PA501 Public Affairs Concepts & Theory

for FAP 2007

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Mission Statement: The mission of the School of Graduate and Professional Studies at Park University is to provide leadership and directions to Park University's graduate and professional programs to assure that they are specialized, scholarly, innovative, and designed to educate students to be creative, independent, and lifelong learners within the context of a global community.

Hauptmann School for Public Affairs Mission Statement
The Hauptmann School of Public Affairs offers a citizen-centered, professional program of graduate study that is grounded in the liberal arts tradition.  As participants in HSPA's vibrant academic community, faculty and students consider, with the coursework, the larger issues of democracy, stewardship, and technology.  In so doing, HSPA seeks to prepare students for the courage and discernment to act for the common good in the global context.  Going beyond competence, students develop knowledge, skills, and values requisite for leadership and service in and across all sectors of society, including government, business, and nonprofit.  HSPA cultivates public affairs as a life-long passion that is fundamental to citizenship in a free society.

Vision Statement: Park University's School of Graduate and Professional Studies will be an international leader in providing innovative graduate and professional educational opportunities to learners within a global society.

Hauptmann School for Public Affairs Vision Statement
The Hauptmann School for Public Affairs will serve the common good by graduating leaders who exercise authority responsibly, make ethical decisions, act with moral courage, and advance human dignity world-wide.


PA 501 Public Affairs Concepts and Theory


FAP 2007 GS


James, Ray S.


Senior Instructor


M.P.A., University of Missouri, 1989
Chancellor's Certificate in Public Administration, University of Missouri at St. Louis, 2006

Office Location

Downtown Campus, 911 Main Street, Kansas City, Mo.  64105

Daytime Phone

816-931-5293 (h). Fax messages may be sent to this number.


Class Days


Class Time

5:45 - 8:15 PM

Credit Hours


1. Robert P. Denhardt, Theories of Public Organization, Harcourt Brace College Publishers
2. Saumel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations, Simon & Schuster
3. George M. Kelling & Catherine M. Coles, Fixing Broken Windows, Simon & Schuster
4. Amatai Etzioni, The Monochrome Society, Princeton University Press
5. John Mueller, Capitalism, Democracy, and Ralph=s Pretty Good Grocery, Princeton University Press
6. Robert D. Putnam, Bowling Alone, Simon & Schuster
7. Terry L. Jordan, The U.S. Constitution and Interesting Facts about it, Oak Hill Publishing Co.

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:
1. Brian R. Fry, Mastering Public Administration, Chatham House Publishers
2. Jack C. Doppelt/Ellen Shearer, Nonvoters, America=s No-ShowsSage Publications
3. Robert P. George, The Clash of Orthodoxies, ISI Books
4. Jan S. Prybyla, The American Way of Peace, University of Missouri Press

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
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Course Description:
An introduction to the field of public affairs and to the current problems in the area. Public affairs will be related to concepts of organizational theory and organizational behavior with an emphasis on the special nature of public organizations. The emphasis areas of the M.P.A. program and their interrelationships will be explained.
The basic goal of this course is to provide students with an understanding of the field and an introduction to its segments as well as to their interrelationships. Since we "meet" in a virtual setting, students will play a pivotal role in the class's success. Not only will they need to follow their reading schedule and submit required assignments on time, but they must also engage in online discussions with their fellow classmates.

In one semester we will read seven books and cover a whole range of concepts and theories. Students should "come to class" each week (via our online conferencing area) with questions, comments and new ideas.


Educational Philosophy:
Using all available forms of research and information gathering, the instructor believes in a Socratic approach. Students will be encouraged to interact with the instructor and each other in the pursuit of truth and excellence. The instructor is especially concerned that students develop their particular styles of presentation, both oral and written, and show an increased understanding of the interrelationships of the public affairs field and the political/legal environment in which the individual public servant works.

