My office location: 772 SWKT
My office hours: Tue and Thu 9:15am-10:40am or by appointment.
TA names, contact info, and office hours
Each time you reload this page, the order of the TAs' names below will be shuffled. If you're not sure which TA to email, just email the TA whose name appears first in this list. For more information about what TAs can do for you, see the "Teaching Assistants" section later in this syllabus.
In addition to one-on-one office hours, TAs will hold group Q&A sessions Tu 3-4 (MARB B113), Fr 11-12 (MARB 127), and Fr 1-2 (MARB 127). TAs will lead these sessions with brief comments about the week's material, then they will open the floor for questions.
For your reference, the TAs look like this:
You learned in high school about our basic governmental structure. You know that we have a federal system. You know that the federal government is divided into three branches: judicial, legislative, and executive. You know that Congress is bicameral, and that it takes a 2/3 vote to override a presidential veto. You know all these basic facts. If you've forgotten any, they are easy to look up. They are also reviewed in your textbook, of course.
My goal is not to teach these basic facts about our government's structure. Rather, my goal is to help you understand how these basic facts influence how politics operates. How would policy outcomes be different if the president lacked a veto, or if we elected the vice president separately from the president, or if we had a nationwide referendum process? You learned the facts about our governmental structure in high school; now, you will learn about the implications of those facts. This course will help you understand that our government's structure has important consequences.
In addition to studying the American Constitutional structure, we will also discuss how individual Americans interact with their government. Who votes, and why does it matter? What do political parties, interest groups, and the news media do, and why does it matter? Why do candidates run negative ads, and does it matter?
Of course, before we get to any of that, we will consider the American founding. What was so flawed about our first constitution—the Articles of Confederation, drafted during the Revolution—that we decided in 1787 to draft a new constitution? Why do we need a Constitution at all? How has the Constitution evolved over time, particularly with respect to civil rights and civil liberties?
Those are the three main fields of study within American politics: political development (how we got where we are), political institutions (how the rules and structure matter), and political behavior (how individuals act in political settings). This brief introductory course will not be able to cover everything, of course. It will, however, provide enough information about these three topics to enable you to think critically and carefully about politics throughout your lifetime.
The political science department has established specific learning outcomes to ensure that all our graduates grow spiritually and intellectually. We have developed a narrower set of learning outcomes for Poli 110 that contribute to these departmental goals. By the conclusion of this course, you should be able to do the following:
This course also meets university-level learning outcomes and therefore provides general education credit. Because we will discuss the scientific methodologies, theories, assumptions, and models used in political research, this course satisfies the general education requirement in social science. And because of our substantive focus on American history and politics, this course also contributes toward the general education requirement in American heritage. Refer to the university's general education foundation documents for more information about what the social science and American heritage requirements involve.
Required: Kernell, Jacobson, Kousser, and Vavreck. The Logic of American Politics. 7th edition.
Required: An iClicker. You must have your own. You cannot share an iClicker with another student; it will be linked to your BYU identity. (Buying a used iClicker is fine.) Your iclicker MUST be registered (see below) or you will receive no credit for taking quizzes.
Required: Follow national news every day from the New York Times.
This syllabus is a plan, not a contract. Anything you read in this syllabus is subject to reasonable change at my discretion. That being said...
You are responsible to know all the deadlines, policies, and other information in this syllabus. Do not expect me to remind you in class. I know there is a lot here, but using the table of contents and your browser's "find on page" feature (CTRL-F or Command-F on most systems) will help. Visit me or a TA with questions.
Email. You must check your email daily, including your spam folder. You are accountable for anything I send by email. Make sure that the email address you have provided to BYU is current. Log into myBYU and check. I will manually import your email from the roster BYU provides me into my website, which will enable you to login to this website and complete online assignments; if your email address changes after the first week of class, send me an email so I can re-sync my website's roster.
