Successful graduates of this program go on to graduate or law school, manage campaigns, run for office, work in state and local government or for various federal government agencies, including the U.S. Marshall’s Office, U.S. State Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Environmental Protection Agency, and Amnesty International.
Statement of Policies – Admission
For students enrolled at The University of Akron and for students wishing to transfer directly to Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences from other institutions, the following criteria must be satisfied for admission to the Department of Political Science:
- The student must be admissible to Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences
- A minimum grade point average of 2.20 must be met in all university work, including transfer credits
- A minimum grade point average of 2.20 must be met in all work in Political Science, including university and transfer credits. Only credits earned at an accredited institution of post-secondary education, as recognized by The University of Akron, will be considered for transfer credit, and only those grades will be considered in the grade point average.
Students in the Political Science programs must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.20 overall and a minimum of 2.20 grade point average in Political Science courses (including transfer credit) in order to remain in the program. A student who fails to maintain the 2.20 cumulative average (including transfer credit) will be placed on academic probation. Failure to raise the average after one semester will result in dismissal from the program. The student may not apply for readmission for at least one semester.
Political Science (3700)
3700:100 Government & Politics in the United States (3 Credits)
Examination of American political system with emphasis on fundamental principles, ideas, institutions and processes of modern government. Lecture and discussion sections (day classes only).
Gen Ed: Tier 2 - Social Science
3700:150 World Politics & Government (3 Credits)
Introduction to international politics and an examination of the governments and foreign policies of selected states from a comparative perspective.
Gen Ed: Tier 2 - Social Science
3700:210 State & Local Government & Politics (3 Credits)
Examination of institutions, processes and intergovernmental relations at state and local levels.
3700:300 Comparative Politics (3 Credits)
Introduction to comparative political analysis; description of political systems of Great Britain, France, Germany and Soviet Union; contrast between democracy and totalitarianism.
Gen Ed: Tier 3 - Global Diversity
3700:301 Introduction to Political Research (3 Credits)
Introduction to the research process in political science through an introduction to the logic of social science inquiry and contemporary techniques of analysis.
3700:302 American Political Ideas (3 Credits)
Study of major thinkers and writers of American political thought.
3700:303 Introduction to Political Thought (3 Credits)
Survey of major ideas and concepts of Western political theory from pre-Socrates through period of Enlightenment.
3700:304 Modern Political Thought (3 Credits)
Examination of central concepts of political thought from 19th Century to present. Modern liberalism, communism, fascism and totalitarianism emphasized.
3700:310 International Politics & Institutions (3 Credits)
Relations among nations examined in political context.
3700:311 Developing States in World Politics (3 Credits)
Examines how developing states are conditioned by the global system and how they attempt to modify it.
3700:313 International Law (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:150 or 3700:310. This course explores law at the international level and will focus on diplomacy, treaties, covenants, laws of war, and the legal role of international organizations.
3700:321 European Politics (3 Credits)
Description and analysis of government and politics of France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and Russia, with appropriate references to the European Union.
3700:326 Politics of Developing Nations (3 Credits)
General introduction to concepts and theories of political development and political institutions, elite-recruitment and political processes of selected emerging nations.
3700:328 American Foreign Policy Process (3 Credits)
Examination of American foreign policy-making process; public opinion and other limitations on policy; specific contemporary problems in selected foreign policy areas.
3700:333 Social Entrepreneurship (3 Credits)
Scholarly analysis of successful social and political entrepreneur's efforts to address real world problems and an interdisciplinary analysis of the strategies and skills they deploy.
3700:334 Law, Mediation, and Violence (3 Credits)
A critical analysis of the practical challenges central to learning to better prevent, resolve, or reduce the harms associated with conflict.
3700:335 Law & Society (3 Credits)
This course will examine how law constructs and constrains political conflict, and how legal institutions mediate, reinforce, and challenge existing power relationships.
3700:336 Homeland Security Policy and Process (3 Credits)
The course will focus on the topic of homeland security, an area that has received a great deal of attention following the tragic events of September 11, 2001.
3700:337 Terrorism: Perpetrators, Politics and Response (3 Credits)
Survey of terrorist organizations, political implications of terrorism, and governmental response to terrorism.
3700:339 Terrorism and the Constitution (3 Credits)
Primary goals include learning about the balance courts try to strike in safeguarding public safety and respect for personal freedom in a constitutional republic.
3700:341 The American Congress (3 Credits)
Examination of structure and function of Congress, with comparative materials on legislative process on all levels. Presidential and congressional conflict examined.
3700:345 World Politics in Film (3 Credits)
This course examines the political meaning and content of films. Themes investigated include war, the nuclear age and its consequences, postindustrial society, the future, and unemployment.
