Syllabus: Political Science 130: U.S.

Environmental Politics (20 May-28 June 2013)
Robert V. Bartlett Department of Political Science University of Vermont Email: “We Americans want it all: endless and secure energy supplies; low prices; no pollution; less global warming; no new power plants (or oil and gas drilling either) near people or pristine places. This is a wonderful wish list, whose only shortcoming is the minor inconvenience of massive inconsistency.” Robert J. Samuelson, Washington Post COURSE SUMMARY In this course we will study the politics of environmentalism in a particular, peculiar political system-that of the United States of America. Trends, patterns, and processes will be examined, the historical basis for them will be analyzed, and theoretical approaches to understanding and addressing them will be explored. PREREQUISITES Although POLS 021, American Political System, is officially a prerequisite for this course, anyone with college-level reading and writing skills and a willingness to work hard should be able to do well in the course. HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS Regular access to a computer and a connection to the Internet. Firefox Browser on the Mac or Windows platforms (other browsers may work, but behave inconsistently). You can download Firefox browser at:; enter your "netid" and password for UVM email to proceed. You need a Skype account (you can call anyone else with a Skype account for free).

REQUIRED READINGS All books been ordered through the UVM Bookstore. If you buy them elsewhere, be certain you have the right edition and translation! Alm, Leslie R., Ross E. Burkhart, and Marc V. Simon. Turmoil in American Public Policy: Science, Democracy, and the Environment. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger, 2010. Ibsen, Henrik. An Enemy of the People, in Four Great Plays, trans. R Farquharson Sharp. New York: Bantam, 1981. (This translation and this edition ONLY--no other translation or edition is acceptable!) Klyza, Christopher McGrory, and David Sousa. American Environmental Policy, 1990-2006. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2008. Layzer, Judith A. The Environmental Case: Translating Values into Policy, 3rd ed. Washington, DC: CQ Press, 2012. Miller, Norman. Environmental Politics: Stakeholders, Interests, and Policymaking, 2nd ed. New York: Routledge, 2009.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES By the end of the term, the student should be able to: • Demonstrate mastery of basic concepts and theories of American politics and public policy making and to demonstrate the ability to apply these to matters of environmental politics. • Analyze the distinctive character of environmental problems and politics. • Describe and analyze basic characteristics of the American political system, the key actors and institutions, and the main processes through which these actors engage in environmental politics (people, patterns, and processes in a system). • Describe basic features of the development of U. S. environmental politics over the past 150 years, particularly the past 40 years, and to explain basic ways that U.S. development has differed from that of other countries. • Explain the basic premises and arguments of major theorists and critics of environmental politics. • Use a set of arguments from one reading and apply them to critically analyze a different issue or set of arguments. • Advance a normative position on critical matters of environmental politics and policy, backing this judgment with sound arguments and evidence. • Demonstrate the above skills in written essays, in brief prepared presentations, and in extemporaneous discussions. WORK EXPECTATIONS The University as a whole has adopted a policy that states the work expectation for all UVM classes is, at a minimum, two hours of work outside of the classroom for each hour of class meeting time, or at least 120 hours total (40 in class, 80 outside of the classroom) for a three-credit course. The work expectation for a totally online course then is also at least 120 hours. That means for this course, offered in a six-week term, you should expect to spend at least 20 hours a week in online and offline activities. BEHAVIORAL EXPECTATIONS I view this as a fascinating, exciting, terribly important subject. I will do my best to make learning about it interesting, fun, and rewarding by using a variety of learning exercises. All of these involve you in some mode of active learning, of learning by doing. This is not a class in which you can sit back and watch and memorize, and expect to do well. Learning should be fun, but it isn't just fun--it requires work and discipline. In our postindustrial world, the three skills most important for college graduates are the ability to think critically, to write well, and to speak articulately. People who have these skills succeed and become leaders (and in crass material terms, usually get paid more over their lives). These may also be the three most important citizenship skills you will need in order to contribute positively to the creation of a better future environment. An overarching goal of this course, therefore, is to help you improve your writing, speaking, and critical thinking skills. To that end, rather than mere comprehension of facts and memorization of details, we will emphasize higher-level cognitive skills such as application, analysis, evaluation, and synthesis. PROTOCOL Achieving all of the above requires active discussion, questioning, and dialogue. I welcome the presentation of a range of perspectives, positions, and experiences. I encourage you to present relevant arguments, experiences, and stories for the consideration of all of us, subject to time availability. I insist, however, on the following protocol in all class meetings: • Students are expected to complete all assignments and participate in all required activities by the deadlines specified. • Students are expected to treat faculty and fellow students with respect. This requires an active effort on the part of all students with regard to:

• ACTIVE READING AND LISTENING—reading and hearing is not the same as understanding and listening. Conscious attention to a writer's or speaker’s words and potential meanings is essential. • ACTIVE RESPECT—showing consideration for alternative viewpoints in a manner that continues the dialogue without denigrating the dignity of other participants. • ACTIVE REFLEXIVITY—a willingness to employ self-critique and to consider collegial constructive criticism. This is a participation intensive class, a class in which you can develop and refine some really valuable and important skills. Routine daily participation, including involvement in online discussions, is also required and a part of your grade. I expect students at this level to demonstrate their professionalism routinely by preparing to participate on time. I expect you to do all the readings before the due date and to be ready to discuss them. Your grade for participation will be based on a roughly equal weighing of the quantity and quality of your contributions, so you must participate and your contributions as a whole ought to be the kind that advance, in a positive way, your own education and the learning of others. Some of you may find involving yourself in discussion difficult, but it is no less important for being difficult. One of the best ways to prepare to participate is to pose questions to the whole class that you would like to have answered or discussed. Students must review all content in the Blackboard course posted in the lessons during each week. Participation in discussion forum topics must be timely (within each week’s assignments) with multiple postings per week anticipated. Students should expect to log into the course at least four times per week.

Class Communication I will use the Announcements box on the course home page to communicate reminders, updates, and special interest topics. During the first week, I will have online office hours Monday 21 May at 11-noon, 3-4, and 8-9 EST; and on Thursday 24 May at 11-noon, 3-4, and 8-9 EST. You may email me during these times for an immediate response, or you may arrange to speak with me via Skype. After the first week, I will post my online office hours in Announcements on Blackboard. Response Turnaround Time Please use UVM email for communication with the instructor. During the first week (21-25 May), expect a 12-24 hour turnaround on email and discussion postings. For 26 May-29 June, expect a 24-48 hour turnaround on email and discussion postings. Normally other assignments will be graded within 72 hours of being due.

For a complete description of all graded assignments, please see “Assignment Descriptions” located in the Online Lessons section (see Course Menu to the left). The following weights will be given to each of these components: Blackboard readings journal blog 20% Current event paper 20% Current event blog 10% Discussion board participation 20% Wiki paper 10% Final essay 20%

Students are expected to complete all assignments and participate in all required activities by the deadlines specified. Grades will be numerical, ranging from 0-99. These may be translated into letter grades according to the following scale. 97 - 99 = A+ 93 - 96 = A 90 - 92 = A87 - 89 = B+ 83 - 86 = B 80 - 82 = B77 - 79 = C+ 73 - 76 = C 70 - 72 = C67 - 69 = D+ 63 - 66 = D 60 - 62 = D0 - 59 = F

LATE POLICY Because it is crucial that you not fall behind in a class that moves ahead so rapidly, work submitted late cannot be accepted except for the Current Event Paper. The Current Event Paper will be accepted if late, but penalized 10 points for each day that it is late. DISHONESTY POLICY Please read UVM’s Code of Academic Integrity ( Copying material from another source or using another's ideas without acknowledgment (citation) is plagiarism. Using notes during exams is cheating. These and all other forms of academic dishonesty will result in an automatic grade of F and will be reported to the University for further action. ATTENDANCE AND ILLNESS POLICY Online participation in Blackboard is expected each week to complete assignments and post discussion messages. Students are expected to visit the course at least four times per week. I have assumed that some of us might be briefly ill or have unexpected emergencies and so I have tried to build in as much flexibility as possible to accommodate. But there is no hiding the fact a summer online course moves ahead quickly and if you fall very far behind your learning and grades will suffer and you may never catch up. It is up to you to prepare for the contingency of unexpected illness by keeping up with all work while healthy, so that you can take advantage of maximum flexibility in the event of an emergency or possible onset of severe illness. RELIGIOUS HOLIDAYS POLICY Students have the right to practice the religion of their choice. Students should submit to me in writing their documented religious holiday schedule for the term no later than the end of the second full week of classes. Those students who do so and who miss written assignments because of religious observance may make up this work.

STUDENT LEARNING ACCOMMODATION STATEMENT Accommodations will be provided to eligible students with disabilities. Please obtain an accommodation letter from the ACCESS office and see one of the instructors early in the course to discuss what accommodations will be necessary. If you are unfamiliar with ACCESS, visit their website at to learn more about the services they provide. ACESS: A-170 Living Learning Center, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05405. PH: 802-656-7753, TTY: call 711 (relay), Fax: 802-656-0739, Email:, Instant Messenger: UVMaccess. General office hours: 8:30am – 4:30pm Monday through Friday. Call to make an appointment.

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