POLITICAL SCIENCE 382: FOREIGN POLICY DECISION-MAKING
Office: ZU 315 (Enter ZU 316 after )
Class Meetings: T, TH
Classroom: DU 476
Office Hours: T, TH or by appointment
This survey course in
The second objective of the course is to understand how these actors
interact to make
Through lectures, discussions and case analyses, the fourth and final goal
is to consider who truly makes American foreign policy. Scholars of
The class meetings devoted to a specific foreign policy actor will have a lecture component. However, students are welcome and encouraged to interrupt me to ask questions or make comments about the material. Also members of the class should be prepared to answer the many questions that I will regularly pose concerning a particular dayís material, a past class, or the assigned readings (which are to be completed before class). Thoughtful participation will be rewarded.
For class meetings devoted to the analysis of case studies, everyoneís active and thoughtful participation is absolutely essential and expected. During these sessions I will guide the discussion and highlight key points and concepts, but the vast majority of our time will be spent discussing and dissecting American foreign policy as a group. Much of the class participation grade (discussed below) will be dependent on studentsí performance during these sessions.
To ensure the quality of these class periods, everyone is expected to do three things. First, a copy of the assigned case study should be brought to class. Second, the assigned case study should be read carefully before class. The "Before You Begin" questions that accompany each case study should be used as a reading guide. Third, some time should be spent prior to class considering any additional questions or instructions that I may have provided at our previous meeting.
Two required textbooks are available for purchase at the university bookstore. I have made a conscious effort to keep the material as affordable and update-to-date as possible. Therefore, the books are recently published paperback editions. To be successful in this course, I strongly encourage students to have personal copies of each of the following books:
For those students faced with limited budgets, I have placed one copy of each book on two-hour reserve in the library. Please return these materials in a timely fashion so that everyone is guaranteed reasonable access.
The first requirement is written examinations. The midterm exam is scheduled for Thursday, October 9 and will be worth 25 percent of the course grade. The final exam will be administered on Tuesday, December 9 during the universityís examination period and be worth 30 percent of the final course grade. Both examinations must be completed to pass the course. Each test will be composed of a variety of written response short answer questions. Prior to each exam, I will outline the specific exam format, discuss my grading standards, and distribute a study guide.
The second course requirement is participation. Components of this grade include (a) regular and thoughtful participation in class lectures and discussions, (b) regular attendance (no more than three absences), and (c) regular and thoughtful engagement in case study exercises. Failure to fulfill any one these expectations satisfactorily or any additional assignment will significantly reduce the participation grade, which is worth 20 percent of the final course grade.
In general, relevant in-class participation (a and c) will be evaluated according to the following scale (with plus and minus grades being possible):
A = regular and thoughtful participation
B = occasional and thoughtful participation
C = regular attendance, but little or no participation
D = less than regular attendance
F = little or no attendance
Attendance is generally taken each class session. At the end of the semester, the total number of class meetings is divided into the number of times a student was present. The resulting percentage is then converted to a letter grade. Missing class no more than two or three times will result in an "A" for this portion of the participation grade. Please note that a half letter grade deduction will be taken from the overall course participation grade (not just the attendance grade) for each class missed after the fifth absence.
The third course requirement are short quizzes on most or all case study days. These relatively easy quizzes are designed to test one's basic understanding of the assigned case study's content to ensure that the class has completed the reading and is fully prepared to discuss and analyze it. The expectation is that every member of the class will have at least a minimally passing quiz average (60 percent) by the end of the semester. There will be a half letter deduction in the final course grade for anyone who does not. No make up quizzes will be administered.
The fourth course requirement is an eight-page research paper that
examines the role and relative influence of an actor within the contemporary
The midterm examination, final examination, and quizzes will be scored on a 0 to 100 percent scale and assigned a corresponding letter grade (with plus and minus designations included when appropriate). For the research papers and participation, letter grades will be awarded. In computing the final course grade, these two components will count as follows: A = 95, A- = 91, B+ = 88, B = 85, B- =81, C+ = 78, C = 75, C- = 71, D+ = 68, D = 65, D- = 61, and F = 0.
SUMMARY OF GRADED REQUIREMENTS
Midterm Examination = 25 percent
Final Examination = 30 percent
Participation = 20 percent
Research Paper = 25 percent
COURSE POLICIES AND LOOSE ENDS
1. Makeup Exams: Makeup exams will only be given in extraordinary circumstances. If such circumstances arise, please contact the instructor as soon as possible and before the scheduled exam. To keep the process fair for everyone in the course, students may be asked to support requests for makeup exams with documentation. A missed examination without prior notification and a documented excuse will result in a zero and a course grade of "F" as opposed to an incomplete.
