Academic Catalog

Political Science (POL)

POL 110  Introduction to Political Science  

This course explores the fundamental concepts in the discipline of political science and the philosophical foundation of the American system of governments.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Distinguish between political philosophy and political science.
State and explain the basic issues addressed in the phi.
State and define the essential concepts in the discipline of political science.
Demonstrate an understanding of the philosophical foundations of the American system of government.

Prerequisites: (ENG 050 and REA 050) or ENG 099 or REA 075. Appropriate placement test scores may be accepted.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 120  American National Government  

American Government introduces students to the concepts, functions, and structures of the United States government. It undertakes an analysis of the U. S. national political system with a focus on the role of individuals in the governmental process, and the nature of the interactions that take place among the various branches and levels of government. Analysis will be made of civil rights and liberties that has maintained America as the most culturally diverse country in the world.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Assess the political economy and historical underpinnings of the American system to the principles that were purported.
Contrast the structure and organization of the executive, legislative, judiciary branches of government with the actual mechanisms of the system.
Analyze the struggle for civil liberties and civil rights.
Assess political factors and dynamics of democracy and actors within the system: citizens, political parties, interest groups, the media, and electoral process.
Examine public policies with regard to populations throughout history.

College Academic Learning Goal Designation: Diversity and Social Justice (DJ)

Corequisites: (ENG 050 and REA 050) or ENG 099 or REA 075.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 130  American State and Local Government  

An analytical study of the powers, process and problems of American state, county and local governments. Careful consideration of the nature of political, legislative, administrative and judicial organization at the state, county and city level will be given. NOTE: Prerequisites: Students are encouraged to participate in civil, political and community activities in a democratic society.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
List the development of the six major historical periods in the evolution of American state and local government.
Define federalism and two other major forms of governmental structure.
Identify the nature, functions, structure and legal position of local government in American federalism.
Trace the structure, functions and problems of the three branches of American state government with emphasis on Pennsylvania.
Students are encouraged to participate in civil, political and community activities in a democratic society.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 140  American Presidency  

This course is a study and analysis of the historical and political influences upon the institution of the modern American presidency.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Explain the forces and participants involved in the dynamics of the compromise of the Constitutional Convention, which shaped the establishment of an executive branch.
Identify the constitutional model and proper role of the president in the doctrine of separation of power.
Discuss the constitutional powers of the president that overlap within the other two branches.
Include some relevant and modern issues that are sources of controversy regarding their administration.
Trace the historical evolution of the president within the confines of the constitutional and non-constitutional functions of the office.
Critique the present method of nominating presidential candidates and election of the chief executive.
Identify those presidents who have made the most permanent contributions to the evolution of the office.
Explain the impact of television, campaign financing and the expectations of the American people toward the office of president.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 200  World Affairs  

This course deals with the theory and practice of international relations.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Identify the principle characteristics of national states.
Analyze the role of power in international politics.
Identify the major constraints a national state must deal with in the formulation and implementation of foreign policy.
Evaluate the relations between East and West in the post-World War I era.
Assess the impact of the United Nations on the relations between national states in the contemporary world.
Model appropriate strategies to acquire various methods for gathering information for the development, comprehension and practical application of said information in the deciphering of issues involved in world politics.
Relate the foundations of instruction to the practice of reading and interpreting texts at the secondary level.
Plan developmentally and culturally appropriate strategies to address individual differences among political adversaries.
Enrich interdisciplinary activities by incorporating innovative technology and multimedia activities.
Teach questioning and communication skills as an integral part of cultural development.

Prerequisites: (ENG 050 and REA 050) or ENG 099 or REA 075. Appropriate placement test scores may be accepted.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 210  Principles of Public Administration  

The general principles and theories of administration are analyzed and related to the management of public business.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Evaluate the trends and philosophies of bureaucracy in the public and private sectors.
Analyze the relationship of the public administrator to the various branches and levels of government and to the general public.
Describe the roles of the public administrator in terms of goal setting, organizational and personnel procedures, and financial management.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 211  Modern Political Theory  

The goal of Modern Political Theory is to examine the origin, purpose and role of current political thought and action. The European Renaissance in the 16th century to the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century, produced a philosophical movement in Western thought, referred to as “modernity" that evolved from and coincides with the expansion of capitalism and imperialism. This class will expand on the modern classification and include contemporary thinkers, African descendants, and women through Feminist thought. Class discussions will challenge many presumptions about political life. In addition,the exploration of the major tenets of identifiable theorists will be applied to current societal thinking and actions.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Describe key ideas such as order, human nature, freedom, justice, community, and equality that animated the great thinkers of ancient, medieval, and modern political thought.
Enumerate fundamental tenets of major ideologies and assess the impact of these ideologies in today’s political landscape.
Discern the continued relevance of historical ideas about government institutions and the citizenry to the present political landscape.

Prerequisites: POL 120.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 225  Constitutional Law  

This course introduces the student to the interpretation of the United States Constitution by the Supreme Court through a series of prominent decisions from leading cases. The parameters of the Courts power over the states will be established by analyzing the history of federalism. The Supreme Court's relationship to the executive and legislative branches will be ascertained by the role of the Court in determining the constitutionality of their actions. An examination of the rights of the citizenry will be investigated through the balancing tests between protecting the rights of the individual and the well being of society as a whole as evidenced in their decisions regarding such rights.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Discern the power relationships among branches of government (checks and balances) and between levels of government (federalism).
Analyze important constitutional provisions, historically critical Supreme Court decisions, as well as areas of contemporary interest.
Analyze the relationship between the government and its citizens, including restrictions on interference with individual freedom (civil liberties) and obligations to prevent discrimination and ensure equality (civil rights).
Assess the primary arguments made by advocates on most sides of the controversies surrounding the structure, organization and functioning of government.

Prerequisites: POL 120.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours

POL 226  Comparative Politics  

This course will introduce students to the processes of World politics. The origin of international governments will be examined in addition to current issues and challenges that have evolved from that structure. The origins of both national and international governments will be assessed with particular focus given to the role of the economy within nation states. Emphasis will be placed the role of international organizations aimed at mediating affairs between international actors.

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Examine how political systems are shaped by historical forces, political cultures, the international environment, economic conditions, ideologies, and the decisions of leaders and public participants in politics.
Compare institutions, electoral and voting processes, political systems, public policies, and political and economic development of different countries.
Assess the ways that ethnic, religious, and other minorities are affected by global decision making and power relations.
Apply scientific methodologies within the Political Science discipline, and construct typologies and assess political systems.

Prerequisites: POL 120.

3 Credits3 Weekly Lecture Hours