Law and Public Policy (LPSC)

LPSC 1101. Introduction to Law. 4 Hours.

Examines the role of law and society from a regulatory, constitutional, and judicial perspective, noting the role each of these has played in shaping the current legal framework in the United States. Introduces students to the relationship between law, societal organizations (both nongovernmental organizations and not-for-profit organizations), the private sector, and the separate branches of government (the judiciary, congressional, and executive branches). Provides students with the opportunity to learn to legally analyze judicial opinions, prepare legal memoranda, and present an oral argument before a “judge.”.

LPSC 1990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions.

LPSC 2301. Introduction to Law, Policy, and Society. 4 Hours.

Examines the relationship of society to its laws: how society creates changes in law or policy via societal pressure and social movements (such as the environmental, women’s rights, and corporate accountability movements); how law and policy affect individual rights and behavior; whether a society needs laws in order to function; the relationship between some branches of our government in effectuating social change; and some of the fundamental differences between societies governed by seemingly similar but pragmatically different laws, such as the right to a jury trial. Prereq. GPA of 3.000 or better.

LPSC 2302. Global Human Rights: A Social and Economic Perspective. 4 Hours.

Explores the implications of globalization on international human rights law. Analyzes numerous sources of international law, such as the universal declaration of human rights and the international covenant on economic, social, and cultural rights. Examines free trade and its impact on civil, political, economic, social, and cultural rights. Also explores the international mechanisms to resolve disputes and the impact of globalization on the rights of particular groups (e.g., women, children, and indigenous peoples).

LPSC 2990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions.

LPSC 3303. Topics in Law and Public Policy. 4 Hours.

Covers special topics in law, policy, and society to fulfill students’ interests. Prereq. LPSC 1101 with a grade of B or LPSC 2201 with a grade of B.

LPSC 3305. Law and the City. 4 Hours.

Considers questions such as the following: Can cities regulate private gun ownership, such as the Mayors Against Gun initiative, within the confines of the Second Amendment? When do green city initiatives, such as wetlands and water table preservation programs, regulate private property to an extent that regulation becomes constitutional “takings”? How can cities employ zoning regulation to further urban planning and economic growth? U.S. cities are the source of many legal controversies that are on the cutting edge of modern jurisprudence, covering a wide range of subject areas. Analyzes key legal opinions and social research to examine how law is developing at the urban level. Prereq. Sophomore standing or above.

LPSC 3306. Law and Literature. 4 Hours.

Examines the role of literature in our understanding of the law and the legal system. Explores a variety of themes and delves into many of the policy questions currently facing society, such as the connection between literary writing and the legal system, the role of the lawyer, whether lawyers are heroes or villains, if we can really trust juries to find the truth, how to determine proper punishment for crimes, the role of government surveillance on society’s behavior, when the level of government control becomes too much, how society reacts to unjust laws, and what happens when law and justice are in conflict. Using literature, students have an opportunity to analyze current policy problems and assess potential solutions. Prereq. Sophomore standing or above.

LPSC 3990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions.

LPSC 4304. Advanced Debates in Law and Public Policy. 4 Hours.

Explores the evolving roles of the courts, the legislative process, and social movements through case studies of current controversies in law and policy. Topics may include sentencing disparities in drug crimes, the changing laws of Internet use, funding of stem cell research, and safety on university campuses. Each case study includes a class debate or interactive simulation. Specific topics vary each semester. Prereq. (a) LPSC 1101 or LPSC 2201 and (b) junior or senior standing.

LPSC 4990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions.

LPSC 4992. Directed Study. 1-4 Hours.

Offers independent work under the direction of members of the department on a chosen topic. Course content depends on instructor.

LPSC 5201. Law and the City. 3 Hours.

Examines key legal structures, court decisions, and social research to consider the ability of cities to make and implement public policies that directly affect the everyday lives of millions of people. American cities and their residents are frequently faced with similar legal and political questions. Topics include federalism, land-use planning and development, business regulation, gun control, school choice, public health, and climate adaptation initiatives. Prereq. Juniors, seniors, and graduate students only.

LPSC 6313. Economic Analysis for Law, Policy, and Planning. 3 Hours.

Designed to familiarize master’s degree students with the essential ideas and methods of microeconomics and their application to a wide range of domestic public policy issues at the national, state, and local level. Emphasizes the role of program and management incentives in influencing behavior and policy outcomes. Focuses on understanding the ideas of microeconomic theory and applying them to a range of alternative public policy issues. Offers students an opportunity to develop a clear understanding of essential economic ideas and how the economic perspective can be applied to a wide range of public policy issues. Prereq. Master’s degree students only.

