POLS 331:  Intro to Public Administration

Fall 2004

 

Professor:                   Curt Wood

Class Times:              Monday and Wednesday: 2:00-3:15 PM in DuSable 452

Office Hours:             Monday and Wednesday: 3:30-4:30 PM or by appointment

Office Room No.            213 IASBO Building           

Email:                         chwood@niu.edu

Office Phone:             (815) 753-6144

 

Course Objectives and Description

This course is designed to provide the student with an understanding of the major public administration theories influencing the discipline, the role of the public bureaucracy in American society, and the interplay of politics and administration at the national, state, and local levels.

 

This course serves as an introduction to public administration. During the semester we will review topics generally associated with its study and practice such as organization theory and behavior, public policy formation, public management, leadership, human resources, public finance, and ethics.  Through class discussion, group work, lecture, reading, and assignments students will become familiar with the primary issues and challenges facing public administrators today at the local, state, and national levels.

 

Required Texts

Shafritz, Jay M. and Russell, E.W. 2005. Introducing Public Administration. Fourth Edition. New York: Addison Wesley Longman, Inc.

 

Shafritz, Jay M., Albert C. Hyde, and Sandra J. Parkes, eds. 2004. Classics of Public Administration. Fifth Edition. Wadsworth.

 

Teaching Philosophy

 

It is my goal to train students to think critically about the major theories of public administration and to link theory with practice through case studies. I will challenge students to think actively by taking responsibility for and becoming involved in their own learning inside and outside the classroom.

 

Book Review or Journal Article Reviews

Students must write a review of either one book or two journal articles found at the back of any chapter in Introducing Public Administration by Shafritz and Hyde. The review(s) should describe the author’s primary message(s) or theme(s), hypotheses and findings, and your thoughts about the book or articles. The book review should be no longer than 3 pages and each journal review should be no longer than 2 pages each. Papers should be double-spaced with 1-inch margins, written with 12-point font, and include a cover page and citations.  Your book review or journal article reviews should be turned in during the week that we cover the chapter that is relevant to your review. Each student is responsible for finding his or her chosen book or journal articles. Reviews will be considered late if they are turned in any week following the discussion in class and will be marked down one letter grade.

 

Current Events Paper and Analysis

In order to demonstrate an understanding of the current practice of public administration, each student must also read and analyze 2 newspaper/magazine articles addressing a major theme, theory, concept, or idea put forward on public administration from the readings or lecture. Articles must be about public organizations and public administrators. The analysis should describe the situation or event mentioned in the article and how the event or situation relates to a major public administration theme, idea, or concept from the readings or lecture for that week. The analysis of each article should be no more than one page but should also include a cover page and a citation page. The analysis should also be double-spaced, one-inch margins, and 12-point font.  The written analyses are due during the week the relevant chapter or readings are discussed in class. Articles turned in late will be marked down one letter grade. Students may be asked to briefly tell the class about their current events analysis.

 

Quizzes

Throughout the semester, 5 in-class quizzes will be given on Wednesdays. Questions will emphasize the reading assignments but may also include material from the lectures.  The lowest quiz score will be dropped. Quizzes will be multiple choice and/or true/false questions.  No make-up quizzes will be given.

 

Midterm and Final Examination

There will be a midterm and a final exam.  Each exam will be worth 25 percent of the course grade.  The final examination will not be cumulative.  Make-up exams will only be permitted in the case of extreme emergencies. In order to be eligible to make up a test, you must notify Professor Wood prior to the test that you will not be able to take the test at the appointed time. An unexcused absence from an exam will receive a score of zero.

 

Class Participation and Attendance

Each student is expected to fully participate in class discussion and is encouraged to ask questions during class. Also, students will be given credit for turning in one question each week pertaining to the readings or material presented in class. These questions may be discussed in class. In order to meaningfully participate (i.e. receive credit), each student must be prepared for class.  Attending class is a prerequisite for participation.  Each student is expected to have read the material prior to coming to class. Sleeping in class is grounds for a lower participation score.

 

Basis for Calculating Course Grade

Letter grades will be based on the standard 100 percent scale (e.g. 90% – 100% = A, 80% – 89% = B, 70% - 79% = C, etc.).  The following components are the criteria for calculating the course grade.

Quizzes                                                10%

Mid-term                                         25%

Final                                                     25%

Current Events Papers                           10%

Book/Journal Review(s)                     20%

Participation/Attendance                      10%

                                                            100%

 

 

CLASS SCHEDULE

 

Week 1 (Aug 23-27): Public Administration Definitions and the Politics (Policy) –Administration Dichotomy                          

            Monday: Introduction: Go over syllabus and Introductions

Wednesday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 1 and Woodrow Wilson. 1887. “The Study of Administration.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes).

