Skip Navigation
UT wordmark
College of Liberal Arts wordmark
government masthead
Robert G. Moser, Chair BAT 2.116, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-5121

Jessica Price

M.A. Political Science (August 2007), A.B. International Affairs (May 2007), The University of Georgia

Jessica Price



Jessica J. Price is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Government. She studies comparative politics and public law. Her research interests focus primarily on ethnic politics, indigenous politics, and on the politics of rights and legal implementation in Latin America. Her countries of interest include Mexico, Chile, and Brazil.

Her dissertation analyzes patterns of protest in highly indigenous areas of Southern Mexico. It argues that protesters in ethnically diverse regions tend to make demands primarily for strategic reasons. Protest patterns are shaped more strongly by the political environment than by the identity politics. Political clientelism persists in these areas despite neoliberal reforms and competitive partisan politics tend to feature competing party bosses. In consequence, ethnic rights-based demands remain rare during public protests, and most protests focus on issues of redistribution or partisan politics. 

Her research in Mexico has been supported through a 2011-2012 Academic Year Macdonald Dissertation Fellowship from the Department of Government, a summer 2012 E.D. Farmer International Fellowship for field research, and through a summer 2010 Tinker Field Research Grant and summer 2008 Lozano Long Travel Grant.

She is employed currently as an Assistant Instructor in the Department of Government. Her classes taught include: GOV 310L Introduction to American Government and a GOV 312L Issues and Policies in American Government class entitled "Ethnic and Racial Minorities and American Democracy in Comparative Perspective." 


Ethnic Politics; Indigenous Politics; Mexican and Latin American Politics; Protest and Social Movements; Clientelism; Minority Voting Behavior; Legal Systems and Minority Rights; Legal Reform and Crime in Latin America

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37800 • Spring 2015
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am MEZ B0.306
show description

Government 312L satisfies the second half of the mandated six hours of government that every UT student must take.  Course covers analysis of varying topics concerned with American political institutions and policies, including the United States Constitution, and assumes basic knowledge of government from GOV 310L, which is a prerequiste. May be taken for credit only once.

GOV 310L • American Government

38695 • Fall 2014
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm MEZ B0.306
show description

This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While the main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas. Topics will include U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.

GOV S310L • American Government

84870 • Summer 2014
Meets MTWTHF 1000am-1130am CLA 0.130
show description


Price, Jessica

Course Title:             Introduction to American Government                                                                            


A. Prerequisites:

Students must have twelve semester hours of college coursework and a passing score on the reading section of the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) test (or an appropriate assessment test) in order to take this class.


B. Course Description:

This course provides an introduction to the institutions and process of American government.


The goal of this course is to provide you with the background and tools to understand how the United States government functions today and how its present structure and function relate to the historical expansion of American democracy. This course will cover U.S. political history, institutions, public policy, political parties, voting, and political participation. It will do so through a perspective that focuses on the American government as a democracy and analyzes the process of expanding rights and liberties within the U.S.  To help students better understand our state and federal government, this course will compare the national political experience to that of Texas.


This course is divided into three conceptual parts. At the end of each part there will be a non-cumulative exam. Each part of the class will cover material about Texas in addition to material about the U.S. national government. Part one explores the origins and expansion of U.S. democracy. Part two focuses on U.S. political institutions and public policy. In the third part of the class, we will study political parties and the processes of voting and political participation in American Government. We will also compare different ways of understanding Texas politics.


Students will have two midterms and a final exam to evaluate their progress. They will also be responsible for attending and participating in class regularly.


C. Grading Policy:

Grades will be based on the following coursework, for a total of 100% possible in the course:


Three Exams (95% of the grade)

Class Participation (5% of the grade)



There will be three exams. The exams will not be cumulative. They will cover the current section of the class only. They will cover material presented in the lecture and in the readings. Tests are in class at the regularly scheduled class time and location. The location of the final exam will be announced. Students will be required to bring a number 2 pencil and picture identification to exams.


Exam Schedule

Exam 1                                    July 23 (Wednesday):                                                 30% Exam 2                                    August 5 (Tuesday):                                                   30% Final Exam                               TBA:                                                                          35%


Grade Scale

The University uses a plus/minus system.  I will use the following grading scale. I do NOT negotiate grades. I do NOT provide extra credit. I round grades to the nearest whole number. This means that students who are in between whole-number grades must make .5 or above to round up to the next grade.  For example 92.5 would round up to an A letter grade; 92.4 would stay an A- letter grade.

























Below 60% 




D. Texts:


American Government: Power and Purpose, (Brief Thirteenth Edition), Theodore J. Lowi, Benjamin Ginsberg, Kenneth A. Shepsle, and Stephen Ansolbehere, 2014, W.W. Norton   & Company. (AG)


Course Packet Reader (CP)

Available at the University of Texas Co-op bookstore 

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

39025 • Spring 2014
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am MEZ B0.306
show description



GOV 312L is the second course in the American government sequence; this course assumes the basic knowledge of American government from GOV 310L.


Course Description:

This course examines the American political system by studying the political participation of ethnic and racial minorities in the U.S. in historical and comparative context. It provides an overview of minority politics in the U.S. that will familiarize students with the history and current situation of racial and ethnic minorities, including Black Americans, Native Americans, and Latinos. The first part of the course analyzes the historical expansion of U.S. democracy by exploring the history of ethnic and racial minority rights and movements in America. The course then focuses on current patterns of voting and other forms of political participation among ethnic and racial minorities in the U.S. One of the primary objectives of this course is to get students to think comparatively about American politics. Consequently, the latter part of the course takes the U.S. experience and puts it in context by examining racial and ethnic politics within other counties in the Americas. Students will study how racial and ethnic minorities participate in politics within Latin America and Canada and how these experiences compare to those in the U.S.  Particular attention will be paid to the cases of Afro-Brazilian mobilization, indigenous mobilization in Mexico, and Canadian multiculturalism.

This course will train students to think critically about politics in the U.S. and about politics in general. It should help students develop greater understanding about race and ethnicity in U.S. politics and how U.S. experiences are similar and different compared to those of other societies.                                                               

Grading Policy:

Three Exams (88% of the grade)

Short Paper Assignment (12% of the grade)


Exams will be in class and will not be cumulative. Students also will write a 2-3 page double-spaced short paper that takes a position on an issue covered in class.

Exam 1                      February 21 (Friday):                                               29%

Exam 2                      April 4 (Friday):                                                       29%

Short Paper              Due April 21 (Monday):                                               12%   

Final Exam                TBA:                                                                        30%


Grade Scale. I round grades to the nearest whole number.

A:         93-100%       C:        73-76% 

A-:       90-92%          C-:       70-72% 

B+:      87-89%          D+:      67-69% 

B:        83-86%          D:        63-66% 

B-:       80-82%          D-:       60-62%

C+:      77-79%          F:         Below 60% 



“Can We All Get Along?”: Racial and Ethnic Minorities in American Politics, (Sixth Edition), Paula D. McClain and Joseph Stewart Jr., 2013, Westview Press. 


Democratization in America: A Comparative-Historical Analysis, Desmond King, Robert C. Lieberman, Gretchen Ritter, and Laurence Whitehead, eds., 2009, The John Hopkins University Press. 


Course Packet Reader (Available at the University of Texas Co-op bookstore)    

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

39075 • Fall 2013
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm ART 1.102
show description

Government 312L satisfies the second half of the mandated six hours of government that every UT student must take.  Course covers analysis of varying topics concerned with American political institutions and policies, including the United States Constitution, and assumes basic knowledge of government from GOV 310L, which is a prerequiste. May be taken for credit only once.

bottom border