CoursesThe Public Policy Process
PPE 321 / PSCI 236

The Public Policy Process

This course is an introduction to the theories, practices, and processes of making public policy. It is designed for undergraduates majoring in political science and PPE and for curious students who want to better understand how policies get made and why they look the way they do.

Tuesdays, 12 PM – 2 PM

We will introduce you to the ways that value conflicts animate and shape this process, the steps and skills needed to make policy, and how to engage in active and deliberative discourse in order to work through disagreements and build understandings across diverse preferences. Our focus will primarily be on political institutions in the world’s rich democracies, including the United States, though many of the ideas and topics discussed can provide useful comparisons to nations with different systems of government and at different levels of per capita income. Students will be evaluated based on their preparation for and engagement with a variety of in-class participatory and deliberative exercises, and on two written exams.

Throughout the course, we will engage as a learning community in active learning and deliberation. Active learning provides students with opportunities to discuss, investigate, and create solutions to real-world problems. In this class, we will practice policy skills, grapple with complex political questions, and propose solutions to these problems. Research has shown that active learning helps students to better understand and remember course material.

This class is an active learning (SAIL) class as well as a SNF Paideia designated course.

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