Course website. Many course activities require you to log in to the course website using a username and password I provide to you. (You can change this password if you wish.) Log out every time you finish using the website so that your grades and personal information remain secure, even if you are accessing the website from a computer that you own. If you ever worry that your account has been compromised, inform me immediately.
|18%||Debate papers (download instructions and submit online)|
|21%||Midterm 2 (not comprehensive)|
|30%||Final exam (partly comprehensive)|
|Bonus||Enrichment activities (download instructions and submit online)|
Grade appeals should always come to me, not to a TA. Allow a 24-hour cooling off period after receiving your grade before coming to talk to me, but come within a week of receiving the grade in question. Generally speaking, I would rather help you improve your performance on future assignments than revisit past grades, but I will consider appeals when there is demonstrable error by graders or some other palpable injustice. (I do not use the words demonstrable or palpable lightly.)
Quizzes. I will regularly give brief quizzes or other assignments in class. I give most quizzes at the beginning of class, but occasionally I will give them at other times. A typical quiz will have 4 questions, plus a free point simply for attending. Quizzes will address assigned readings, recent lectures, and current events. You must have your iClicker with you (including live batteries) to receive any credit.
Missed quizzes cannot be made up, but I drop your two lowest quiz scores, which allows for a handful of absences (or days when you forget your iclicker). It does not matter whether your absence was excusable (illness, official university travel) or not. Everybody gets two dropped quizzes. (Dropping a quiz means removing it from both the numerator and denominator; it does not mean changing it to a perfect score.) If you want me to drop more than two quizzes, keep reading.
Complete enrichment activities to drop more quizzes. You will have two opportunities to complete an (optional) enrichment assignment, graded pass/fail. If you complete the assignment satisfactorily, I will drop 3 additional quizzes. Yes, you may earn this bonus twice if you submit both enrichment assignments, meaning I drop 6 additional quizzes, for a total of 8 dropped quizzes. That's likely to be almost half the quizzes I give this semester, so this is sort of a big deal. Again, it does not matter why you miss (or bomb) a quiz. This is your only makeup option.
Missed lectures. If you miss a lecture, you do not need to contact me with an excuse. With a class this size, I do not keep attendance. However, you are responsible for the material you missed; do not expect me to summarize the lecture one-on-one. Get notes from a classmate or two. (If you don't know other people in class, visiting a TA Q&A session is a good way to find students interested in studying together.) After reviewing those notes, my lecture slides, and the assigned readings, visit me or a TA to ask any remaining questions you have.
Missed midterm exams cannot be made up unless you (1) arrange it in advance for a valid reason (which is extremely rare) or (2) have a genuine emergency and contact me as soon as possible to work things out. I expect you to take exams as scheduled.
Late assignments are not acceptable unless you experience a documented medical or family emergency, which I may choose to excuse at my discretion. Your written assignments will be submitted and graded online. Assignments are always due by 4:00pm, with a grace period until 11:55pm. Once that grace period expires, the software WILL NOT allow you to submit your assignment for any reason. Realize that internet outages and technical difficulties sometimes arise at inconvenient times. Submit your work early to avoid these problems. If a technical problem arises prior to 4:00pm, get in touch with me before I leave for the day and I will either fix the problem or extend the deadline. If a technical problem arises during the grace period, however, you are out of luck and will receive a zero on the assignment. Choosing to submit your assignment after 4:00pm is choosing to gamble.
Always submit assignments early. There will typically be a multiday window during which you can submit your written assignments online. I expect you to submit your assignments near the beginning of this window. If you procrastinate the assignment until the afternoon of the last day, and then you find that an unforeseen illness, emergency, or internet outage prevents you from completing the assignment on time, I will exhibit far less sympathy than if those problems had arisen on the first day of the assignment submission window.
Again, do not rely on grace periods. My web server sometimes crashes for a couple hours during the grace period due to a flood of students trying to submit at the last minute. You're out of luck, though, if the crash happens after 4pm (during the grace period); I will not accept your assignment. You really are gambling if you try submitting close to the deadline. Submit your assignments early.
