POL 310

Dr. John J. Quinn
Comparative Politics: Theory and Research
POL 310
Office: McClain 206D  x4578

Required Texts                       Grading

This course will outline — in broad parameters — some core ideas and approaches to comparative politics.  As the field is very broad and ever increasing, we will emphasize a more traditional approach to study the field. We will first explore some historical and methodological underpinnings of comparative politics.  Then we will examine some major trends in comparative politics.

The required texts for the class are as follows:

Brown, Bernard E. Comparative Politics: Notes and Readings. 10th ed. New York:Harcourt
Brace College Publishers, 1996.

Lijphart, Arendt.  Patterns of Democracy: Government Forms and performance in Thirty- Six
2nd Edition. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2012.

Zahariadis, Nikolaos, Theory, Case, and Method in Comparative Politics. Fort Worth  TX:
Harcourt Brace College Publishers, 1997.

There will also be assigned readings posted on blackboard.


 During the course, there will be three major exams as well as two papers.  Each student is responsible for bringing a blue book on the day of the exam, including the final exam.  Each exam counts for 100 points and the papers count for 150 points: 50 for the first, 100 for the second.  Attendance and participation will be used to decide the remaining 50 points for the course. Therefore there are 500 points possible (double to get your grade).  Perfect attendance without any participation will merit a middle to low C.  Good participation and comments reflect that students have read and have an initial understanding of the materials.  So if no one can field questions about the assigned readings for the day and this persists over the course of the semester, then the grade will still hover about a middle C.  Should it become clear that students have not been reading the assigned readings prior to class, a regime of pop quizzes will be instituted and used to calculate the participation grade.