Pols 121c Syllabus, Fall 2009

Pols 121c Syllabus, Fall 2009 - 1 Syllabus San Jose State...

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Syllabus San Jose State University Professor Ken Nuger Office: Clark Hall, 453 Pols 121.c: Civil Rights Phone: 924-5346, DMH 149a Email: kpnuger@email.sjsu.edu 9-10:15 T, TR Office Hours: 8:15-8:45, 1:30-3, T, TH Fall, 2009 4:45-5:45 T, and by appt. http://www.sjsu.edu/people/ken.nuger/ Introduction A hallmark of democratic societies is the commitment to equal treatment under law. Unfounded and unjustified forms of unequal treatment are anathema to a society that values a limited and accountable government. The U.S. Constitution helps define the authority and limits of our government, as well as the rights citizens enjoy in our polity. This course is designed to exam- ine the constitutional bases that ensure equal treatment under law. Its main pedagogy and fo- cus is to analyze key cases in American constitutional law that helped define what discrimina- tion is what limitations the constitution might place on discriminatory treatment. Public, or gov- ernment sponsored discrimination, as well as private discrimination is examined on the basis of several characteristics including but not limited to race, class, sex, disability, sexual orientation, age. In addition to traditional concepts of discrimination, this course also examines issues of governmental discriminatory treatment as applied to both voting rights issues and applied in the criminal justice system, especially focusing on the application of the 4 th , 5 th , 6 th , and 8 th amend- ments. Required Text Ducat, Craig, Constitutional Interpretation, Rights of the Individual, Volume II, 8 th Edition. In ad- dition, be prepared to read additional cases relevant to our curricula that are not found in our text. Grading Inherently a vulgar subject but one with which we must all contend. You will have two essay ex- aminations, one midterm and a final, each worth 100 points. You must also write a 5 to 7 page position paper/analysis on a subject relevant to civil rights. The paper is worth 30 points and is due on Tuesday, December 1 st . If the paper is turned in late, it will receive a 6 point penalty. Students will also write legal briefs on all cases, but will occasionally turn in their legal briefs, which will be worth 10 points per brief. Briefs must be typed, not handwritten. If you turn in a handwritten brief, it will be docked 3 points before I grade it. You may drop your lowest graded brief when calculating your grade. Finally, students will be called upon to present briefs of as- signed cases. While not graded, the quality of your oral presentations may affect my perception of whether you should receive the benefit of the doubt if the points you earned borders between two different grades. Similarly, class participation can help tip the scales in your favor if your fi- nal grade is in doubt. The percent of your total grade for all of these assignments is based on the likelihood that I will collect for a grade, five or six briefs, with your lowest scored brief being dropped. Attendance
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course POLS 121A at San Jose State University .

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Pols 121c Syllabus, Fall 2009 - 1 Syllabus San Jose State...

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