Political Science major

mhcc.edu/SocialScience

Faculty Adviser

Janet Campbell: 503-491-7430 | Room AC2667 | Janet.Campbell@mhcc.edu

Why study politics? Many students think political science is “dry” and “boring.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Politics affects the way you think, eat, dress, socialize and work, so it may be worth knowing about. Once you do know about it you can begin to 1) understand what is going on around you, and 2) think for yourself. Here’s what students say: “I feel more powerful now knowing what I know; “It changed my life;” “It was fun!” Note: Most political science courses are offered at least once a year, and some are available in an online format.

Students interested in pursuing the Political Science major can complete the following courses toward the Social Science requirement and/or electives on the AAOT (recommended), AS, AGS or ASLA degrees. Admitted students may also log on to Navigate to start the process of building an academic plan based on this major and can notify an adviser for review.

PS200Introduction to Political Science (Course offered online)4
PS201American Government (Course offered online)4
PS203State and Local Governments4
PS204Introduction to Comparative Politics4
PS205International Relations (Course offered online) (Cultural Literacy course)4
PS209Problems in American Politics4
PS215Global Issues4
PS217Introduction to Public Land Management: The Politics of Recreation3
PS225Political Ideology: Ideas About Government4
PS241Introduction to Political Terrorism (Course offered online)4

Transfer Schools

The following shows just one example of how students can complete an Associate of Arts Oregon Transfer degree while also taking lower-division political science courses. Be sure to work with an MHCC adviser and the transfer institution you'd like to attend to ensure correct courses are being taken. Not all courses are offered every term. Click on a course number to see what term(s) the course is typically offered.

Plan of Study Grid
First QuarterCredits
PS200 Introduction to Political Science (Course offered online) 4
WR121 English Composition (Course offered online) 4
MTH105 Mathematics in Society (or higher) 5
Elective / university requirement 4
 Credits17
Second Quarter
PS201 American Government (Course offered online) 4
WR122
English Composition: Critical Thinking (Course offered online)
or Technical Report Writing (Course offered online)
4
Health & Physical Education 3
Oral Communication 3-4
 Credits15
Third Quarter
PS204
Introduction to Comparative Politics
or International Relations (Course offered online) (Cultural Literacy course)
4
Arts & Letters 3-4
Lab Science 3-5
Elective / university requirement 4
 Credits17
Fourth Quarter
PS203
State and Local Governments
or Problems in American Politics
4
Arts & Letters 3-4
Lab Science 3-5
Elective / university requirement 4
 Credits16
Fifth Quarter
Arts & Letters 3-4
Lab Science 3-5
Social Science (other than Political Science) 3-4
 Credits13
Sixth Quarter
PS217
Introduction to Public Land Management: The Politics of Recreation
or Political Ideology: Ideas About Government
3
Science / Math / Computer Science 3-5
Elective / university requirement 4
 Credits12
 Total Credits90

PS200 Introduction to Political Science (Course offered online)

Credits 4Summer/Fall/Winter/Spring

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

Students learn about basic political concepts and themes such as legitimacy, sovereignty, democracy, political culture and socialization, participation and rights, revolution and change as well as explore various ideas about governments and their structures and functions.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Analyze political issues and their impact on the past, present, and future
  2. Apply social science methodology to current political/social issues
  3. Explain and apply major ideologies of the modern world
  4. Identify and apply basic political concepts and their impact on citizens and society.
  5. Recognize and discuss the principle factors involved in relationships between government and its citizens, economy, government and other states

PS201 American Government (Course offered online)

Credits 4Summer/Fall/Winter/Spring

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

Reflection exercises are used to guide students to explore academic concepts using their experiences as text. Students learn about basic political concepts and themes such as legitimacy, democracy, political structure and socialization, participation and rights, revolution and change as well as explore various ideas about governments and their structures and functions.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Approach political issues with critical thinking skills
  2. Discuss the principle factors which influence policy and political values
  3. Examine strategies for shaping policy from various viewpoints including politicians, citizens,interest groups, bureaucrats and the media
  4. Explain and competently discuss major groups that shape political policy such as parties and interestgroups
  5. Identify and competently discuss constitutional principles and the three branches of governmentincluding the presidency, Supreme Court, and Congress
  6. Identify key civil rights and civil liberties issues and discuss supreme court rulings in key cases

PS203 State and Local Governments

Credits 4Fall

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

This course provides students the opportunity to study state, county, city and special district government. Concepts such as states' rights, local control and direct democracy are explored. Students are encouraged to monitor the activities of state and local government and discuss the policy decisions made during the term of study. Federalism, the constitutional concept of shared powers between the state and federal government, is reviewed thoroughly.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Apply concepts of state and local government to Oregon
  2. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  3. Explain at least three issues of concern in public policy in each of the following categories
  4. statewide issues
  5. local issues, county, city or special district
  6. environmental, social or fiscal issues on any level
  7. Explain the constitutional and historical basis of federalism
  8. Explain the relationship between state government and the local governments, including counties, cities and special districts
  9. Identify the three branches of state government and explain the principle function of each

