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Undergraduate Bulletin 2009-2010
Bulletin Homepage |Nelson A. Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy | Courses in Public Law

Courses in Public Law

R POS 295/295Z (= A HIS 295/295Z) The Supreme Court and American Constitutional History (3)
This course treats the history of the Constitution through an examination of many of the major arguments made about it before the Supreme Court of the United States. This course allows us to understand the critical role counsel has made in shaping arguments before the Court, the way in which litigants representing competing social demands have pushed the envelope of American constitutionalism, and the means by which the Courts’ agenda (and American constitutional history) has changed in response to those arguments and the underlying social circumstances that have informed them during the previous two centuries. Only one version of R POS 295 may be taken for credit.

R POS 328 (= R PUB 328) Law and Policy (3)
Examination of the role of the of the courts in the public policy process and in substantive policy fields; integrates the literature of law and policy and applies it to such areas as mental health care, corrections, human resources, education, and housing policy. Only one version of R POS 328 may be taken for credit.

R POS 330 Law, Courts, and Politics (3)
The structure and function of the courts in the American political system with special attention to staffing, the decision-making process, judicial policy making, and checks upon judicial power. Students who have taken R POS 230H may not take R POS 330 for credit.

R POS 333 (= A WSS 333) Women and the Law (3)
This course surveys the relationship between women and the law, looking at the way that women have been defined as legal subjects over time and through intersections of gender, sexual orientation, race, and class. The course focuses on the United States, but may also include discussion of women's status in international law and cross-national comparisons of legal policies. Only one version of R POS 333 may be taken for credit. Prerequisite(s): R POS 101 and junior or senior standing, or permission of instructor.

R POS 335 The American Supreme Court (3)
The role of the Supreme Court in American political life. Topics include: access to the court; the nature of Supreme Court decision making; the selection of Supreme Court justices; the relationship between the Supreme Court and the executive and legislative branches of government; and the major substantive issues with which the Supreme Court has been concerned.

R POS 336 Civil Liberties (3)
The ways in which the courts have interpreted the Constitution with respect to individual freedoms. Examines a range of source materials to assess the role of the judiciary in arbitrating between the individual and the state, and its implications in American political life.

R POS 346 (= A WSS 346) Law, Civil Rights, and Sexual Orientation (3)
The course will examine relevant court cases as well as local, state, and federal laws that define the boundaries for legal recognition of sexual orientation and personal sexuality in the 20th century.

R POS 363 (= R CRJ 353) American Criminal Courts (3)
Examines the organization and operations of state and local criminal court systems from the perspective of social science research and public policy analysis. Major issues include: the role of courts in American society; bail and pre-trial procedures; the roles and decisions of prosecutors, judges and the defense bar; selection and operation of grand juries and trial juries; sentencing of criminal defendants; and others. The operations of juvenile and adult courts are compared, and efforts directed toward court reform are assessed. Prerequisite(s): junior or senior standing.

R POS 426Z American Constitutional Law (3)
Examination of basic cases in their historical settings and analysis in terms of legal or constitutional issues and judicial doctrines, including judicial review, separation of powers, division of power, interstate relations, the power to tax and spend, war powers and treaty powers.

R POS 427Z American Constitutional Law (3)
Examination of basic cases in their historical settings and analysis in terms of legal or constitutional issues and judicial doctrines, civil and political rights, the privileges and immunities of citizenship, due process and equal protection.

R POS 428 Comparative Legal Systems (3)
Examination of basic cases in their historical settings and analysis in terms of legal or constitutional issues and judicial doctrines in the area of criminal justice, including search and seizure, self-incrimination, the right to counsel, and the right of a fair trial. May not be offered in 2009-2010.

R POS 437Z Law and Society (3)
Examination of central aspects of the legal process, focusing primarily on Anglo-American common law. Attention to the meaning of law and law's functions; legal education and practice; basic procedural matters, and exposure to the law of manufacturer's liability, contracts and labor management relations (injunctions and administrative law).

R POS 449/449Z Topics in Public Law (3)
Special topics course in Public Law. Only one version of R POS 449 may be taken for credit. Prerequisite(s): two courses in public law, or permission of instructor.