2015-2016 Catalog

POL 120 American Government


This course is a study of the origins, development, structure, and functions of American government. Topics include the constitutional framework, federalism, the three branches of government including the bureaucracy, civil rights and liberties, political participation and behavior, and policy process. Upon completion, students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic concepts and participatory processes of the American political system.  This course has been approved for transfer under the CAA and the ICAA as a general education course in Social/Behavioral Sciences.  This is a Universal General Education Transfer Component (UGETC) course.

1. Demonstrate an understanding of the essential concepts and theories in the course materials.
2. Illustrate an understanding of the roles, duties, and structural characteristics of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches in the US government.
3. Analyze how American political institutions and individual behaviors interact to create political outcomes, with an awareness of the global context.
4. Define the function of political parties, interest groups, public opinion, and the media.
5. Interpret how American's political history, constitutional structure, and political culture contribute to the state of contemporary American democracy.


DRE 097 or appropriate placement scores