Graduate Courses

Fall 2019 Courses

All information in this guide is tentative and subject to change. Check the Political Science Department Office for updates. 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 m002 Citizenship: Theory, Law, & Practice

Instructor: Elizabeth Cohen
Class #: 21386
Offered: T 3:30 pm-6:15 pm

Course Description
PSC 600 is a graduate seminar for MA and PhD students from any department who are interested in immigration and citizenship. It begins with an extended survey of theories of citizenship. With that as a foundation, we cover topics such as immigration, free movement, territoriality, statelessness and refuge. The class is designed to be accessible for students from an array of disciplines. The assignments offer opportunities for students to hone their presentation and discussion leadership skills.  


PSC 621 m001 Theories of American Politics 

Instructor: Christopher Faricy
Class #: 21387
Offered: Th 9:30 am-12:15 pm

Course Description
This course will provide a broad survey of the major substantive questions that animate research in American politics.  We will not cover everything, of course, but by the end of the semester, you should have an improved sense of the major substantive questions being addressed in the field and the various approaches that have been utilized to answer those questions.  The class will help you prepare for your general exams and identify one or more research traditions within which you might situate your own interests.


PSC 651 m001 Theories of International Relations

Instructor: Audie Klotz
Class #: 21388
Offered: W 12:45 pm-3:30 pm

Course Description
This course explores alternative perspectives on power in the international system, covering global, state-centric and transnational approaches. Readings cover both classics and newer exemplars. While we will relate theories to contemporary controversies, you should be prepared to embark on more than a current events course. By introducing the basic vocabulary and some of the major debates of the field, the course serves as a foundation for the field exam, additional coursework, and dissertation research. 


PSC 671 m001 Comparative Political Analysis

Instructor: Margarita Estevez-Abe
Class #: 21389
Offered: M 3:45 pm-6:30 pm

Course Description
This seminar surveys major topics in comparative politics. Topics include: power, state, state formation and challenges to state (such as civil war); collective actions; regime change and democratization; political mobilization; political parties and party systems; the origin and effect of political institutions; economic development; redistribution and welfare states; accountability and representation. As we review each of the substantive topics, we will also discuss and evaluate the theoretical and methodological approaches that scholars have used to shed light on them.


PSC 691 m001 Logic of Political Inquiry

Instructor: Shana Gadarian
Class #: 13687
Offered: W 9:30 am-12:15 pm

Course Description
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 #: 11811
Offered: T 12:30 pm-2:30 pm; F 10:35 am-11:30 am Lab

Course Description
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 m001 Global Economic Governance

Instructor: Daniel McDowell
Class #: 13688
Offered: T 9:30 am-12:15 pm

Course Description
Economic globalization involves the internationalization of markets. This course examines the need for governance of the global marketplace: the rules and institutions that both guide and restrain the international economic policies of states. Our primary focus will be on the governance of the key economic sectors of trade and finance. We will work to answer several fundamental questions about global economic governance: What explains the emergence of specific rules and institutions? Once created, how do these governance structures help resolve conflicts and collective action problems among states? How do different institutional designs bias governance outcomes in ways that benefit some states at the expense of others? How and why do existing governance structures change? Throughout the semester, we will explore a broad range of scholarly work that will begin to provide answers to these questions. These works draw from a variety of theoretical perspectives and employ a broad range of methodological approaches. Finally, using a pedagogical technique known as student directed learning (SDL), students will craft their own course of study for the final two sessions.


PSC 769 m001 Comparative Parties and Politics

Instructor: Seth Jolly
Class #20678
Offered: T 9:30 am-12:15 pm

Course Description
The course provides an overview of concepts and theories employed in the study of political parties in competitive democracies. The course will develop theoretical arguments and employ empirical examples primarily from the literature on party systems in advanced postindustrial democracies. In the first section, we will focus on pure, general theories of parties as coalitions of politicians and party systems as arenas for competition among such coalitions.

In the second part of class, we consider democratic institutions, and more specifically electoral systems, as rules that constrain and enable politicians to choose strategies. In the third section, we consider societal (political-economic, cultural) conditions as forces impinging upon the nature of competition among parties and the internal process of strategy formation and resource pooling inside parties. In the final part of class, we consider change in both parties and party systems, paying special attention to the entry of new parties.


PSC 788 m001 Political Leadership

Instructor: Margaret Hermann
Class #: 12120
Offered: W 12:45 pm-3:30 pm

Course Description 
This class will focus on answering the question: What is the relationship between what political leaders are like and the political behavior of the institutions or governments that they lead? In responding to this question, we will seek to understand the kinds of leaders that are recruited and selected in various types of political systems and the effects of cultural variables on who becomes a political leader and what political leaders can do. We will also explore the links between leadership style and political decision making as well as between leaders' individual characteristics and the ingredients of leadership. And we will consider the conditions under which political leaders' personalities and experiences are likely to shape what their political units do. In the course of the class, students will work with several techniques for studying the effects of leaders and leadership on politics by examining the activities and leadership style of one particular leader.

Course requirements will include completing three projects and mini-papers focused around a political leader of interest to the student and an oral presentation on that leader. The projects and mini-papers will focus on (1) doing a social background study on the leader of choice, (2) ascertaining the leader's leadership style using assessment at a distance techniques, and (3) completing a case study of a decision in which the leader was involved to link leadership style and experience to political behavior.


PSC 792 m001 Research Design

Instructor: Colin Elman
Class #: 13582
Offered: M 9:30apm-12:15 pm

Course Description
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 800 m001 Global Justice

Instructor: Kenneth Baynes
Class #: 21450
Offered: W 3:45 pm-6:30 pm

Meets with PHI 880 m001

Course Description
The seminar will explore various topics in current (i.e., “post-Rawlsian”) discussions about justice and equality.  These are likely to include a review of discussions concerning the appropriate metric of equality—should egalitarians be primarily concerned with welfare, resources, capabilities or the opportunity for one or another of these; debates between distributive and relational accounts of equality (including “luck egalitarianism” and the relational accounts of Elizabeth Anderson, Axel Honneth, and others); debates about the place of individual responsibility and desert in accounts of social justice; and (depending on interest) recent debates about conflicts between religious liberty and equality (as in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby) as well as questions about state neutrality and whether religion is “special”—that is, deserves accommodation by the state and/or exemption from state regulation in ways not provided to other individual or group/corporate interests.


PSC 997 m001 Master’s Thesis

Register for class # 13693, PSC 997 m001, 6 credit hours –or-

Register for class # 13694, PSC 997 m002, 0 credit hours


PSC 999 Dissertation Credits

Register for class # 10611 for 1 to 15 credits


GRD 998 Degree in Progress (Zero Hour Registration)

Register for class number 17122, GRD 998.001 or 17123, GRD 998.002

When you have completed all of your coursework and your dissertation credits, you should be registered each fall and spring semester for “Degree in Progress”, GRD 998.  Please see Candy Brooks if you have any questions about your credits.

Remember to complete a “Certification of Full-Time Status” form each time you register for zero credit hours to continue your full time status. A copy is attached for your convenience.