PS204 Introduction to Comparative Politics

Credits 4Spring

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

The student explores the political culture, institutions and processes of a selection of different countries of the world. Case studies represent a variety of governments and political cultures.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Analyze political issues with critical thinking skills
  2. Analyze political phenomena from a comparative perspective
  3. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  4. Describe and relate factors which shape government institutions and process
  5. Identify and relate various ideologies of world nation states

PS205 International Relations (Course offered online) (Cultural Literacy course)

Credits 4Summer/Spring

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

This course studies international relations and foreign affairs. Institutions and methodology of international governmental relations are studied, including current international problems. Primary emphasis is placed on distinguishing the developmental features of developed, developing and underdeveloped nations.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  2. Compare international relations to their own life citing areas in which they are personally affected
  3. Critically evaluate international problems
  4. Explain theories regarding the basis of nation/state interaction
  5. Identify the major concerns in foreign affairs and international relations and discuss their relative importance
  6. Locate and define problem areas and support possible solutions

PS209 Problems in American Politics

Credits 4Fall

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

This course explores current policy issues in American politics which may range from international to national to local topics. Topics may include the politics of unemployment, military affairs, civil rights, natural resources, education and other timely issues of interest to students.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  2. Critically analyze current policy and pose possible alternatives
  3. Discuss competently possible causes of these problems
  4. Identify basic problems facing American politics today
  5. Know essential factors that contribute to these problems

PS215 Global Issues

Credits 4Fall/Winter

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

Students study various global issues, which affect cross-national interactions. Examples of such issues are environmental problems, health concerns, population questions, international military actions, terrorism and human rights.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Analyze political issues with critical thinking skills
  2. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  3. Articulate and competently discuss alternative approaches to a variety of global issues
  4. Explain and competently discuss factors which influence government actions with regard to specific global issues
  5. Identify and competently discuss an array of issues affecting cross-national interactions and the global macro-environment

PS217 Introduction to Public Land Management: The Politics of Recreation

Credits 3Spring

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

The course examines the growing number of management problems associated with outdoor recreation of public lands. Emphasis is placed on legal, societal and historical explanations of management decisions and topics including agency autonomy and accountability, elements of the administrative rulemaking process, the nature and role of competing user groups and the influence such groups have over policy outcomes. Discussion is framed in the regional context of the Pacific Northwest.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. "Analyze current recreation management issues in relation to the central themes raised in the course
  2. ""Discuss the role of """"non-procedural"""" variables in affecting final policy outcomes""
  3. Discuss the various elements of the administrative rule making process by which agencies formulate rules andpolicies
  4. Explain in comparative terms the concepts of agency autonomy, agency accountability and agency capture
  5. Explain in comparative terms the key differences in approaches to recreation management between the federal landagencies and the sources of such variation
  6. Explain the degree to which Congress plays a role in affecting management decisions
  7. Explain the degree to which courts have a role in affecting final policy outcomes
  8. Explain the manner in which competing user groups are able to affect management decisions
  9. List and describe the agencies responsible for managing public lands
  10. List and describe the various impacts associated with the emergence of recreation as a principal use of public lands
  11. List and explain the principal variables affecting recreation management decisions
  12. "

PS225 Political Ideology: Ideas About Government

Credits 4Spring

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W; and MTH020; all with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

This course examines the role of ideology, the organization of propaganda and the structure of political action in the modern state. Political ideology and theory are studied through an examination of the "isms," i.e., nationalism, communism, socialism, fascism and democracy. The relationship of the individual state through rights and responsibilities is emphasized. A principle focus is to associate political theory and political action through an understanding of political ideology.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  2. Explain the comparative and related features of these ideological guides to humanity and civilization
  3. Explain the development of each ideology, its principle features and problems in its practice
  4. Identify the ideologies' practices in modern nation states

PS241 Introduction to Political Terrorism (Course offered online)

Credits 4Winter

Registration Requirement: RD090 and WR090, or IECC201R and IECC201W, each with a grade of "C" or better; or placement above stated course levels.

This course is a review of terrorism as a political and social statement, with an attempt to understand its motives, objectives and outcomes. Particular attention is given to selected circumstances that are especially conducive to terrorists' acts. A special effort is made to distinguish which lifestyles and religions promote terrorism, and to study the history and development of terrorism as a modern mechanism for obtaining political concessions.

This course fulfills: Human Relations; Social Science

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Analyze terrorist organizations
  2. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  3. Articulate motivations of current terrorist incidents using critical thinking
  4. Identify key factors behind terrorist movements

PS298 Political Science Research

Credit 1Summer/Fall/Spring

Registration Requirement: Instructor and dean's consent. PS298 students must be concurrently registered in any political science course. For information, call 503-491-7430.

- maximum 2 This course develops skills needed for the successful completion of a guided exploration of various themes in political science. Critical themes include freedom and oppression, peace and conflict, the status of women in the world, political literature and various other topics. Students may repeat PS298 for a maximum of 2 credits. PS298 students must be concurrently registered in any political science course.

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Apply social science methodology to current issues
  2. Critically analyze alternative approaches to common concepts
  3. Discuss competently core concepts
  4. Organize and assess logical sequences leading to conclusions

Course offered online

Cultural Literacy course