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Winter 2010 Political Science Courses

1000 LEVEL COURSES

1000 Introduction to Politics and Government
section 1 (A. Bittner, 2-3:15pm Tues/Thurs)
section 2 (K. Blidook, 9-9:50am Mon/Wed/Fri)
section 3 (M. Temelini, 10-10:50am Mon/Wed/Fri)
section 81 (M. Kerby/R. Tremblay, World Wide Web)
Everybody thinks they know something about politics. How much do you know? How do governments form? How do citizens get to express their opinions? Do politicians play the same kind of role in different countries, or is politics the same everywhere? POSC 1000 is a popular course that offers a basic introduction to politics for students who have not taken any other courses in political science, for those who may want to major in the field, or for those who just want an interesting elective. We will look at a range of countries and political systems to gain a broad understanding of what politics is all about. After this, you’ll be able to talk politics with your friends and family all day long.

1010 Issues in Canadian Politics (A. Marland, 3:30-4:45pm, Tues/Thurs)
Canadians may be good at hockey, like maple syrup and perhaps be able to parle Francais, but this country has plenty of political troubles. Can we trust political parties and politicians? What role should the government play in health care? What kinds of jobs can you get by studying Political Science? What does Quebec want, anyway? Whether this is your first Political Science course or you’re a poli sci guru, you’ll gain a better understanding of how flawed this great country is, eh?

1020 Issues in World Politics (cancelled)

2000 LEVEL COURSES

2010 Research and Writing in Political Science
In this R/W course you’ll hone your research and writing skills, availing of resources such as RefWorks, Ingenta, JSTOR and—wait for it—even the library bookstacks (horrors!) as you develop skills for use in other courses and in your post-university career. Note: students may only complete one section.

  • section 1 of POSC 2010 (M. Anderson, 3:30-4:45pm, Tues/Thurs): This section of our research/writing course is an introduction to peace studies. We’ll examine the causes of violent conflict and the possibilities for world peace. Do countries fight because there is no world government, because of human nature, or because men (as opposed to women) are in charge? Is perpetual peace just a far-fetched idea, or something achievable in our lifetime? While trying to sort through the causes of war and prospects for peace, we’ll improve our research and writing abilities in Political Science—in a non-violent manner, of course. Prerequisite: POSC 1000.
  • section 2 of POSC 2010 (A. Marland, 10:30-11:45am, Tues/Thurs): The theme of this section of our research/writing course is standards of behaviour in Canadian politics. We’ll discuss ethics, political journalism, recent controversies in federal and provincial politics, public participation and Internet politics. Along the way we’ll be looking at standards in research and writing. Everyone had better be on their best behaviour… Prerequisite: POSC 1000.

2100 Introduction to Political Theory (M. Temelini, 2:00-2:50pm Mon/Wed/Fri)
Is the Prime Minister right wing? Is the NDP a socialist party? What does 'feminism' mean? This course will explore these and other such questions by examining the political ideologies of liberalism, conservatism, socialism, Nazism/fascism, feminism, and environmentalism. We may also examine multiculturalism, as well as the political theory of non-violence. [same as the former POSC 2000]

2200 Introduction to International Politics (R. Williams, 2:00-3:15pm Tues/Thurs)
Interested in issues like the “War on Terror,” international human rights abuses, economic development, trade disputes, and the causes of conflict in world politics? This course is an introduction to the field of international politics and is intended to help students understand and analyze these issues by using the appropriate language and concepts.

2300 Introduction to Comparative Politics (cancelled)

2600 Introduction to Public Policy and Administration (S. Tomblin, 9:00-10:15am Tues/Thurs)
Americans are currently debating how to reform their health care system – they have different perspectives on the nature of the problem and what should be done (or not) to fix it. Meanwhile, governments are spending money on infrastructure programs in an attempt to ‘stimulate’ economic growth, but someone has to make decisions about actually putting shovels in the ground. How do we arrive at solutions to public problems? How are perceived solutions then implemented? A major advantage of this course is that we will highlight the challenges of both public policy and public administration, providing you with an improved ability to examine new challenges, to construct a vision, and to assess whether the resources exist for ideas to be implemented. [same as the former POSC 3540]

