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Spring 2008 Political Science Courses

So you want to understand basic political concepts that are in the news. Perhaps you're interested in learning about public affairs, government and society. Maybe you’re considering a career in the government, as a lawyer, as a social advocate, or perhaps with the United Nations. You're intrigued by Newfoundland and Labrador politics. Or possibly you're looking to analyze complex policies as you prepare for graduate (M.A.) studies. Look no further. We are offering a wide range of courses next semester. In many cases information expanding on the formal course description is provided here. Remember, in some classes enrollment is limited, so sign up early for your preferred choices! For more information, visit us online (, email us (, drop by the main office (SN-2028), call us (864-8179), or feel free to chat with a course instructor.

Note: Sample course outlines are available by clicking here.

The Spring Semester comprises the following:

  • Spring semester (14 weeks from mid-May to mid-August)
  • Intersession (first seven weeks of the semester)
  • Summer session (last seven weeks of the semester)

1000 Introduction to Politics (J. Loder, slot 3, M/W/F 10-10:50am)
This course introduces students to the basic conceptual tools needed to examine politics. Domestically, why do governments often implement unpopular public policies? What factors allow this to occur and whose interests are being served by public policy decisions? At the international level, our focus will be on the changing nature of global politics and conflict in the 21st century. You will be introduced to globalization through an examination of the relationship between globalization, the state and terrorism.

1020 World Political Problems (S. Keller, slot 2, M/W/F 9-9:50am)
This course will introduce you to some of the relationships between political theory and current events. Specifically, how do societies order themselves for the distribution of values – and what happens when there is serious disagreement? How does this result in violence that can escalate to the point of civil war? What are the knock-on effects of globalization and the interaction between politics in the "first-world" and the "third-world"? Take this course to learn why politics is about "who gets what and how."

2200 Introduction to International Politics (O.Croci, slot 18, Tu/Th 10:30am-12pm)
Why is it that a less active USA might not necessarily imply a more peaceful world? Why is military conflict more common in some parts of the world than in others? Under what conditions is peace more likely to be achieved? Why is the UN neither a supranational nor a democratic organization? These are just some of the questions to be examined in this course that you can discuss passionately with your peers.

2300 Introduction to Comparative Politics (J. Loder, slot 4, M/W/F 11-11:50am)
Want to learn about the field of comparative politics? In this course you’ll gain the analytical and methodological tools needed to conduct comparative research. Together we will examine issues such as political institutions, the welfare state, the impact of globalization on the welfare state, and the impact of European Union integration on member states within the EU. Students will have the opportunity to develop a comparative research project that appeals to their interests within the scope of these topics.

2710 Introduction to Canadian Politics I (P. Boswell, slot 99, Distance Education)
Ever wonder how the Canadian Parliament works or what all the fuss was about constitutional change and special status for Quebec? Want to know more about the role and power of the Prime Minister, federal-provincial relations, the federal bureaucracy, and the judicial system? Want to study at your own pace and in the comfort of your own home? Then this correspondence course may be right for you.

3210 International Law (F. O'Brien, slots 30 and 32, M/W 7-9pm)
This popular course is an introduction to international law concerned with the interaction of the political and legal systems. Topics discussed are sources, agreements, membership, recognition, territory, jurisdiction, immunities, state responsibility, and force and war.

3291 The European Union (O. Croci, slot 19, Tu/Th 2-3:30pm)
What is the European Union? Is it something different from the European Community or the Common Market? Why does it take issue with the seal hunt? Why does it spend half of its budget on subsidizing agriculture? Is it already, or is it likely to become, a political giant like the USA? How far will it extend? How does the EU differ from the North American Free Trade Agreement and is NAFTA likely to become something like the EU? What difference would it make for Canada? Take this course to find out.

3391 Politics of Food (S. Keller, slot 17, Tu/Th 9-10:30am)
Is there enough food for everyone in the world? What is "food security"? Should hungry third-world people be satisfied with whatever aid donor nations contribute, including genetically modified foods? In conflict situations can food aid be limited to vulnerable populations and kept from combatants? What are the consequences of huge western agribusinesses dominating global and local food production, processing, and distribution? Should governments intervene in individuals’ food choices, such as supplements, diets, or obesity issues? Is our own food "safe"? Considering these issues it is hard to say that there is anything more political than food. Note: Students interested in this special topics course are encouraged to enroll this semester because this course is not regularly offered by the Department.

3741 Public Administration in Canada (C. Dunn, slot 99, Distance Education)
This course provides an introduction to public administration and history of the public service in Canada. We will examine the structure and functioning of contemporary federal and provincial governments. Topics to be covered include cabinet organization, financial and personnel management, collective bargaining, and bilingualism.

4000 Internship (A. Marland, slot 99, with informal meetings on some Wednesdays at 1pm)
Wouldn’t it be nice to have some career-related work experience to highlight on your résumé? This course features a part-time job placement in government, voluntary organizations, political parties, unions, or other institutions involved in public affairs. Admission criteria apply. Further information is available from the course instructor and online at

4450 State & Society in the Third World (D. Close, slot 12, M/W 12:30-2pm)
In this course we will look at the politics of the world’s poorer countries by focusing on three themes: what development means and has meant; why authoritarian politics have been the norm in the Third World; and what prospects democracy has.

4950 Honours Essay I and 4951 Honours Essay II (D.Close, slot 99)
More information about our Honours program—which provides strong preparation for a Master of Arts program—is available online at