3700:346 American Politics in Film (3 Credits)
Examines the portrayal and representation of American politics through cinema. Emphasis on the positive and negative roles that movies play in educating the public.
3700:350 The American Presidency (3 Credits)
The presidency as focal point of politics, policy and leadership in American political system.
3700:351 Inside the White House (3 Credits)
The course looks behind the curtain at the inner-workings of the White House. Topics include: physical structure of the White House, travel, protection, and staff.
3700:352 Weapons of Mass Destruction (3 Credits)
An exploration of the various weapons of mass destruction available to terrorists and other potential enemies with an emphasis on the challenge America faces in responding to such threats.
3700:353 Future International Threats (3 Credits)
A study of future threats through the use of scenario construction and future projections.
3700:360 The Judicial Process (3 Credits)
Role of police, lawyers, courts and judges in context of American political process. Structure and process of judicial policy making and limitations on judicial power.
3700:361 Politics of the Criminal Justice System (3 Credits)
Examines the impact of the political process and political institutions on criminal law and policy.
3700:363 Crime, Punishment, Politics: A Comparative Perspective (3 Credits)
Comparative study of the structures, practices, power relationships, and politics in various criminal justice systems.
3700:370 Public Administrtion: Concepts & Practices (4 Credits)
Examines current administrative theories and their application in public bureaucracies. Emphasis is placed on practices to improve the quality of public sector administration.
3700:375 Women in Politics (3 Credits)
Course examines the past, present, and future role of women in politics.
3700:381 State Politics (3 Credits)
Analysis of the state political process in terms of its capacity to deal with a wide range of socioeconomic problems. Special emphasis on legislators, administrators, parties and interest groups.
3700:391 Honors in Political Science (3 Credits)
Prerequisites: at least 17 credits and a 3.25 average in political science and permission of adviser.
3700:392 Selected Topics in Political Science (1-3 Credits)
(May be repeated, but no more than three credits can be applied to major in political science) Topics of substantial current importance, specialized topics within political science or experimental courses.
3700:395 Internship in Government & Politics (2-9 Credits)
(May be taken twice for a total of nine hours. No more than four credits may be applied toward major in political science.) Prerequisite: Completion of 3 courses with a 2.20 GPA in political science. Supervised individual placement with political office holders, party groups, governmental agencies, law firms and other organizations providing professional-level work.
3700:397 Independent Study: Political Science (1-4 Credits)
(May be repeated for a total of four credits) Prerequisites: Minimum academic standing of a Senior and a 3.00 GPA.
3700:400 Political Extremism & Violence (3 Credits)
This course examines the causes and consequences of political extremism and political violence in democracies and failed democracies.
3700:401 Advanced Topics in Research Methods (3-6 Credits)
3700:402 Politics and the Media (3 Credits)
Examination of relationships between the press, the news media and political decision makers.
3700:403 Media, Crime and Public Opinion (3 Credits)
Examines the social construction of crime in mass media and how it impacts public, including fear of crime, beliefs about crime causation, and crime policy.
3700:405 Politics in the Middle East (3 Credits)
The rise of the state system in the Middle East after World War I; an analysis of the socio-cultural, ideological forces influencing the political behavior of the people of the Middle East. In-depth study of selected political systems.
3700:406 Comparative Constitutional Law (3 Credits)
This course will explore the essential principles and theories of law and constitutionalism and then apply them, comparatively, to several different constitutional traditions from various regions of the world.
3700:410 International Security Policy (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:310 or 3400:461. Introduction to political uses of military forces. Major focus on methodological, conceptual, and ethical dilemmas confronted in developing and implementing security policy.
3700:413 Global Public Health Threats (3 Credits)
An introduction to comparative global biological and public health security policy. Topics include: infectious disease outbreaks, bioterrorism, and potential "nano-terrorism.
3700:414 Wealth and Power Among Nations (3 Credits)
Studies relationship between politics and economy; mesh theoretical perspectives with exploration of key empirical issues. Topics: trade, relations, unions, finance, development, aid, sanctions.
3700:417 Environmental Security: Policy & Politics (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. Examines the politics, economics, science, security, and policy changes behind global warming/climate change, peak oil (looming energy shortages), and related governmental and resource security.
3700:422 Understanding Racial and Gender Conflicts (3 Credits)
This is the core course the Certificates in Racial and Gender Conflict, providing students with an opportunity to intensively examine racial and gender conflict.
3700:428 Ohio Politics (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. This course focuses on factors that make Ohio economically competitive. Material focuses on recent election results, public opinion polling and influence of socioeconomic factors.
