Washington Center

Fall Semester 2017

General Research

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Day and Time: 
Wednesdays, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Quarter Dates: 
September 27 to December 6, 2017
Semester Dates: 
August 30 to December 6, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Core Seminar
Description: 

Research methods in the social sciences are a set of tools that assist us in understanding our world. This seminar is designed to teach you how to be a critical observer of and contributor to that world using these methods. The course has an academic and a practical or civic component. As scholars, we are interested in contributing to a body of knowledge based on the systematic examination of our surroundings; we ask questions, develop theories, collect data to subject to various forms of analysis, and submit results in written form for critique by experts in our field and ultimately for publication in our discipline’s scholarly journals. As practitioners and citizens, we are interested in devising solutions to the world’s problems; we ask questions, examine relevant bodies of knowledge, develop arguments and communicate them to stakeholders to effect change. We will spend the term being both scholars and practitioners/citizens, using your internship experiences, DC, and the larger national and global community, to explore questions and answers through each of these lenses with the tools that improve our lives.

 

Draft Syllabus

Course ID: 
UCDC191A01F17

International Policy

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Day and Time: 
Tuesday, 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Quarter Dates: 
September 26 - December 5, 2017
Semester Dates: 
August 29 - December 5, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Core Seminar
Description: 

This course is designed to help you think systematically about international and global policy issues, and will guide you in writing a substantive research paper based on a topic of your choice. The course seeks to consider contemporary events and policy questions with reference to the recent history of world politics and foundational theories of comparative and international politics. Through news briefings, student research, and course readings, we will engage with a wide range of issues and problems that are of international and global scale, while identifying and trying to understand the behavior of major actors in the international political arena of the 21st century. Within this framework, we will also reflect on continuities and changes to the international system and the possible future trajectories of world (dis)order.

Draft Syllabus

 

*Required for all semester students enrolled in the Congress, Supreme Court, Presidency, International Policy and Media seminars:  

The first four weeks of this semester (August 30 to September 20) will be spent in a special topics module taught by Professor Jennifer Diascro on Wednesdays, 6:30-9:30 p.m. This module will account for 15% of the core seminar final course grade. See syllabus below (forthcoming). Please contact Dr. Diascro at jennifer.diascro@ucdc.edu with questions. 

Dr. Danielson will begin teaching the International Policy seminar on Tuesdays, beginning September 26, and he will officially be your instructor of record for the term, responsible for computing and submitting final course grades at the end of the term.

**NO additional registration required.

Course ID: 
UCDC191E01F17

U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Term or Semester: 
Day and Time: 
Friday, 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Semester Dates: 
September 1 to December 8, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Semester Elective
Description: 

What are the United States’ interests in the Middle East?  Who and what determine those interests?  And how are those interests pursued?  This course addresses these questions in two parts.  First, we will consider the domestic American debate on foreign policy in the Middle East, exploring key Middle Eastern trends; America’s regional interests; and the political actors and factors that shape U.S. policy in the Middle East.  We will then turn to America’s actions and relationships in the region, assessing American policy dilemmas across a wide variety of countries and events.  Students should leave this class with a strong understanding of the challenges that the U.S. faces in the Middle East, as well as an informed viewpoint regarding how well America is meeting those challenges.

 

Syllabus

 

Course ID: 
UCDCSEM6F17

The Politics of Theater

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Term or Semester: 
Day and Time: 
Thursday, 7:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Semester Dates: 
August 31 to December 7, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Semester Elective
Description: 

Since 2006, this course has canvassed the Washington DC theater scene and discovered a wealth of offerings, many of them, not surprisingly, political in focus. Which prompts the question: What should the role of an arts community be in an essentially political town? To provide escape? A dissident voice? Which raises the larger question about art: What's it good for? Why make it and attend it? We'll be asking that question throughout the semester, of artists and the institutions that produce them. More specifically, we'll examine what the impact and challenge of presenting politically-relevant work in Washington DC might be as we discuss the range and history of "political theater." What are the stories being told right now that reflect how we view the past, understand the present, and envision the future? We'll think about the role of theater as it holds up a mirror to society as our focus moves from examinations inward and inter-personal, toward portraits that are more broadly regional and national in scope.

 

Syllabus

Course ID: 
UCDCSEM5F17

American Political Journalism

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Term or Semester: 
Day and Time: 
Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Semester Dates: 
August 29 to December 5, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Semester Elective
Location: 
Off-site
Description: 

This class will explore the relationships among politics, news media and government. It will do so by focusing on particular news events in which the role of the media became an integral part of the story. Some of the sessions may change based on guest speakers’ schedules; topics of discussion and readings may also change based on breaking news events. 

Class meets at 1301 K Street, NW. The address is also known as One Franklin Square, and in addition to the 1301 address you will see some banners featuring “One Franklin Square." There are two entrances on the K Street side; please use the east entrance. It is marked “1301 East” and is the one closest to 13th Street. (Yes, the west entrance is the one actually labeled “The Washington Post,” but the west doors close at 5:30 pm, so you will only be able to enter through the east entrance.) The instructor will be waiting for you there and will let you into the newsroom. Please arrive by 6:25 pm. The closest Metro Station is Metro Center, though it is also walking distance from the UCDC building.

Students must bring a government-issued photo ID.

Syllabus

 

Course ID: 
UCDCSEM4F17

Lobbying, Money and Influence in Washington

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Term or Semester: 
Day and Time: 
Thursday, 6:00 p.m - 9:00 p.m.
Semester Dates: 
August 31 to December 7, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Semester Elective
Description: 

This course will be an intense examination of lobbying in Washington with particular attention given to the role of money and campaign finance in the operation of what has become a highly sophisticated and poorly under-stood network of advocacy and influence. It will provide a basic understanding of three different but interrelated knowledge sets: the Congress, political money and lobbying by interest groups. Student should understand that while the lectures are focused on those individual subject areas and that the semester is divided into three separate sections for that purpose, the readings later in the term will often relate to earlier lectures. This is done with the intent of “connecting the dots” among all these somewhat diverse topical areas. 

