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1.2: Course Contents at a Glance

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    The following list shows a summary of the topics covered in this course. To see all of the course pages, visit the Table of Contents.

    Module 1: American Government and Civic Engagement

    • What is Government?
    • Who Governs? Elitism, Pluralism, and Tradeoffs
    • Engagement in a Democracy

    Module 2: The Constitution and Its Origins

    • The Pre-Revolutionary Period and the Roots of the American Political Tradition
    • The Articles of Confederation
    • The Development of the Constitution
    • The Ratification of the Constitution
    • Constitutional Change

    Module 3: American Federalism

    • The Division of Powers
    • The Evolution of American Federalism
    • Intergovernmental Relationships
    • Competitive Federalism Today
    • Advantages and Disadvantages of Federalism

    Module 4: Civil Liberties

    • What Are Civil Liberties?
    • Securing Basic Freedoms
    • The Rights of Suspects
    • Interpreting the Bill of Rights

    Module 5: Civil Rights

    • What Are Civil Rights and How Do We Identify Them?
    • The African American Struggle for Equality
    • The Fight for Women’s Rights
    • Groups: Native Americans, Alaskans, and Hawaiians
    • Equal Protection for Other Groups

    Module 6: The Politics of Public Opinion

    • The Nature of Public Opinion
    • How Is Public Opinion Measured?
    • What Does the Public Think?
    • The Effects of Public Opinion

    Module 7: Voting and Elections

    • Voter Registration
    • Voter Turnout
    • Elections
    • Campaigns and Voting
    • Direct Democracy

    Module 8: The Media

    • What Is the Media?
    • The Evolution of the Media
    • Regulating the Media
    • The Impact of the Media

    Module 9: Political Parties

    • What Are Parties and How Did They Form?
    • The Two-Party System
    • The Shape of Modern Political Parties
    • Divided Government and Partisan Polarization

    Module 10: Interest Groups and Lobbying

    • Interest Groups Defined
    • Collective Action and Interest Group Formation
    • Interest Groups as Political Participation
    • Pathways of Interest Group Influence
    • Free Speech and the Regulation of Interest Groups

    Module 11: Congress

    • The Institutional Design of Congress
    • Congressional Elections
    • Congressional Representation
    • House and Senate Organizations
    • The Legislative Process

    Module 12: The Presidency

    • The Design and Evolution of the Presidency
    • The Presidential Election Process
    • Organizing to Govern
    • The Public Presidency
    • Presidential Governance: Direct Presidential Action

    Module 13: The Courts

    • Guardians of the Constitution and Individual Rights
    • The Dual Court System
    • The Federal Court System
    • The Supreme Court
    • Judicial Decision-Making and Implementation by the Supreme Court

    Module 14: State and Local Government

    • State Power and Delegation
    • State Political Culture
    • Governors and State Legislatures
    • State Legislative Term Limits
    • County and City Government

    Module 15: The Bureaucracy

    • Bureaucracy and the Evolution of Public Administration
    • Toward a Merit-Based Civil Service
    • Understanding Bureaucracies and their Types
    • Controlling the Bureaucracy

    Module 16: Domestic Policy

    • What Is Public Policy?
    • Categorizing Public Policy
    • Policy Arenas
    • Policymakers
    • Budgeting and Tax Policy

    Module 17: Foreign Policy

    • Defining Foreign Policy
    • Foreign Policy Instruments
    • Institutional Relations in Foreign Policy
    • Approaches to Foreign Policy
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