Public Opinion with Pres. Herbst

We are excited to announce Pres. Susan Herbst’s first course at UConn!

POLS 3625-001: Public Opinion

Instructors: Susan Herbst, Richard Orr

What is public opinion?  Why and how does it matter in a democracy?  And how can we connect the “vox populi” with American public policy?

Public opinion is the basis for democratic theory and practice.  Without the considered, thoughtful voice of the people, it is impossible to fulfill the goals of the Founders or to match preferences of voters to the public policy that dictates their lives. The goal of this course is to evaluate and conceptualize the role of public opinion, considering its power, authority, and limitations.

We will begin with some larger theoretical ideas and debates, to introduce the context for our policy cases and visitors close to home, here in Connecticut.

Grades will determined by a combination of a take-home midterm exam, a 10-15 page final paper, and class participation.

Note POLS 3625 is coded at the catalog level as “open to juniors or higher,” but this section is open to all Honors students. If you will not have junior or senior standing in fall 2015, email and include (1) your name; (2) your 7-digit Student Admin number; (3) the class number (10996); (4) the course number and section (POLS 3625-001); and (5) confirmation that there are seats available in the course.