POSU 110 Introduction to American Politics
Students master the basic concepts and analytical methods used by political scientists in their attempts to address these questions: What are the fundamental components of the national government of the United States? How do they transform citizen opinion, interest group pressures, and economic imperatives into social policy? This course satisfies the State of California Credential requirement in American History and Government. This course may also be offered online. 3 credits.
POSU 120 Introduction to International Relations
Students explore major global issues such as conflict, development ideologies, technological growth, current events, ecosystem balance, war and violence, and the distribution of power and resources. 3 credits.
POSU 240 Introduction to Law
Law is a force for maintaining social order. This course critically examines various aspects of law and the legal system, seeking an understanding of its strengths and weaknesses, its promise and its peril. 3 credits.
POSU 300 American Political Thought
The modern United States is shaped by contending ideas regarding democracy, capitalism, social welfare, elite rule, theocracy, and liberty. Students will explore how these issues have evolved over the history of our nation. 3 credits.
POSU 301 History of Political Philosophy I
(Same as PHLU 301) An introduction to the early political thoughts that shaped and dominated Western European development. This course traces the concepts of power, social order and proper governance from Plato to the Enlightenment. It places special emphasis on examining and understanding the growing debate of separation of church and state and the rising voice of individual, social and civil liberties through this period. 3 credits.
POSU 302 History of Political Philosophy II
(Same as PHLU 302) An introduction to the later political thoughts that shaped and dominated Western European development. This course traces the concepts of power, social order and proper governance from the Enlightenment until today. This course places special emphasis on examining and understanding Fascism, Communism, Democracy, Anarchism and the rising voices of previously under-represented populations. 3 credits.
POSU 305 Democratic Theory
Students examine different models and kinds of democracy, analyze ways that the United States achieves democratic ideals and the ways it falls short, explore tensions between democracy and competing economic systems, and seek ways to deepen or extend democratic ideals. 3 credits.
POSU 310 The United States Presidency
In this course, students address the following issues: What is the "state" of the presidency today? What responsibilities come with the office? Does it make a difference who the president is? What are the weaknesses of the presidency as an institution, and what reforms might improve it? 3 credits.
POSU 311 Legislative Process
The United States has one of the few non-parliamentary systems in the world. How does its legislative process differ from the processes found in parliamentary systems? This course will examine the legislative process with an emphasis on institutional differences between parliamentary and non-parliamentary systems such as the United States. A special focus on interest groups and political parties will highlight the importance of institutional factors on the efficacy of legislative actors in the policymaking process. 3 credits.
POSU 312 The Road to the White House
Does the road that we travel to the White House every four years produce the best presidents? Are modern campaigns so long, expensive, and punishing that many of the "best" people choose not to run? Students examine the effectiveness of the way in which we recruit and select presidents. 3 credits.
POSU 314 Governing the Golden State
California, with a population and economy greater than many countries, confronts social and political problems national in scope and complexity. How does the state government reconcile the conflicting needs of its diverse citizenry, its industries, and natural resources? Students will learn how Sacramento shapes our lives. 3 credits.
POSU 317 The Politics of the 1960s
Few periods hold the political significance of the 1960s. Human dignity, the role of tradition, America's role in the world, and domestic problems all were examined and refashioned. Three decades later, that redefinition maintains great authority in American society. 3 credits.
POSU 320 International Law, International Organization, and World Order
An introduction to changing perceptions of international law and its applications to human rights, environmental, and other issues. Philosophical and political approaches to international law are distinguished and analyzed. 3 credits.
POSU 321 American Diplomatic History and Foreign Policy
(Same as HISU 340) Students focus on the origin and development of United States foreign policy. Important areas of study include the role of ideology in foreign policy, economics and foreign affairs, isolationism, American dominance of the Western hemisphere, and the consequences of increasing international interdependence. Also considered are the influences of public opinion, the media, corporations, the Congress, the bureaucracy, and the presidency in shaping American policy. This course may also be offered online. 3 credits.
POSU 323 Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States
(Same as HISU 311) Students learn the history of Russia and the Soviet Union from the fall of the Romanov dynasty through the demise of the Soviet government and the creation of the Commonwealth of Independent States. Ideas and ideologies, politics, economics, foreign affairs and the Cold War, and cultural and intellectual developments are emphasized. 3 credits.
POSU 325 Latin American Politics
Much of Latin America is emerging from years of authoritarian rule and the abuse of human rights; yet the new democracies remain threatened by highly politicized military establishments and unstable economies. As these governments pursue economic development and democratic reform they are also influenced by the foreign policies of the United States. 3 credits.
POSU 329 Experimental Topics in Political Science
An examination of selected topics in Political Science relevant to evolving areas in the field. Syllabi must be approved by the Division Chair and announced to the Curriculum and Academic Committee prior to being offered. May be repeated for credit provided that the course content is different each time. 3 credits.
