All information in this guide is tentative and subject to change. Check the Political Science Department Office for updates. Current Information on rooms and times for the classes listed can be obtained from the university-wide Time Schedule of Classes or from the Political Science office.
PSC 600 m003 Gender & Politics
Instructor: Jenn Jackson
Class # 20807
Offered: W 12:45 pm-3:30 pm
This course examines the intersection of gender and politics in the United States. We will begin the course by examining gender formation, naming, social group inclusion/exclusion, and the work of conforming to or transgressing gender norms. In the remainder of the course, we will cover the following topics: gender in society; media, politics, and gendered expectations and stereotypes; women’s social movements of the left—and the right; gender and power, political engagement and political participation; voice, choice and party identification; the gender gap in running for office; political representation and policy-making; the effects of public policy on gender; the political intersection of gender with race, class, sexual orientation, and embodiment; and gender and politics across countries.
PSC 681 m001 Comparative State, Society Relations
Instructor: S.N. Sangpam
Class # 20774
Offered: M 3:45 pm – 6:30 pm
To the extent that former Soviet-bloc East European allies and federated states have moved to the West while former Asian federated states of the Soviet Union are joining the non-Western world or the "Third World," cross-national comparative politics is and will be about Western and non-Western countries. Its observation units are European and North American countries or Western countries, on the one hand, and African, Asian, and South American countries or non-Western countries, on the other. This graduate course revolves around the question of how to compare Western and non-Western countries. It provides conceptual, methodological, and theoretical tools for defining, comparing/contrasting, and explaining the politically relevant features of these two types of countries as embodied by their respective type of state-society relations. The course deals with the question of the validity of the two dominant modes of inquiry in comparative politics that address the issue of state-society relations in Western and non-Western countries: macro-deductive theories which reflect "universalism" and micro-inductive theories which reflect "particularism."
PSC 691 m001 Logic of Political Inquiry
Instructor: Colin Elman
Class # 12192
Offered: W 9:30 am-12:15 pm
This seminar introduces students to the principles of research design in mainstream political science. We will begin with some questions in the philosophy of science as they apply to the social sciences. We will review the purpose of theories, as well as different approaches to generating and evaluating them. We will investigate concept formation and operationalization. We will discuss how different research designs (including the construction of counterfactuals, comparative case studies, large-N regression analysis, and experiments) may be used to help researchers make valid causal inferences.
PSC 693 m001 Intro to Quantitative Political Analysis
Instructor: Seth Jolly
Class # 11360
Offered: Tu 12:30 pm-2:30 pm; F 10:35 am-11:30 am Lab
This course introduces students to the basic statistical methods used in the study of political science. In the seminars and labs, you will learn to describe and analyze social science data, such as national election surveys. Throughout the course, you will also learn to understand the importance of randomness in statistical research, conduct statistical tests, present your results, and evaluate the implications of quantitative analysis. You will learn to compute most of the techniques both ‘by hand’ and with Stata, a statistical software program commonly used in political science. Contemporary political science research in all subfields utilizes statistical techniques and, consequently, a basic understanding of these methods is crucial. The goal is this course to provide students with the statistical tools necessary to become a sophisticated consumer and producer of quantitative research.
PSC 700 m101 Ethics in International Relations
Instructor: Glyn Morgan
Class # 13218
Offered: W 6:45 pm-9:30 pm
International Relations (IR) is a field of study that focuses on the behavior of international actors (typically states and international organizations). Ethics as a field of study focuses on the rights and wrongs of actions, policies, and institutions. The ethics of international relations focuses on the rights and wrongs of international actions, policies, and institutions. This class will read some of the classic works in International Political Theory (including works by Thucydides, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Kant, Morgenthau, Walzer, Habermas, and Rawls). We will discuss the pros and cons of the realist tradition. And we will examine a number of current ethical dilemmas, including terrorism, torture, global inequality, immigration, and climate change.
PSC 700 m301 Order and Change in International Systems
Instructor: Ryan Griffiths
Class # 20809
Offered: Th 9:30 am – 12:15 pm
In this seminar we will explore a number of topics in international relations. We will begin by looking at theories of international order and the origins of the state system. We will then survey a set of related topics including theories of hierarchy and anarchy, legitimacy, regional variation in political order across time and space, the importance of borders, and the dynamics of international change. In doing so, we’ll engage with the latest research in these topic areas. The seminar is meant to not only prepare students for comprehensive exams, but to also assist them in identifying potential research projects.
