POLS 326: 


DuSable Hall 246 

Professor:                   Fred Mayhew

Class Times:               Tuesday & Thursday, 9:30-10:45 AM

Office Hours:             Tuesday 11:00-12:00, Thursday 11:00-12:00, and by appointment

Office:                                    203 IASBO Building

Email:                         fmayhew@niu.edu

Office Phone:             (815) 753-6147 



Course Description

The general purpose of this course is to introduce students to the concept of social welfare policy and how it is carried out in the United States.  Specifically this course is designed provide an overview of the nonprofit sector and its role in social welfare policy.  The nonprofit sector is an important and often overlooked player in the policy process.  From delivering services to influencing public policy decision-making, nonprofit organizations play a vital and sometimes controversial role.      


Course Objectives

By the end of the semester students should have a basic understanding of:


Course Readings

Readings will be available on Blackboard 



Letter grades will be based on a 100 percent scale


A = 90-100; B = 80-89; C = 70-79; D = 60 – 69; below 60 = F


Course Requirements

Exam I                                    15%

Exam II                                   15%

2 essays                                   20%

Short paper                              15%

Final Exam                              25%

Participation                            10% 



There will be three during the semester (two shorter exams and a final).  Exam I will focus on the first portion of the course and will cover the topics of social welfare, governance and the size and scope of the nonprofit sector.  Exam II will cover the nonprofit subsectors and their role in governance and social welfare policy.  Exam II will include only those topics covered after Exam I, meaning it will not be cumulative.  The final exam will be cumulative, but will have a strong focus on the topics covered following Exam II.  All exams will include multiple choice and short answer questions.      



You will be required to write two short essays for the course.  The essays will be due on the day before the Exams I and II and should serve as good starting points for your test preparation.  Essays will be a minimum of 3 pages and a maximum of 5 pages, double spaced.  The essays will briefly summarize what has been covered in the appropriate section of the course and how these topics relate to and affect social welfare policy.  You will also reflect on the material - indicating what was of interest to you, what surprised you, etc.  Essay requirements will be discussed in class and more information will be available on blackboard.      


Short Paper:

You will be required to write a short (minimum of 5 pages) research paper that will be due on April 23.  To complete this assignment you will choose one of the topics covered in class (governance, strategic management, advocacy, etc.).  You will conduct research on the topic; at least three sources outside of those assigned for class, and investigate how this topic relates to social welfare policy in the United States.  More information on the paper will be distributed in class.    


Attendance and Participation:

It is expected that students will attend all class sessions.  However, it is understood that life sometimes intervenes, in which case I request that you notify me of the reason for your absence (beforehand if possible).  Participation accounts for 10% of your final grade – participation is not attained through your mere presence.     


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 a paper written in whole or in part by another; a paper copied word-for-word or with only minor changes from another source; a paper copied in part from one or more sources without proper identification and acknowledgment of the sources; a paper that is merely a paraphrase of one or more sources, using ideas and/or logic without credit even though the actual words may be changed; and a paper that quotes, summarizes or paraphrases, or cuts and pastes words, phrases, or images from an Internet source without identification and the address of the web site.


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 an impact on their course work must register with the Center for Access-Ability Resources (CAAR) on the fourth floor of the Health Services Building (753-1303). CAAR will assist students in making appropriate instructional and/or examination accommodations with course instructors. It is important that CAAR and instructors be informed of any disability-related needs during the first two weeks of the semester.


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, research 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


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 the end of March.  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.
















Class Schedule  

(Class schedule is subject to change)

*All readings are available on Blackboard unless otherwise indicated 


January 13: Introduction

            Review syllabus, course objectives and expectations


January 15:  Social Welfare


DiNitto, “Politics and Social Welfare Policy” p.1-13 in Social Welfare: Politics and Public Policy


January 20: Tackling the Concept of Governance


Rhodes, “The New Governance: Governing without Government” p.652-657


January 22: The Mixed Economy of Social Welfare


Lipsky & Smith, “Nonprofit Organizations, Government, and the Welfare State” p.625-648


January 27: For Profit Involvement in Social Services


            Ryan, “The New Landscape for Nonprofits” p. 127-136


January 29: Defining the Nonprofit Sector


            Grobman, “Defining and Describing the Nonprofit Sector” p. 13-29

February 3: Size & Scope of the Nonprofit Sector


            The Nonprofit Sector in Brief, “Facts and Figures from the Nonprofit Almanac 2008      


February 5: History of the Nonprofit Sector


            Hall, “Historical Perspectives on Nonprofit Organizations in the United States” p.3-38


February 10: Economic Theories


            “Economic and Political Theories” p.179-196





February 12: Noneconomic Theories


            Lohmann, “The Commons, a multidisciplinary approach” p.309-324


ESSAY I due in class today



February 17: EXAM 1: Social Welfare, Governance, and the Nonprofit Sector

February 19: Nonprofits role(s) in Welfare


Government, Politics, and Law” p.49-62 in The Jossey-Bass Handbook of Nonprofit Management and Leadership


February 24: Social Services


Salamon, “Social Services” p.109-123


February 26: Arts, Culture, and Recreation                                 


Salamon, “Arts, Culture, and Recreation” p.123-135


March 3: Health Care


Frank & Salkever, “Nonprofit Organizations in the Health Sector” p.129-144


March 5: Education


Salamon, “Education” p.95-109








March 17: Advocacy


            Boris & Mosher-Williams, “Nonprofit Advocacy Organizations” p.488-506






March 19: Religious Organizations


·         Smith & Sosin, “The Varieties of Faith-Related Agencies” p.651-666

·         Oliphant, “Charitable Choice, The End of Churches as we know them?” p.8-11


ESSAY II due in class today



March 24: EXAM II: Nonprofit Subsectors and their role in governance



March 26: Boards


            Axelrod, “Board Leadership and Development” p.131-151


March 31: Mission & Vision


            Grobman, “Mission and Vision Statements” p.105-112        


April 2: Strategic Management


            Werther & Berman, “The Strategic View” p.28-49



April 7: Accountability


·         Ebrahim, “Accountability Myopia” p.56-87

·         Campbell, “Outcomes Assessment and the Paradox of Nonprofit Accountability” p.243-259


April 9: Evaluation


Mark, Henry, & Julnes, “Introducing a Framework for Evaluation” p. 3-18


April 14: Personnel & Diversity


·         Polk, “Diversity in a National Nonprofit Organization: Strategy for Success” available at http://www.redcross.org/news/other/diversity/010316polk.html

·         Letts, Ryan, & Grossman, “Human Resources: Developing Employees to Advance Organizational Goals” p.107-128


April 16:  Ethics


            Grobman, “Ethics” p.113-132


April 21: Fundraising


            Thornton, “Nonprofit Fundraising in Competitive Donor Markets” p.204-224


April 23: Communications & Public Relations


            Grobman, “Communications and Public Relations” p.209-221


Research Paper due today


April 28: Social Entrepreneurship


·         Wallace, “Social Enterprise” From Chronicle of Philanthropy.

·         Dees “Enterprising Nonprofits.” P. 55–67



April 30: Summation & review for final





May 7: 10-11:50 AM