PO210 Comparative Political Systems

for S1T 2012

Printer Friendly

Mission Statement: Park University provides access to a quality higher education experience that prepares a diverse community of learners to think critically, communicate effectively, demonstrate a global perspective and engage in lifelong learning and service to others.

Vision Statement: Park University, a pioneering institution of higher learning since 1875, will provide leadership in quality, innovative education for a diversity of learners who will excel in their professional and personal service to the global community.


PO 210 Comparative Political Systems


S1T 2012 DL


Trout, Alexis M.


Adjunct Faculty


Bachelors of Journalism, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Masters in Political Science, University of West Florida

Office Location


Office Hours

by appointment

Daytime Phone




Semester Dates

1/16/12 - 3/11/12

Credit Hours






Kesselman, Mark, et al. 2010. Introduction to Comparative Politics. Boston, MA: Wadsworth. (ISBN:0-547-21629-7)

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

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.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email helpdesk@park.edu or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information http://www.park.edu/Current/.
Advising - Park University would like to assist you in achieving your educational goals. Please contact your Campus Center for advising or enrollment adjustment information.
Online Classroom Technical Support - For technical assistance with the Online classroom, email helpdesk@parkonline.org or call the helpdesk at 866-301-PARK (7275). To see the technical requirements for Online courses, please visit the http://parkonline.org website, and click on the "Technical Requirements" link, and click on "BROWSER Test" to see if your system is ready.
FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.

Course Description:
PO 210 Comparative Political Systems: (MGE) 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

Educational Philosophy:
This class is meant to provide an open and non-threatening forum for discussion of the many political topics covered. My goal is to facilitate learning through interaction and feedback. While debate is encouraged, any degradation or intolerance of other students’ opinions will not be tolerated. 

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:

Your graded activities in this class will consist of discussions, assignments, your research paper and three exams.

The following rubric will be used:
  • Analytical quality of the main discussion response. (2 points)
  • Use of text and outside sources to support your position in the main discussion response. (1 point)
  • Use of correct grammar and spelling. (1 point)
  • Response to another student’s post. (1 point)

The analytical quality of the work. (10 points)
How the articles/texts chosen for review contribute to the understanding of the topic. (5 points)
Use of correct grammar and spelling. (5 points)

You have one research paper in this course which students are required to complete and submit to the course dropbox by the end of Week 7.  The paper should analyze the political and economic system of any country in the world not covered in one of the chapters of the text.  In other words, students may select any country to write about except for:  The United Kingdom, France, Germany, Japan, India, the United States, Nigeria, Brazil, Mexico, Russia, Iran, or China.

The paper should include an analysis of the following for the country you select:

  1. Brief historical overview (2 pages)
  2. Governmental institutions and structure (2 pages)
  3. Economic overview (2 pages)
  4. Public policy concerns and prospects for the future (2-4 pages)

The paper should be double-spaced, 8-10 pages in length, and must include a Works Cited page listing a minimum of eight sources (at least four of which should be from academic journals).

The following rubric will be used:
The analytical quality of the work. (60 points)
How the articles/texts chosen for review contribute to the understanding of the topic chosen. (20 points)
Use of correct grammar and spelling. (20 points)



Assignment                            Points
Discussion Board                 (8 @ 5 pts)       = 40
Assignments                        (3 @ 20 pts)      = 60
Paper                                   (1 @ 100 pts)     =100
Exams                                  (3 @ 100 pts)     =300

Total points available 500.
500 – 450 = A
449 – 400 = B
399 – 350 = C
349 – 300 = D
299 and below = F

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Note that all graded activities are due by midnight Sunday of the respective class week, with the exception of your initial post in each week's discussion which is due by midnight Thursday. Apart from approved excuses and absences (cleared with the instructor prior to the due date), you may expect a penalty of one letter grade reduction per day late for assignments.

Make-ups are never given for quizzes or exams, so do not miss them.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Please be respectful of other students' opinions and do not make personal attacks on other members of the class. Be mindful that when you are typing in your comments, others do not know your personality. Other students may not know when you are joking or being serious, so be clear to avoid unintentionally offending another student.
Please also be sure to post personal discussions in the Virtual Café and not on the weekly discussion boards.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Week                 Assignment

1                        Kesselman 1 & 2
2                        Assignment 1; Kessleman 3 & 4
3                        EXAM 1; Kesselman 5
4                        Assignment 2; Kesselman 6 & 7
5                        Assignment 3; Kesselman 8 & 9
6                        EXAM 2; Kesselman 10
7                        Paper; Kesselman 11 & 12
8                        Kesselman 13; FINAL EXAM

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 students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty (www.park.edu/current or http://www.park.edu/faculty/).from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

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. from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

Attendance Policy:
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, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. 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".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
ONLINE NOTE: Students must participate in an academically related activity on a weekly basis in order to be marked present in an online class. Examples of academically-related activities include but are not limited to: contributing to an online discussion, completing a quiz or exam, completing an assignment, initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a courserelated question, or using any of the learning management system tools.

Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 96

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: http://www.park.edu/disability .


This material is protected by copyright
                               and can not be reused without author permission.

Last Updated:12/31/2011 10:36:24 AM