The Department of Government
The Department of Government

Bethany L Albertson


Assistant ProfessorPh.D., University of Chicago

Bethany L Albertson

Contact

Interests


Political Psychology; Public Opinion

Biography


Professor Albertson's work explores political attitudes and persuasion. Her current research relies on surveys and experiments to examine the effect of religious appeals in American politics and the relationship between emotion and cognition, with a recent focus on the role of anxiety on attitudes towards immigration.

Courses


GOV 370L • Political Psychology

37875 • Fall 2015
Meets MW 400pm-530pm GDC 1.406

Political Psychology  

Course Description: This course examines the psychology behind political attitudes and behaviors. By using insights from psychology and (often, but not always) experimental methods, political psychology offers a unique way of understanding politics. We will address questions such  How do people acquire their political beliefs? What types of campaign advertisements are effective? Do people approach politics in a rational way, or are they more emotional? What are the causes of intolerance and racism? What are the prospects for change? How does identity affect political choices?  

Prerequisites: None

GOV 370L • Political Psychology

38087 • Spring 2015
Meets MW 400pm-530pm MEZ 1.120

Course Description:

Analysis of varying topics in the study of American government and politics.

Prerequisite:

Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

Grading:

TBD

Readings:

TBD

 

 

 

GOV 370L • Political Psychology

39006 • Fall 2014
Meets MW 400pm-530pm GDC 1.406

Political Psychology

Course Description:

 

This course examines the psychology behind political attitudes and behaviors. By using insights from psychology and (often, but not always) experimental methods, political psychology offers a unique way of understanding politics. We will address questions such 

How do people acquire their political beliefs?

What types of campaign advertisements are effective?

Do people approach politics in a rational way, or are they more emotional?

What are the causes of intolerance and racism? What are the prospects for change?

How does identity affect political choices?

 

Prerequisites:

 

None

GOV 310L • American Government

38970 • Spring 2014
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm MEZ 1.306

Prerequisites: None

 

Course Description: This course provides an introduction to American politics.  The course topics include an introduction to America’s constitutional foundations, the relationship between the mass public and politics (public opinion and participation), the role of intermediary organizations (interest groups, media, parties), and the function of institutions (Congress, Presidency, Courts).  In addition to mastering a set of basic facts about American government, students will learn theories addressing “big questions” in American politics, and will explore critical assessments of the evidence brought to bear on these questions.  Some of these topics will also be examined in the context of Texas politics.

 

Grading Policy: 4 in class exams (25% each)

 

Texts:

American Politics Today, Core Edition, 3e. Bianco & Canon. Norton.

Other readings will be made available on-line.

GOV 370L • Political Psychology

39371 • Spring 2014
Meets MWF 900am-1000am GAR 0.128

Prerequisites: None

 

Course Description: This course examines the psychology behind political attitudes and behaviors. By using insights from psychology and (often, but not always) experimental methods, political psychology offers a unique way of understanding politics. We will address questions such as:

  • How do people acquire their political beliefs?
  • What types of campaign advertisements are effective?
  • Do people approach politics in a rational way, or are they more emotional?
  • What are the causes of intolerance and racism? What are the prospects for change?
  • How does identity affect political choices?

 

This will be a small, discussion-based class and I expect you to come to class prepared! Also, there will be an original research component to the course, and students will be expected to design surveys for their class papers.

 

Grading Policy:

2 in class exams (25% each)

1 paper proposal (10%)

1 paper (10-15 pages) (25%)

Class Participation (15%)

 

Texts:

Readings will be made available on-line.

GOV 310L • American Government

38680 • Spring 2013
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm MEZ 1.306

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to American politics.  The course topics include an introduction to America’s constitutional foundations, the function of institutions (Congress, Presidency, Courts), the role of intermediary organizations (parties, interest groups, media), and the relationship between the mass public and politics (public opinion and participation).  In addition to mastering a set of basic facts about American government, students will learn theories addressing “big questions” in American politics, and will explore critical assessments of the evidence brought to bear on these questions.  Some of these topics will also be examined in the context of Texas politics.  This class has no prerequisites.

 

Grading Policy

5%:        5 in class writing exercises

75%:      3 midterms (25% each)

20%:      1 final exam

 

 

Texts

Fiorina, Peterson, Johnson and Mayer.  2011.  The New American  

Democracy, Alternate 7th Ed.  Pearson.

