Prof. Maggie Rubio
Office: Room 6206 - Kendall
Telephone: (305) 237-2474
Please use "Ask the Professor" in discussion area,
to ask all non private questions about course and
WebCT e-mail for private communication.
Virtual Office Chat:
Go to Communications/Chat at a time we'll set up
as a class.
This is an introductory
level course intended to give students a comprehensive
overview of the institutions (Congress, Presidency,
the Courts) and processes and actors (elections, voting
behavior, political parties, campaigns, interest groups,
and the media) which operate in the American political
system. We will focus on the origins, development,
and current state of American political institutions
and democratic processes. Along the way we will discuss
contemporary issues such as campaign finance reform,
and congressional term limits.
The class begins with
an intensive analysis of the Founding Fathers' objectives
in forming the American Republic. We will then proceed
to an analysis of the evolution of political institutions
and processes. Topics will be examined from an historical
perspective, with particular reference to the intentions
of the original framers of the Constitution. Of
particular import for the class is whether our political
processes and institutions continue to operate in
a manner that is consistent with the democratic
principles outlined in the Constitution and which
reforms, if any, are needed.
The course provides 3
college credits that are readily transferable within
the Florida State University System. Click here to
read the official catalogue description and course
|Prerequisites and Co-requisites:
the People: An Introduction to American Politics, Shorter 4th edition. Benjamin Ginsberg, Theodore
J. Lowi and Margaret Weir.W.W. Norton, 2001
Although it is not required
to do so, students are strongly encouraged to read
a good daily newspaper so they can follow the examples
used in the lectures. The two best daily newspapers
in the United States, the New York
Times (http://www.times.com) and Washington
Post (http://www.washingtonpost.com) are available on-line
at no charge. The student rate of 50% off the regular
price for home delivery of the N.Y. Times is available
to you by calling 1.800.NYTIMES and identifying yourself
as my student.
Web Sites: the most
important tools you have.
Be sure you use
our textbook website: www.wwnorton.com/wtp3e.
- You are responsible
for learning approximately 45 pages a week in your
textbook, exploration and discussion, mini projects,
web participation, and, of course, attending class.
- The level of success that
you wish to achieve is possible in this class. It requires
however that you commit to being an active participant.
You must devote adequate time to your reading, complete
your required assignments accurately and on time,
and study. Participate in class by using our Web
site. Ask questions, seek help, put forth your maximum
effort and you will inevitably reap the benefits.
Check out the course requirements.
- Review course
calendar and assignments to be familiar with our plan
of study. Stick
to the schedule. Your tests are to be taken on
line. You will have a limited amount of time and you can
only take the test once.
- It is your responsibility
to ensure that you are properly registered or withdrawn
from this course via the Registrar by the proper dates.
- I do not keep any
reports, tests, or other items you turn in.However the
WebCT server does keep a record of everything. This
include the times you go on line and where do you
go. I use this information to award participation
- Academic dishonesty
will not be tolerated. Students involved in any
form of academic dishonesty (cheating, plagiarism,
etc.,) will receive a grade of "F" for the course.
Criteria for Grading: (See
requirements for specifics)
who get top grades (A, B+) generally:
self starters and stick to deadlines. Realistically
take time needed to reach their goals. Spend
the 6-7 hours needed to really learn a chapter/unit
well, take all quizzes, answer study guide questions and review frequently.
carefully and productively, do not fall behind,
participate actively in discussions.
Frequently report to me about what's working
for them in the course and what needs to be
improved. Don't be shy. Your feedback is
tremendously important In a distance course-I
can't "read" you the same as I can in face-to-face
all quizzes, print out and answer study guide
and essay questions.
- Enjoy reading alternative
sources that don't necessarily agree with their assumptions.
(If you are conservative read The
Nation, if are liberal The Weekly
Standard) if they are conservative, and other papers
as needed (on-line is fine). This reflects in their discussions,
participation, and other written work such as postings,
chapter reviews, etc.
Turn in high-quality written work which reflects
reading, research, well-conceived arguments,
originality, clarity of thought, and integration
of course material.
who get middle grades (B, C+) generally :
maybe 5-6 hours a chapter, and occasionally
take practice quizzes. Do not make time to use
in acceptable written work, with no serious
deficiencies in writing. They meet deadlines
generally. Their work is readable and typed.
complete assigned readings and participate in
discussions, asking occasional questions.
who get low and failing grades ( D, F) generally:
- get off
to a bad start by starting late, fall behind and
drop out of sight. They complete only part
of their readings, rely too much on chapter summaries,
do not take practice quizzes, do not bother to answer
study guide questions. Only spend around 4 hours
studying a chapter. Learning takes time.
not devote the 3-4 hours that it takes to learn
each chapter at about a C level; make excuses
such as that they "do not have time, have too
many course, have to much to do at work, etc."
contact me when they run into problems.
poor grade doesn't indicate to a lack of intelligence,
but rather lack of prioritizing, inadequate discipline
and planning. Decide what your priorities
American Federal Government-
POS 2041- MDC - Virtual College
August, 2003 Miami-Dade College