Offered at all Summer School sessions
Through lectures, class discussions and extensive reading, this course explores the operating principles and practices that form the United States government. How do institutions exercise and compete for political power in our nation? How do individuals and lobbying groups take part? What theoretical models shed light on this process? You will evaluate democratic thought, as it is embodied in the Constitution and other government treatises, and examine the structure and function of various political institutions: the courts, interest groups, political parties, the Presidency, Congress and the bureaucracy. Case studies demonstrate the role of these players in the policymaking process, at both the state and national level.
Student-run legislative debates are the heart of Congressional Workshop, an academic exercise that is part of all classes. This experience serves as a practical demonstration of the academic curriculum. Beginner public speakers and expert debaters enjoy the rational discourse, peer-to-peer learning and witty repartee of JSA debate. As an interactive part of the coursework, participation is graded and constitutes a percentage of final course grades.
This college-level course is designed to prepare students for the Advanced Placement Examination in U.S. Government and Politics. It is equivalent to a one-semester Advanced Placement course.