Course Descriptions - Undergraduate Calendar 2014-2015

University of Waterloo Home | Undergraduate Calendar | Course Description Index | Contact Us | Privacy
University of Waterloo
P O L I T I C A L   S C I E N C E 



Notes

  1. Courses normally meet three hours per week; however, each instructor determines the pattern of meetings for his/her courses.
  2. Some of the courses listed are not offered in the current academic year. Precise information on course offerings and more detailed descriptions of the content of Political Science courses are available in the Department at the time students select their classes.

PSCI 100s


PSCI 100 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 014381
Introduction to Government
The comparative study of ideas, institutions, and interests central to politics and key policy issues in Canada and elsewhere.

PSCI 101 LEC,TUT 0.50Course ID: 007719
Introduction to Political Ideas
In this course, students are introduced to a number of concepts which have a bearing on how we respond to our political environment, including liberalism, conservatism, Marxism, feminism, equality, liberty, rights and justice. Some of the constraints that affect the application of these concepts to public policy are also examined.

PSCI 110 LEC,SEM 0.50Course ID: 011331
Introduction to Politics in the Contemporary World
An examination of political systems and behaviors across the contemporary world. Themes and topics may include the nature and function of the state; institutions of democracy and authoritarianism; processes of economic development; the legacy of colonialism; political parties; values/ideologies; and finally, the intensifying impact of globalization on politics of the contemporary world.

PSCI 150 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 014382
Introduction to Global Politics
An introduction to the political factors underlying the distribution and governance of wealth and power across the globe.

PSCI 190 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 014383
Special Studies
From time to time, courses of special study may be added to the program at the first-year level.

PSCI 200s


PSCI 225 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007738
Classics in Political Thought 1
A selection of some of the most influential texts in the canon of political thought from ancient to modern times.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 150

PSCI 226 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007740
Classics in Political Thought 2
An examination of some of the most important themes in Western political thought in the modern period including contemporary debates on political obligation, human rights, economic justice, and the extent of personal liberty.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 150, 225

PSCI 231 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007744
Government and Business
An examination of government, business, and civil society relations with a focus on Canada in comparative context, including national and sub-national government policies relating to key debates in socio-economic development.
Prereq: Level at least 2A

PSCI 244 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 014267
Irrational and Rational Choices in Politics
This course examines a wide range of apparently random, puzzling, or even irrational choices in political life. For example, why do powerful dictators allow independent legislatures and parties to exist? Why are frontlines of civil wars spared from violence? Why do the same people sometimes choose language to define their ethnic identity, and choose religion at other times? This course provides a unified explanation for these diverse puzzles using a simple framework of rational choices by individuals to further their self-interests.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110 or 150

PSCI 250 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 011344
The Comparative Politics of State and Nation
This core comparative politics course assesses various approaches in the study of politics within states. The emphasis is on political developments, institutions, and processes in various countries in the global South and advanced industrial worlds.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110, 150

PSCI 252 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007724
Global South
An introduction to politics of development. Topics may include colonialism, economic growth, democracy, population, gender, education, environmental issues, working children, and health.
Prereq: One of PSCI 101, 110, 150

PSCI 254 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 014384
The Political Documentary
Political documentaries are examined from the standpoint of contemporary political thought and practice, as well as the role they play in the public sphere. A range of documentary films made by government agencies, professional filmmakers, and activists will be critically assessed.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110, 150

PSCI 255 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007747
Comparative Political Economy of Advanced Industrial Democracies
An introduction to the political economy of advanced industrial liberal democracies examining how the wealth of the "rich democracies" is made and how some is redistributed through democratic institutions by the actors who control these institutions.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110.
Antireq: PSCI 283 taught Winter 2007, 2008; Fall 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011

