MS in IPEC Course Descriptions


Graduate courses [This is not a comprehensive list of all possible courses.  The list includes only those courses specifically noted in the Program Description.  The program director maintains a current list of area and theme concentration classes.]


PSCI 5301 Proseminar in Democratization, Globalization, and International Relations (3 semester hours) Studies major theories of democracy, democratization and globalization, relationships between democratization and globalization, and their implications for citizen politics, government performance, and regime legitimacy.(3-0) Y
POEC 5307 (PA 5307) Economics for Public Policy (3 semester hours) Economics for Public Policy is a doctoral-level course designed to introduce students to the use of economic methods of the analysis of public policy. While the primary theoretical framework for the course is microeconomics, the course also includes macroeconomics. A variety of public policy topics is covered in the course such as education and education reform, employment and the labor market, taxes and redistribution, health and health care, poverty and inequality, and public assistance programs. A central theme in the course is the role of the government.  (3-0) Y
POEC 5310 (CRIM5310) Research Design I (3 semester hours) This course is the first in a two-course sequence devoted to the research enterprise and the study of data development strategies and techniques to facilitate effective statistical analysis. Topics generally covered include: (1) issues and techniques in social science research with emphasis on philosophy of science, theory testing, and hypothesis formulation; (2) measurement and data collection strategies, reliability and validity of measures and results, sampling, surveys; and (3) examination of qualitative versus quantitative research techniques, working with observational data, field research issues, and triangulation. (3-0) Y
POEC 5313 (CRIM 5313, PA 5313) Descriptive and Inferential Statistics for the Economic, Political and Policy Sciences (3 semester hours) This course is an introduction to data analysis, statistics, and regression. The only prerequisite is a sound foundation in algebra. The heart of the course is a rigorous introduction to statistical inference: sampling theory, confidence intervals, and hypothesis tests. The final section of the course covers regression analysis, which is developed in a fairly non-technical way, with an emphasis on interpretation of regression results, using examples from recent research.  SOCS 3305 or equivalent recommended. (3-0) Y
POEC 5316 (CRIM 5316) Advanced Regression Analysis for the Economic, Political and Policy Sciences (3 semester hours) This course provides a detailed examination of the bivariate and multiple regression models estimated using Ordinary Least Squares (OLS), with an emphasis on using regression models to test social and economic hypotheses. Also covered are several special topics in regression analysis, including violations of OLS assumptions, the use of dummy variables, fixed effects models, and path analysis. Applications are demonstrated with examples drawn from economics, political science, public policy and sociology.  POEC 5313 or equivalent recommended. (3-0) Y
PSCI 6309 International Political Economy and Organizations (3 semester hours) An overview of important developments in the study of conflict and cooperation among countries, especially in the economic arena. (3-0) T
POEC 6319 (PSCI 6310) Political Economy of MNCs  (3 semester hours) The Political Economy of Multinational Corporations will approach the rise of international firms and their behavior from a social scientific approach, utilizing research in economics, political science, and other disciplines.  In addition to the historical rise of international firms, the course covers the economic theory of the firm, MNCs as political actors, the dynamics of foreign direct investment, and the relationship of MNCs to developing countries.  The aim of the course is to understand the causes and effects of the behavior of transnational corporations, particularly in regard to economic policy.(3-0) T
POEC 6335 (PSCI 6335) Institutions and Development (3 semester hours) An overview of leading theories, institutional perspectives, issues and policy debates concerning urban, regional, national and global development. Topics may include economic growth, technology and innovation, shifts in industrial structure, spatially imbalanced change, and their welfare consequences. (3-0) T
PSCI 6337 Comparative Institutions (3 semester hours) A comparative analysis of political and economic institutions in different settings.