Final exam mercy rule: If you do better on the final than on one (or both) of the midterms, then whichever midterm you perform worse on will have its weight reduced by 5 percentage points and the final will have its weight increased by 5 percentage points.
This year, as has been the case for more than three decades, our class will provide Election Day volunteers to assist with the KBYU-Utah Colleges Exit Poll. Students enrolled in Poli 317 design the questionnaire, which Poli 110 students and other volunteers from seven Utah colleges and universities administer to voters. If you volunteer, exit poll administrators will provide you with a letter granting a university-excused absence, which may assist in working out any needed accommodations with your other instructors. You may volunteer in one of the following three ways:
Volunteers will attend a training on how to do survey research before the election. This training will be offered during our regular lecture period on October 20. Exit poll organizers are also likely to offer trainings at other times (for the benefit of those who sign up for a phone banking shift prior to October 20, for example).
Needs are greatest on election day. The earlier you sign up as a volunteer, the more likely you are to get your preferred time slot. Sign up through this link.
Participation in the exit poll contributes substantially to this course's outcomes by introducing you to political polling methods and to public opinion. I expect all to participate. Arrange your schedule now so you will be able to do so.
As an incentive, those who volunteer will have their worst debate paper score raised by 20 percentage points (even if that takes your score above 100). In addition to volunteering for a full shift, you will also need to submit a brief evaluation of your exit poll experience to me by November 29; I will provide instructions for this evaluation later, and I may share your evaluation with the exit poll organizers to help them improve the experience going forward.
I have hired intelligent, hard working, wonderful teaching assistants. They are all your fellow students. Get to know them. A TA's two main jobs are to serve as a tutor and as a grader. Don't forget the "tutor" part. When you have questions about course material, ask them. TAs are, of course, fellow students, and sometimes they will not know the answer. But if they don't, they will either help you find it or else refer you to me. (You are, of course, always welcome to visit me in my office hours without seeing a TA first, but you'll find that TAs hold more office hours than I do.)
TA Q&A sessions: I have asked the TAs to organize frequent group Q&A sessions. These group Q&A sessions provide a venue to ask questions about concepts that may have been unclear to you. I encourage you to attend, even if you only listen. (The specific times appear at the top of this syllabus.)
TA office hours: TAs will also offer one-on-one interaction in office hours. TAs will not accept grade appeals (those should come to me), but this is a good time to discuss your papers or go over any complicated course material. TA office hours are held at the times and places listed at the top of this syllabus.
TAs and the writing process. TAs are an excellent resource for improving the conceptual ideas in your papers. Before writing your final draft, write an outline and discuss your ideas with a TA. When it comes to improving your ideas, a good oral discussion is usually better than bringing in a written draft and asking a TA to read through it. If you're mostly looking for help with grammar or style (not with conceptual ideas), I encourage you to visit the FHSS writing lab or the BYU writing center, which have more resources for that sort of help.
TA boundaries. It is inappropriate to ask a TA on a date or offer any gift (not even cookies) until after final grades are posted. It is also inappropriate to pay a TA for service as your private tutor; their services are free to students in this course.
Past midterms are available only in my office, not the TA office. I trust my TAs, but I am not comfortable keeping copies of my past exams in the TA office, which is shared by TAs from several political science courses, some of whom could conceivably be registered as students in this course. As such, you must come to my office if you wish to look through your past exams. If you cannot come during my scheduled office hours, email me to make an appointment.
Is this a weeder class? No. A true weeder class ensures that only the "best" students can declare for a certain major. For example, Econ 110 is a weeder class (in every sense of the word) for some business majors; you cannot declare in these majors unless you receive a certain minimum grade in Econ 110 and other courses in the pre-management core. Rest assured that Poli 110 is not a weeder class for any major. It's not even a weeder for political science; you can get a D in Poli 110 and still declare in political science, though I might advise otherwise.
