PO210 Comparative Political Systems

for SP 2008

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PO 210 Comparative Political Systems


SP 2008 HO


Pasley, James F.


Associate Professor of Political Science


Ph.D.  Political Science

Office Location

Mackay 20.5

Office Hours

T/R 1:00 - 2:30 & W 1:00 - 4:00

Daytime Phone




Web Page


Class Days


Class Time

1:00 - 2:15 PM

Credit Hours



Hauss, Charles.  2006.  Comparative Politics.  Belmont, CA:  Thompson/Wadsworth Publishing.

Soe, Christian.  2007  Annual Editions:  Comparative Politics 0708  Guilford, CTMcGraw-Hill/Dushkin.


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Course Description:
Introduction to the concepts and approaches in the field of comparative politics and government. Included is the comparative analysis of political institutions, processes, and problems in selected countries. 3:0:3

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe the several general systems of government including democracy, monarchy, theocracy, military dictatorship, etc.
  2. Use pertinent historical and contemporary examples of each type of system of government.
  3. Compare and contrast the sources of public authority and political power of various systems.
  4. Compare and contrast various governing institutions.
  5. Describe the relationships between citizens and states.
  6. Describe political change in various governing systems.
  7. Discuss policy issues of several different nations.
  8. Relate what is being learned to current events.
  9. Describe how ethics might be involved in various political systems.

Core Assessment:

Class Assessment:

Exams will consist of short answer and essays.  Each of the three exams will encompass 25% of the final grade.  The final exam is cumulative.  The remaining 25% will consist of a research paper to be written on a country selected with permission of the professor.   The research paper is intended to be a scholarly effort and must include eight sources (four of which should be from academic journals).  The paper should be eight to ten pages in length and include a bibliography.  Students are required to present the findings of their paper to the class near the end of the semester.  Presentation dates will be assigned by the professor.  20% of the paper grade will be based on the student's presentation.


Course Requirements:


Assignment                                                             Percentage of Final Grade

      Exam One –  February 19                                                                   25%

      Exam Two –  March 20                                                                      25%
      Paper/Presentation – May 1                                                                25%

      Final Exam –  May 6                                                                           25%


Late Submission of Course Materials:

Late papers will be assessed a one letter grade penalty for every day they are late.  Missed exams may be taken late at the discretion of the professor.  Make-up exams always are more difficult and students should strive to take exams on time.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Please be on time and attentive.

Children are not permitted in class.

Please turn off phones and wireless devices while in class.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:



Meeting                                                                                    Assignment


January  15 & 17                                                                      Introduction  -- Nationalism,

Ethnicity and Political



  22 & 24                                                                     Industrialized Democracies: 

Hauss 1 -2; Soe  14 – 19


  29 & 31                                                                     Constitutional Democracy:

Hauss 3; Soe 11 - 13, 20 - 22


Feb.      5 & 7                                                                          The Westminster Model: 

            Hauss 4; Soe 1 - 4


            12 & 14                                                                      Hybrid Democracies:   

Hauss 5 & 6; Soe 5 - 10


February   19                                                                          EXAM 1 

       21                                                                         European Union: 

Hauss 7; Soe 23 - 25


                26  & 28                                                                  Transitional States: 

Hauss 8 & 9; Soe 26 - 29


March         4 & 6                                                                   Power in the Global South –                                                                                               China:  Hauss 10 & 11; Soe 33 & 34


                      11 – 13                                                              SPRING BREAK


        18                                                                     Weak Democracy – India

Hauss 12; Soe 35


March           20                                                                     EXAM 2        

                 25 & 27                                                                 Theocracy – Iran

Hauss 13

Failed States:  Hauss 14

Soe 36 - 42


 1 & 3                                                              Authoritarianism in Africa:        

Hauss 15; Soe 32


            8 - 10                                                               Presidential Systems in Latin

America:  Hauss 16; Soe 30 & 31 




April       15                                                                              AFRICA                 

               17                                                                             ASIA

               22                                                                             EUROPE

               24                                                                             THE MIDDLE EAST
               29                                                                             NORTH & SOUTH AMERICA

May          1                                                                             OCEANIA & PAPERS DUE

MAY 6 FINAL EXAM  1:00 - 3:00

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 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-86

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85

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Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  3. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  4. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  5. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  6. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  7. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87-88

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Last Updated:12/20/2007 3:03:51 PM