PSCI 257 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 012170
Introduction to the Modern Middle East
This course examines the modern political history of the Middle East, with an emphasis on international affairs. It examines the colonisation of the Middle East, the rise of national self-determination and nation-states, enduring Arab-Israeli conflicts, the Cold War, and the impact of US foreign policy in shaping the modern Middle East.
Prereq: Level at least 2A
(Cross-listed with HIST 230)

PSCI 259 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 012187
Government and Politics of Asia
A comparative perspective on the government and politics of Asia.
[Note: formerly PSCI 359]
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110, 150

PSCI 260 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007749
Canadian Government & Politics
An examination of Canada's federal system, parliamentary government, and national political processes, such as the party system, interest groups, the electoral system and voting behaviour.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110

PSCI 264 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007752
American Government and Politics
An examination of the United States federal government and national political processes.
Prereq: One of PSCI 100, 101, 110

PSCI 281 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007756
World Politics
Billions of people live together in various degrees of disharmony in the anarchy - 'an', without, 'archos', governor - of world politics. The course considers the what, where, when and why of the patterns of power, of peace and war, of cooperation and conflict about the globe.
Prereq: One of PSCI 101, 110, 150

PSCI 282 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 007757
Foreign Policy
An introduction to the study of a state's foreign policy as a two-level game played at the intersection of the domestic and international spheres.
Prereq: One of PSCI 101,110,150, 281

PSCI 283 DIS,LEC 0.50Course ID: 012302
International Political Economy
An introduction to the politics of the world economy with special reference to the politics of international trade, multinational corporations, international monetary relations, global finance, comparative capitalisms, and regional economic integration.
Prereq: One of PSCI 101, 110, 150

PSCI 300s


PSCI 300 LEC 0.50Course ID: 014224
Foundations of Political Economy
An examination of influential historical and contemporary works in the study of political economy. Core themes include the relationship between politics and business, states and markets, and power and wealth.
Prereq: PSCI 110 or 150; ECON 101 or 102; Level at least 3A

PSCI 314 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007733
Quantitative Analysis
An introduction to the use of quantitative methods in Political Science. Only a rudimentary understanding of mathematics is required.
[Note: Formerly PSCI 214]
Prereq: Level at least 2A; Not open to Math students.
Antireq: ARTS 280,BIOL 361, ECON 221, ENVS 278, ISS/SDS 250A/B, 250R, KIN 222, PSYCH 292, REC 371, SMF 230, SOC/LS 280, STAT 202, 204, 206, 211, 221, 231, 241, SWREN 205R

PSCI 315 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007764
Research Design in Political Science
Introduction to the logic and limitations of experimental and non-experimental research designs. Selected studies of politics are examined to demonstrate how plausible threats to validity are made less plausible with appropriate design and data analysis.
Prereq: PSCI 214/314; Not open to Students in the Faculty of Mathematics

PSCI 324 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007771
Contemporary Political Philosophy
This course provides an introduction to, and critical assessment of, the major schools of thought which dominate contemporary debates in political philosophy. Ideals of justice, freedom and community will be examined.
Prereq: PSCI 225 or 226

PSCI 331 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007774
Public Administration
An introduction to the principles and practices of public administration including a consideration of the fit between various forms of bureaucratic organization and democratic political institutions in Canada.
Prereq: PSCI 260

PSCI 334 LEC 0.50Course ID: 011638
Public Policy
An examination of the policy-making process in liberal democratic societies, and an evaluation of the tools employed by policy analysts to understand that process.
Prereq: One of PSCI 250, 255, 260, 264

PSCI 350 LEC,TUT 0.50Course ID: 007789
Political Economy of Development
A critical examination of development problems in the global South, with the focus on North-South relations. Topics include trade, investment, aid, industrialization, agribusiness, development assistance, education, health, and food production.
Prereq: One of PSCI 250, 252, 281.
Antireq: INDEV 200

PSCI 351 LEC,SEM 0.50Course ID: 007791
Power Sharing in Divided Societies
Examination of conflict within societies and various ways in which conflict is eased or worsened through the sharing of power. Emphasis will be on pluralism, corporatism, consociationalism, and federalism.
Prereq: Level at least 3A

