Department of Political Science
Chairperson and Professor Foster
Professors Bowen, Hjelm
Associate Professors Maughan, Adler
Assistant Professors Gilbertsen,
Adjunct Faculty Pulling, Winmill
Doctor of Arts in Political
This interdisciplinary program requires preparation in the
disciplines of economics and sociology in addition to political
science. The program is designed to produce individuals who are
qualified to instruct undergraduate courses in the three
disciplines, graduate courses in political science, and interand
cross-disciplinary courses which require a broad competence
rather than specialization. Provision is made for classroom
For full admission to the Doctor of Arts program, the applicant
must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 for the last two years of
undergraduate study, an average score in the 50th percentile or
above on the aptitude section of the GRE and a 3.5 GPA in all
previous graduate study. At the time of application, the
candidate must submit to the Department of Political Science
three letters of recommendation and a statement of his/her
A candidate entering with a B.A. degree must fulfill a minimum of
79 credit hours in the three cooperating disciplines, with an
emphasis in political science, including a teaching internship.
Candidates have the option of completing the M.A. or M.P.A. in
political science en route to the D.A.; if they choose the
non-thesis M.A. program, only 30 hours of course work toward the
M.A. will apply to the Doctor of Arts program. Candidates
entering the Doctor of Arts program with M.A. degrees must
complete a minimum of 49 credit hours, including two full-time
consecutive semesters in residence. The total length and number
of credit hours of a student's program, above the minimum, is
dependent upon the student's academic preparation and his/her
Equivalent of an M.A. (although completion of the M.A. is not
required) as determined by examination in three of the following
- American Politics, and
- Any two of the following fields:
a. Public Law
b. Political Theory
c. Comparative/International Politics
d. Public Administration
Doctor of Arts students will be required to take nine hours of
600-level seminar courses selected from the following courses:
POLS 611, POLS 612, POLS 613, POLS 614 and POLS 615 plus a
methodology course, POLS 519, 519L. Doctor of Arts students are
also required to take POLS 649, D.A. major paper or project, 3
credits. This is a major research and teaching project aimed at
the application of theory to teaching, or illustrating new or
innovative teaching methods and techniques. The presentation of
this project will be made prior to sitting for comprehensive
examination. Faculty and students will be invited to the formal
Nine graduate credits including ECON 501, Intermediate Economic
(Macroeconomics); and ECON 502, Intermediate Economic Theory
Nine graduate credits including SOC 600, Comparative Sociological
A minimum of six credits in interdisciplinary classes which
integrate concepts from political science, economics, and
sociology. Three credits must be selected from among the
following courses: POLS 620, ECON 620, or SOC 620; three credits
must be selected from among the following courses: POLS 621, ECON
621, or SOC 621.
POLS 700, 9 credits, and POLS 701 (optional), up to 6 credits.
A qualifying examination is administered during the first year of
residence. A comprehensive written and oral examination is
administered at the conclusion of the program which tests the
candidate's knowledge of three fields of political science and
basic concepts in economics and sociology, as well as the ability
of each candidate to apply concepts from each of these
disciplines to actual problems and situations.
Master of Arts in Political
This program emphasizes general preparation in political science
and research. It is designed to:
- Provide the first phase of graduate study for students
seeking terminal degrees such as the Ph.D. or D.A. and who plan
to complete their studies at Idaho State University or at another
- Train individuals who plan to seek employment upon
completion of the M.A. degree in non-teaching governmental
- Provide in-service opportunities for enhancing the
conceptual and research capabilities of persons who are employed
in teaching or public positions.
Thesis and non-thesis options are available.
Areas of emphasis in the M.A. program are limited, because of the
research nature of the degree, to American governmental
institutions and political behavior, public law, political
theory, public administration and comparative/international
M.A. candidates are required to present themselves for
comprehensive examination on their thesis and/or in three of the
five areas of emphasis mentioned above.
In addition to meeting the general requirements of the Graduate
School, a student must have achieved an accumulated grade point
average of 3.00 during the last two years of undergraduate study
and an average score in the 35th percentile or above on the
aptitude section of the GRE to be eligible for admission to the
graduate program and to candidacy for the M.A. degree in
political science. At the time of application, the candidate must
submit to the Department of Political Science three letters of
recommendation and a statement of his/her personal goals.
A thesis (six credits), 24 additional credits approved by the
Department of Political Science and the Graduate School, and a
reading knowledge of one foreign language are the basic
requirements of the graduate program in political science.
Subject to department approval, a non-thesis program is
available. Subsequent to the approval of the Department of
Political Science, the student may elect to satisfy the language
requirement by satisfactory completion of a course in
methodology, demonstrating a comprehensive theoretical and
practical understanding of a relevant research method.