2800 Introduction to Canadian Politics and Government (M. Temelini, 12:00-12:50pm Mon/Wed/Fri)
This course is like lifting the hood up on an automobile and seeing how everything runs. Why is the Cabinet so secretive in Canada? Why is Parliament so weak? Do bureaucrats really control everything? Why can’t governments “just get along”? After taking POSC 2800, you’ll understand why Canadian politics is less like a sports car and more like a minivan. [same as the former POSC 2710]

2990 Europe in the 20th Century (O. Croci, 3:30-4:45pm Tue/Thurs)
This is the story of a continent which was at the centre of the world and after two World Wars reluctantly left centre stage to the USA, but insisted on playing adviser to the new prince. It is also the story of how it learned from past mistakes and adjusted domestic institutions and policies to meet ever new challenges. Europe today is very different politically than it was at the turn of the last century. What will it look like at the close of this century? Note: This course is offered with the expectation that Political Science students interested in a Harlow semester and/or European exchange program will enroll. [same as the former POSC 2350, as History 2350 and as European Studies 2000]

3000 LEVEL COURSES

3010 Empirical Methods in Political Science (K. Blidook, 12:00-12:50pm Mon/Wed/Fri)
One person’s fact is another’s fiction. At some point, we have to ask the questions: what do we know? how do we know it? and how are all the things we know connected? Observing. Interviewing. Surveying. Analyzing. These are just some of the topics that we will explore as you become acquainted with basic concepts in the empirical approach to studying politics. Warning: POSC 3010 teaches important skill sets that employers and academics look for!
Prerequisite: POSC 2010 or another R/W course, and enrollment as a Political Science Honours, Major or Minor.

3110 Political Theory from Tocqueville to Present (M. Wallack, 10:00-10:50am Mon/Wed/Fri)
Marx maintained that a new power was being created among the working class and de Tocqueville warned about majority tyranny. Mill argued for the tolerance of individualism. Kropotkin believed that law and authority were neither necessary nor legitimate. Conversely, Freud proposed that political discontents might reflect a conflict between eros and death. After this course, what will your political viewpoints be?

3210 International Law (F. O'Brien, 7:00-9:30pm Wednesdays)
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.

3220 International Organizations (M. Anderson, 10:30-11:45am Tues/Thurs)
AU, OIC, UN, OSCE, ICJ, EU, MNCs. Like OMG, what on earth do those acronyms stand for? If you don’t know then, FYI, you need to take this course to get the 411. We’ll examine the origins, structures and roles of international organizations. We’ll look at their significance in security, trade, the environment, in human rights, and in development. What R U w8ting 4? Sign up 2dae.

3300 European Politics (M. Kerby, 9:00-10:15am Tues/Thurs)
So near yet so far away. The history and evolution of European political institutions continues to inform our own understanding politics, whether in Canada or closer to home in Newfoundland and Labrador. Are you interested in the switch to proportional representation, the role of the courts in our daily lives or the relationship between leaders and followers? Our European neighbours have been tackling these subjects for some time with intensity and controversy. We might learn a thing or two from them.

3305 Irish Politics (M. Kerby, 2:00-3:15pm Tues/Thurs)
If Sarah Palin lived in St. John’s, she might suggest that if you were to stand on top of Signal Hill you may see the Cliffs of Moher on a clear day. Seriously though, we'll get a little closer to Ireland by examining what makes Irish politics so interesting. Whether you are attracted to one of the most unique electoral systems in the world, the rise and fall of the Celtic tiger, or the rapid transformation of Ireland's relationship with Northern Ireland and the rest of Europe... Céad mile fáilte.

3310 American Politics (M. Wallack, 11:00-11:50am Mon/Wed/Fri)
Looking at and beyond the 2008 presidential election campaign, this course will examine the unusually powerful role of the US Congress, the legal and political implications of the Constitution, and the politicized bureaucracy of the executive branch. Drawing on Web and television sources, we will examine the role of the media and interest groups in the struggle for power over the vast resources of the federal budget.