PSC 700 m401 Politics of Africa
Instructor: Erin Hern
Class # 20810
Offered: M 9:30 am – 12:15 pm
How can African politics deepen our understanding of concepts in comparative politics? Many theories of comparative politics were developed with the experience of Europe or European settler colonies in mind, while the experiences of other places were relegated to “regional studies” or “why don’t our theories work there” thinking. This course applies concepts of comparative politics to African cases, seeking to uncover what CP concepts can explain about politics in Africa, while also illuminating how African experiences enrich our understanding of comparative politics.
PSC 700 m501 Democratic Representation & Accountability
Instructor: Simon Weschle
Class # 20811
Offered: W 9:30 am – 12:15 pm
In this seminar, we study the nuts and bolts of democracy. One of its core characteristics is that policy is supposed to represent the preferences of citizens, and that the latter can hold the former accountable if they don’t do a good job. How is this supposed to work, and what are factors that can impede democratic representation and accountability? Topics covered include, among others: forms of representation, accountability and retrospective voting, responsiveness, social identity, political/social inequality, political selection, special interest politics, clientelism, or election fraud.
PSC 700 m601 Politics & Media
Instructor: Emily Thorson
Class # 20812
Offered: Tu 9:30 am – 12:15 pm
This seminar provides an overview of political communication research, including core concepts, major theories, and methodological tools. Readings will draw on political science, communication, and psychology. The course will cover both traditional mass media as well as newer forms of media (e.g. social media platforms and partisan media).
PSC 719 m001 Fundamentals of Post-Conflict Reconstruction
Instructor: Renee de Nevers
Class # 12793
Offered: Tu/Th 9:30 am- 10:50 am
Meets with PAI 719 m001
The goal of this class is to familiarize students with the main concepts of post conflict reconstruction, the various dimensions and goals of post-conflict work, the types of actors that conduct it, the trade-offs and dilemmas they face, and the lessons learned from its application across various settings. The course will devote considerable attention to the applied side of post-conflict reconstruction; that is, the techniques and tools used by international intermediaries (states, IOs and NGOs) as well as local stakeholders to transition societies from violence to sustainable peace. It will also address many of the key issues that frame the debate in post-conflict reconstruction work: the tension between externally and internally generated recovery efforts; the possibilities and weaknesses of formal peace and reconciliation commissions; the challenges of civilian-military cooperation in post-conflict zones; the trade-offs between stability and liberty; and the quest for viable exit strategies for international actors.
PSC 767 m001 International Human Rights
Instructor: Lamis Abdelaaty
Class # 20799
Offered: W 9:30 am – 12:15 pm
This seminar introduces the student to the IR subfield of International Political Economy (IPE). At its core, IPE aims to answer one big question: What explains governments' international economic policy choices? Put differently, why do states choose to integrate (or, disintegrate) their economies with each other? Existing scholarship provides us with a range of theoretical and empirical answers to these questions across a variety of issue areas. While some work explains policy outcomes by focusing on international structure, other work emphasizes domestic interests and institutions. Though much of the work in the subfield is unequivocally materialist, we will also engage with a growing body of scholarship that explores how ideas and identity also shape policy. We will debate these diverse analytical approaches as we explore the major issue areas in the subfield including trade, foreign direct investment, capital account liberalization, exchange rates, sovereign debt, international currencies, and the rise of China.
PSC 768 m001 Law, Courts, and Human Rights
Instructor: Yuksel Sezgin
Class # 20801
Offered: M 3:45 pm – 6:30 pm
The interaction between law, courts and politics is gaining increasing interest among scholars in recent years. This renewed interest in comparative study of judicial institutions, human rights and socio-legal change in non-American contexts have given rise to emergence of new schools of thought as well as theoretical, methodological innovations and challenges. This course aims to introduce graduate students to inner workings of judicial institutions in a comparative perspective, and familiarize them with various theories and methodologies employed by scholars, professionals and practitioners for conducting research on comparative legal systems and institutions. Drawing from comparative politics, comparative law, socio-legal studies, legal anthropology, and international relations literatures, the course will analyze dispute-resolution, policymaking, social control and regime legitimation functions of courts (state courts and non-state tribunals alike –i.e., tribal courts, religious tribunals, international courts etc.) and examine the question of which of these core functions courts in different societies choose to emphasize, and why. In other words, in respect to the function and role that courts have come to play in their respective social and political systems, there is a considerable variation across time and space, why that is the case; and what intrinsic or extrinsic factors determine the specific role and function a court plays at a given point in time and place.
