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American Political System

by: Jayce Baumbach DVM

American Political System POLS 120

Jayce Baumbach DVM
Lansing Community College
GPA 3.59

Anthony Drago

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Anthony Drago
Class Notes
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This 11 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jayce Baumbach DVM on Tuesday October 13, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to POLS 120 at Lansing Community College taught by Anthony Drago in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 50 views. For similar materials see /class/222370/pols-120-lansing-community-college in Political Science at Lansing Community College.

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Date Created: 10/13/15
POLS 120 American Political Systems Learning Outcomes Effective Summer 2005 Areas of Study 1 Fundamental Political Ideas 2 The United States Constitution 3 Federalism A Civil Liberties and Civil Rights UI Public Opinion the Media and Interest Groups G Political Parties Campaigns and Elections 1 The United States Congress 8 The Presidency 9 The Federal Bureaucracy 13 T NOTE While every effort has been made to cover the major topic areas that are covered in each section of POLS 120 students should be aware that individual faculty members determine the speci c topics covered and the emphasis on each topic in their classes The POLS 120 Departmental Final Examination consists of a total of 50 multiple choice questions Ten of the questions are based on student interpretation of a selected paragraph Topic One Fundamental Political Ideas Learning Outcomes A U De ne politics and recognize examples of this activity in everyday life De ne government and describe its basic activities and role in society 1 Distinguish between pure 1 identify the characteristics of each J and icpi i and De ne initiative referendum and recall Recognize examples of these terms in contemporary politics De ne and understand the various political systems democracy oligarchy aristocracy totalitarianism and anarchy De ne the terms conservatism and liberalism Describe the approach of advocates of each concept to government Recognize examples of the uses of these terms in political discourse Topic Two The United States Constitution Learning Outcomes t N L is U 9 gt1 00 gt9 Describe the fundamental political values and arguments of the Declaration of Independence Explain the concepts of natural laws and the social contract Describe the basic features of the Articles of Confederation Explain the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles Explain how their defects led to the Constitutional Convention Describe the purpose members and the agenda of the Constitutional Convention of 1787 Explain the signi cance of the Great Compromise and outline its major components De ne the political beliefs of the Federalists and Anti Federalists Describe their role in the Constitutional Convention and the rati cation of the Us Constitution Explain the underlying concept behind the Bill of Rights Outline the major provisions of the Bill of Rights and describe its signi cance in the rati cation process De ne the concepts of separation of powers and checks and balances Describe their purpose and recognize examples of their operation in the federal government Explain the signi cance of the following provisions of the Constitution the necessary and proper clause the supremacy clause the commerce clause and advice and consent powers Distinguish between express and implied powers Describe the major principles enunciated by the US Supreme Court in the following cases Marburv V Madison Gibbons V Ogden McCulloch v ngla d Explain the methods of amending the US Constitution Topic Three Federalism Learning Outcomes L A J a is UV 0 De ne and distinguish the three major types of government organization confederal federal and unitaiy Identify the advantages and disadvantages of federalism Describe the different models of federalism Explain the role of the Supremacy Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause in the context of federalism De ne the concepts of police powers reserved powers concurrent powers and prohibited powers Explain the concepts and signi cance of full faith and credit privileges and immunities and rendition 0r extradition Topic Four Civil Liberties and Civil Rights Learning Outcomes l Equot J1 Ox 1 00 D i O A De ne the Bill of Rights explain its purpose and the historical origins of the concepts outlined in the Bill of Rights Explain the distinction between civil rights and civil liberties Summarize the purpose of the First Amendment explain how the Supreme Court has interpreted Freedom of Religion Freedom of Speech Freedom of the Press the Right to Petition Government and Freedom of Assembly De ne those instances where the Courts have permitted govermnent to limit First Amendment rights List and explain the rights that apply to criminal proceedings that are spelled out in the Bill of Rights Explain the right to bear arms and apply it to contemporary society Explain the right to privacy and how the US Supreme Court reached the conclusion that there is such a right Explain the contents of the Civil War Amendments with special attention to the Fourteenth Amendment and its application of all Americans Explain how the Supreme Court has interpreted the concepts of equal protection and due process of the Laws Explain the incorporation theory Explain the concept of separate but equal De ne Jim Crow laws and give examples Explain the contents and signi cance of the two cases of Brown v Board of Education Contrast the rulings in the Brown cases and Plessy v Fergpson and explain the concept of informal amendment of the Constitution Describe the purpose contents and effects of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and its subsequent amendments Describe the purpose contents and effects of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and its subsequent amendments Describe contemporary examples of denial of the right to vote Explain the various techniques used to keep former slaves and their descendents as well as poor whites from voting 12 Explain the process of women getting the right to vote 13 Distinguish between the concepts of af rmative action and reverse discrimination Understand the current Status of the