Do I have to be "good" at political science to earn an A? No. You are not competing against a room full of political science experts. In fact, 80-90% of the students who take Poli 110 are NOT political science majors. Rather, they are students fulfilling general education requirements for social science or American heritage. If you have little or no background with American politics or social science, you are not unusual. Foreign students often do as well as American students, assuming no language barriers. As such, what separates A students from C students is usually effort and dedication.
Wait, your grades are based on effort? No. But consider some sage counsel from Thomas S. Monson: "Thinking is the hardest work anyone can do, which is probably the reason why we have so few thinkers.... What the public takes for brilliance is really the result of thorough, painstaking investigation and downright hard work. Were we to be deprived of work, we should be robbed of our greatest field of enjoyment and be forever condemned to mediocrity." (In "Constant Truths," found in Pathways to Perfection.) Those who work hard can usually learn the material and earn a satisfactory grade.
Do you curve grades? I never curve grades down, but I curve them up if necessary. As in many large introductory courses, the average grade here is usually around a B-. If average scores come back lower than that, I curve them up as needed.
How much time should students spend on this class? As the BYU catalog states, "The expectation for undergraduate courses is three hours of work per week per credit hour for the average student who is appropriately prepared; much more time may be required to achieve excellence." Elsewhere, the catalog defines an A as "excellent," a B as "good," and a C as "satisfactory." Thus, an "average student" (earning a B or C) who is "appropriately prepared" (took standard coursework on US history and government in high school) should plan to spend 9 hours per week on this course. If you want to "achieve excellence" (an A), "much more time may be required." It's fine to have a job—I had them when I was a student—but consider carefully how many hours you work each week. An "average student" (28 ACT, 3.8 high school GPA) who takes 15 credit hours should plan to spend 45 hours on school each week to maintain a B or C average.
Some of you will be happy with the grades you receive, but others will not. I do not generally offer extra credit assignments, but I can offer several suggestions that may help you raise your grades. If you have questions about any of these suggestions, come chat with me. (Also, don't forget about the final exam mercy rule.)
Getting the most out of lecture. Sometimes lectures overlap with readings, but often they do not. Attend every class and take notes.
Getting the most out of readings. Following department standards, I assign roughly 1200 pages per semester, which comes out to almost 100 pages per week.
Improving your writing. When writing in the social sciences, it is rarely sufficient to summarize or describe a topic. Instead, you must take a side and defend it. A persuasive paper will have (1) a central claim, clearly stated as you open and close; (2) logical arguments (reasons) that support your claim; and (3) compelling real-world evidence that supports your reasons. This advice is especially relevant to your debate papers.
In 1979 a large passenger jet with 257 people on board left New Zealand for a sightseeing flight to Antarctica and back. Unknown to the pilots, however, someone had modified the flight coordinates by a mere two degrees. This error placed the aircraft 28 miles (45 km) to the east of where the pilots assumed they were. As they approached Antarctica, the pilots descended to a lower altitude to give the passengers a better look at the landscape. Although both were experienced pilots, neither had made this particular flight before, and they had no way of knowing that the incorrect coordinates had placed them directly in the path of Mount Erebus....
By the time the instruments sounded the warning that the ground was rising fast toward them, it was too late. The airplane crashed into the side of the volcano, killing everyone on board.
It was a terrible tragedy brought on by a minor error—a matter of only a few degrees....
Remember: the heavens will not be filled with those who never made mistakes but with those who recognized that they were off course and who corrected their ways...
Although he told this story to make a different point, we can also apply this story to the university setting: High grades don't go to those who never make mistakes, but to those who recognize when they go off course and take prompt corrective action. If an exam or paper early in the course comes back with a lower grade than you hoped, then read and apply the study tips listed above. Visit with me for further help. If you wait until the end of the course to correct your course, it may be too late.
