economic) aspects of international politics. By the end of the course students should be able to discuss current international political issues using appropriate concepts and theoretical tools. They should also be able to analyze contemporary international political issues within the appropriate theoretical context and derive basic policy recommendations.

Textbook: Karen Mingst, Essentials of International Relations (3rd edition), New York: Norton, 2004 (available in the bookstore). The study of international politics presupposes a good knowledge of political history. Students are therefore strongly encouraged to read the following chapters at the very beginning of the course: John Baylis and Steve Smith (eds). The Globalization of World Politics: An Introduction to International Relations (3rd edition), Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005 pp. 63-157 (on reserve in the library).

Course Evaluation: Three multiple choice tests 30%, Final exam 50%, Assignment 20%


Introduction to Comparative Politics
Political Science 2300
Class Time: Slot 4, Monday, Wednesday, Friday @ 11:00-11:50
Room: ED 1014
Description: An introduction to the techniques of comparative analysis and the ways in which we can account for differences and similarities among different kinds of political systems. Questions to be considered include differences among democracies, semi-democracies and authoritarian systems, reasons why some countries are liberal democracies while others are, political culture and the forces which shape it, the role of parties and interest groups, and the ways in which liberal democracies and other systems have been or are changing. The course provides you with tools and approaches useful in advanced courses and understanding the world around you. If this is to happen, you need to take an active approach to learning. This means following the news, completing assigned readings and thinking about them before you come to class, attending class and participating in class discussions, and completing net commentaries and in-class exercises.
Course Evaluation: Paper 30%, midterm exam 20%, final examination 40%, Internet assignments 10%
Textbooks: Rod Hague and Martin Harrop, Political Science: A Comparative Introduction, 5th ed.; Christian Søe, ed., Annual Editions, Comparative Politics 07/08


Introduction to Canadian Politics I
POSC 2710, section 1
Time Slot 17, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00am - 10:15am
Classroom: ED-2018B
Instructor: Alex Marland
Description: An introduction to the structure, operation, and inter-relationships of the institutions of government at the federal level in Canada. Topics include the constitution, federalism, parliament, the executive, and the judiciary. Students majoring or minoring in Political Science must complete POSC 2710.
Textbook to purchase: Canadian Government in Transition, 4th edition, by Robert J. Jackson and Doreen Jackson (Pearson Prentice Hall, 2006)
Grade breakdown: Thursday quizzes 20%, midterm test 35%, final exam 45%


International Political Economy
POSC 3250, section 1
Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:30pm-4:50pm - SN2067
Description: This course introduces upper-level undergraduate students to the study of International Political Economy (IPE). The course begins with an examination of the four major theoretical frameworks in IPE: Realism, Liberalism, Historical Structuralism, and Feminism. The course also touches on specific approaches within each of these frameworks, such as, hegemonic stability theory, regime theory, and Gramscian analysis. The course then applies these frameworks to key topics in IPE; including the global monetary and financial order, international trade, foreign investment, multinational corporations, foreign debt, and international development.
Course Organization: There will be two lectures each week.
Required Text: Theodore H. Cohn, Global Political Economy: Theory and Practice, (Addison Wesley Longman, 3rd edition, 2005).
Additional articles specified in the syllabus
Course Evaluation: Mid-term exam 20%, Essay 40%, Final exam 35%, Term Paper Outline 5%


The European Union
POSC 3291
Instructor: Osvaldo Croci
Class time: Wednesdays, 19:00 – 21:30
Description: This course examines the European Union (EU) as a case of regional political and economic integration and governance. The objective of the course is to have students become familiar with the significance of the EU, its historical origins and developments, its institutional structure, its main public policies, and the challenges it currently faces. At the end of the course students should also be able to discuss the differences between the EU and less institutionally developed examples of regional integration (e.g. NAFTA or OAS) on the one hand, and full-fledged federations (e.g. Canada) on the other. They should also develop at least an initial appreciation of the theories explaining regional economic and political integration.
Prerequisites: Students enrolled in this course should have already taken Political Science 1000, 2200 and 2300 (or 2710-11). If they have not, they should be prepared to do some extra work to familiarize themselves with some basic concepts that this course assumes students already have in their 3rd year of political science.
Textbook: Ian Bache and Stephen George, Politics in the European Union, Second Edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006.
Course Evaluation: Multiple Choice Tests 20%, Final exam 40%, Research Paper (including a 20-minute oral discussion of the paper) 40%


