Bluefield State College

POSC 405—SPRING 2013

Sections 1 & 2

CRN:  20388 & 20389



Colin S. Cavell, Ph.D.                                                        Course Room No.:  PHYSED P202F & HEC W17

Class W:  4:00 p.m. – 6:50 p.m. (16:00-18:50)                              INTERNET:

Office Hours:  TBA                                                                                                                        Office No.:  B120

VOICE:  304.327.4034 (W)                                                                                                          512-924-2364 (M)


Study of the major concepts and approaches in world politics and analysis of process, institutions, problems of war and peace, and contemporary trends.  PR:  POSC 200.


Grading Policy:  20% for Attendance*; 20% for the Class Presentation; 20% for the Midterm Exam; 20% for the Research Paper; and 20% for the Final Exam. A Guidelines sheet will be distributed outlining the requirements for your Class Presentation and for your Research Paper.


Grading Scale:  90-100=A; 80-89=B; 70-79=C; 60-69=D; 0-59=F.  These numerical scores correspond to the following evaluations:  “A” = Excellent; “B” = Good; “C” = Satisfactory (NOTE:  A grade of “C” or better is required in major courses); “D” = Poor (passing, except in major courses); “F” = Earned Failure (removed only by repeating the course; upon successfully passing the course, the first grade is “excluded” from grade point average.  The second grade is “included” in the recalculation of the grade point average); and “I” = Incomplete.


Learning Outcomes:  Upon completion of POSC 405, students should be able to read and provide an immanent critique of texts; to articulate arguments and examine their flaws; be familiar with the basics of logical, ethical, and dialectical reasoning; be familiar with essays, both pro and con, regarding world politics, theories of world politics, international decision making, rivalries and relations among the great powers, the global South in a world of powers, non-state actors and the quest for global community, the threat of armed conflict to the world, the pursuit of power through arms and alliances of armed aggression to the world, the quest for peace through international law and collective security, the globalization of international finance, international trade in the global marketplace, the demographic and cultural dimensions of globalization, the promotion of human development and human rights, and the global responsibility for the preservation of the environment.


Academic Integrity Policy:   Academic integrity is expected of all students. This means that all work for this class must be undertaken and completed by you alone without collaboration from others. Any dishonesty in the performance of course work, such as plagiarism or cheating in other forms, will be reported. In the event the student is charged with some form of dishonesty, the Student Discipline Policy will be followed. The full text of the BSC Academic Honesty Policy can be found at: In addition, students should be aware that research paper assignments may be submitted to Turnitin by the instructor for the purpose of checking for possible plagiarism. Submitted assignments will be included in the BSC dedicated database of assignments at Turnitin and will be used solely for the purpose of checking for possible plagiarism during the grading process during this term and in the future.


Attendance Policy*:  Attendance in class is mandatory.  It is the student’s responsibility to sign the attendance sheet each day of class; failure to sign the attendance sheet—even if in attendance—will be counted as an absence.  “When the number of clock hours of willful absences exceeds the number of  semester hours of credit, the instructor will notify the Registrar that the student has exceeded the permissible number of absences and should be withdrawn from class.”  Students with Excused Absences must submit to me a hard copy of the campus publication The Bulletin announcing your allowed absence in order to get credit for the day(s) of your absence.  “It is the responsibility of the student to…provide supporting documents for institutional and unavoidable absences” (Bluefield State College Academic Catalog 2012-2014, p. 55).  As well, you are expected to follow the syllabus and accordingly be prepared for each day’s class.  This means that you must read the pre-assigned readings before class so that you will be prepared to discuss and debate in class the subject matter scheduled for that day and answer questions related to the issues being covered.  NOTE:  TURN OFF all cell phones during class.


* Absence from class may be made up by preparing a two-page, typed (i.e. using maximum 12 point font size and maximum double-spaced text with one-inch margin on all sides), summary on the missed material scheduled to be covered the day(s) of your absence.  The summary must be in your own words and must not be copied material from the text(s), the internet, or any other source(s).  All summaries must be turned in to me by the last day of classes if you want credit for your absences.


