List of Courses
POS 100 American National Politics (3 credits)
This course examines American political principles, institutions, processes, and controversies. Emphasis will be placed on the historical development of institutions including Congress, the Presidency, and the Supreme Court. Students will study the theoretical foundations of the American regime and analyze the U.S. Constitution. Significant attention will be given to how successive generations of Americans have interpreted the meaning of the foundational principles of equality and liberty.
POS 102 State and Local Politics (3 credits)
This course examines the role of state and local governments in the American political system, with special emphasis on New York State's government institutions, political processes and public policies. The evolving nature of federalism and intergovernmental relations is covered as is the value of civic participation in state and local affairs.
POS 198 Introduction to Political Thought (3 credits)
This course surveys the history of political philosophy from Plato through Rawls. Students will consider fundamental political questions related to justice, liberty, equality, human nature, and power. Original philosophical texts will be analyzed and discussed.
POS 201 Comparative Politics (3 credits)
Students will learn about six of the world's regions and particular nation-states within those regions, in comparison to one other and to the USA. Historical and geographical factors will be examined to determine their effects on the contemporary political, economic and social patterns that exist in each of the regions. Future problems and prospects for each region will also be explored.
POS 215 The Politics of Native American - U.S. Relations (3 credits)
This course will cover three aspects of the relationship between Native American peoples and the U.S. government. The first includes a sample of Native American governance and law that existed prior to European settlement, its later influence on the U.S. founding, and its rebirth. The second part of the course will examine U.S. government policies toward native tribes from 1790 to the present. Treaties, acts and court decisions that reflect these policies will be analyzed. The last third of the course will include a discussion of contemporary issues and conflicts between and among various Native American tribes and the U.S. government. These contemporary topics will include: land claims, land use, gambling, poverty, religious freedom, and social and environmental policies.
POS 230 Women and Politics (3 credits)
This course will compare and contrast the role of women in politics in the US, Western Europe and a selection of countries from the less-developed world. The suffrage movement and ERA movements will be examined for their successes and failures and compared to similar political movements in the west. Women as political actors will be studied: as voters; as party members; as interest group members; as legislators; and as executives in the U.S., Europe and the developing world. The effect that women in office have on policy-making will be evaluated in different regions. A brief survey of how certain public policies affect women will be covered, as will U.N. efforts in the area of international women's rights.
POS 260 New York State Environmental Regulation (3 credits)
This course surveys environmental regulatory management in New York state. Included are historical efforts, present procedures, and some developing trends. The primary focus of the course is on programs of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. In addition to NYS DEC programs, the course will examine agencies' regulatory jurisdictions at the federal, state, and local levels. Various local approvals will also be considered. The emphasis will be on the inter-relationship of programs, as well as the specific details of the NYS DEC programs themselves.
POS 280 Internship in Politics and Government (3 credits)
The course provides students the opportunity to apply their knowledge of politics and government in a practical setting. Internships are available in various public offices in the executive/bureaucratic, legislative, or judicial branches of government at the national, state and local levels. Internships with major political parties may also be available. Students arrange their placement with the help of the Cooperative Education Office and a faculty coordinator. Course requirements include a minimum of 120 hours of work, maintenance of a weekly journal, attendance at four on-campus seminars, occasional readings, and an experience-based essay. Two on-site evaluations will also be made by the faculty coordinator. Letter grade will be awarded. No credit given for past work experience. Prerequisite: Permission of Instructor.
POS 290 Senate and Assembly Internship (9 credits)
Senate and Assembly internships are available on a competitive basis for outstanding sophomores. Applicants are screened by a selection committee in Albany after approval by the Campus Liaison Officer. The program begins in early January with a week-long orientation to the operation of the state government, with particular reference to the workings of the Legislature. Interns then receive full-time intern assignments for 30+ hours per week in an office of a NYS Assembly or Senate member. Office tasks involve constituent work, research on specific legislation, research on the legislative process, representation of the office at campaign and legislative events, and office administration. On-site supervisors are either members of the Legislature (Senate or Assembly), or members of their staff. A work plan and a learning contract are developed between the intern and supervisor, and intern performance is evaluated regularly. A stipend is available for housing in Albany. Prerequisite: POS 100 or 102, or Permission of Instructor; co-requisite: POS 291. Spring semesters only.
POS 291 Senate and Assembly Research and Seminar (6 credits)
Senate and Assembly internships are available on a competitive basis for outstanding sophomores. Applicants are screened by a selection committee in Albany after approval by the Campus Liaison Officer. The program begins in early January with a week-long orientation to the operation of state government. After placement in a NYS Senate or Assembly office, interns participate in weekly seminars exploring how politics influences policy in the NYS legislative process. Critical issues that challenge NYS will be used as models for understanding the complexities of the policy-making process. The various actors involved in policy-making, in particular, the legislators, the governor, state agencies, citizens, lobbyists, and the media, are analyzed. Interns receive academic guidance and support from the permanent program staff, the professors in residence, and from legislative staff. This guidance allows students to maximize their understanding of the practical application of the theoretical concepts introduced in the seminar. A stipend is available for housing in Albany. Prerequisite: POS 100 or 102, or Permission of Instructor; co-requisite: POS 290. Spring semesters only.