2. Students with Disabilities: Under Section 504 of the
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, NIU is committed to making reasonable
accommodations for persons with documented disabilities. Those students with
disabilities that may have some impact on their coursework for which they may
require accommodations should notify the Center for Access-Ability Resources
(CAAR) on the fourth floor of the
3. Late Assignments: An assignment submitted after the due date will be penalized by a deduction of ten points or one letter grade per day. Since students will have had several weeks to complete their work, this standard will be waived only in extraordinary circumstances.
4. Submitting Written Work: Assignments should be handed-in to me personally or given to a department secretary to be time-stamped. Assignments placed under my office door or sent with a friend tend to disappear at times. If a student selects one of these modes of delivery, he or she does so at their own risk.
5. Extra Credit: Extra credit assignments will not be given on an individual basis to raise final course grades. Like makeup exams, such projects raise serious questions of equity. In the rare event such a project is made available, every member of the class will be given the opportunity to complete it.
6. Handouts: Handouts are a privilege for those students who attend class on a regular basis. No student is entitled to supplemental materials simply because they are registered for the course.
7. Classroom Etiquette: Students are to arrive at class on time. Two tardy arrivals are equivalent to one class absence. Cell phones, pagers, or any electronic devices that make noise must be turned off during class unless the instructor has been notified beforehand of a special circumstance (e.g., sick family member, pregnant wife, special childcare situation, etc.). No one should talk while someone else is talking; this includes comments meant for a classmate rather than the entire group. What may seem like a whisper or a harmless remark to one person can be a distraction to someone else, particularly in a small room. Overall, classroom dialogue and behavior should always be courteous, respectful of others, and consistent with the expectations set forth by the university.
8. Incomplete Requests: Such petitions will be granted only in extraordinary circumstances. The instructor reserves the right to ask for documentation to verify the problem preventing completion of the course by the normal deadlines. If the student does not present documentation from a university office or official, the matter will be left to the instructorís discretion.
9. Academic Dishonesty: Regarding plagiarism, the NIU Undergraduate Catalog states: "students are guilty of plagiarism, intentional or not, if they copy material from books, magazines, or other sources without identifying and acknowledging them. Students guilty of, or assisting others in, either cheating or plagiarism on an assignment, quiz, or examination may receive a grade of F for the course involved and may be suspended or dismissed from the university." The above statement encompasses the purchase or use of papers that were written by others. Please note that I retain copies of papers written in previous years. In short, students are advised to do their own work and learn the rules for proper quoting, paraphrasing, and footnoting.
10. Class Participation: I recognize class discussion comes more easily for some people than for others. By temperament or habit, some individuals are "talkers" while others are "listeners." Learning to be both is an important subsidiary goal of this course. Comments that are not relevant to the ongoing discussion and off the point will not be rewarded. Remarks that are disruptive to the discussion, insensitive to others, or attempt to dominate the discussion will not be tolerated. I strongly prefer students to participate on a voluntary basis. If you are particularly apprehensive about talking in class, or feel closed out of the discussion for another reason, please speak with me. There are some things I can suggest that may be helpful. Remember: communication skills and self-confidence are extremely important assets in the professional world. Thus it is better to develop these things in the collegial environment of this class rather than under mor! ! e difficult circumstances later in life.
11. Unannounced Quizzes: The instructor reserves the right to conduct pop quizzes (in addition to the case study quizzes), if it becomes grossly apparent through class discussions that students are not completing the assigned readings on a regular basis. If such quizzes are administered, they will be averaged and used to raise or lower a studentís final course grade by a half a letter grade. Whether a particular studentís grade is adjusted positively or negatively will be dependent on a class average. It will not be done capriciously.
12. Undergraduate Writing Awards: The Department of Political Science will recognize, on an annual basis, outstanding undergraduate papers written in conjunction with 300-400 level political science courses or directed studies. Authors do not have to be political science majors or have a particular class standing. Winners are expected to attend the Departmentís spring graduation ceremony where they will receive a certificate and $50.00. Papers, which can be submitted by students or faculty, must be supplied in triplicate to a department secretary by February 28. All copies should have two cover pages Ė one with the studentís name and one without the studentís name. Only papers written in the previous calendar can be considered for the award. However, papers completed in the current spring semester are eligible for the following yearís competition even if the student has graduated.
13. Department of Political Science Web Site: Undergraduates are strongly encouraged to consult the Department of Political Science web site on a regular basis. This up-to-date, central source of information will assist students in contacting faculty and staff, reviewing course requirements and syllabi, exploring graduate study, researching career options, tracking department events, and accessing important details related to undergraduate programs and activities. To reach the site, go to http://polisci.niu.edu
October 9 - Midterm Examination
November 25 - Research paper is due at
December 9 - Final Examination
COURSE SCHEDULE AND READING ASSIGNMENTS
* Reading assignments are to be completed by the appropriate date before arriving at class.