 

Week 2 (Aug. 30-Sept. 3): Bureaucracy and the Role of Bureaucracy in a Democracy                            

Monday: Weber, Max. 1922. “Bureaucracy.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes).

Wednesday: Rosenbloom, David H. 1983. “Public Administrative Theory and the Separation of Powers.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes).

There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 3 (Sept. 6-10): Social Equity                                                                        

            Monday: No class, Labor Day

Wednesday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 12 and H. George Frederickson. 1971. “Toward a New Public Administration.”  Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes).

 

Week 4 (Sept. 13-17): Honor, Ethics, and Accountability                                                                        Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 5

Wednesday: Dennis F. Thompson. 1985. “The Possibility of Administrative Ethics.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 5 (Sept. 20-24): Organization Theory                                                                       

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 6

Wednesday: Taylor, Frederick W. 1912. “Scientific Management.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 6 (Sept. 27- Oct.1): Organizational Behavior                                                                  

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 7

Wednesday: McGregor, Douglas Murray. 1957. “The Human Side of Enterprise.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 7 (Oct. 4-8): Leadership                                                                                        

            Monday:  Midterm (Bring blue books!)    

            Wednesday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 10

 

 

Week 8 (Oct. 11-15): Public Policy                                                                                     

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 2

Wednesday: Lindblom, Charles E. 1959. “The Science of Muddling Through.”

Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

                       

 

Week 9 (Oct. 18-22): Administrative Reform                                                       

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 3

Wednesday: Allison, Graham T. 1980. “Public and Private Management: Are They Alike in All the Unimportant Respects?” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 10 (Oct. 25-29): Performance and Strategic Management                        

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapters 8 and 9

Wednesday: Ronald Moe. 1987. “Exploring the Limits of Privatization. Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 11 (Nov. 1-5): Intergovernmental Relations                                                       

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 4

Wednesday: Morton Grodzins. 1966. “ The American System.”  Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 12 (Nov. 8-12): Personnel Management                                                             

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 11

Wednesday: R. Roosevelt Thomas Jr. 1990. “From Affirmative Action to Affirming Diversity.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 13 (Nov. 15-19): Public Financial Management                                                 

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 13

Wednesday: V.O. Key Jr. 1940. “The Lack of a Budgetary Theory.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Week 14 (Nov. 22-26): Public Financial Management continued                               

Monday: Charles H. Levine. 1978. “Organizational Decline and Cutback Management.”Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes).

Wednesday: No class, Thanksgiving Break

           

Week 15 (Nov. 29- Dec. 3): Auditing and Evaluation                                                                 

            Monday: Shafritz and Russell: Chapter 14

Wednesday: Alice M. Rivlin. 1971. “Systematic Thinking for Social Action.” Classics of Public Administration (Shafritz, Hyde, and Parkes). There may also be a quiz, group work, lecture, discuss current events and/or answer student questions.

 

Final Examination: To be announced. Finals are December 6-11.

 

Professor Wood reserves the right to make changes to the above schedule

 

Academic Misconduct

Academic misconduct is defined in the Student Judicial Code as the receipt or transmission of unauthorized aid on assignments or examinations, plagiarism, the unauthorized use of examination materials, or other forms of dishonesty. The professor is authorized by NIU to levy a sanction not greater than an F for the course.

 

Whenever referencing material from the texts, supplemental readings, or lectures, students should include appropriate citations to avoid problems of plagiarism.  Students are guilty of plagiarism, intentional or not, if they copy material from books, journals, or other sources without identifying and acknowledging those sources or if they paraphrase ideas from such sources without acknowledging them  (NIU Undergraduate Catalog). 

 

Statement Concerning 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 and for which they may require accommodations should notify the Center for Access-Ability Resources (CAAR) on the fourth floor of the Health Services Building. CAAR will assist students in making appropriate accommodations with course instructors. It is important that the student inform CAAR and Professor Wood of any disability-related needs during the first two weeks of the semester.

 

THE WRITING CENTER

The Writing Center provides writing assistance for all undergraduate and graduate students. The Center is located in Stevenson Towers South, Lower Level. For more information call 753-6636.

 

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 Department’s 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 – one with the student’s name and one without the student’s name. Only papers written in the previous calendar year can be considered for the award. However, papers completed in the current spring semester are eligible for the following year’s competition even if the student has graduated.

OTHER RULES

Please turn your cell phones off before coming to class. Cell phones may not be used in class, nor is it acceptable to read newspapers or bring persons not enrolled in the course to class.

 

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