The instructor is also concerned that students show an understanding of the ethical issues that face public and other not-for-profit staff members.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Become acquainted with the basic concepts of public affairs and organizational theory
  2. Understand the relationships of the social, economic and political aspects of public affairs
  3. Recognize the complexity of public problems and the issues underlying their attempted solutions within a democratic political system
  4. Discover the connections between the study of public affairs and organizational theory
  5. Develop personal approaches and opinion about the solution of public problems
  6. Build awareness of the ethical dimensions of public affairs

Core Assessment:

Class Assessment:

1.  Each student will produce a brief analysis/critique of the administrative thinker listed in the calendar for weekly consideration.  These reports are due on the evenings indicated.  Late papers may not receive full credit.  Papers may be presented in class as decided by the instructor.  Each report, not less than 4 pages in length, summarizes the thought of the author being considered.  The student is to show the relevance of the author=s basic ides to the field of public administration, as well as one=s own field.  It will be necessary to prioritize and exclude material the student judges as less important.  25 points each.

2.  Each student will prepare a full-length paper, based on one of the additional books we are to read and discuss.  Book papers will be allocated among students so that each book receives adequate attention.  The paper is no less than 8 pages in length, and analyzes the thought of the author and its consequences for public policy.  Outside sources are strongly suggested.  These papers may be Acombined@ by committees or groups of class members for presentation to the class on the evenings indicated.  The book paper must be in complete paper form with cover, contents, summary, and notation.  100  points

3.  Readings Analysis: each student will select two of the weekly public administration theorists listed in the calendar.  They are to be compared and contrasted in a brief paper (about 7 pages).  An outside, professional or governmental source about each is to be found and used, in addition to the text or Fry.  Material from any of the required books may also be used with great benefit!  Thereby the student can further demonstrate what he or she has learned from those books  AA@ students will follow this advice!  This paper, too, is in proper form with notation and Asources Cited@.  It will be presented in class on one of the last 3 sessions.  75 points

4.  Constitution Comprehension:  Using the book by Jordan, and any other sources, each student will integrate into the Final Project (Rubric Requirement) a treatment of an issue closely related to the United States Constitution.

5.  Final (Rubric)   On the last night, summaries/critiques of the four required reading books on which the student did not write a paper.  (See No. 2, above)  The student is to demonstrate an understanding of each book, its relevance to the field of administration, and the impact of the American Constitutional system of government. (see No. 4, above).  Also, the student is expected to draw on the weekly management theorists who were discussed in class.  (See No. 1 & 3, above) The Rubric Requirement will be further explained in class.  It should be viewed as demonstrating an integrative knowledge of all that has been read and discussed.



Exceeds Expectation (3)

Meets Expectations (2)

Does Not Meet Expectations (1)

No Evidence (0)

Cognitive Skills

Content/Comprehension: Factual Accuracy

No factual errors

1 or 2 factual errors

2-4 factual errors

More the 4 factual errors

Analysis & Synthesis of authors ideas

All 12 authors included

At least 4 books and 6 weekly authors

At least 4 books and 4 weekly authors

4 books and but fewer than 4 weekly authors

Application of U.S. Constitution

Impact, sources & 2 sides of an issue

Impact only & 2 sides of an issue

Impact & 1 sides of an issue

No impact or application

Technical/Professional Skills

Research Skills: Use of required material and outside sources. 

All required sources included and outside sources

Uses all book authors and weekly authors only

All book authors and at least 4 weekly authors

4 book authors only

Profession writing skills

No errors and thorough notation

1 or 2 errors with adequate notation

2 to 5 errors with at least some notation

More than 5 errors no notation

Professional Disposition

Open Mindedness: Appreciations and responds to different opinions

All sides of relevant issues explained thoroughly

Some explanation of relevant issues

One side of issues stronger than others

No effort at balance

Respect of human dignity and ability to deal with differences

Strongly developed


Mentioned in passing

Not treated

Awareness of leadership principles

Leadership principles key to paper

Leadership principles included

Leadership principles only mentioned

Leadership principles not included


Late work will not receive full credit:

Paper 1. (ACalendar)    @25=200
Paper 2. (ABook@)                 100
Paper 3. (AComparison@)         75
Mid-term (optional)                    50 (extra)
Final (Rubric)                            100
Class Participation                      25
Total                                         500                                         

90 to 100%,   A
80 to 89%,     B
70 to 79%,     C
60 to 69%,     D

Late Submission of Course Materials:
Late work will not receive full credit.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
Ordinary principles of civility and polite conduct are expected:  respectful word choice and restraint from interrupting others, for example.  Assignments are due as stated, regardless of “computer problems”.  Live cell phones and pagers are not to be brought into class.  Park University complies with all appropriate needs for special assistance and disability requirements.  For further information,  Plagiarism, representing the words and work of others as one’s own, will not be tolerated.  That matter will be further discussed in the beginning class.  It is  also expected that papers will use standard and correct English.  Persons who have difficulty in that regard are advised to seek help generally and with individual papers.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

August 20th, Introduction, discussion of syllabi, group assignment, opening discussion etc.