While all students sign the honor code, there are still specific skills most students need to master over time in order to correctly cite sources, especially online sources, as well as deal with the stress and strain of college life without resorting to cheating. As your professor, I will notice instances of cheating on exams or plagiarizing on papers. Even if the plagiarism was unintentional, it will have serious consequences for your grade. General information about the honor code can be found at http://honorcode.byu.edu. Details about Academic Honesty are found in the university catalog
Writing submitted for credit at BYU must consist of the student's own ideas presented in sentences and paragraphs of the student's own construction. The work of other writers or speakers may be included when appropriate (as in a research paper or book review), but such material must support the student's own work (not substitute for it) and must be clearly identified by appropriate introduction ("According to so-and-so...") and punctuation (such as quotation marks) and by footnoting or other standard referencing. Take care with your notetaking to track sources and to differentiate quotations you have jotted down from paraphrases you have written.
Substituting another person's work for the student's own or including another person's work without adequate acknowledgment (whether done intentionally or not) is plagiarism. Plagiarism is a violation of academic, ethical, moral, and legal standards and can result in a failing grade not only for the paper but also for the course in which the paper is written. In extreme cases, it can justify expulsion from the University. Because of the seriousness of these consequences, students who wonder if their papers are within these guidelines should visit the Writing Lab or consult with their professor or TA. Useful books to consult on the topic include the current Harbrace College Handbook, the MLA Handbook, and James D. Lester's Writing Research Papers.
Most lifelong mental illnesses emerge in adolescence and early adulthood—the typical college students' age. If you experience frequent sadness, worry, fear, inability to focus, nightmares, forgetfulness, or extreme mood changes; if you are withdrawing socially, avoiding friends and social activities; if you experience significant changes in sleeping habits or eating habits; if you are abusing alcohol, prescription medications, or other substances; or if you are thinking about hurting yourself, then please talk to somebody. You may find that all is well, but please find out.
Mental health concerns and stressful life events can affect students' academic performance and quality of life. BYU Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS, 1500 WSC, 801-422-3035, https://caps.byu.edu) provides individual, couples, and group counseling, as well as stress management services. These services are confidential and are provided by the university at no cost for full-time students. For general information please visit https://caps.byu.edu. For more immediate concerns please visit http://help.byu.edu.
Discrimination and misconduct: As required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the university prohibits sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. Title IX also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. University policy requires any university employee in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report incidents of sexual misconduct (such as sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking) that come to their attention through face-to-face conversation, a written class assignment, class discussion, email, social media post, or other means. If you have been a victim of a crime, call the police. If you encounter unlawful sexual misconduct or gender based discrimination, please contact the Title IX Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or 801-422-2130, or via Ethics Point (https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062, 24-hours). Additional information about Title IX and resources available to you can be found at titleix.byu.edu.
Disabilities: Brigham Young University is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates qualified persons with disabilities. If you have any disability which may impair your ability to complete this course successfully, please contact the University Accessibility Center (801-422-2767). Reasonable academic accommodations are reviewed for all students who have qualified documented disabilities. Services are coordinated with the student and instructor by the UAC office. If you need assistance or if you feel you have been unlawfully discriminated against on the basis of disability, you may seek resolution through established grievance policy and procedures. Contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Office at 801-422-5895, D-282 ASB
Accommodation letters: If you desire accommodations based on a letter written on your behalf by the University Accessibility Center, please deliver the letter to me in person (not by email) so we can have a face-to-face conversation about appropriate accommodations. These are important conversations; if you are unable to come during my office hours, email me to schedule an appointment at another time.
Dates and deadlines are subject to change. "Terms" are intended to focus your exam preparation. The terms listed here are in addition to those listed in your textbook. "Readings" are required; please tell me if a link is broken. "Resources" are not required, but you may find them interesting.