PSCI 352 LEC 0.50Course ID: 014386
Culture and Political Violence
An examination of structural, direct, and symbolic violence in everyday experiences as well as an exploration of ethnographic and cultural accounts of political violence 'from below'.
[Note: PSCI 281 or 351 recommended.]
Prereq: At least one 200-level PSCI course

PSCI 353 LEC 0.50Course ID: 011637
Politics in Russia
A comparative examination of political processes, institutions, and reforms in Russia, with a focus on the successes and failures of democratization.
[Note: One of PSCI 244, 250, 252, 255, 259, 260, 264 strongly recommended]
Prereq: One of PSCI 101, 110, 150. Level at least 3A

PSCI 355 LEC 0.50Course ID: 009514
Politics Among the Soviet Successor States
An examination of the consequences of the collapse of the Soviet Union that focuses on the evolving relationships among the Soviet Union's successor states. [Formerly: PSCI 355B]
Prereq: One of PSCI 250, 281, 282

PSCI 358 LEC 0.50Course ID: 012183
Political Change in Greater China
An examination of the government and politics of Greater China, including mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau. Topics include their historical traditions, the transformation of political parties, state institutions, political leadership, the military, democracy movements, economic reforms and foreign relations.
Prereq: Level at least 3A

PSCI 360 LEC 0.50Course ID: 011768
Topics in Canadian Government and Politics
Topics vary from time to time: e.g. the federal system, parliamentary government to native self-government to ethnicity and multiculturalism.
Prereq: PSCI 260

PSCI 362 LEC 0.50Course ID: 014387
Cultural Politics and Indigenous Practices
This course examines cultural questions and methodological issues that have arisen in the context of research conducted in indigenous communities. It examines questions of colonialism, power, and voice in the context of indigenous struggles with the nation-state and around the globe.
Prereq: At least one 200-level PSCI course; Level at least 2B

PSCI 363 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007797
Canadian Constitutional Law
An introduction to the nature and basic principles of constitutional law. Explores constitutional conventions, the distribution of powers in the Canadian federalism, Aboriginal and treaty rights, and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Prereq: PSCI 260 or LS 101

PSCI 367 LEC 0.50Course ID: 012063
Topics in American Government and Politics
An analysis of topics related to the American system of government and politics.
Prereq: PSCI 264

PSCI 369 LEC 0.50Course ID: 012944
The Politics of Decolonization
This course examines the break-up of empires in the mid/late 20th century, and assesses how the colonial experience has shaped relations between and among former imperial polities to the present. Focus is given to questions of political identity in colonial and post-colonial societies, and how these identities shape current political challenges.
Prereq: PSCI 250 or 252
(Cross-listed with HIST 369)

PSCI 370 LEC 0.50Course ID: 011639
Women and Politics
An examination of patterns of women's participation in both Western and non-Western societies.
Prereq: Two of PSCI 250, 252,255, 260, 264

PSCI 373 LEC 0.50Course ID: 011118
Political Parties, Elections, and Political Marketing
Examination of the role of political parties and electoral competition in established democracies. Focus is given to the practice of political marketing and its implications for democracy.
Prereq: One of PSCI 231, 250, 255, 260, 264; Level at least 3A

PSCI 375 LEC 0.50Course ID: 014268
Transnational Migration
This survey of transnational migration in the contemporary moment examines the reasons people have migrated voluntarily (e.g., as migrant workers) and involuntarily (e.g., as refugees); and how international and domestic law and policies affect, enable, and/or criminalize the movements of people across state borders.
Prereq: One of PSCI 250, 252, 255, 259, 260, 264, 281; Level at least 3A

PSCI 382 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007805
Politics of Canadian Foreign Policy
An examination of issues and the foreign policy-making process in Canada. Special attention is paid to the domestic context of foreign policy.
Prereq: PSCI 260; PSCI 281 or 282

