PLSC 404: Selected Problems in American Politics
Th 7:00pm / LSC
This course will survey recent literature in the field of political behavior, including research on political participation, public opinion, and the intersection between psychology and political research. Particular attention will be given to the strengths and weaknesses of the various (typically quantitative) methods used to address questions related to political behavior. Most of topics we examine will be addressed in the American context, but some research from elsewhere will also be discussed. Students will be expected to conduct original quantitative analysis on a topic of their choosing.
PLSC 429: Selected Problems in Comparative Politics
Th 4:15pm / LSC
This course is a new comparative course on trust and social capital. The aim is threefold. First is to introduce students to the use of experimental games to study social interactions and study whether there are cultural differences in the manner in which these games are played across countries. Second, is to provide students with a broader understanding of the concept of trust in society and to look at the predicted consequences of trust. Third, is to look at the roles trust and social capital play in the comparative development of societies. Prominent thinkers whose work we will consider include Fukuyama, Putnam, Rothstein.
PLSC 432: Comparative Foreign Policy
T 7:00pm / LSC
This graduate seminar serves as an introduction to the comparative study of foreign policy. We will examine competing theoretical approaches that have been adopted to explain foreign policy phenomena at four separate levels of analysis: individual decision-maker, the nation-state, the region, and the international system. Our primary goal will be to better understand foreign policy behavior through the use of theory. Each student will conduct research on the foreign policy claims of one regional studies literature and on the foreign policy of one country.
PLSC 440: Ancient Political Thought
W 4:15pm / LSC
The ancient Greeks were the first people to investigate rationally what is today called "multi-culturalism"--the multiplicity and variety of the "ways" of human life. In Greece we discover the beginnings of an enterprise which came to be known as "political philosophy," which can be defined as the investigation into the various ways of life, with an eye toward determining the best way of life for human beings. The best or most appropriate way of life for human beings is the way most in accordance with human nature, and with the nature of the world. Political philosophy is associated above all with one man, its founder, Socrates. We will be concerned chiefly with him, through an intensive study of Plato’s Republic. But we will also consider two classical alternatives to (or variants on) the Socratic enterprise portrayed by Plato: Thucydides, a historian, and Aristotle, a student of Plato and the man usually regarded as the founder of political science properly understood. Both have much to teach about the deepest issues of concern to human beings, then or now. We will also consider a play about communism by Aristophanes, Socrates’ contemporary. This is a combined graduate-undergraduate course.
PLSC 476: Political Analysis II
M 7:00pm / LSC
Regression analysis is a powerful tool for understanding the world around us. This class introduces the theory, methods, and practical application of linear regression. By the end of the semester, you will be able to understand and evaluate social science research that uses regression analysis. You will use regression to address a research question of interest. Finally, you will learn and apply additional techniques of statistical analysis, including logit and probit.