Political Science 150 - Introduction to American Government and Politics - Dr. Richard Dyke
|Course:||Introduction to American Government and Politics|
|Professor:||Dr. Richard Dyke|
|Course Length:||16 week|
|Textbook Title:||College of the Canyons Custom Edition, Political Science 150, Introduction to American Government and Politics, 2019 (ISBN 978-0-393-43204-6), available through the Cougar Bookstore, or available as two separate books: Ginsberg, Benjamin; Lowi, Theodore J.; Weir, Margaret; Tolbert, Caroline J.; and Campbell, Andrea L., We the People: An Introduction to American Politics, Twelfth Edition; New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2019 (ISBN: 978-0-393-64432-6). - AND - Anagnoson, J. Theodore; Bonetto, Gerald; Buck, J. Vincent; Emrey, Jolly; Kelleher, James J.; Koch, Nadine; and Michelson, Melissa, Governing California in the Twenty-First Century: The Political Dynamics of the Golden State, Seventh Edition; New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2019 (ISBN: 978-0-393-66488-1, paperback).|
|Types of Assessments:||There will be five tests, taken on Canvas, that will cover your readings, the lectures, discussions, and video materials. Four of the tests will be multiple choice questions based mainly on a list of study questions provided beforehand. One test will be a long essay. your will be provided that question beforehand as well. Your grade will be based on the five tests.|
Welcome to Political Science 150, Introduction to American Government and Politics! I hope you will join us as we explore the many facets of American government and politics described in the Course Description below. It should be an eye-opener on the systems and complexities in our government. We will have opportunities for reading, lectures, discussions, and videos about how politics works, why money matters so much, why politics is noisy and controversial and confrontational, and how issues change over time. Hopefully you will come away from this class as a more knowledgeable and politically engaged citizen.
This course is an introduction to American government and politics. As such, it provides an overview of the major terms, concepts, ideologies, institutions, and structures of the United States federal system, which includes both the federal government in Washington, D. C. and the individual governments of the 50 states. The course will concentrate on the U.S. Constitution and our state constitution of California, including both similarities and differences between these two governing documents and the political systems that each represents. The Anagnoson book is about California government and politics, while the Ginsberg text describes our national government and political system. We will consider both in detail, but with much attention being given to our overall U.S. Constitution and the enormous and powerful government it has created. Major topics will include the unique rights and privileges that Americans enjoy, particularly our civil liberties and civil rights; and our federal institutions, including Congress, the President, the federal court system, and the huge bureaucracy (and taxes) necessary to carry out all of the government's functions. But we will also analyze all aspects of politics, including political parties, voter participation, public opinion, the role of the media and interest groups, campaign funding and elections, and U.S. domestic and foreign policies.
What to Expect in this Course
Get ready to expect a lot of knowledge about our state and federal political systems and how you as a potential voter can participate, at a level you are comfortable with, in the issues and policies of the California and federal governments. An educated citizen is an engaged citizen. Knowledge brings power but also realization of how tough the fight can get and will be as Americans attempt to adjust their governments and society in meaningful ways to make a more tolerant and inevitably diversified community. Expect some of your values and beliefs to be challenged. Politics can be both fun and rewarding.
Additional Textbook Information / Link to OER Textbook
Our Custom Text includes both the Ginsberg, et. al. text, We the People, minus Chapter 17, and the Anagnoson book on California government and politics, minus Chapter 3. These chapters are covered elsewhere in the two books and allowed the Political Science Department to offer students a less expensive text. You can buy the two books separately at higher cost, but should buy the TWELFTH Edition of Ginsberg and the SEVENTH Edition of Anagnoson. Caution: Don't buy earlier editions, because the content may have changed as much as 30% or 40%, and you may not be able to find all of the Study Questions for the tests.
Other Relevant Course Information
This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at https://coc.instructure.com. Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:
- CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password
Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.
The Learning Center (TLC)
The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!
Academic Accomodation Center (AAC)
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Management of Stress and Mental Health
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Last updated: 12/16/2020 Sub # Orig: 2647