PSCI 387 LEC 0.50Course ID: 010348
Globalization
An examination of the relationship between globalization and changing forms of political authority, with particular attention to contemporary debates concerning the erosion of the territorial nation-state in world politics.
Prereq: One of PSCI 281, 282, 283, INDEV 200 or Level at least 3A International Development

PSCI 389 LEC 0.50Course ID: 012593
Global Governance
Global governance is governing beyond the state. An examination of diverse problems - global warming, international human rights, terrorism, property rights disputes, and health crises - which transcend borders and demand cooperative global solutions.
Prereq: Level at least 3A.
Antireq: PSCI 357 taken before winter 2010

PSCI 390 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007806
Special Studies
From time to time courses of special study may be added to the program at the third-year level.
Prereq: A minimum of 0.50 unit of PSCI; Level at least 3A

PSCI 391 RDG 0.50Course ID: 007807
Special Studies
From time to time courses of special study may be added to the program at the third-year level. Students wishing to take such courses should consult the Department's Undergraduate Officer.
Department Consent Required

PSCI 400s


PSCI 402 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014225
Politics of International Trade
An examination of the political underpinnings of international trade. The material discussed is both theoretical and applied with attention to interest groups and institutional arrangements, including intergovernmental organizations, important to trade policy.
Prereq: PSCI 283

PSCI 403 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014226
Topics in Politics and Business
Examination of selected topics of current interest to faculty and students.
[Note: This course is repeatable up to two times, subject to different content.]
Prereq: Level at least 4A Honours Political Science students

PSCI 404 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014527
Globalization, International Business, and Development
Examines the impact of international business on development in the context of economic globalization. Explores contending perspectives on how international business practices have affected economic, social, and political development in host countries, home countries, and the world in general.
Prereq: Two of PSCI 252, 283, 300, 350, 387, 389.
Antireq: PSCI 490, Section 001 taken Fall 2011 and Fall 2012

PSCI 405 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014528
Chinese Political Economy
Introduction to the study of contemporary Chinese political economy. Explores various aspects of the deep economic, political, and social changes associated with China's transition from a command to a market economy since 1978.
Prereq: PSCI 259 or 358

PSCI 421 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007813
Justice and Gender
Theories of justice are concerned with the distribution of the basic goods of society - money, power, status, leisure, and so on. The course considers how the gender system fares from the standpoint of liberal justice, and to what extent the promises of liberal justice can be used to overturn the unequal treatment of women.
Prereq: One of PSCI 225, 226, 291, 292, 370, LS 201; Level at least 4A

PSCI 423 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007815
Democratic Theory and Practice
An examination of the justification and limitations of democratic government, as well as more practical applications of democratic theory to the workplace, judicial review, legal obligations, etc. The focus will be on problems of democratic theory and practice.
Prereq: PSCI 225 or 226; Level at least 4A

PSCI 426 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007816
Selected Subjects in Political Philosophy
A selective treatment of basic themes in political philosophy in the modern and pre-modern times.
Prereq: PSCI 323 or 324; Level at least 4A

PSCI 428 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007818
The State and Economic Life
An examination of current debates and competing ideological traditions about the relationship between the state and economic life.
Prereq: Four PSCI courses; Level at least 4A

PSCI 431 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007819
Canadian Public Policy
An examination of major trends in Canadian public policy in selected issue areas with a primary focus on the federal level.
Prereq: PSCI 260, 334; Level at least 4A

PSCI 432 LEC,TUT 0.50Course ID: 005377
Global Environmental Governance
Examination of the ways in which world society is striving to address environmental challenges by means of 'global governance' - that is, international organizations and institutions intended to deal with these challenges. The history of international environmental politics will be reviewed, specific organizations and other actors involved in global environmental governance will be examined and the management of particular global environmental challenges investigated.
Prereq: Level at least 3A
(Cross-listed with ERS 404)