Includes a consideration of different theoretical approaches to the comparative study and design of institutions in the United States and elsewhere. (3-0) T
POEC 6352 (SOC 6352 and PA 6352) Evaluation Research Methods in the Economic, Political and Policy Sciences (3 semester hours) A review of research methods used in program evaluation, with an emphasis on public and non-profit social programs. Issues to be addressed include research design, appropriate performance standards, measurement and selection of indicators, sampling, data collection, and data analysis. (3-0) T
POEC 6355 Political Economy of the Middle East  (3 semester hours) Analysis of the interplay of cultures and conflicts in the Middle East.  The course will examine ancient cultures, Islam and the Ottoman Empire, the Arab-Israeli conflict, the rise of the Oil Kingdoms, the Kurds, the Gulf wars, and terrorism in the name of Islam.  The course will also focus on U.S. relations with a number of Middle Eastern countries such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Egypt, and Israel. (3-0) T
POEC 6357 (PSCI 6357) Political Economy of Latin America (3 semester hours) Addresses historical and contemporary issues in Latin American political economy. Uses case studies and cross-regional comparisons to assess competing explanations. Analyzes the current political and economic situation facing Latin America in its quest for economic growth and development. The emphasis is to understand the broad patterns of development and change in the region and the physical, historical, social and economic constraints which have affected development, broadly understood. (3-0) T
POEC 6358  Political Economy of South and Southeast Asia  (3 semester hours) Political Economy of South and Southeast Asia.  South Asia is the Indian peninsula. Southeast Asia is the great swath of countries from Burma and Thailand through Malaysia to Indonesia and Australia.  This is a region of great cultural, political, economic, religious, and historical diversity.  This course surveys the political economy of the region by selectively examining key countries and their mutual interactions.  The major countries, all of which are rising military and economic powers, are Pakistan, India, Thailand, Indonesia and Australia. Additional countries which will be included according to interest and available material, include Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Papua New Guinea, East Timor and New Zealand. (3-0) T
POEC 6360 World Political Economy (3 semester hours) An overview of the major social, political, economic, and cultural forces that influence the nature of international political and economic relations. Same as ECO 6352. (3-0) T
POEC 6361 (PSCI 6361) Political Violence and Terrorism (3 semester hours) In this discussion-based seminar, we will cover the topics of terrorism, political violence, and civil war.  We will examine concepts, causes, and consequences of different types of political violence.  Additionally, we will discuss topics relevant to research, including discussions of different approaches (quantitative, qualitative, and formal) and a perusal of different data sources.  We will take advantage of literature from multiple disciplines.
POEC 6362 (PSCI 6362) Political Development (3 semester hours) This course will survey different perspectives and theories of political development. Topics covered include the role of the state, democratization, political stability, civil society and environmental concerns, among others. (3-0) T
POEC 6363 (PSCI 6363) Conflict and Development (3 semester hours) This module will explore the nexus between violent intrastate conflict and development. It will examine some of the key conceptual frameworks advanced to understand conflict and will explore specific themes which have preoccupied researchers and policy practitioners in recent years. In addition to assessing the economic costs of the conflicts, this course will also examine the traditional factors that have been purported to explain the prevalence of insurgency. (3-0) T
POEC 6366 International Economics (3 semester hours) The course focuses on international trade theory and the ongoing process of regional integration in the Americas, with particular emphasis on the North American Free Trade Agreement. (3-0) T
POEC 6367 Topical Issues in Conflict and Conflict Resolution   (3 semester hours) This course will examine in detail three recent international or ethnic conflicts and the national and international efforts to resolve the conflicts and/or mitigate their effects.  The course will examine theories of conflict including ethnic conflict and just war theory.  It will examine the historical sources of the conflicts, the regional and international dimensions, the precipitating causes and the intensification of the conflicts.  Examples of conflicts that could be used include: the former Yugoslavia, India/Pakistan, Iraq and Kuwait, North Korea, Israel/Palestine and Sudan. (3-0) T
POEC 6369 National and International Security Strategies and Policies (3 semester hours) With the end of the decades long Cold War, the U.S. has become the world's only superpower.  But the problem of national and international security continue to be a dominant concern of national and international political and economic life, just as it has been for more than sixty years.  Many nations continue to maintain high levels of military expenditure as a mainstay of their security policy.  Yet, there has been a profound change in the nature of the threats to security since the Cold War. Some, like the threat of intentional full-scale global nuclear war, have receded. Others, like the threat posed by nuclear proliferation and the terrorism of mass destruction, have increased. From acute hot spots to longer term questions of restructuring power and security arrangements in a post Cold War world, understanding the deeper issues of national and international security is critical to understanding what lies behind the headlines -- and what strategies are likely to be effective in achieving real security.  Topics include: the nature and meaning of security; security and military force; terrorism, accidents and accidental war; nuclear proliferation; the international arms trade; the experience of war; the economics of security policy; social and psychological factors; strategies for achieving security by nonmilitary means. (3-0) T
POEC 6V76 Policy Research Workshop in Development Studies (3-9 semester hours) Students join a faculty member in a group research project. Topics vary from semester to semester. However, students may substitute an individual Field Research Project for this workshop; the project must be approved by the faculty of the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences. (May be repeated for credit to a maximum of 12 hours. However, MPA or doctoral students may not take more than 3 hours of their concentration requirement from POEC 6376 and POEC 6379.) Prerequisites: POEC 6341, POEC 6364, and an additional course in the concentration. ([3-9]-0) T