3700:437 Government Versus Organized Crime (3 Credits)
The course gives a history of organized crime and the government's responses to fight it. Newly emerging international crime groups are also discussed.
3700:440 Survey Research Methods (3 Credits)
Prerequisites: 3700:100. Study of survey research methods as applied to the analysis of public opinion, political behavior, and public policy formation.
3700:441 The Policy Process (3 Credits)
Prerequisites: eight credits in political science. Intensive study of policy-making process, emphasizing roles of various participants in executive and legislative branches as well as private individuals and groups.
3700:442 Methods of Policy Analysis (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:201. Examines variety of methods available for analyzing public policies. Techniques of cost benefit analysis, evaluation research quasi-experimentation are covered as well as consideration of ethical questions in policy analysis, the practical problems facing policy analysts.
3700:443 Political Scandals & Corruption (3 Credits)
This course will provide information on major political scandals, including media coverage, public opinion, the role of special prosecutors, and the impacts of scandals.
3700:445 Al Qaeda and ISIS (3 Credits)
This course explores the causes and consequences of Al Qaeda and ISIS ideologies and tactics around the world.
3700:446 National Security Intelligence (3 Credits)
The aim of this course is to familiarize students with the politics and policy of national security intelligence in the US.
3700:447 Counterterrorism (3 Credits)
The course introduces students to the federal national security agencies, polices, politics, and methods of containing and defeating terrorism abroad and within the United States.
3700:448 Intelligence Analysis (3 Credits)
This course is intended to for students who seek a career in the field of government or private sector intelligence or who just have an interest in how intelligence analysis is done.
3700:450 Administering Prisons, Probation, and Parole (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. Analysis of the administrative, electoral, and community conflicts central to understanding, resolving, and preventing these conflicts in a correctional environment.
3700:461 The Supreme Court & Constitutional Law (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. Interpretation of the Constitution by the Supreme Court with emphasis on federal judicial, legislative and executive power; separation of powers; and federalism.
3700:462 The Supreme Court & Civil Liberties (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. Interpretation of the Constitution by the Supreme Court with emphasis on freedom of speech and press, freedom of religion, criminal rights and right to privacy.
3700:463 Human Rights in World Politics (3 Credits)
An introduction to human rights from a comparative perspective; topics include: definition and development of human rights with attention paid to government interaction and wartime.
3700:470 Campaign Management I (3 Credits)
Reading, research and practice in campaign management decision making.
3700:471 Campaign Management II (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:470. The second course in campaign management. The focus is on timing, coalition building, candidate positioning, event planning, internal organization, and other elements of campaign strategy.
3700:472 Campaign Finance (3 Credits)
Reading and research in financial decision making in political campaigns.
3700:473 Voter Contact & Elections (3 Credits)
Theoretical and practical approaches to communication in all types of campaigns.
3700:474 Political Opinion, Behavior & Electorial Politics (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100 or 3700:301. Advanced analysis of psychological, cultural, and group processes of opinion formation and change. Attention given to the effect of opinion change on electoral outcomes.
3700:475 American Interest Groups (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: Completion of six or more political science credits. Reading and research on the development, structure and function of interest groups in the United States.
3700:476 American Political Parties (3 Credits)
Prerequisites: Completion of six or more political science credits. Reading and research on the development, structure and function of parties in the United States.
3700:477 Lobbying (3 Credits)
Examines the lobbying profession in the political process. Topics include theories of lobbying, tools of lobbying, the lobbying process, and types of lobbying.
3700:480 Policy Problems in Political Science (3 Credits)
(May be repeated for a total of six credits) Intensive study of selected problems in public policy.
3700:481 The Challenges of Police Work (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. Analysis of the neighborhood, bureaucratic, electoral, and operational conflicts central to police work, with a focus on efforts and obstacles to improving police work.
3700:482 Criminal Justice Topic: Current Issues (3 Credits)
(May be repeated for a maximum of six credits) Prerequisite: 3700:100. Critical analysis of current issues relating to political science and criminal justice. No more than three credits can be applied to the major.
3700:483 Constitutional Problems in Criminal Justice (3 Credits)
Prerequisite: 3700:100. Analyzes Supreme Court policy-making regarding problems of criminal justice, including search and seizure, self-incrimination, right to counsel, jury selection, and post-appeal prisoner rights.
3700:492 Selected Topics in Political Science (3 Credits)
Topics of substantial current importance or specialized topics within political science (May be repeated for a total of 6 credits). .
3700:497 Senior Honors Project in Political Science (1-3 Credits)
(May be repeated for a total of six credits) Prerequisites: senior standing in Honors Program and permission. Open only to a political science major in Honors Program. Independent study leading to completion of senior honors thesis or other original work.