You can also view the reading schedule in calendar format.
|Tue, Aug 30th, 2016. Course overview. What is politics? Why study American politics? What is political science?|
|Terms||politics; policy; false consensus bias; American politics; comparative politics; international relations; political philosophy; methodology; political institutions; political behavior; political development; all terms from textbook|
|FYI||Throughout this syllabus, readings are listed on the day they are due. That is, you should read the materials listed above before coming to class.|
|Thu, Sep 1st, 2016. The logic of politics. What is politics? Why can voluntary action produce undesirable results? What are the tradeoffs of governmental involvement?|
|Terms||coordination problem; prisoner's dilemma; chicken; collective action problem; free rider problem; tragedy of the commons; transaction costs; conformity costs; all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Sep 6th, 2016. The Constitution. How do institutions matter? What influenced the framers' thinking and interests? What was wrong with the Articles of Confederation? Why is it hard to know the founders' intent? Why was compromise important in drafting and ratifying the Constitution? How was the Constitution inspired?|
|Terms||institutions; original sin; Newton's laws; American Philosophical Society; Declaration of Independence; Articles of Confederation; confederation; Shays's rebellion; aristocrat; republic; democracy; Virginia Plan; New Jersey Plan; three-fifths compromise; plural executive; separation of powers; federal division of powers; popular sovereignty; rule of law; Bill of Rights; federalist; antifederalist; ratification; Federalist Papers; all terms from textbook|
|Thu, Sep 8th, 2016. Continued.|
|DUE||Get your password. Your username is the email address you have provided to BYU. You will need to request a password. Email is not always instantaneous; your password may take an hour or two to arrive. Contact me if you have trouble.|
|Tue, Sep 13th, 2016. Federalism and centralization. What is federalism? Why has power grown more centralized (or nationalized) over time?|
|DUE||Get your password (for real). Anybody who successfully creates a password and logs into the course website before class starts today will receive quiz credit; those who don't won't. Look for a login link at the top of the page. Your username is the email address you have provided to BYU; you will need to request a password.|
|Terms||state; unitary; confederal; federal; dual federalism; shared federalism; centralization; supremacy clause; necessary and proper clause; commerce clause; McCulloch v Maryland; Gibbons v Ogden; all terms from textbook|
|Thu, Sep 15th, 2016. Rights and liberties (with case studies on speech and on religious liberty). How are the terms "civil rights" and "civil liberties" used differently? How did the civil rights movement of the 1960s overcome collective action problems? Why and how did southern states resist federal civil rights actions? What are the rights and duties of an American citizen? How have your liberties evolved over time? What was the framers' experience with religious freedom? When can free exercise be limited? When is prayer allowed in public schools?|
|Terms||civil rights; civil liberties; procedural equality; substantive equality; 13th amendment; 14th amendment; 15th amendment; Civil Rights Act; Voting Rights Act; Plessy v Ferguson; Brown v Board of Education; segregation; busing; affirmative action; de facto; de jure; ex post facto laws; bills of attainder; habeas corpus; 14th amendment; selective incorporation; 1st amendment; freedom of speech; pure political speech; symbolic speech; speech accompanied by disruptive conduct; incitement; Toleration Act; establishment clause; free exercise clause; theocracy; de jure establishment; de facto establishment; incidental burden; Lemon test; neutrality test; Main Street Plaza; school prayer; all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Sep 20th, 2016. Continued.|
|DUE||Debate 1. Read the instructions and then submit online.|
|Wed, Sep 21st, 2016. Reminder.|
|FYI||Peer reviews for Debate 1 are now open. Submit online by Thursday, September 22nd.|
|Thu, Sep 22nd, 2016. Catch up and review.|
|Tue, Sep 27th, 2016. Introduction to Congress. How can Congress be so unpopular when individual representatives are so popular? How does the structure of Congress influence how we evaluate Congress? How do reapportionment and redistricting work?|
