History Courses

HIST 101-102 World Civilizations I & II 3 credits each
These courses are a survey of world civilizations and the interactions between the different centers of civilization from the ancient world to the present. Particular emphasis is given to non-Western cultures in Asia, Africa, and the Americas. First semester covers the period from the ancient world to about AD 1400. Second semester carries through to the present.

HIST 201-202 U.S. History I & II 3 credits each
These courses survey the political, economic, and social growth of America. The first semester covers the period of exploration to 1865, and the second semester from 1865 to the present.

HIST 225 West Virginia History, Government, Geography 2 credits
This course is a history of the western section of Virginia to the Civil War and the history and government of West Virginia to the present. The physical, political, and social geography of the state is included.

HIST 297-298 Special Studies in History 2 or 3 credits
These courses are designed to permit students to study with various faculty members in the department or with visiting instructors or foreign visitors.

HIST 309 The World of Late Antiquity 3 credits
The World of Late Antiquity surveys the many different and competing elements of religious views found in ancient Greco-Roman culture through the first five centuries of the common era. Particular attention is given to the philosophical, sociological, theological, and political environment of ancient Mediterranean culture in an effort to understand the influence these views had on the Western tradition. (This course may be taken for credit as RELS 326.)

HIST 311 The Age of Transition: 1300-1600 3 credits
This course is an examination of the transitional period from the Middle Ages to the Modern World. Particular emphasis is on the political and economic development of the Italian city states, the rise of national monarchies in Northern Europe, and the collapse of the unity of western Christendom.

HIST 312 The Age of Absolutism: 1600-1789 3 credits
This course examines the emergence of the modern state system and the rise of Absolutism. Topics include the Thirty Years War, the Age of Louis XIV, the English revolutions, and the Enlightenment.

HIST 313 The Age of Revolution and Nationalism: 1789-1914 3 credits
This course is an examination of the French Revolution, the Industrial Revolution, and the rise of the modern nation-state. Particular emphasis is placed on the political, economic, and social upheaval resulting from the impact of liberalism and nationalism.

HIST 314 The Age of Uncertainty: 1914-Present 3 credits
This course examines the collapse of European global domination in the wake of two world wars and the division of Europe during the Cold War. Topics include the disaster of the First World War, the rise of Communism and Fascism, the Second World War, the recovery of Europe, the collapse of the Soviet Empire, and the rise of the European Union.

HIST 324 Russia Under the Tsars: 1500-1918 3 credits
This course surveys the history of Russia from the late Middle Ages to the Russian Revolution. Specific topics include the growth of Russian power, the emergence of Russia as a major player in the European state system, and the collapse of Tsarist autocracy.

HIST 325 The Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union 2 credits
This course is an examination of the rise of Soviet totalitarianism, the Great Patriotic War, the impact of the Soviet Union’s role as superpower, both internal and external, the collapse of Soviet society, and the prospects for post-Soviet Russia.

HIST 326 Latin America 3 credits
This course is a basic survey of modern Latin America. Following an introduction to the geography and history of the region, the course focuses on the art, modern literature, cinema, culture, sociology, politics, economy, and current conditions in Latin America.

HIST 327 British History 3 credits
This course provides a brief survey of British society to the Elizabethan period, followed by a more detailed study of the Elizabethan period through World War II. Topics such as the nature of the 18th century politics, the Industrial Revolution, liberal and Victorian England, the impact of the World Wars on British society, and the “Irish Question” are examined.

HIST 329 Islamic Civilization 3 credits
This course is a survey of the emergence of Islam during late Roman antiquity and the middle ages, highlighting the life of the prophet Mohammed and the development of Islamic religion, philosophy, and literature in the early Islamic empires. Also considered is the development of Islamic fundamentalism in the modern world and institutional, operational, and environmental factors which demonstrate differences between the Islamic and Western worlds. (This course may be taken for credit as RELS 352.)

HIST 330 Modern China 3 credits
This course is a basic survey of modern China. Following an introduction to the geography and history of the country, the course focuses on the art, modern literature, cinema, culture, sociology, politics, foreign relations, economy, and current conditions in the People’s Republic of China.

HIST 331 Modern Japan 3 credits
This course is a basic survey of modern Japan. Following an introduction to geography and history, the course focuses on art, modern literature, cinema, culture, sociology, politics, economy, and current conditions in Japan. (This course may be taken for credit as JAPN 321.)

HIST 351 The Early Republic, 1789-1848 3 credits
This course explores the development of the United States from the birth of the Republic through the Mexican-American War, examining, among other topics, the implementation of the government under the Constitution, the democratization of the political process, the early foreign relations of the United States, the growth of sectionalism, the commercial and market “revolutions,” and territorial expansion.