Withdrawal Policy:   Academic Withdrawal from the course prior to the deadline date for withdrawal as published within the academic calendar is accomplished by securing a change in schedule form and having it signed by appropriate persons.  Blank copies of the change in schedule form are available in the offices of the Registrar, the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Dean and the advisor.  After obtaining the required signatures, the student must submit, prior to the deadline date, the change in schedule form to the Office of the Registrar.


Disability Services Statement:  BSC is committed to full inclusion of all students. Students who, by nature of a documented disability, require classroom, equipment, testing or assignment accommodations should contact the Student Support Services at 304.327.4227 to request accommodations before the start of the semester. Your immediate attention to these arrangements is necessary to assure a positive learning experience.

Free Tutoring Services Available:  BSC offers Smarthinking free online tutoring for all BSC students in the following subjects:  Math; Accounting, Managerial; Accounting, Financial; Writing (all subjects); Grammar; Microeconomics; Macroeconomics; Statistics; Spanish. Chemistry, etc. This service is free and available 24 hours a day to all BSC students. Go to and follow these instructions.



Required Texts:


Kegley Jr., Charles W. and Shannon L. Blanton.  2013.  World Politics: Trend and Transformation, 2013 - 2014 Update Edition, 14th Edition.  Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing, [Cengage Learning] [ISBN-13: 9781111830106]  624 Pages  Paperback.


Recommended Supplemental Text:


Allen, John L. and Christopher J. Sutton.  2013.  Student Atlas of World Politics [Paperback] , Tenth Edition.  New York, NY:  McGraw-Hill Higher Education [ISBN-13 9780078026201], 240 pages.




***This class is web-enhanced and students will be able to access supplemental materials on the BSC BlackBoard website, including chapter outlines, chapter PowerPoint summaries, etc.***




Jan. 21:  Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (College Closed)


Jan. 22:  Classes begin for Spring Semester


Jan. 23:  Exploring World Politics


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 1


Main Themes:  Nature of the international political system; governmental types; role of international law; constitution (written and unwritten); separation of powers; role of media and civil society, formulation of governmental policy.


Explain Syllabus:  Go over class requirements, required books, in-class presentation, research paper, midterm and final exams.


Jan. 30:  Theories of World Politics


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 2


Feb. 6:  Theories of International Decision Making


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 3


Feb. 13:  Rivalries and Relations Among the Great Powers


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 4


Feb. 20:  The Global South in a World of Powers


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 5


Feb. 27:  Nonstate Actors and the Quest for Global Community


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 6


Mar. 6:  MIDTERM EXAM [Wednesday]


Mar. 11:  Mid-Semester grades due to Registrar


Mar.  11-15:  Spring Break (No Classes)


Mar. 20:  The Threat of Armed Conflict to the World


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 7


Mar. 27:  The Pursuit of Power Through Arms and Alliances of Armed Aggression to the World


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 8


Apr. 1-12:  Pre-Registration for Summer & Fall Semester courses


Apr. 3:  The Quest for Peace Through International Law and Collective Security


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 9


Apr. 10:  The Globalization of International Finance


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 10


Apr. 12:  Last Day to Withdraw from course/college with a grade of "W"


Apr. 17:  International Trade in the Global Marketplace


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 11


Apr. 24:  The Demographic and Cultural Dimensions of Globalization


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 12


May 1:  [Research Papers Due] The Promotion of Human Development and Human Rights


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 13


Assignment: Research Papers Due today.  Hand in a hard copy of your Research Papers to me in class and send me an electronic copy by email as a Microsoft Word attachment.


May 8:  [In-Class Presentations Due] Global Responsibility for the Preservation of the Environment


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 14


May 10:  [Last day of classes. All course work MUST be completed by this date. No submissions will be accepted after this date.] Looking Ahead at Global Trends and Transformations


Readings:  Kegley & Blanton Ch. 15


Assignment: Complete all readings.


May 15:  FINAL EXAM [Wednesday]


May 20:  Final grades due to Registrar electronically