PS 1202 - AMERICAN CONSTITUTIONAL LAW
Minimum Credits: 3
Maximum Credits: 3
The United States constitution plays an extraordinarily powerful role in American political life. The primary focus of this course is examination of the role of constitutional law in the American political process. We do this by analyzing constitutional interpretation by the United States Supreme Court and other federal courts in its major decisions. Students will learn how the court reached its decisions, who some significant justices have been, how the court considered contending arguments, and what the consequences of these decisions for our political system have been. Topics include the development of judicial review and close analysis of the way in which the court has addressed the two major structural features of the U.S. Constitution ' separation of powers and federalism in an historic and contemporary setting. Specific issues in these areas are struggles over presidential and congressional power and national versus state power. We also address issues regarding civil liberties and civil rights. Students should find this course helpful in reaching a more sophisticated understanding of the major issues of constitutional law in American life, as well as providing a useful background to the cases and kinds of legal analysis they may pursue in further study in law school or other graduate study.
Academic Career: Undergraduate
Course Component: Lecture
Grade Component: LG/SNC Elective Basis
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