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Bryan · Social Sciences · Government - GOVT

American Government
GOVT-2305

  • Fall 2020
  • Sections 54A CRN-18991, 54B CRN-18998
  • 3 Credits
  • 08/24/2020 to 12/10/2020
  • Modified 09/14/2020

Meeting Times

Lecture

  • Monday, Wednesday, 9:10 AM to 10:25 AM

'A' meets on campus on Monday, remotely on Wednesday

'B' meets remotely on Monday, on campus on Wednesday

Room A-109

Contact Information

Instructor: Mr. Michael Burnside

Office Hours

  • Monday, Wednesday, 11:00 AM to 11:30 AM, via phone or email
  • Monday, 1:30 PM to 2:00 PM, via phone or email
  • Tuesday, 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM, via phone or email

Description

Government 2305 is a study of the organization, functions, and administration of the several branches and agencies of the national government, including a study of the federal constitution. The primary factors considered relate to the three branches of government -- judicial, executive, legislative -- major historical documents, the events that shaped the nation, and current events. Emphasis will be placed on the interaction of these subsystems. 48 contact hours. Credit: Three semester hours.

Requisites

Student must be college reading ready according to Texas Success Initiatives Standards (TSI). Please see the Catalog section under Texas Success Initiative.

Core Curriculum Statement

Through the Texas Core Curriculum, students will gain a foundation of knowledge in human cultures and the physical and natural world, develop principles of personal and social responsibility for living in a diverse world, and advance intellectual and practical skills that are essential for all learning. For details relating to this core course, please see:

http://www.blinn.edu/academics/core-curriculum.html

Outcomes

Explain the origin and development of constitutional democracy in the United States.

Demonstrate knowledge of the federal system.

Describe separation of powers and checks and balances in both theory and practice.

Demonstrate knowledge of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the federal government.

Evaluate the role of public opinion, interest groups, and political parties in the political system.

Analyze the election process.

Describe the rights and responsibilities of citizens.

Analyze issues and policies in U.S. politics.

Materials

WE THE PEOPLE 

REQUIRED |By GINSBERG

  • EDITION:  12E
  • PUBLISHER:   NORTON
  • ISBN: 9780393431261

 

Course Requirements

Syllabus Quiz (used for bonus points on 1st exam)

4 Major Exams (lowest grade is dropped)  15% each                          45% of total grade

2 Writing Assignments - both required 10% each                                 20% of total grade

Attendance                                                                                                  10% of total grade

Final Exam - required                                                                                  25% of total grade

Evaluation

Breakdown

895 - 1000 points (89.5% +)            =  'A'

795  - 894  points (79.5% - 89.4%)  =  'B'

695 -  794 points   (69.5% - 79.4%)  =  'C'

595  -  694 points   (59.5% - 69.4%)  = 'D'

< 595 points                                         =  'F'

Blinn College Policies

All policies, guidelines, and procedures in the Blinn College CatalogBlinn College Board Policies, and the Blinn College Administrative Regulations are applicable to this course.

Specific information on civility, attendance, add/drop, scholastic integrity, students with disabilities, final grade appeal, alternative retailers, campus carry and proctoring arrangements and cost.

Notice of any action taken under these protocol and procedures, by Blinn College or its employees, may be delivered by hand, through the U.S. Postal Service, or electronically to the student’s Blinn Buc e-mail account. Notice shall be deemed received upon actual receipt, on deposit in the U.S. Mail, or upon entering the information processing system used by Blinn College for Blinn Buc e-mail accounts, whichever first occurs.

Information about the changes Blinn has made to the Fall semester: Back with Blinn.

Attendance

Excused absences are allowed based on Blinn College policy and medical and legal issues that may cause a student to be absent. 

Illness, medical treatment or doctor's appointments are considered excused absences.  They must be documented by a third party professional (e.g. a note from the Blinn College nurse or a clinic)   

Legal issues are also considered excused absences but they must also be documented by a third party professional (e.g. an accident report number issued by a police officer)

Documentation must be submitted via email.

Excused absences do not effect the attendance grade; unexcused absences can effect the attendance grade.  

Based on Blinn College policy a student may be dropped from a class if 4 unexcused absences are accumulated during the semester.

Schedule

Week 1

Meeting Details

HRS

W Weekly

Tues., Aug. 25, 2020

Syllabus Overview

Assignments for next class: Read the Declaration of Independence

1.5

3

Thur., Aug. 27, 2020

Complete Syllabus Overview; begin Declaration of Independence & its sources

Reading assignment for next class: Learn vocabulary “government,” [page 5]; page 7 definitions, “Limiting Government” [8]; “pluralism” [9]; “limited government” [23] and pages 43-53

1.5

Week 2

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Sept. 1,  2020

Complete DOI & its sources and Ch. 2 Constitutional Foundations: an overview of the Constitution of 1787

Reading assignment for next class: 53-64; 633-641

1.5

3

Thur., Sept. 3, 2020

Quiz - Syllabus - due by 11:30 PM, 9-3

Ch. 2 – Ratification and Adding the Bill of Rights; begin Ch. 16 – Economic Policy – Intro