PSCI 433 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007776
Topics in Canadian Public Administration
Selected issues in public administration with particular reference to recent developments in Canada.
[Note: Formerly PSCI 332]
Prereq: PSCI 331; Level at least 4A

PSCI 434 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007822
Comparative Public Administration
A comparative survey of public administration in both developed and developing areas. The focus is on the rise of the administrative state in a variety of cultural and political contexts.
Prereq: Four PSCI courses; Level at least 4A

PSCI 435 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014529
Comparative Public Policy
An examination of explanatory theories of public policy and selected public policy issues in comparative perspective.
Prereq: PSCI 334

PSCI 439 SEM 0.50Course ID: 012359
Global Social Policy
This course examines three interrelated aspects of global social policy: the global social issues resulting from increased economic integration, the role of international governmental and non-governmental actors in fashioning cross-national responses to these issues, and the effects of global and regional economic and political integration on domestic social policy.
Prereq: One of PSCI 334, 357, 387, 389; Level at least 4A

PSCI 451 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007827
Comparative Political Systems: Eastern Europe
A comparative examination of political institutions and processes in the states of Eastern Europe.
Prereq: Level at least 4A

PSCI 452 SEM 0.50Course ID: 012947
Comparative Political Parties
With a primary focus on advanced industrialized countries, this course examines the origin and function of parties, party organization, their social and economic basis, the party system and its evolution, radical left and right parties, and the decline or adaptation of parties.
Prereq: One of PSCI 250, 252, 255, 373; Level at least 4A.
Antireq: PSCI 490 taken Winter 2008

PSCI 454 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007830
Topics in Politics in Global South
An examination of social and political change with the focus on rural structures and processes.
Prereq: Level at least 4A

PSCI 455 SEM 0.50Course ID: 012949
Comparative Political Economy
Focusing especially on advanced industrialized countries, this course surveys the key topics in political economy including the influence of politics on social and economic policies in relation to welfare states, labour markets, training, corporate governance and technological innovation. The course also explores the social and economic consequences of politics such as poverty, inequality, growth and decline.
Prereq: Four PSCI courses; Level at least 4A

PSCI 456 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007831
Ethnic Conflict and Conflict Resolution
This course examines the causes of ethnic conflict but focuses in particular on the strategies which states use to manage or resolve such conflicts. The review of state strategies is comprehensive in nature, and includes approaches which are morally unacceptable as well as approaches which many consider morally desirable.
Prereq: Four PSCI courses; Level at least 4A

PSCI 458 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007832
Cultural Explanations of Politics
Critical assessments of selected explanations of political authority, political organization, political conflict and political violence in terms of cultural values.
Prereq: One of PSCI 250, 255, 281, 282; Level at least 4A

PSCI 460 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014388
The Cultural Politics of Israel/Palestine
The cultural politics of the Israel/Palestine conflict, with an emphasis on understanding the complex narratives of violence, peace, and human rights that circulate across the region, as well as among those in diaspora and exile. The course focuses on the everyday life of those affected by the violence.
Prereq: PSCI 257 or 351; Level at least 4A

PSCI 461 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007834
Canadian National Politics
Selected aspects of Canadian national politics.
Prereq: PSCI 260; Level at least 4A

PSCI 462 SEM 0.50Course ID: 013476
Government and Politics of Indigenous Peoples
An introduction to the history and development of government policy and regulations that have altered the political and social structures of aboriginal societies. We explore contemporary challenges to government policy and regulations, as reflected in the struggles for land, aboriginal rights, and self-government, as well as the development of a global identity.
Prereq: Level at least 4A

PSCI 463 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014530
Rights and Public Policy
An examination of the role that rights and rights discourse plays in public policy development and policy change. Examines Canadian public policy in relation to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and human rights legislation, as well as cases in comparative context.
Prereq: PSCI 260 or LS 101

PSCI 472 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007837
Women and Public Policy
An examination of public policy from the perspective of women's experiences and needs. The course reviews policy developments in Canada and elsewhere, and reflects on the significance of feminist approaches to public policy.