HIST 352 The Crisis of the Republic, 1848-1877 3 credits
This course examines the social, political, economic, and ideological forces that led to the American Civil War, traces the main phases of the military campaigns, and explores the far-reaching consequences of the war in American history. Topics include slavery and sectional conflict before the war, the abolitionist movement, Union and Confederate strategies, the wartime experiences in the North and South, African-Americans and emancipation, and the Reconstruction period following the war.

HIST 353 The Birth of Modern America, 1877-1914 3 credits
This course examines the industrialization of the United States following the Civil War and the massive immigration and rapid industrialization that accompanied that process, as well as the various reform movements that arose in response to these developments. Other topics include the development of the West and the rise of the United States as a world power.

HIST 354 America in the Era of the World Wars, 1914-1945 3 credits
This class explores American society, politics, and international relations in the era of the world wars of the twentieth century, a period during which American attitudes concerning international relations, domestic politics, and social policies underwent profound changes. Topics include American participation in the First World War, the isolationist impulse of the 1920s and 1930s, the culture and politics of the 1920s, the Great Depression, the New Deal, and the Second World War.

HIST 355 Contemporary U.S. History, 1945-present 3 credits
This course examines the history of the United States since 1945. Emphasis is placed on the evolution of the postwar world, the Cold War, the rise of the consumer society, the changes in society and social values, the urban and suburban revolution, the sixties, and the Civil Rights Movement.

HIST 376 Methods of Historical Research and Writing 3 credits
This course is a study of the techniques of historical writing and research that that are expected in the History program and more generally in the academy. It introduces students to the major types of historical paper-writing, including book reviews, various analyses, and research papers. It also discusses suggestions for improving writing quality and provides an introductory tutorial to the Chicago Manual of Style.

HIST 377 Theory and Practice of History 3 credits
This course is a study of the major works of the ancient, medieval, and modern European and American historians with emphasis on the various schools and methods of interpretation. The student also receives an introduction to the nature and methods of history as an intellectual discipline. Emphasis is on the techniques of historical research in preparation for the Senior Project.

HIST 400-409 Seminar in American History 2-4 credits
These seminars provide the opportunity for advanced study of a topic, period, or issue in American History. (Topics change regularly.) Prerequisite: Previous study of the topic in a survey course or permission of the instructor.

HIST 401 Constitutional Law 3 credits
Case studies and moot cases examine the historical development of important constitutional issues before the United Stated Supreme Court. Students become familiar with the basic structure and functions of the federal court system. (This course may be taken for credit as POLS 401.)

HIST 410-419 Seminar in European History 2-4 credits
These seminars provide an opportunity for advanced study of a topic, period, or issue in European History. (Topics change regularly.) Prerequisite: Previous study of the topic in a survey course or permission of the instructor.

HIST 410 Weapons and Warfare 4 credits
This course is an examination of the science and art of warfare throughout the history of civilization. Particular emphasis is on the technology of war and the methods developed to employ that technology against opponents on the battlefield or against an opponent’s entire society.

HIST 418 History as the Novel, the Novel as History 2 credits
This course is an examination of the use of historical evidence as the background for a work of fiction and the relationship between the historian and the artist. Historical periods and works to be examined change regularly.

HIST 420-429 Seminar in Non-Western History 2-4 credits
These seminars provide the opportunity for advanced study of a topic, period, or issue in non-Western History. (Topics change regularly.) Prerequisite: Previous study of the topic in a survey course or permission of the instructor.

HIST 487-488 Independent Study 2-4 credits

HIST 490 Senior Project 2-4 credits
The student plans and pursues an independent research project in History.

Political Science Courses

POLS 120 Model United Nations 1 credit
This course is a study of the structure, role, and procedure of the United Nations. Emphasis is on preparation for student participation in a simulated United Nations conference. This course may be repeated for credit. (Activity course: CR/NCR only. Exception: must be taken for a letter grade by students pursuing the International Relations Interdisciplinary Studies major.)

POLS 225 American Politics 3 credits
This course is an introduction to the formal and informal structures, institutions, and processes which comprise the American political system at the national level.

POLS 243 International Politics 3 credits
This course provides an introduction to international relations. Emphasis is on the study of conflict and cooperation in the international system and on the study of power, diplomacy, alliances, international law and organization, and other forms of interaction.

POLS 253 Nature and International Society 3 credits
This course is an examination of the political, economic, ethical/philosophical, and international security dimensions of the relationship between the environment and society. Special focus is on the role of political institutions and the market in resolving the ecological challenges of the 21st century.

POLS 320 Legislative Process 3 credits
This course examines the roles of the United States Congress and other national legislatures as makers of law and policy. Emphasis is on formal and informal internal structural organizations. Prerequisite: POLS 225.