Reading assignment for next class: 641-6; 649-52

1.5

Week 3

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Sept. 8, 2020

Ch. 16 -The “Fed” and Monetary Policy; Reading assignment for next class: 652-63

1.5

3

Thur., Sept. 10,  2020

 Ch. 16 – Fiscal Policy; Reading assignment for next class: 648-9

1.5

Week 4

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Sept. 15,  2020

Ch. 16 – The Great American Real Estate Meltdown and the “Great Recession”

1.5

3

Thur., Sept. 17,  2020

ONLINE EXAM 1 (Political Theory and the DOI, Ch. 2, and Ch. 16)

 

Reading assignment to begin next class (unit): 677-89

1.5

Week 5

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Sept. 22,  2020

FIRST WRITING ASSIGNMENT “HANDOUT”

 

Ch. 17 – Social Policy: The Welfare State;   Reading assignment for next class: 689-98; 717-20

1.5

3

Thur., Sept. 24, 2020

The “War on Poverty,” Education Policy, and National Health Care; Ch. 18-Intro to Foreign Policy

Reading assignment for next class: 720-32; 734-8

1.5

Week 6

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Sept. 29,  2020

Ch.18–Foreign Policy and Democracy–From Isolationism to the Fall of the Wall; RA for Next Class: Begin Ch. 14, 553-70

1.5

3

Thur., Oct. 1, 2020

Ch. 14- The Federal Bureaucracy: Its Growth and Power  

1.5

 Week 7

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Oct. 6, 2020

ONLINE EXAM 2 – Ch. 14, 17 & 18 (Social Policy, Foreign Policy, and the Federal Judiciary)

 

RA to begin next class (unit): 593-603

 

1.5

3

Thur., Oct. 8, 2020

FIRST WRITING ASSIGNMENT DUE, NO LATE PAPERS ACCEPTED;   

 

 

Ch. 15–The Federal Judiciary-Organization of the Court System RA:604-618; 117-8

1.5

 

 

 

 

 Week 8

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Oct. 13,  2020

Ch. 15-The Supreme Court-Arriving at Decisions; Begin Ch. 4-Civil Liberties-Incorporation; RA: 118-22;

1.5

3

Thur., Oct. 15, 2020

Ch. 4–Civil Liberties–Justice Cardozo and Selective Incorporation; RA: 125-7

1.5

 Week 9

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Oct. 20, 2020

2ND WRITING ASSIGNMENT “HANDOUT”;

1st Amendment: ‘Free exercise of religion’; read each amendment when it is the assigned; RA: 127-33

1.5

3

Thur., Oct. 22, 2020

Complete ‘Free exercise’ clause; begin the  Establishment’ clause; Freedom of Speech  (‘symbolic’ speech)

RA: 133-43, all of page 143

1.5

 Week 10

 

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Oct. 27, 2020

Second, Fourth and Fifth amendments;

 RA: 144-51; 161-77

1.5

3

Thur., Oct. 29, 2020

Sixth, Eighth, and Ninth amendments; begin Ch. 5-Civil Rights: Laying the Groundwork;   RA: 177-97

 

 

1.5

 Week 11

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Nov. 3,   2020

Complete Civil Rights: The Basic Pattern (for almost all groups)

1.5

3

Thur., Nov. 5, 2020

ONLINE EXAM 3-Ch. 4, 5, and 15 (Civil Liberties, Civil Rights and Judicial Branch)

RA to begin next class (unit): 469-89

 

1.5

Week 12

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Nov. 10,  2020

Second Writing Assignment Due, Bonus Points; Ch. 12-Congress–Qualifications,  Organization & Legislation; RA: 489-505

1.5

3

Thur., Nov. 12, 2020

Congress: Other Influences & Powers

RA: 515-529; PAPERS ACCEPTED

1.5

Week 13

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Nov. 17, 2020

Second Writing Assignment Due, No Bonus Points, No Late Papers; Ch. 13-The Presidency–Characteristics and Expressed Powers of the President; RA: 529-43

1.5

3

 

 

 

 

Thur., Nov. 19, 2020

The Modern Presidency

1.5

 

Week 14

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Tues., Nov. 24, 2020

ONLINE EXAM 4-Ch. 12-13  (Congress & the Presidency) RA to begin next unit: 79-88

1.5

3

Thur., Nov. 26, 2020

THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY – NO CLASS ASSIGNMENTS

1.5

Week 15

Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

Mon., Nov. 30, 2020

LAST DAY FOR AUTOMATIC ‘Q’ DROP

 

 

 

Tues., Dec. 1, 2020

FULLY ONLINE CLASS

Federalism: The Nature of Federalism and Why it is in Decline RA: 89-99

1.5

3

Thur., Dec. 3,  2020

FULLY ONLINE CLASS

Federalism: Since the Civil War

1.5

Week 16-Finals Week

 Meeting Details

HRS

Weekly

M-TH, 

Dec. 7-10, 2020

Check the Finals Week Schedule

 

FINAL EXAMS WILL BE TAKEN ONLINE

 

3

 

TOTAL CONTACT HOURS

 

48