 

Syllabus

Course ID: 
UCDCSEM3F17

Economics of Public Policy

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Term or Semester: 
Day and Time: 
Thursday, 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Semester Dates: 
August 31 to December 7, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Semester Elective
Description: 

Economic thinking provides an important set of tools for almost every aspect of public policy making. This course aims to offer students a basic understanding of economics and its importance in public policy making. The will begin by providing a broad-based introduction to economics that offers students an understanding of microeconomic and macroeconomic theory including a discussion of when markets can work to achieve policy goals and when “market failures” call for government intervention. The class will then use these economic tools and theories in order to survey several specific policy areas – including health policy, tax policy, and the national debt.

 

Draft Syllabus

Course ID: 
UCDCSEM2F17

The American Presidency and Executive Power

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Day and Time: 
Tuesday, 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Quarter Dates: 
September 26 to December 5, 2017
Semester Dates: 
August 29 to December 5, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Core Seminar
Description: 

This course will put the current presidency in historical and theoretical context, drawing on a variety of readings and approaches. At its core, this class is about the problem of executive power in democratic government. We will study and reflect not only on the details of what the presidency is in theory and practice, we will also consider how it (and other parts of the system) might be changed to overcome the problems of governance that have plagued the U.S. The goal is to understand the work of the presidency and some of the different perspectives by which we might analyze presidents and their administrations.

Draft Syllabus

 

*Required for all semester students enrolled in the Congress, Supreme Court, Presidency, International Policy and Media seminars:  

The first four weeks of this semester (August 30 to September 20) will be spent in a special topics module taught by Professor Jennifer Diascro on Wednesdays, 6:30-9:30 p.m. This module will account for 15% of the core seminar final course grade. See syllabus below (forthcoming). Please contact Dr. Diascro at jennifer.diascro@ucdc.edu with questions. 

Dr. Nunez will begin teaching the Presidency seminar on Tuesdays, beginning September 26, and he will officially be your instructor of record for the term, responsible for computing and submitting final course grades at the end of the term.

**NO additional registration required.

Course ID: 
UCDC191C01F17

Campaign and Elections

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Term or Semester: 
Day and Time: 
Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Semester Dates: 
August 29 to December 5, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Semester Elective
Description: 

Even though we experienced an election last year where the rules supposedly did not apply, anyone who hopes to pursue a career in politics – or just be a good citizen -- should be familiar with some basics about the electorate and the mechanics of election campaigns.  Also, although energy, hard work, creativity, and political instinct cannot be taught, there are specific technical skills that are crucial in modern campaigns. These include knowledge of the fundamental factors that drive elections and public opinion as well familiarity with survey research, research design, statistical analysis, and paid media.

This class will teach you how to understand the fundamental factors that drive elections in America and to learn some of the skills employed by political professionals.  Many of your assignments will require you to apply the lessons of this class to real time events.  We will take special advantage of the fact that this class is taking place after a presidential election campaign and that we are in a data rich environment.  

 

Syllabus

Course ID: 
UCDCSEM1F17

Washington Media

Credits: 
4
Instructor: 
Day and Time: 
Wednesday, 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Quarter Dates: 
September 27 to December 6, 2017
Semester Dates: 
August 30 to December 6, 2017
Campus: 
UCDC
Category: 
Core Seminar
Description: 

This seminar will examine the relationship between politics, governance and the media, in all its new finery. By wedding practice with theory, the course provides an academic framework for students interning in government, news media and advocacy offices. The course complements and enhances the lessons absorbed during Washington, D.C. internships, combining reading, writing, discussion, guest speakers, field trips and scholarly research. Students will examine the evolving methods of political communication. This spans the media environment, from conventional journalism and specialty beat reporting to lobbying and governmental public relations. Students will confront the ethical and professional dilemmas that arise daily in the nation’s news capital. These include defining the boundary between personal privacy and public responsibility, developing expertise without going native and managing stories amid the collapse of print journalism and the rise of mobile new technologies. Washington, D.C. serves as the expanded classroom for this hands-on course. Field trips to the National Press Club, Capitol Hill and the Newseum will insert students into the heart of the action. Guest presentations by reporters, press secretaries, lobbyists and lawmakers will bring students face-to-face with key practitioners. Through readings and discussions, the class will be agile and responsive to the political moment. Students will complete a significant writing assignment, which will be aimed for potential publication. Students will also sharpen their writing and oral presentation skills with shorter assignments and ungraded practice.

There is no waitlist for this class, so if you would like to enroll and the class is full, please email Professor Sandalow (msandalow@ucdc.edu).

Draft Syllabus

 

*Required for all semester students enrolled in the Congress, Supreme Court, Presidency, International Policy and Media seminars:  

The first four weeks of this semester (August 30 to September 20) will be spent in a special topics module taught by Professor Jennifer Diascro on Wednesdays, 6:30-9:30 p.m. This module will account for 15% of the core seminar final course grade. See syllabus below (forthcoming). Please contact Dr. Diascro at jennifer.diascro@ucdc.edu with questions. 

Professor Sandalow will begin teaching the Media seminar on Wednesdays, beginning September 27, and he will officially be your instructor of record for the term, responsible for computing and submitting final course grades at the end of the term.

**NO additional registration required.

Course ID: 
UCDC191F01F17

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