August 27th,  Max Weber—presentations and discussion. 

September 10th, Weber Papers Due.  Frederick Taylor—presentations and discussion.  Taylor papers due.

September 17th, Luther Gulick—presentations and discussion. Gulick papers due.                   

September 24th, Mary Parker Follett—presentations and papers due.  Mueller book presentation and Mueller book papers due.

October 1st, Elton Mayo—presentations, discussion, and papers due. 

October 8th, Kelling & Coles book papers and group presentations due. 

October 15th, Fall Break

October 22nd, Chester Barnard—presentations and papers due.  Mid Term Exam.

October 29th, Herbert Simon presentations, discussion, and papers due

November 5th, Etzione book papers and presentation due.  Turn in Mid-term examinations.

November 12th, Dwight Waldo presentations, discussion, and papers due.  All late papers due.  Late assignments will not receive full credit.

November 19th, Putnam book papers and presentation due. 

November 26th Huntington book papers and presentation due.  Presentation of Comparison papers due.  Final Examination (Rubric) explained. 

December 3rd, Comparison papers completed.  Final (Rubric) papers may be
Turned in and presented.

December 10th, All Final papers and presentations completed.

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2007-2008 Graduate Catalog Page 24-26


Plagiarism involves the appropriation of another person's ideas, interpretation, words (even a few), data, statements, illustration or creative work and their presentation as one's own. An offense against plagiarism constitutes a serious academic misconduct. Although offenses against academic integrity can manifest themselves in various ways, the most common forms of offenses are plagiarism and cheating. Plagiarism goes beyond the copying of an entire article. It may include, but is not limited to: copying a section of an article or a chapter from a book, reproduction of an art work, illustration, cartoon, photograph and the like and passing them off as one's own. Copying from the Internet is no less serious an offense than copying from a book or printed article, even when the material is not copyrighted.

Plagiarism also includes borrowing ideas and phrases from, or paraphrasing, someone else's work, published or unpublished, without acknowledging and documenting the source. Acknowledging and documenting the source of an idea or phrase, at the point where it is utilized, is necessary even when the idea or phrase is taken from a speech or conversation with another person.

Park University 2007-2008 Graduate Catalog Page 24-26

Park University insists on the highest standards of academic honesty.  All forms of cheating or plagiarism on tests, papers, or other work, will not be condoned.  Presenting the work of others as one's own is dishonest and lazy.  The penalty can extend from being given a failing grade to expulsion from Park University.  Consult your instructor about proper documentation.  Each student will be required to complete one of a number of tutorials on the subject of plagiarism, and turn in a brief critique/description of what had been learned.  Points will be awarded for critiques depending on how well the student does.  A final grade will not be awarded until the exercise and critique have been completed.

Attendance Policy:

Professors are required to maintain attendance records and report absences. Excused absences can be granted by the instructor, for medical reasons, school sponsored activities, and employment-related demands, including temporary duty. Students are responsible for any missed work. Absences in excess of four (4) class periods, in a 16-week semester (or 2, in an 8-week term) will be reported to the Director of the individual graduate program, or to the Dean, for appropriate action. Students with such a record of absences, without an approved excuse, may be administratively withdrawn from the class and notified by mail that an "F" will be recorded, unless the student initiates official withdrawal from the class(es).Park University 2007-2008 Graduate Catalog Page 28
Instructors are required to keep records and report absences.  Absence may be sometimes excused for good reason, but work must be made up within the term of enrollment, and unexcused absence may carry penalties.  In the event of two consecutive unexcused absences, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".  An AIncomplete@ will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences.  Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance (TA) of Veterans Administration (VA) educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the term of enrollment.  Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty.  Reports of "F" grades (attendance or academic) will also be reported.

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .


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Last Updated:10/2/2007 4:16:06 PM