PSC 785 m001 Comparative Civilian-Military Relations
Instructor: Brian Taylor
Class # 20802
Offered: Th 12:30 pm – 3:15 pm
This course is a graduate seminar on the major themes and debates in the study of civil-military relations (CMR). In every modern state the question of the proper balance between the armed forces and the civilian political leadership is a key feature of politics. In the most extreme cases, the military itself takes power. In established democracies civil-military relations do not take this extreme form, but there are still important debates about the proper degree of military influence over defense and foreign policy, and the degree to which military policy should be responsive to broader social and cultural values. This course has four separate units: 1. Foundations: States, Militaries, Nations, and Military Professionalism; 2. Who’s In Charge? Military Intervention and Civilian Control; 3. Civil-Military Relations and the Use of Force; 4. New Challenges in Civil-Military Relations.
PSC 792 m001 Research Design
Instructor: Chris Faricy
Class # 12002
Offered: Tu 12:30 pm – 3:15 pm
PSC 792 is required for Ph.D. students and should ideally be taken at the beginning of your third year, the same semester you are taking qualifying examinations. The primary goal of this course is to have each student produce a working draft of a dissertation proposal. Topics to be covered include: what makes for a good dissertation, what a prospectus should look like, how to situate your project in the existing literature, field research, funding, writing tips, and professional development. Each student will write and present several drafts of their proposal, and provide feedback to their colleagues. The course also will include discussions with junior faculty and current ABDs about their experiences, and meetings with university experts on human subjects research and external funding. In addition to the proposal, students will complete short assignments about different aspects of the dissertation process and professional development. Another important goal of the course is to develop the skills of providing feedback to your peers, and accepting constructive criticism from them. You should prepare to submit a 5-page description of your research area and the problem(s) you intend to address in your dissertation at the beginning of the semester. (Instructor consent required.)
PSC 796 m001 Formal Theories of Choice
Instructor: Minju Kim
Class #: 13219
Offered: M 12:45 pm – 3:30 pm
This course provides an introduction to game theory in political science. In this class, you will learn models of non-cooperative individuals who are not bound by the direct preference aggregation rules. In game theory, preferences will be indirectly aggregated, under the name of “equilibrium,” with actions of the non-cooperative individuals.
This class has two main learning objectives. First, students will be able to comprehend static and dynamic games of complete and incomplete information. Second, the course will prepare students to independently analyze social science phenomena using game theory. Students will not only solve ready-made problems but will also construct a game on their own to critically analyze a real-world event of their interest. In doing so, students will learn how to apply game-theoretic tools to their own research.
PSC 800 m001 Seminar in Social and Political Philosophy
Instructor: Kenneth Baynes
Class # 20826
Offered: Tu 3:30 pm – 6:15 pm
Two broad topics in recent Rawlsian and “post-Rawlsian” political philosophy have received a great deal of attention: One is the question of feasibility (or how “realistic” vs. “utopian” normative theorizing should be). A second concerns the role various economic institutions (including markets, property rights and, indeed, labor or work itself) should play in assumptions about a just society or “realistic utopia”. We’ll explore both of these with particular focus on the value (and future) of work, the critique of ‘private government’ (Anderson) and the feasibility of some form of democratic socialism (vs. Rawls’s idea of a ‘property-owners’ democracy’).
PSC 804 m001 Advanced Topics in Qualitative Methods
Instructor: Steven White
Class #: 12603
Offered: W 12:45 pm – 3:30 pm
This class covers a range of theoretical and practical issues related to conducting qualitative historical research in political science. Topics will include differences between historical research in political science and political history; historiography and selection bias when working with secondary sources; and planning and conducting archival research. We will also look at examples of different types of historical research to see best practices in action, including process tracing and the use of historical narratives to develop new concepts or hypotheses. Other topics might include using historical research as part of a mixed methods approach; points of tension and overlap with quantitative historical work; and debates about what transparency should look like for qualitative researchers.
PSC 997 m001 Master’s Thesis
Register for class # 12193, PSC 997 m001, 6 credit hours –or-
Register for class # 12194, PSC 997 m002, 0 credit hours
PSC 999 m001 Dissertation Credits
Register for class # 10484, for 1 to 15 credits
GRD 998 Degree in Progress (Zero Hour Registration)
GRD 998m001, register for class # 16528
GRD 998m002, register for class # 16529
GRD 998m003, register for class # 16531
If you have completed your political science coursework and dissertation credits, you should register for GRD 998 “Degree in Progress” each semester until you graduate.
Along with your GRD 998 registration, please remember to complete a Full Time Certification form each semester you are registered for zero credit hours to continue your Full-Time student status. You can find the form on the graduate school link below.
Your student status will be discontinued if you are not registered before the last day to add a class:
Please see Candy Brooks if you have any questions about your credits or registration.