Women and Politics
POSC 3340
Mondays 7:30pm

Description: This course examines the role and representation of women in contemporary democracies. Discussions will cover a range of perspectives, with a focus on ensuring that the student has a foundation from which to question and understand the role of women in our political processes.
Required Text: Wendy Stokes, Women in Contemporary Politics


Political Parties
POSC 3531, section 1
Time Slot 20
Description: Political parties occupy a peculiar position in contemporary democracies. We find it hard to imagine large scale democracy without parties. Yet parties are not well-regarded, and there is considerable debate about whether they are changing or are in decline. This course examines parties and party systems in Europe, Canada, and the United States and considers whether any of this is true. The aim is to understand parties and party systems and the factors which shape them. We begin with basics, examining parties and what they do – for example how they organize themselves, select candidates and contest elections -- and consider what difference this makes. The course is an explicit attempt to mix theory and data and see what this can produce. Classes will combine lectures, discussions, and a number of devices designed to force students to engage course material and understand it. Students are expected to complete assigned readings on schedule, attend class regularly, and participate in class discussions. There will be a midterm and a final examination, a major research paper, and five ‘net’ assignments.
Text: Alan Ware, Political Parties and Party Systems

Tentative scheme of evaluation: midterm examination 20%, final examination 30%, research paper 40%, Internet assignments and class participation 10%


Canadian Foreign Policy
Political Science 3760
Instructor: B. McGrath
Course Description: This course will introduce students to the study of Canadian foreign policy. The introduction is devoted to a discussion of approaches to foreign policy analysis. The next section will focus upon the past and present development of Canada’s policies. The last part of the course examines the politics of Canadian foreign policy with special attention directed towards the institutions and processes through which policy is made. During the fall semester of 2007, the Department of Foreign Affairs will organize an eDiscussion focused on the theme, Canada’s Role in North America. 3760 students will participate through preparation and submission of a policy position paper and responses to questions posed by Department officials.
Textbooks: John Kirton, Canadian Foreign Policy in a Changing World Toronto: Thomson/Nelson, 2007; Duane Bratt and Christopher J.Kukucha, editors, Readings in Canadian Foreign Policy. Classic Debates and New Ideas Don Mills, Ontario: Oxford University Press, 2007
Grading Scheme: Policy Position Paper (750 words) 15%, Response to eDiscussion Guiding Question (250 words) 5%, Participation 10%, Mid-Term Examination 40%, Final Examination 30%

Newfoundland Corrections: Policy and Practice

POSC 3791

Instructor: Terry Carlson

Tuesday and Thursday, 3:30 - 4:45 p.m.

Description: This special topics course provides an overview of the evolution of corrections policy and practice in Newfoundland. It examines how various political, social and economic forces helped shape correctional policy and practice from the eighteenth century to the present. The course will concentrate on recent developments ranging from the operation of the new Youth Criminal Justice Act to new adult sentencing and treatment options. It will discuss issues such as prisoners' right to vote and the public release of information on sex offenders. The course will explore how factors such as liberal and conservative ideologies, public perceptions, cost considerations, research findings and the influence of other jurisdictions have impacted on correctional decision-making in Newfoundland.

Text: No textbook required. Assigned readings only.

Tentative scheme of evaluation: Two tests 20% each; term paper 30%; and final exam 30%.


POSC 4000
Instructor: Alex Marland
Description: This course includes a part-time, normally unpaid placement in government, voluntary organizations, political parties, unions, or other institutions involved in public affairs. The number of openings varies and admission to this course is selective and competitive. Placements are for 12 weeks at eight hours per week, in addition to regularly scheduled class meetings. Prerequisites: Fifteen credit hours in Political Science courses with a B70 average and third-year standing (minimum 60 credit hours). Credit may not be obtained for both Political Science 4000 and Political Science 3900.
Textbook to purchase: none
Grade breakdown: Internship placement 35%, academic essay 35%, reflective essay 20%, briefing note 5%, academic essay outline 5%


Preconditions of Democracy
POSC 4301, section 56

Instructor: Derek Butler

This course is an exploration of the preconditions of democracy, i.e. what is necessary to develop and sustain democratic regimes, including the circumstances under which transitions to democratic rule succeed or fail. We will look at both consolidated and transitioning democracies. We will consider the concepts and theories of democracy, "waves of democratization," economic, socio-cultural and political preconditions, stages of democratic transitions (liberalization, democratization, consolidation), democratization and globalization, non-liberal democracies, and 'democracy as foreign policy.'

Required Text: Assigned readings only.
Course Evaluation: Three in-class essays (15% x3, 45%) and research paper (55%).