Supplemental readings will be available on Blackboard.

GOV 310L • American Government

38690 • Spring 2013
Meets MWF 300pm-400pm CAL 100

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to American politics.  The course topics include an introduction to America’s constitutional foundations, the function of institutions (Congress, Presidency, Courts), the role of intermediary organizations (parties, interest groups, media), and the relationship between the mass public and politics (public opinion and participation).  In addition to mastering a set of basic facts about American government, students will learn theories addressing “big questions” in American politics, and will explore critical assessments of the evidence brought to bear on these questions.  Some of these topics will also be examined in the context of Texas politics.  This class has no prerequisites.

 

Grading Policy

5%:        5 in class writing exercises

75%:      3 midterms (25% each)

20%:      1 final exam

 

 

Texts

Fiorina, Peterson, Johnson and Mayer.  2011.  The New American  

Democracy, Alternate 7th Ed.  Pearson.

Supplemental readings will be available on Blackboard.

GOV 310L • American Government-Honors

38595 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 930am-1100am BAT 5.102

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to American politics.  The course topics include an introduction to America’s constitutional foundations, the function of institutions (Congress, Presidency, Courts), the role of intermediary organizations (parties, interest groups, media), and the relationship between the mass public and politics (public opinion and participation).  In addition to mastering a set of basic facts about American government, students will learn theories addressing “big questions” in American politics, and will explore critical assessments of the evidence brought to bear on these questions. Some of these topics will also be examined in the context of Texas politics.  This class has no prerequisites.

 

Grading Policy

 20%-  1 paper (5-7 pages)

5%- 3 in class writing exercises

50%- 2 midterms (25% each)

25%- 1 final exam

 

Texts

Fiorina, Peterson, Johnson and Mayer.  2011.  The New American Democracy, Alternate 7th Ed.  Pearson. (NAD)

Supplemental readings will be available on Blackboard.

GOV 310L • American Government

38533 • Spring 2012
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm MEZ B0.306

course description coming soon.

GOV 310L • American Government

38540 • Spring 2012
Meets MWF 300pm-400pm CAL 100

This course provides an introduction to American politics.  The course topics include an introduction to America’s constitutional  foundations, the function of institutions (Congress, Presidency, Courts), the role of intermediary organizations (parties, interest groups, media), and the relationship between the mass public and politics (public opinion and participation).  In addition to mastering a set of basic facts about American government, students will learn theories addressing “big questions” in American politics, and will explore critical assessments of the evidence brought to bear on these questions.  Some of these topics will also be examined in the context of Texas politics.

GOV 310L • American Government

38775 • Spring 2011
Meets MWF 300pm-400pm CAL 100

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 381S • Public Opin & Voting Behav

39135 • Spring 2011
Meets W 630pm-930pm BAT 1.104

See syllabus

GOV 310L • American Government-Honors

38410 • Fall 2010
Meets MWF 300pm-400pm GAR 0.128

This section restricted to Plan I and Plan II honors students.

This course provides an introduction to American politics.  The course
topics include an introduction to America’s constitutional
foundations, the function of institutions (Congress, Presidency,
Courts), the role of intermediary organizations (parties, interest
groups, media), and the relationship between the mass public and
politics (public opinion and participation).  In addition to mastering
a set of basic facts about American government, students will learn
theories addressing “big questions” in American politics, and will
explore critical assessments of the evidence brought to bear on these
questions.  Some of these topics will also be examined in the context
of Texas politics.

 

Grading Policy and Textbooks TBA.

 

GOV 310L • American Government

38696 • Spring 2010
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CAL 100

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 310L • American Government

38995 • Fall 2009
Meets MWF 1000-1100 CAL 100

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.

Media


Albertson: The Use of Anxiety in the 2012 Campaign

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Assistant Professor Bethany Albertson describes research she and her colleague have conducted about the use of anxiety and negative emotions in political advertising, and discusses how advertising and rhetoric in the 2012 campaign have tried to elicit anxiety and fear for political effect.

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External Links



  • Department of Government

    The University of Texas at Austin
    158 W 21st ST STOP A1800
    Batts Hall 2.116
    Austin, TX 78712-1704
    512-471-5121

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