Spring 2021 - POL 100 J100

Introduction to Politics and Government (3)

Class Number: 4902

Delivery Method: Remote


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo 5:30 PM – 6:20 PM



A comprehensive introduction to the study of politics and government for both political science majors and students specializing in other disciplines. The course will explore the major concepts, methods, approaches and issues in political science, as well as the primary components of government structure and the political process. POL 101W is the Writing certified version of POL 100 and students cannot receive credit for both courses. Breadth-Social Sciences.


Decisions by our governments unavoidably affect us. Studying political science enables a better understanding of those events. This course covers the basic concepts in the discipline of political science and provides more accurate answers to questions regarding political change. One section of the course focuses on the values that shape political culture and on the political ideas that mobilize citizens. Another examines the operation of government institutions. How do courts, legislatures, and political parties reconcile competing and diverging interests? Have political institutions and mechanisms dealt effectively with global challenges, such as environmental pollution? Can we ensure that the political executive is accountable to the people and can we increase citizen participation in the political process? We contrast Canada’s parliamentary system with other political systems. The course also considers results from the 2020 presidential election and the upcoming Canadian election.


  • Three synchronous take home quizzes (1 hour each) 30%
  • Participation and attendance in synchronous tutorial 10%
  • Term paper proposal and one short online chat with instructor 10%
  • Short paper assignment 10%
  • Term paper 30%
  • Asynchronous Contributions to the online discussion board 10%



Politics, Power, and the Common Good: An Introduction to Political Science, sixth edition by Eric Mintz, David Close, and Osvaldo Croci, Pearson Education, 2021.  Purchase can be made through the Bookstore (Vital Source)  E-Text ISBN: 9780135287507

or through Revel version and instructions will be posted on Canvas on how to access the Revel version.

ISBN: 9780135287507

Department Undergraduate Notes:

The Department of Political Science strictly enforces a policy on plagiarism.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2021 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).