3610 Public Administration in Canada (S. Tomblin, 2:00-3:15pm Tues/Thurs)
“There’s not enough doctors!”, “We need more nurses!”, “If only there were more politicians!”… okay, so you won’t hear anyone say the latter, but the fact is many people are employed by the government and the competition for trained workers can make it difficult to implement public policies. How the government delivers programs and services has been changing due to social diversity, globalization, pressures for regionalization and civil society partnerships. In this course we will look at the literature on public administration and apply these to current challenges and solutions, whether we are talking about building infrastructure, promoting primary health care reform, or simply getting shovels in the ground. [same as the former POSC 3741]

3820 Constitutional Law in Canada (F. O'Brien, 7:00-9:30pm Tuesdays)
In this course we’ll use a casebook approach to examine critical issues of Canadian constitutional Law. The development of the Canadian constitution and processes of judicial review, as well as the legal development of federalism and protection of civil rights, will be examined in detail. [same as the former POSC 3720]

3880 Introduction to Newfoundland and Labrador Politics (P. Boswell, Distance Education)
Why did the citizens of the country of Newfoundland decide to join Canada as its 10th province? Was Newfoundland and Labrador’s first premier, Joey Smallwood, a real ‘man of the people’ or a power-hungry despot? Is the current state of federal-provincial relations unusually tense or have there been similar stresses in the past? These and other issues will be dealt with in POSC 3880 as we explore the province’s post-confederation political parties, leaders, elections, interest groups, economy, and government structures. [same as the former POSC 3780]

4000 LEVEL COURSES

4010/4011 Honours Essay I & II (contact the Head of the Department)
Spend two semesters writing a research essay on the topic of your choice. Sound interesting? More information about our Honours program, including our “Guidelines Governing Honours Essays”, is available at www.mun.ca/posc/undergraduate/honours.php [same as the former POSC 4950/4951] Prerequisites apply.

4120 Contemporary Democratic Theory (M. Wallack, 2:00-3:15pm Mon/Wed)
In this course we’ll explore alternative conceptions of the foundations of democracy. Prior to the last third of the 20th century, it was generally thought that all that could be said about the content of liberal democratic theory had been said already. All the energetic discussions about contemporary political theory were at the tables where critics of liberal democracy spent their late evenings. Things changed. New ways of thinking about democracy were proposed and debated. This course puts its participants into the middle of that debate. [same as the former POSC 4113]

4200 International Law and Politics (cancelled)

4250 The European Union (O. Croci, 7:00-9:30pm Wednesdays)
Besides banning seal products and allegedly engaging in overfishing, what exactly does the EU do? What is it? Why was it formed? For what purpose? Iceland and Greenland are not part of it, but which countries are, when did they join, why, and who might join in the future? Why is it an economic giant but a political pygmy in world affairs? Would anyone regret it if it fell apart? Take this course and Even U can find out the answers. [same as the former POSC 3291]

4255 Controversies in Political Economy (cancelled)

4340 Women and Mass Politics (A. Bittner, 7:00-9:30pm Tuesdays)
For centuries women have been excluded from mainstream politics, and the legacy of this exclusion remains. To this day women are missing from the highest administrative posts, and they continue to participate in lower numbers than men. We will look at women’s efforts to secure political rights from the mid-19thcentury onward, as well as assessing women’s attitudes towards politics, participation, and public policy. Over the course of the semester we will address systemic and institutional barriers to participation, as well as looking at the effects of women’s participation in politics, both in conventional institutional settings as well as non-conventional forms of activism. How big a problem is it if women don’t vote, don’t run for office, and don’t legislate? We will explore these and other normative questions. [same as the former POSC 4503]

4380 The Developing World (cancelled)

4600 Public Policy Work Internship (A. Marland)
Wouldn’t it be great to have career-related work experience on your résumé and to apply your Political Science knowledge to the real world? This three credit hour course includes a part-time job placement with government, a voluntary organization, a political party, a union, or another institution involved in public affairs. Interested? Your first job is to visit mun.ca/posc/internships and to contact the course administrator before the semester starts. [same as the former POSC 4000] Prerequisites apply.

4880 Research in Newfoundland and Labrador Politics (S. Reid, 7:00-9:30pm Mondays)
Requires students to participate in advanced research projects dealing with selected aspects of the politics of Newfoundland and Labrador. Topics to be considered may include the legislature and the executive, the civil service, interest groups, parties, elections and political recruitment.

STUDY ABROAD

5999 Exchange Program – Limerick, Ireland or Uppsala, Sweden (contact O. Croci)
Feeling lucky enough to study in Ireland? Information about our exchange programs is available online at mun.ca/posc/exchanges. Imagine how Swede it would be to study in Uppsala! Prerequisites apply.

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