Recent Courses
(Photo of lecture and discussion with Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, Minnesota 
Supreme 
Justice David Stras, and Timothy R. Johnson).

Undergraduate Courses Taught in the Past Three Academic Years (fall 2015-spring 2018)

Fall 2018

POL 4501W Constitutional Law (55 students)

This Course is designed to introduce students to constitutional law, with an emphasis on the U.S. Supreme Court’s interpretation of the powers of the national government in Article I (the legislature), Article II (the executive), and Article III (the judiciary). In addition, we will discuss the Court’s interpretation of how the national government relates with the states through the commerce clause and the concept of federalism. Finally, we will discuss one of the most controversial topics in the Court’s history – substantive due process.

POL 3309 Judicial Process (83 students)

The principal purpose of this course is to introduce you to judicial politics and decisionmaking. Specifically, we will examine theoretical issues regarding judicial process and politics. Unlike constitutional law and civil liberties classes, this course does not study legal doctrine. Rather, it examines political aspects of the legal system with an emphasis on the social scientific literature on law and the legal process.

Spring 2018

POL 4502W Supreme Court and Civil Liberties (75 students)

This writing intensive course deals with civil liberties in the United States and how the United States Supreme Court decides which rights and liberties get which protections, at which times. Specifically, the focus is on the First Amendment (speech, religion, press, and limits of the speech), and the Right to Privacy. Special emphasis is placed on how the Supreme Court defines, establishes, and protects these liberties through its interpretation of the Constitution.

POL 3309 Judicial Process (82 students)

The principal purpose of this course is to introduce you to judicial politics and decisionmaking. Specifically, we will examine theoretical issues regarding judicial process and politics. Unlike constitutional law and civil liberties classes, this course does not study legal doctrine. Rather, it examines political aspects of the legal system with an emphasis on the social scientific literature on law and the legal process.

Fall 2017

POL 4501W Constitutional Law (71 students)

This Course is designed to introduce students to constitutional law, with an emphasis on the U.S. Supreme Court’s interpretation of the powers of the national government in Article I (the legislature), Article II (the executive), and Article III (the judiciary). In addition, we will discuss the Court’s interpretation of how the national government relates with the states through the commerce clause and the concept of federalism. Finally, we will discuss one of the most controversial topics in the Court’s history – substantive due process.

Spring 2017

POL 4502W Supreme Court and Civil Liberties (59 students)

This writing intensive course deals with civil liberties in the United States and how the United States Supreme Court decides which rights and liberties get which protections, at which times. Specifically, the focus is on the First Amendment (speech, religion, press, and limits of the speech), and the Right to Privacy. Special emphasis is placed on how the Supreme Court defines, establishes, and protects these liberties through its interpretation of the Constitution.

POL 3309 Judicial Process (80 students)

The principal purpose of this course is to introduce you to judicial politics and decisionmaking. Specifically, we will examine theoretical issues regarding judicial process and politics. Unlike constitutional law and civil liberties classes, this course does not study legal doctrine. Rather, it examines political aspects of the legal system with an emphasis on the social scientific literature on law and the legal process.





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