August 26 Course Introduction
Discussion of requirements, expectations, and policies
Explanation of assignments
Rosati, pp. 2-6 (stop after first paragraph)
August 28 The International Context of
Rosati, Chapter 3
September 2 The Domestic Context of
Rosati, "Collapse of the Cold War, September 11, & Politics in the Twenty-first
Century," pp.10-13. See next page for two additional items.
Rosati, "Administration of George Bush, Jr." & "Bush Doctrine", pp. 38-41
Rosati, "Implications of the Sept. 11 Attacks & War on Terrorism," pp. 416-421
September 4 The President: Foreign Policy Roles, Opportunities, & Constraints
Rosati, Chapter 4
September 9 The President and War Powers:
Rosati, pp. 313 (bottom)-318
If you wish to review the entire War Powers Act, go to http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/warpower.htm or http://www.usinfo.state.gov/usa/infousa/laws/majorlaw/warpower.htm
September 11 Case: The
Carter, Chapter 8
September 16 Presidential Advisers and the National Security Council
Rosati, Chapter 5
September 18 Case: The War in Kosovo
Carter, Chapter 3
September 23 The Foreign Policy Bureaucracy
Begin Rosati, Chapter 6
The reading assignment focuses on the State Department, which we will begin discussing today and continue next Tuesday.
September 25 The State Department
Finish Rosati, Chapter 6
September 30 The Foreign Economic Bureaucracy
Rosati, Chapter 9 and pp. 343-352 (on state and local governments)
October 2 Case: Sino-American Trade Relations
Carter, Chapter 12
October 7 The Defense Department
Rosati, Chapter 7
October 9 Midterm Examination
October 14 Case: The V-22 Osprey
Carter, Chapter 9
October 16 The Intelligence Community
Rosati, pp. 197-217
October 21 The Central Intelligence Agency
Rosati, pp. 217-239
October 23 Interagency Processes: Interactions within the
A reading will be distributed.
October 28 The Congress
Rosati, Chapter 11
October 30 Case: The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
Carter, Chapter 7
November 4 Interest Groups and Nongovernmental Organizations
Rosati, Chapter 16
November 6 Case:
Carter, Chapter 1
November 11 The News Media
Rosati, Chapter 17
November 13 Public Opinion
Rosati, pp. 362-374 (top)
November 18 Case: Public Opinion and
Carter, Chapter 2
November 20 Film or Video Presentation related to
Instructor away at U.S. Military Academy
-Rosati, Chapter 15: Electoral Politics (This topic will not be discussed in class, but questions can certainly be raised on December 2.)
November 25 Film or Video Presentation related to
Instructor away at the U.S. Military Academy
No reading assignment
Papers are due today.
November 27 No Class - Thanksgiving Break
December 2 Course Conclusion: Who Really Makes
Rosati, Chapter 10 and pp.532-536 (stop at the major subheading on this page)
December 4 Complete Course Conclusion (if necessary) and Review for Final Examination
No reading assignment
December 9 Final Examination:
in DU 476
GUIDELINES FOR RESEARCH PAPER ASSIGNMENT
Select an appropriate topic: Choose a specific individual, group,
organization, or country that has some impact on the contemporary
Topic suggestions: Here are some examples of possible paper topics. Use this list if it is helpful, but certainly do not be limited by it. Please feel free to discuss other ideas with the instructor.
Goal and substance of the paper: Descriptive, background information
or history necessary to understand the actor under study may be included, but
this type of information should not dominate the paper. Remember this is a
political science paper concerned with the relative influence of an actor
Format and presentation: The final paper should be properly presented and assembled. Be sure it conforms to the following guidelines:
Research and Documentation: The final paper should be carefully and properly documented.
Quality Writing: The final paper should be well written in formal English.
Writing Assistance: For writing assistance, please consult with the
Research and Substantive Assistance: Students are welcome to consult with the instructor as often as they wish about their paper's topic, source material, or substance. Please feel free to talk to me after class, visit office hours, ask brief questions over e-mail, or submit outlines and research design statements for feedback.
Submitting the Paper: Be sure to submit two copies of the final paper at the proper on the posted due date. Keep a photocopy and computer disk copy of the paper. Students are responsible for supplying an additional copy should the instructor request it.
Paper Grades: The main criteria to be used in evaluating the paper will be the caliber of research, understanding of subject, quality of analysis, quality of writing and overall presentation, degree of independent thinking, and the use of evidence and reasoning to reach meaningful conclusions. It goes without saying that the paper must meet the stated goal of the assignment and the guidelines (discussed above).