PSCI 479 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014531
International Political Economy of Asia
Explores patterns of economic development in Asia at the national level as well as the political and economic implications of growing interdependence in the region.
Prereq: PSCI 259 or 283

PSCI 480 SEM 0.50Course ID: 014227
China and Global Governance
This course examines China's activity in global governance across a number of major issue areas: security, economy, human rights, the environment, and social policy. It considers the evolution of China's relations with the international system, Chinese perspectives on globalization, and how China's involvement in global governance has shaped its domestic institutions.
Prereq: Level at least 4A Honours Political Science students

PSCI 481 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007841
Interstate War
An examination of research on the causes and consequences of interstate warfare.
Prereq: Level at least 4A; PSCI 281 or 282

PSCI 482 SEM 0.50Course ID: 012950
Critical Security Studies
This course reviews critical analytical models for the study of security and covers a range of issues which might be considered non-traditional including environmental security, public safety, cyber security, and counter-terrorism.
Prereq: PSCI 281 or 282; Level at least 4A

PSCI 485 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007844
Selected Topics in International Political Economy
Contemporary perspectives and issues in international political economy, with particular attention to advanced industrial countries. Topics include political/economic cooperation, the politics of trade, and the politics of adjustment.
Prereq: PSCI 283 or 387; Level at least 4A

PSCI 486 LEC 0.50Course ID: 010240
Special Topics in International Diplomacy
This course will deal with contemporary perspectives and issues in diplomacy. Topics include public diplomacy, the use of technological innovation such as cyber-diplomacy, the widening of the definition of diplomats, multilateral diplomacy, and 'niche' diplomacy.
Prereq: One of PSCI 281, 282, 283; Level at least 4A

PSCI 487 SEM 0.50Course ID: 012951
International Relations Theory
This course examines the major schools of international relations theory with attention paid to both positivist and post-positivist approaches.
Prereq: PSCI 281 or 282; Level at least 4A

PSCI 488 LEC 0.50Course ID: 013955
Global Food and Agricultural Politics
This course examines the global food and agriculture system. Specific themes to be covered include political and governance issues related to the Green Revolution, global food corporations, agricultural trade liberalization, food aid, international agricultural assistance, the global agro-chemical industry, and agricultural bio-technology.
Prereq: Level at least 3B.
Antireq: ERS 489/PSCI 489/GEOG 429
(Cross-listed with ERS 462, GEOG 462)

PSCI 490 LEC 0.50Course ID: 007847
Special Subjects
From time to time courses of special study may be added to the program at the fourth-year level.
Prereq: A minimum of 0.50 unit of PSCI; Level at least 4A

PSCI 491 SEM 0.50Course ID: 007848
Special Subjects
From time to time courses of special study may be added to the program at the fourth-year level.
Prereq: A minimum of 0.50 unit of PSCI; Level at least 4A

PSCI 492 RDG 0.50Course ID: 007849
Special Subjects
From time to time courses of special study may be added to the program at the fourth-year level. Students wishing to add such courses should consult the Department's Undergraduate Officer.
Department Consent Required

PSCI 499A ESS,SEM 0.50Course ID: 007859
Special Honours Essay
Honours Political Science students wishing to undertake a senior honours essay in their fourth year should consult the Department's Undergraduate Officer.
[Note: A numeric grade for PSCI 499A will be submitted only after the completion of PSCI 499B.]
Department Consent Required
Prereq: Level at least 4A Honours Political Science students only

PSCI 499B ESS,SEM 0.50Course ID: 007860
Special Honours Essay
Honours Political Science students wishing to undertake a senior honours essay in their fourth year should consult the Department's Undergraduate Officer.
Department Consent Required
Prereq: PSCI 499A; Level at least 4A Honours Political Science students only