Required courses are POLS 512, Modern Political Analysis, 3
credits, and POLS 650, Thesis, 6 credits. Other requirements
include a total of 30 credit hours in graduate level courses
approved by the Department of Political Science and the Graduate
School; a minimum of 15 credit hours taken at the 600 level and a
comprehensive oral examination in government covering the
student's graduate course work, the literature of the field, and
the M.A. thesis.
Required courses are the same as the thesis program with the
exception of deleting POLS 650, Thesis, 6 credits. Other
requirements include a total of 36 credit hours in graduate level
courses approved by the Department of Political Science and the
Graduate School; a minimum of 15 credit hours taken at the 600
level; a comprehensive written examination in political science
covering the student's graduate course work and the department's
graduate bibliography; and a final oral examination which, like
the final written exam, may be taken no more than twice.
Master of Public Administration
The Master in Public Administration degree is an inter-university
cooperative graduate program offered jointly by Boise State
University, Idaho State University and the University of Idaho.
The purpose of the program is to provide present and prospective
public administrators with the basic intellectual preparation
necessary to understand and to adjust to a changing and
challenging environment, through an introduction to the theories
and practices of administration, management and social science
research as these relate to effective performance in public
organizations. The MPA program is coordinated through an
inter-university committee comprised of the chairperson of the
department of political science at the cooperating universities,
a representative of the Office of the State Board of Education,
and a representative of cooperating government agencies. The
essential features of this inter-university cooperative program
- General coordination and policy control by the
- Unrestricted transferability of credits earned at any of the
participating universities to apply to the MPA degree awarded by
any one of the participating universities
- Coordination among universities in scheduling and offering
courses in the MPA program
- The establishment of a basic core of courses at all three
cooperating institutions plus optional areas of emphasis which
may vary among the universities (reflecting the particular areas
of specialization available at the respective universities)
The inter-university MPA program has been designed in accordance
with the Guidelines and Standards for Professional Master's
Degree Programs in Public Affairs and Public Administration
prescribed through the National Association of Schools of Public
Affairs and Administration (NASPAA).
Admission to the MPA Program
Students may enroll in the MPA program by applying to one of the
participating universities. Acceptance by any one of the three
universities admits a student into the MPA program. A
matriculated student should complete graduate studies at the
institution which offers the area of specialization which s/he
wishes to emphasize. Each student's program will be established
by an advisory committee consisting of three faculty members, one
of whom will be from a university other than that of the
chairperson of the student's advisory committee. It is
anticipated that students will come from widely differing
academic preparations, since no specific undergraduate program is
required in preparation for the MPA program. However, some course
work in humanities and social sciences is essential to the
foundation of the MPA program for all students. A student also
must provide evidence of proficiency in the skills of statistics,
data processing, or accounting, either through undergraduate
preparation or previous work experience. A student may be
required to remove other deficiencies related to specified areas
of emphasis in the MPA program, as determined by the
In addition to the general requirements of each graduate school,
students seeking admission must have completed a baccalaureate
degree from an accredited institution, demonstrate satisfactory
academic competency by attaining an overall undergraduate GPA of
2.75, achieve an average score placing them at or above the 35th
percentile (current norms) on the aptitude section of the GRE,
and submit three letters from individuals who are qualified to
evaluate the applicant's academic potential. Students must also
submit to the Department a personal statement of their goals.
The MPA degree may be achieved through the successful completion
of at least 30 semester credit hours of approved course work plus
6 credits of public service internship. Eighteen credit hours
must be completed in courses selected from prescribed "core
areas" with 12 additional credit hours completed in designated
optional areas of emphasis. Students may follow a thesis or
non-thesis option in pursuing the MPA. The thesis counts as 6
credits toward completion of the degree in lieu of course work
selected from the student's area of emphasis. All MPA candidates
must complete final examinations. Those following the thesis
option will complete an oral examination covering the thesis and
program course work. The non-thesis option requires a written and
an oral examination over program course work. The academic
program of each student must be approved by the advisory
committee and must satisfy the general requirements of an
integrated program designed to meet career objectives of the
student in public administration.
Core and Optional Area Requirements
The specific course requirements of the MPA program are set forth
in a list of courses which has been approved by the
inter-university committee. This list is available through each
of the cooperating universities. Courses are available at each
institution in the "core areas." The optional "areas of emphasis"
may vary among the universities according to the resources and
competence which exist in the respective departments. A
description of those areas of emphasis which are presently
operational at each institution and admission forms to the MPA
program are available through the Political Science Department at
Idaho State University or the departments of Political Science at
Boise State University or the University of Idaho.
Core Area Requirements
All students must have at least 18 semester credit hours of core
area courses. One course must be taken from each of the five
areas listed below. The sixth course can come from any of the
- Administration and Legal Processes: POLS 505, The
Administrative Process; POLS 541, Administrative Law.
