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Penn Summer Session I and our 11-Week Summer Session courses will be offered remotely. Currently, Summer Session II is scheduled to run on campus, as planned. The situation with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is fluid and being monitored closely. Please check back periodically for updates. Should there be any changes to the policy that impacts our decision to hold courses this summer, we are committed to providing timely updates to enrolled students via email. Should any of these programs be cancelled, students will receive a full refund of program fees at that time.

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Introduction to American Politics

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Course Number: 
PSCI 130 920


Course Description: 

This course introduces students to the institutions, processes, and controversies of American politics. The course poses a few questions. What are the historical and philosophical foundations of the American republic? Can America’s eighteenth-century Constitution address modern debates over gun control, same sex marriage, abortion, affirmative action, and economic regulation? Should America’s constitutional system be revised, and if so, how? How does American public policy get made, who makes it, and who benefits? How do elections work in America, and what can we expect for the 2016 presidential election? And more broadly, what is politics and why study it? If you are interested in these questions, are considering a political science major, or want to get better acquainted with American politics, this course will fit your interests.

Programs for every

type of student


Study on-campus,

online or abroad


Summer is the best season

to be at Penn


Penn Summer

3440 Market Street, Suite 100
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3335

(215) 898-7326

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