|Terms||tyranny; efficiency; Congress; legislature; legislator; term length; chamber size; reapportionment; redistricting; all terms from textbook|
|Thu, Sep 29th, 2016. Elections and representation. When do the "best" candidates run? Who serves in office? What creates the incumbency advantage? What is representation? How do Representatives view constituents? How does the Constitutional structure of Congress influence how Representatives behave?|
|Terms||strategic entry; amateur candidate; professional candidate; wave election; incumbent; challenger; open seat; incumbency advantage; reelection incentive; advertising; credit claiming; position taking; geographic constituency; reelection constituency; primary constituency; personal constituency (or "intimates"); issue representation (or "substantive representation"); service representation; allocational representation; descriptive representation; delegate; trustee; all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Oct 4th, 2016. Legislating. How does a bill become a law? Who is empowered by the legislative process in the House? In the Senate? How do initiatives, referendums, and recalls differ? How do initiatives get on the ballot?|
|Terms||bill; law; committee; Speaker; conference committee; Rules Committee; open rule; closed rule; modified closed rule; unanimous consent agreement; filibuster; cloture; initiative; direct initiative; indirect initiative; referendum; legislative referendum; popular referendum; recall; all terms from textbook|
|Thu, Oct 6th, 2016. The presidency. What do we expect of American presidents? How are our expectations of presidents at odds with their formal powers? How has the presidency evolved over time? How do presidents compensate for their limited formal powers?|
|Terms||budget; OMB; veto; veto override; treaty; appointment power; filibuster; chief clerk; Andrew Jackson; Theodore Roosevelt; bully pulpit; stewardship theory; Woodrow Wilson; Franklin Delano Roosevelt; negotiation; going public; executive order; signing statement; all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Oct 11th, 2016. The executive bureaucracy. What is a bureaucracy, and why do we need one? How is the bureaucracy structured, and what are its powers? Why and how have we increased bureaucratic independence? How do Congress and the president control the bureaucracy?|
|Terms||bureaucracy; Executive Office of the President; cabinet department; independent agency; merit system; regulation; implementation; oversight; police patrol; fire alarm; Federal Register; OMB; central clearance; all terms from textbook|
|Thu, Oct 13th, 2016. The judiciary. How is the federal judiciary structured? How are state judiciaries different? How did federal courts acquire the power to strike down laws? How does the Supreme Court operate? How do Supreme Court justices interpret the Constitution?|
|DUE||Enrichment 1 (optional). Read the instructions and then submit online.|
|Terms||common law; civil law; precedent; stare decisis; statutory law; constitutional law; administrative law; case law; District Court; Circuit Court of Appeals; U.S. Supreme Court; trial court; specialty court; intermediate court of appeals; state supreme court; judicial review; Marbury v Madison; decision to decide; rule of four; writ of certiorari; decision on the merits; amicus curiae; majority opinion; dissenting opinion; concurring opinion; originalism; living Constitution; all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Oct 18th, 2016. Continued.|
|FYI||Hamilton defends the Constitution's provisions for unelected judges with lifelong tenure. He argues that these provisions will guarantee judicial independence, which he characterizes as desirable under certain conditions. What are the conditions? Are those conditions met today? If not, would it be better if judges ran in elections as Republican or Democratic candidates?|
|Thu, Oct 20th, 2016. Exit poll training. Guest instructor: Prof. David Magleby.|
|Tue, Oct 25th, 2016. Crime and punishment. What are the goals of criminal justice policy? How is justice policy made? Do "tough on crime" laws work?|
|DUE||Debate 2. Read the instructions and then submit online.|
|Terms||deterrence; retribution/punishment; incapacitation; rehabilitation; truth-in-sentencing; three strikes; sex offender registry; mandatory sentencing guidelines; parole; probation; legislation by anecdote; crime news script; Ronnie Lee Gardner; death penalty|