POSU 330 Contemporary Issues in Public Policy
Students analyze current issues in public policy, using contemporary methods of public policy analysis. Issues addressed may include health care policy, environmental policy, foreign policy, energy policy, policy on crime, and others. 3 credits.
POSU 333 Citizenship in Theory and Practice
Citizenship is the political answer to the question of who is in, who is out? This course approaches citizenship from three angles: a historical survey of the theory and practice of citizenship; citizenship in the American experience; and contemporary citizenship issues such as global citizenship, the status of the environment, and the inclusion or exclusion of a variety of cultural, economic, and social differences from the political community. 3 credits.
POSU 340 The Legal Process
The third branch of government, the judiciary, is certainly the least understood branch. In this course, students will develop political literacy about the principles and practices of law and the judiciary. 3 credits.
POSU 342 The Western Legal Tradition
(Same as HISU 323) Law is a product of history, and an understanding of the law cannot be complete without an examination of its historical roots. This course surveys the history of Western law and legal institutions from the Code of Hammurabi to the American Revolution. Special attention will be focused on the rise and evolution of English common law. 3 credits.
POSU 343 Constitutional Government
(Same as HISU 303) By examining the Federalist Papers, the Constitution, and case law this course examines the growth of the national government, the changing nature of federalism, and other themes: What does the Constitution say about the separation of powers? Does it provide for three coequal branches of government? 3 credits.
POSU 344 Constitutional Rights
(Same as HISU 324) Students analyze the following questions and examine competing theories of civil rights and civil liberties. Did the founders really believe that the United States Congress should make no law abridging freedom of speech or of the press? What does the Constitution say about the rights of the criminal, and what does this mean for "victims' rights" movements? What is the constitutional right to abortion? 3 credits.
POSU 346 Environmental Law
This course provides students with an overview of environmental law. It emphasizes state and federal statutory and case law dealing with air pollution, water pollution, noise pollution, solid waste/resource recovery, pesticides and toxic substances. Additionally, the course explores the impact of various governmental policies upon industry, business, and real estate development. 3 credits.
POSU 347 Gender and the Law
Why have governments and societies felt the need for gender-specific determinations of rights and responsibilities? Students look at the determinations that have been made and consider their present effect. We will examine the trends in United States politics and law, the impact of law and policies on women and society, and the response of women to such treatment. 3 credits
POSU 349 Native American Law
Students examine the historical background and contemporary nature of the legal and political relationship between the United States government and Native American tribes. Through an examination of legislation, court cases, and the policies of federal, state and local governments, the social, political, economic and legal circumstances and prospects of Native Americans are considered. 3 credits.
POSU 350 Human Rights Law
This course introduces students to existing and developing international legal principles and procedures relating to the protection of human rights. It considers how and whether these principles serve to improve the lives of individuals throughout the world including the United States. 3 credits.
POSU 352 Race and Change in South Africa and the United States
Nelson Mandela is free and apartheid has ended in South Africa, yet ethnic violence and economic challenges cloud the future of South Africa. Despite the civil rights movement, racial injustice persists in America, often exploding in urban violence. How might an understanding of the struggle against white supremacy in South Africa help us to solve injustice in the United States? 3 credits.
POSU 353 Peace and Conflict in the Middle East
(Same as CJCU 353) Beginning with a historical examination of the region focusing on the key social forces and the sources of conflict, students explore the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in depth and conduct a peace conference in an attempt to develop a plausible resolution. 3 credits.
POSU 355 Politics of Genocide
Students examine cases of genocide in an effort to determine its political and social causes. They will explore how international law, public tribunals and campaigns of citizen groups may be utilized to prevent future atrocities and seek justice for the victims of genocide. 3 credits
POSU 367 Public Interest Research
(Same as SOCU 367) Students in this class learn quantitative and qualitative research methods by applying them in contemporary practical and academic research projects. Students conduct research that will help policy-makers, community activist, leaders, and citizens find solutions to current social and political problems and improve the lives of area residents. The course is designed to increase students' practical skills in areas like survey research and the use of computers in social, political, and historical analysis, making them more attractive as job applicants. The course is appropriate for students interested in careers in community-based, public, nonprofit, business and educational organizations. 3 credits.
POSU 370 Media and Politics
This course investigates the impact the modern media has on American politics. Does the media help or hurt democracy? 3 credits.
POSU 445 Moot Court
(Same as CJCU 445) Students get hands-on experience in the practice of law through a simulation of appellate advocacy. 3 credits.
POSU 499 Independent Study
Prerequisites: Instructor's approval and approval of petition. Directed reading and/or research designed to meet specific needs of superior upper-division students. 1-3 credits.