PBPL 100 INTRODUCTION TO PUBLIC POLICY
This course provides students with a basic discussion of the history and principles of public policy. Public policy is a large and diverse topic of scholarly and applied study covering a number of academic disciplines including but not limited to political science and government, economics, sociology, anthropology, public administration and management, organizations and institutions. The central purpose of any investigation of public policies is to understand the socioeconomic and political processes behind their formulation and implementation as well as to evaluate their consequences (3 credits).
Cross-listed with SOC 260 Introduction to Public Policy
PBPL 350 APPLIED STATISTICS
This course provides sociology/ public policy majors and others with the tools for understanding, evaluating and conducting social science research. Students will acquire a better understanding of the relationship between the theoretical and substantive questions germane to the discipline and the diverse empirical work addressing those questions. Analytic objectives consistent with Mount Saint Vincent and sociology department learning goals include: (1) developing rudimentary statistical skills (2) linking theoretical problems to hypothesis testing and statistical inference (3) exploring major types of empirical research and their implications for problem solving (e.g., experiments, surveys, participant observation) (4) applying and refining knowledge of sociological methods through diverse readings in both the sociological literature (e.g., American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Social Forces, Sociological Methodology) and in non-academic publications (e.g., The New York Times).
This course also serves as an introduction to fundamental ideas in multivariate statistics using case studies. It will cover descriptive, exploratory, and graphical techniques in multivariate statistics. Also, it will cover the assumptions, limitations, and uses of basic techniques such as cluster analysis, principal components analysis, factor analysis, multivariate regression, and multivariate analysis of variance, as well as how to implement these methods on available public domain policy and economic data sets, using statistical software such as RPSS and SPSS (3 credits).
Cross-listed with SOC 350 Social Science Research Methods
PBPL 360 PUBLIC POLICY ANALYSIS AND CASES
Public policy analysis serves as an intermediate /advanced seminar designed to explore the principles of public policy decision-making. Public policy is a large and diverse topic of scholarly and applied study covering a number of academic disciplines including but not limited to political science and government, economics, sociology, anthropology, public administration and management, organizations and institutions.
The central purpose of any investigation of public policies is to understand the socioeconomic and political processes behind their formulation and implementation as well as to evaluate their consequences. To do so, public policy analysis will provide the intermediate to advanced student knowledge and tools with which to: understand the nature of cooperation and joint action; assess and evaluate the efficacy of public policies and programs to achieve social, political and economic objectives; formulate and evaluate normative and ethical ramifications of policy, including equity and justice, and; apply these tools to decision-making practice, not simply as a matter of theoretical understanding. While some of these objectives parallel those of foundation-level courses in public policy, the intermediate to advanced student will be expected to achieve competency rather than simply gaining familiarity with the topics of discussion (3 credits).
PBPL 375 SURVEY INTERNSHIP
This course will examine survey research design, execution of sampling, field, data processing. Special emphasis is placed on survey research design, although qualitative research and desk research will also be covered. Additionally, the class will be a survey class that also provides a comprehensive background of methodological knowledge for the senior research project (3 credits).
PBPL 460 RESEARCH PROJECT
Students will select a topic in one of the areas of concentration and develop it into a major paper including an original research study, presenting their findings in a formal oral presentation (3 credits).