|Wed, Oct 26th, 2016. Reminder.|
|FYI||Peer reviews for Debate 2 are now open. Submit online by Friday, October 28th.|
|Thu, Oct 27th, 2016. Catch up and review.|
|DUE||Midterm 2. Take it in the testing center between Thursday, October 27th (at noon), and Saturday, October 29th (at close). You will need a pencil.|
|Fri, Oct 28th, 2016.|
|DUE||Peer reviews for Debate 2. Submit online.|
|Tue, Nov 1st, 2016. How voters decide. What are the major candidates and themes of recent elections? How informed are voters? How committed are voters to their party? How do voters select a candidate? Does democracy work? Which explanation of vote choice makes the most sense to you?|
|Terms||substance; style; always shuck your tamales; Iran hostage crisis; Columbia model; sociological model; cross-pressure; opinion leader; minimal effects hypothesis; Downsian model; rational choice model; economic model; calculus of voting; information shortcut; endorsements; Michigan model; psychological model; funnel analogy; partisanship; perceptual screening (also called "selective perception" or "motivated reasoning"); all terms from textbook|
|Thu, Nov 3rd, 2016. No class.|
|Tue, Nov 8th, 2016. No class.|
|FYI||If at least one-third of you volunteer for the BYU exit poll, then we will not hold class today. Since I expect that to happen, I have already made room by deleting the assigned readings for two lecture days (today and the training day). But if too few of you sign up for the exit poll, then I will put the regularly scheduled material back in.|
|Thu, Nov 10th, 2016. How voters decide, continued.|
|FYI||Enrichment 2 (optional) is now open. Read the instructions and then submit online by Thursday, November 17th.|
|Tue, Nov 15th, 2016. Public opinion polling. How can you assess a poll's trustworthiness?|
|Terms||population; sample; random sample; sampling error; margin of error; convenience sample; self-selection bias; non-response error; response rate; measurement error; double barreled question; social desirability bias; Bradley effect; framing; priming|
|Thu, Nov 17th, 2016. Turnout and engagement. Why do some people vote but others don't? Does it matter who votes? Why do Americans flunk civics quizzes? How does political knowledge relate to turnout? What can states do to influence turnout? Which mobilization tactics are most effective?|
|DUE||Enrichment 2 (optional). Read the instructions and then submit online.|
|Terms||calculus of voting; civic duty; information costs; civic knowledge; byproduct theory; issue public; participation costs; motor voter; absentee voting; mobilization; GOTV; social pressure; all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Nov 29th, 2016. War and voting. How much do voters typically know and care about foreign policy? How do terrorism and war change political knowledge and voter attitudes?|
|DUE||Exit poll evaluation. Instructions have been emailed to you.|
|Terms||soft news; hard news; foreign policy; affective; affective intelligence; mortality salience; charisma; normative; empirical|
|Thu, Dec 1st, 2016. Political parties. Why can there be only two major parties? Why do we have these two parties? What do the Republican and Democratic coalitions look like today? How do presidential nominations work? What makes horse race polling during multicandidate primary elections so unreliable?|
|Terms||major party; minor party; Duverger's law; majoritarian; proportional; wasted vote; Ralph Nader; election of 2000; realignment; party system; Republican; Democrat; King Caucus; nominating convention; primary; 1968 Democratic convention; pledged delegate; superdelegate; open primary; closed primary; semi-closed primary; runoff; volatility; momentum; Howard Dean (2004); John Kerry (2004); Hillary Clinton (2008); Barack Obama (2008); Mitt Romney (2012); all terms from textbook|
|Tue, Dec 6th, 2016. Continued.|
|DUE||Debate 3. Read the instructions and then submit online.|
|FYI||Learn more in Poli 316, "American Political Parties"|
|Wed, Dec 7th, 2016. Reminder.|
|FYI||Peer reviews for Debate 3 are now open. Submit online by Thursday, December 8th.|
|Thu, Dec 8th, 2016. What have we learned?|
|DUE||Peer reviews for Debate 3. Submit online.|
|Terms||All terms from textbook|
|Thu, Dec 15th, 2016. Final exam. The final exam will be in the Testing Center throughout finals week.|