POLI 110 – Investigating Politics: An Introduction to Scientific Political Analysis (UBC, Summer 2018)


Course Description: This course prepares students to engage with the field of political science by introducing them to the basic logic and tools used by political scientists to understand and explain the political world. The course will teach students how to ask answerable questions; how to define key political concepts; how to formulate hypotheses and theories about political dynamics; how to measure the phenomena we want to study; how to think about and assess relationships of cause-and-effect; and how to report our findings to the world. We will consider these issues by examining how political scientists have investigated major questions in domestic and international affairs, such as the effectiveness of foreign aid, the link between economic development and democracy, and how citizens arrive at their vote choice and evaluate candidates for public office.