- Organization and Management: POLS 551, Organizational Theory
and Bureaucratic Structure; POLS 554, Public Personnel
- Budgeting and Financial Management: POLS 506,
Intergovernmental Relations; POLS 552, Financial Administration
- Techniques of Analysis: POLS 519, Political Research
Methods; POLS 553, Public Policy Analysis.
- Political Institutions: POLS 503, The Presidency; POLS 504,
The Legislative Process; POLS 542, Constitutional Law; POLS 612,
Seminar: State and Local Politics; POLS 614, Seminar: American
All students must take 12 credit hours from one of the
specialized areas listed below. Courses taken to fulfill core
area requirements cannot be used to fulfill the specialized area
- State and Local Administration: POLS 506, Intergovernmental
Relations; POLS 508, Metropolitan and Urban Studies; POLS 509,
Community and Regional Planning; POLS 553, Public Policy
Analysis; POLS 612 Seminar: State and Local Politics; ECON 539,
State and Local Finance; POLS 669, Independent Problems; POLS
650, Thesis (optional).
- Public Finance and Administration: POLS 541, Administrative
Law; POLS 552, Financial Administration and Budgeting; POLS 554,
Public Personnel Administration; ECON 538, Public Finance; ECON
585, Econometrics; POLS 669, Independent Problems; POLS 650,
- Criminal Justice Administration: POLS 541, Administrative
Law; POLS 543, Constitutional Law; SOC 531, Criminology; SOC 612,
Delinquency and Criminal Behavior; POLS 614, Seminar: American
Politics-Institutions (Judicial Process); POLS 669, Independent
Problems; POLS 650, Thesis (optional).
- Public Health Services Administration: POLS 505, The
Administrative Process; POLS 554, Public Personnel
Administration; AHP 575, Health Care Law; AHP 582, Health
Services Organization and Delivery; AHP 583, Epidemiology; POLS
669, Independent Problems; POLS 650, Thesis (optional). MPA
Internship: 6 credit hours; POLS 559, Government Internship.
Internships are arranged in consultation with the Department
Chairperson, Dr. Richard H. Foster.
American Politics Graduate Courses
g301 Political Parties and Interest Groups 3 credits. The nature
and development of political parties and interest groups as
exemplified in the United States.
g403 The Presidency 3 credits. Evolution and development of the
office of the president; its major responsibilities in domestic
and foreign affairs, with emphasis on particular power problems
that confront the president.
g404 The Legislative Process 3 credits. Nature and functions of
the U.S. Congress. Topics covered: Legislative campaigns, the
politics of law-making, congressional investigations, and major
problems facing the Congress.
g405 The Administrative Process 3 credits. Analysis of the
principles of public administration with an introduction to
theories of organization and administration.
g406 Intergovernmental Relations 3 credits. Analysis of patterns
of intergovernmental relations including changing patterns of
program and fiscal responsibility in the federal system. The
emerging role of new federal structures, state and substate
regional organizations will be reviewed in the context of "new"
federalism and its implications for intergovernmental
g408 Metropolitan and Urban Studies 3 credits. Analysis of
metropolitan and smaller urban systems with emphasis on
relationships among general groups, political organizations and
institutions. Federal, state and interlocal programs will serve
as a focus for analyzing particular problems of metropolitan and
urban systems in the 20th century.
g409 Community and Regional Planning 3 credits. Steps involved in
planning will be analyzed in the context of community and
regional decision-making processes. Two perspectives will be
stressed--that of the decision-maker, the social structure within
which the decision-maker operates and strategies for implementing
decision; and that of the citizen or group interest which lies
outside the power structure of the community. Each perspective
will be used as a framework for analyzing power configurations,
techniques of identifying patterns of decision making, and
various forms of citizen participation.
g427 Voting and Public Opinion 3 credits. Analysis of the way
citizens and government communicate with each other. Elections,
public opinion, and media influence are studied.
g453 Public Policy Analysis 3 credits. Theoretical and practical
analyses of public policies, including theories of policy
formation and their political implementation through governmental
institutions. Case studies will provide the means of analyzing
specific policy problems.
Political Analysis Graduate Courses
g412 Modern Political Analysis 3 credits. Methods of political
inquiry and theories and doctrines of politics, with emphasis on
g419 Political Research Methods 3 credits. This class
investigates the theory and application of various research
methods and statistical techniques common to the social sciences,
with particular reference to their use in political inquiry.
g419L Political Research Methods Lab 1 credit. Application of,
and practice in research methods.
Public Administration Graduate Courses
g441 Administrative Law 3 credits. Introductory survey of the
legal principals defining governmental administrative processes.