POLS 321 Executive Leadership 3 credits
This course is a study of the roles and functions of the President of the United States in relation to the other branches of government, the states, and the international system. Prerequisite: POLS 225.

POLS 322 Judicial Behavior 3 credits
This course is a study of the United States courts as institution and process, emphasizing the Federal courts. The course examines the role of courts as defenders of the rights of citizens and as makers of law and policy. Prerequisite: POLS 225.

POLS 325 Political Economy 3 credits
This course is a study of the theoretical and policy interrelationship of politics and economics, state and market, in the international system. Emphasis is on the role of government and international organizations in the authoritative allocation of public and private goods. Socio-economic decision-making mechanisms (market, hierarchy, bargaining, etc.) are identified and analyzed on a global scale. Neo-classical, Keynesian, Marxist, and non-traditional approaches to political economy are examined. Prerequisite: POLS 243.

POLS 337 Campaigns and Elections 3 credits
This course studies the democratic dynamic in the United States in its electoral form. Particular emphasis is on voting behavior, political parties, candidate decision-making, and political campaign strategy. Political culture and processes of participatory democracy are also emphasized.

POLS 341 United States Foreign Policy 3 credits
This course is an examination of the assumptions and mechanics underlying the making of U.S. foreign policy since World War II. The course provides a framework for analyzing foreign policy decision-making and the various approaches to the formulation and conduct of post-Cold War foreign policy.

POLS 351 Comparative Politics: Western 3 credits
This course is a study of the major western political systems. Focus is on institutional, economic, and regional/international factors of industrial democracies in Western Europe, the Americas, and in areas colonized by Europeans. Emphasis is on establishing the common criteria and methodologies for making valid comparative analysis of these systems. Prerequisite: Three credits in Political Science.

POLS 352 Comparative Politics: Non-Western 3 credits
This course is a study of the major non-western political systems. Emphasis is on institutional, economic, and regional/international factors of modern nation-states which may not operate under the same political or economic philosophies as “the West.” Emphasis is also on establishing the common criteria and methodologies for making valid comparative analysis of these systems. Prerequisite: Three credits in Political Science.

POLS 361 Ancient and Medieval Political Thought 3 credits
This course provides an introduction to ancient and medieval political thought. Fundamental questions examined include: What is the relationship between ethics and politics?; What is a good regime?; What is a good citizen?; What is the relationship between law and ethics?; What is the relationship between theology and political thought? Students are guided in a close reading of important political works, including Plato’s Apology and Republic, Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics and Politics, and Augustine’s City of God. (This course can be taken as PHIL 361.)

POLS 362 Modern Political Thought 3 credits
As an introduction to modern and post-modern political thought, students examine the writings of important political thinkers of the past 500 years, including Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Marx, Nietzsche, Dostoyevsky, and Camus. Emphasis is on the development of liberal democratic thought and its many recent critiques, including Marxism, feminism, and communitarianism. (This course can be taken as PHIL 362.)

POLS 363 American Political Thought 3 credits
This course examines the roots, foundation, and development of American political thought. Special attention is given to the political thought of the Founding Fathers and to contemporary schools of thought such as feminism and communitarianism.

POLS 364 International Relations Theory 3 credits
This course is an examination of various theoretical explanations of how the international system functions and is evolving. Special emphasis is accorded to the study of realist, neo-realist, and post-realist theories.

POLS 370 Research Methods in Political Science 4 credits
This course is a study of the scope and methods of research through an examination of approaches, models, and theories. Qualitative and quantitative methods are studied and applied. The course includes the design and execution of a team research project. An emphasis is on preparation for the Senior Project. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

POLS 371-379 Selected Topics in Political Science 2-4 credits
This is a series of upper level courses in Political Science. The content of specific courses varies. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

POLS 401 Constitutional Law 3 credits
Case studies and moot cases examine the historical development of important constitutional issues before the United Stated Supreme Court. Students become familiar with the basic structure and functions of the federal court system. (This course may be taken for credit as HIST 401.)

POLS 470 Internship in Political Science 2-8 credits
This internship is a faculty supervised off-campus experience with an academic dimension. Each internship combines off-campus work with a substantial research project. The off-campus experience and the proposed research project must be approved by the chair of the department prior to the beginning of the internship. Off-campus work is supervised jointly by a faculty supervisor and a designated off-campus mentor. The student is evaluated by the faculty supervisor who may take into consideration the evaluation of the mentor.

POLS 477 Senior Seminar in Political Science 3 credits
This course is a study of Political Science as a discipline, including its major subfields: Theory and Method; Political Processes and Individual Behavior; Political Institutions of the State; Nations and their Relationships.

POLS 487-488 Independent Study 2-4 credits

POLS 490 Senior Project 2-4 credits
The student plans and pursues an independent project in Political Science.