GOV 310L • American Government
9:00 AM-10:00 AM
Fulfills first half of legislative requirement for 6 hours of American government. The basic goal of this course is to develop our understanding of and ability to think critically and creatively about American politics. The course will focus on disputes among political actors and among experts over a wide variety of issues, ranging from how government really works to what policies should be adopted to deal with major public problems. We will examine the operation of major American instiutions (the presidency, the Congress, the courts, the bureaucracy), examining the inputs into their operations (voters and other activists, parties, interest groups, public opinion, and the mass media), and the outputs (civil liberties, civil rights, and the public policy in areas such as public education, distributive justice, the economy, and foreign affairs). Some of these topics will be examined in their context of Texas politics. Because this is a major election year, we will focus on the campaign and its aftermath, as well as other major current events that relate to the course material by reading The New York Times daily.
Two in class Exams Final Exam
A major text to be selected The New York Times (Monday - Friday)