Topics include judicial review, tort liability of governments and
offices, rules and rule-making, due process, and the limits of
g451 Organizational Theory and Bureaucratic Structure 3 credits.
Introduction to the study of complex organizations and
organizational behavior in the administration of public policy.
Emphasis on public institutions.
g452 Financial Administration and Budgeting 3 credits. Emphasis
on different approaches to financial administration, ranging from
incremental and short-term planning to more recent and
comprehensive emphases on management by objectives and zero-based
budgeting. The development of the Office of Management and Budget
and its relationship with the President, Congress and the Federal
bureaucracy will be considered as well as political,
organizational and behavioral constraints on budgetary
g454 Public Personnel Administration 3 credits. Operations and
processes of personnel management in public institutions. Major
topics include personnel processes, public employee rights and
duties, employee motivation and morale, the political environment
of public personnel administration, and the impact of
professionalism, technology, and participatory democracy on
public personnel practices.
Political Theory Graduate Courses
g318 Topics in Political Theory 3 credits. This course requires
examination, analysis and investigation of selected texts and
topics in political philosophy. May be repeated for a maximum of
g411 American Political Theory 3 credits. Political ideas in the
United States from Colonial and Revolutionary times through the
controversies of the Civil War to the present.
g425 Topics in International Politics 3 credits. This course
requires examination, analysis and evaluation of selected topics
in international politics. May be repeated for a maximum of 6
Comparative Politics Graduate Courses
g332 Comparative Politics: Change and Political Order 3 credits.
The nature of political change is examined in a multifaceted
framework consisting of concepts such as political order,
progress and decay, revolutionary violence, and political
culture. The technological and post-industrial revolutions are
examined as they relate to political change and stability in
g433 Politics of Developing Nations 3 credits. Study of problems
in the political analysis of rapidly changing and unstable
"developing" nation states with an emphasis on problems of the
political, economic, and social development of selected states.
Public Law Graduate Courses
g442 Constitutional Law 3 credits. Analysis of opinions of the
United States Supreme Court concerning the distribution of
authority between the national government and the states and the
relationship among the branches of the national government.
g443 Constitutional Law 3 credits. Analysis of opinions of the
United States Supreme Court with a special emphasis on criminal
cases and civil liberties.
General Graduate Courses
g459 Government Internship 1-9 credits. Directed student
internship in government and organizations or associations
related to public policy and the selection of public officials
involving supervised work experience in research, staff
management practices, or making and implementing public policies.
The student will be placed in a supervised position commensurate
with his or her abilities as determined and approved by faculty
in the department. May be repeated up to 9 credits.
g491-492 Seminar 1-3 credits. Research, reading, discussion, and
the preparation of reports on selected topics. Ordinarily for
seniors majoring in government and having the instructor's
597 Professional Education Development Topics. Variable credit.
May be repeated. A course for practicing professionals aimed at
the development and improvement of skills. May not be applied to
graduate degrees. May be graded S/U.
611 Seminar: Political Theory 3 credits. Review of the primary
and recent literature of political theory.
612 Seminar: State and Local Politics 3 credits. Analysis of
state, local and regional political institutions and processes
from the federal and comparative perspectives.
613 Seminar: American Politics--Behavior 3 credits. Micro
inquiry and analysis into political behavior. Areas relevant to
such inquiry may include but are not limited to, political
psychology, political socializations, attitude and opinion
formation, and voting behavior.
614 Seminar: American Politics--Institutions 3 credits. Macro
inquiry and analysis into the basic institutional structures and
processes of the American political system. Areas of emphasis
include, but are not limited to, executive, legislative and
judicial processes, political parties and interest groups.
615 Seminar: World Politics 3 credits. World politics is
analyzed both from the perspective of relationships between
nation-states and the domestic political sources which influence
and determine these relationships.
620 Seminar: Philosophy of Social Science 3 credits. The
application of mathematical and scientific methods to the study
of social, economic, and political life will be considered
through the reading of certain seminal writings. Attention will
be given to the fundamental assumptions about the nature of
scientific rationality. Required of all D.A. students.
621 Seminar: Interdisciplinary Topics in Social Science 3
credits. Examination of selected topics in the social sciences
from the analytic orientations and perspectives common and
peculiar to the disciplines of political science economics and
sociology. Required of all D.A. students.
649 Independent Studies 3 credits. Preparation and presentation
of a major research paper/project on political science pedagogy.
Required of all Doctor of Arts students.
650 Thesis 1-6 credits.
669 Independent Problems-Tutorial 3 credits. A directed project
emphasizing individual study, research, or the development of
expository writings according to the needs of the individual
700 Supervised Teaching Internship variable up to 9 credits.
701 Supervised Administrative Internship in Higher Education
variable up to 6 credits.
Department of Psychology