issues 14 De ne and understand sexual harassment Distinguish sexual harassment and sex or gender discrimination 15 De ne and explain the rationale for the Older Americans Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act Discuss What types of protection are provided by each act 16 Describe the issues facing gay lesbian and transgender individuals Topic Five Public Opinion the Media and Interest Groups Learning Outcomes 1 De ne and apply the concept of political socialization identify the various individuals groups and institutions that perform this function 2 De ne public opinion Describe the purpose and ways in which public opinion is measured in American politics De ne the terms survey research sampling error margin of error and exit poll 3 Outline the uses of public opinion in issue development and political campaigns 4 De ne and apply the concept of pluralism 5 De ne the term mass media and outline the major types of media that fall into the de nition of that term Explain the impact of the mass media on American politics 6 Define and recognize examples of special interest groups Distinguish between broad interest groups and single interest groups Outline the ways in which they affect American politics Describe the various types of lobbying and the activities of Political Action Committees PACS Explain the in uence of political action committees on American politics r1 00 De ne and apply the concept of political culture Topic Six Political Parties Campaigns and Elections Learning Outcomes 5quot DJ 4 UV 0 9 0 P O r A H Distingniish between liberalism and conservatism Describe and apply the policy r of the D and n r quot Parties De ne the two party system explain the reasons for the persistence of this system in American politics Explain the role that is played by the Electoral College in maintaining the two party system De ne the concept of winner take all De ne the role of third parties in the American party system Give examples of signi cant third parties in the history of American politics Describe the ways in which political parties are organized in the American system De ne the function of the national political party organizations the functions of the national conventions and the purpose of party platforms Distinguish between political party caucuses and primary elections to nominate national party candidates Describe the difference between a closed primary open primary and blanket primary Describe the purpose of the Federal Election Campaign Act and the McCain which presidential 4 mpmessional ranged mm A m quot 7 J I Culguld Act Docyubu tin Way in rm vvxl lv campaigns are nanced Describe the practical effect of the growth of independent voters on voter turnout and political party organizations in general Describe the composition structure and voting rule of the Electoral College Explain the concept of term limits and why this concept may be applied at the state and local level but not the federal level of government Explain the various reasons why a person runs for of ce Explain the impact of minority groups on our political system Describe the role played by other socio economic factors on elections Topic Seven The United States Congress Learning Outcomes r N b 4 Equot 9 gt1 90 gt0 Describe how a bill becomes a law Explain the term bicameralism and presentment in the context of law making Describe the special powers of the US Senate De ne libuster and explain its use Contrast the size and membership of the US Senate with the size and membership of the US House of Representatives Describe the special powers of the US House of Representatives Explain the role of the Rules Committee in the House De ne the major leadership roles in the US House and Senate Explain how these leaders are selected and the signi cance of the political party system in leadership elections De ne and recognize examples of apportionment redistricting and gerrymandering describe their purpose and results Describe the selection composition powers and functions of congressional committees standing committees select committees special committees and joint committees Explain the role and signi cance of conference committees Describe the process that is used to select committee Chairpersons Describe the power of incumbency Describe the process and possible results of impeachment charges and trial in the federal government Explain the role of the House and Senate individually Explain the role of the Judiciary in the process Topic Eight The Presidency Learning Outcomes t l N b P 3 quot Describe the role and power of the president as Chief of State Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces Chief Legislator Chief Diplomat Chief Executive and party leader Recognize examples of how these powers are exercised De ne the veto and pocket veto Explain how and why the president exercises these powers Explain the concepts of line item veto and legislative veto Explain the issues related to each type of veto at the federal level Describe the election powers and functions of the US Vice President Describe the line of presidential succession Describe the selection process composition and powers of the President s Cabinet Recognize examples of cabinet departments Explain the role of the cabinet as advisers to the President De ne the term kitchen cabinet and explain its role in the White House De ne the Presidents powers in the context of war Explain the role of the War Powers Act Murinzl La MM Ac x wwwmm mm quotW39m A A De ne and CAPl39aUl lJ E7 puw lb UL pputntment and icumv i that up 4111un iv the President Topic Nine The Federal Bureaucracy Learning Outcomes P U De ne the term bureaucracy and describe its role in private and public organizations De ne and recognize examples of the spoils system and the civil service system in the federal bureaucracy Describe the purpose and structure of the independent regulatory agencies and independent executive agencies in the federal government Describe the efforts that have been undertaken to make government more accessible and accountable to citizens Explain the concept of legislative oversight function and its impact on executive branch agencies Distinguish between issue networks and iron triangles and explain their role in policymaking Describe the concept of privatization private contracts and its impact on government services and costs


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