Jul 22, 2024  
2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog 
2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Department of Political Science

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418 VARNER HALL (248) 370-2352
Fax: (248) 370-4299

Department Website: oakland.edu/polisci/


Chairperson: David A. Dulio

Distinguished professor emeritus: Sheldon Appleton

Professors emeriti: Thomas W. Casstevens, Robert J. Goldstein, Edward J. Heubel, Vincent B. Khapoya, William A. Macauley, Roger H. Marz, James R. Ozinga

Professors: John S. Klemanski, Paul J. Kubicek

Associate professors: David A. Dulio, Diane Hartmus, Roger Larocca, Emmett Lombard, C. Michelle Piskulich, J. Patrick Piskulich, Peter F. Trumbore, Martha T. Zingo

Assistant professors: Douglas Carr, Matthew Fails, David Kasdan, Laura Landolt, Terri L. Towner, Julie Walters, Byungwon Woo

Adjunct assistant professors: Brian Arbeiter, Joseph Harder, Ram Kishan, John Lees, Jim Marcinkowski, Gary Petroni, Joe Rozell, John Szerlag

Special instructor: Alan David Epstein

Internship directors: Douglas Carr (Public Administration), Roger Larocca (Political Science and International Relations)


Political science offers a concentrated and systematic study of politics at all levels of government and in many different cultural and national settings. Policy making, law, political behavior, administration, international politics, foreign governments, and theories and philosophies of government are among the many topics covered in these courses. The general educational aim is to increase students’ awareness and understanding of the broad realm of politics and government. Many students electing this major wish to prepare for careers in public service, law, practical politics, or the teaching of government and social studies.

The Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in political science is the department’s broadest program and is appropriate for students with an interest in public affairs or students who intend to enter law school or graduate school. The Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in international relations is a multidisciplinary major, which is housed in the Department of Political Science, and focuses on global politics, economics and history. This major is ideal for students interested in working with a multinational corporation, an international development agency or a government institution such as the Department of State. The department also offers a major in public administration leading to the Bachelor of Science degree. This program is designed to provide appropriate analytical skills and prepare students for direct entry into public service or for specialized graduate programs in public administration and public policy. The Master of Public Administration degree is also offered by the department (see the Oakland University Graduate Catalog). The Master of Public Administration degree is accredited by the Commission of Peer Review and Accreditation and is a member of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA).

Departmental Honors and Scholarships

Departmental honors will be awarded competitively to selected students from among those who have attained an overall grade point average of at least 3.30 and a minimum grade point average of 3.70 for courses in political science. Scholarships are available annually on a competitive basis to qualified department majors.

Requirements for a major in political science with other concentrations

Students in political science may pursue a regular major in political science with a number of interdepartmental concentrations. These include, among others, American studies, applied statistics, human and industrial relations, and criminal justice.

Recommended Courses for Pre-Law Students

It is recommended that political science majors interested in law school elect the law related courses given by the department:

 ,  ,  ,  . For advice in planning for law school, contact the department’s pre-law adviser, Julie Walters.  ”The student should also consult the Pre-law Studies website, accessible through the department’s webpage, as well as the associated section of this catalog.”  

Paralegal Program

In cooperation with the School of Business Administration’s Center for Executive and Continuing Education, the Department of Political Science in the College of Arts and Sciences sponsors courses that prepare students for the paralegal field. To earn the certificate in this American Bar Association (ABA) approved program, students must take 10 foundation courses and three legal specialty courses, and serve an internship in a legal setting.

A student enrolled in the non-credit paralegal program, who also wishes to major in political science, may offer up to 8 credits of this course work toward the 40 credits required for the major. A student who wishes to minor in political science may offer up to 4 credits of this course work toward the 20 credits required for the minor. For a course to qualify for both the degree and the Paralegal Program certificate, concurrent registration for the course in both programs is required. Students enrolled in the paralegal program for academic credit may also use these courses as electives to any degree program. Courses approved to date by the Committee on Instruction are listed below. For specific details on policies and procedures for this program, request a brochure from the Center (238B Elliott Hall, 248-370-3128).

Permission of the Department of Political Science is required to enroll in any of the courses listed below. Only students who have been admitted to the paralegal program may enroll in these courses.

PL 379 (CE 2500) Introduction to the Legal System (2)
PL 380 (CE 2506) Substantive Law: Contracts (2)
PL 381 (CE 2507) Substantive Law: Torts (2)
PL 382 (CE 2510) Legal Research and Writing I (2)
PL 383 (CE 2511) Legal Research and Writing II (2)
PL 384 (CE 2520) Real Property Transactions (2)
PL 385 (CE 2530) Business Organizations (2)
PL 386 (CE 2550) Probate Administration (2)
PL 388 (CE 2568) Estate Planning and Documents (2)
PL 421 (CE 2540) Litigation I: Case Preparation before Trial (2)
PL 422 (CE 2541) Litigation II: Case Preparation before Trial (2)
PL 423 (CE 2547) Litigation III: Anatomy of a Lawsuit (2)
PL 424 (CE 2521) Criminal Law (2)
PL 426 (CE 2524) Environmental Law (2)
PL 427 (CE 2535) Employment Law (2)
PL 429 (CE 2532) Immigration Law and Procedure (2)
PL 431 (CE 2575) Computer Assisted Legal Research (1)
PL 432 (CE 2576) Patent, Trademark and Copyright Law (2)
PL 433 (CE 2578) Auto Accident Law (2)
PL 434 (CE 2579) Family Law (2)
PL 435 (CE 2581) Bankruptcy and Collections (2)
PL 436 (CE 2583) Medical Terminology (2)
PL 491 Special Topics for Paralegals (2)

Advanced Seminars

From time to time, the department offers advanced seminars in which a topic or problem is studied in depth, and in which significant individual student research is presented for analysis.

PS 474 Seminar in Political Behavior (4)
PS 478 Seminar in Public Law (4)
PS 480 Seminar in Political Theory (4)
PS 482 Seminar in Public Administration: Strategies and Policies (4)
PS 484 Seminar in Public Policy (4)

Additional Information

Students are limited to 8 credits of independent study (

  or  ) in any one semester. Applicants must seek departmental approval at the beginning of the semester prior to that of the internship. Public administration majors are required to complete 4 credits of  , but no more than 4 credits of   may be counted toward the major in political science or international relations. Permission forms are available in 418 Varner Hall.

Programs & Cores

International Relations, B.A. 

Political Science, B.A. 

Public Administration and Public Policy, B.S.   

International Relations Minor 

Political Science Minor 

Political Science Secondary Teaching Minor 

Public Administration and Public Policy Minor 

Course Descriptions

The department offers selected courses from this catalog as warranted by student needs and availability of faculty: Department of Political Science .

Schedule of Classes

Specific offerings for each semester may be found in the Schedule of Classes: sail.oakland.edu.

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