LPSC 6962. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions.

LPSC 7000. Qualifying Exam. 0 Hours.

Provides eligible students with an opportunity to take the master’s qualifying exam.

LPSC 7215. Advanced Quantitative Techniques. 3 Hours.

Covers multivariate statistical models and their applications to social science data. The ordinary least squares (OLS) regression model and the assumptions underlying it are covered in detail, as are techniques for analyzing data when OLS assumptions do not apply, such as simultaneous equation models, time series models, and maximum likelihood techniques for limited and discrete dependent variables. This is an advanced course in quantitative techniques for graduate students in the social sciences. Prereq. LPSC 7305.

LPSC 7305. Research and Statistical Methods. 3 Hours.

Examines the methods and assumptions of research conducted in policy and legal studies. Explores how to identify researchable questions; how to formulate a set of hypotheses; and how to design, develop, and carry out research projects, including a study of quantitative and qualitative techniques for analyzing data. Focuses written assignments on critiques of published articles in reference journals addressing comparative strengths and weaknesses inherent in any research approach.

LPSC 7308. Law and Legal Reasoning. 3 Hours.

Designed to provide students with an introduction to American jurisprudence and the fundamentals of legal reasoning. Provides the basic skills necessary to use the law library to support LPS research and written work with legal resources.

LPSC 7309. Topics. 3 Hours.

Examines selected topics in law, policy, and society.

LPSC 7310. Research Design and Analysis. 3 Hours.

Continues LPSC 7305. Includes readings of original research and on the philosophy of social science. Emphasizes the problem of indeterminacy of social behavior, the ambiguous role of the law, and the conflict between the goals and assumptions of the research and the practical, public use of it. Includes practical exercises in writing dissertation proposals and outlines.

LPSC 7311. Strategizing Public Policy. 3 Hours.

Provides a practical overview to crafting effective strategies for advancing public policy changes at the federal, state, and local level using a range of legislative, litigation, and other policy tools. Uses a series of case studies on a wide range of policy topics to understand and evaluate how different policy strategies evolve in the interplay between branches and levels of government. Takes an interbranch perspective on how policy is made and places particular emphasis on the role litigation and the courts play in policy making, an aspect of public policy formulation that is often downplayed or overlooked.

LPSC 7312. Cities, Sustainability, and Climate Change. 3 Hours.

Provides an overview of the various aspects of urban sustainability planning. Examines sustainability as an urban planning approach with both ecological and social justice goals. Covers sustainable planning and offers students an opportunity to understand it within the context of smart growth and the new urbanism. Focuses on the two areas in which cities can reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions—the built environment and transportation. From there, the course examines planning efforts to reduce demand on water and sewer systems and to create employment in renewable energy and other “clean-tech” occupations. The course ends by placing urban initiatives in the context of state and national policy.

LPSC 7962. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions.

LPSC 7976. Directed Study. 1-4 Hours.

Offers a supervised reading and research activity with faculty supervision approved by a committee of the Law, Policy, and Society faculty.

LPSC 7978. Independent Study. 1-4 Hours.

Offers independent work under the direction of members of the department on a chosen topic. Course content depends on instructor.

LPSC 7990. Thesis. 1-4 Hours.

Offers thesis supervision by members of the department.

LPSC 7996. Thesis Continuation. 0 Hours.

Offers continued thesis supervision by individual members of the department. Prereq. LPSC 7990.

LPSC 8400. Planning Module in Urban Law and Policy. 1 Hour.

Relates a professional activity to urban and regional planning. Prereq. Architecture majors only.

LPSC 8960. Exam Preparation—Doctoral. 0 Hours.

Offers the student the opportunity to prepare for the PhD qualifying exam under faculty supervision.

LPSC 8966. Practicum. 1-4 Hours.

Provides eligible students with an opportunity for practical experience.

LPSC 8982. Readings. 1-4 Hours.

Offers selected readings under the supervision of a faculty member.

LPSC 8984. Research. 1-4 Hours.

Offers an opportunity to conduct research under faculty supervision.

LPSC 8986. Research. 0 Hours.

Offers an opportunity to conduct full-time research under faculty supervision.

LPSC 9000. PhD Candidacy Achieved. 0 Hours.

Indicates successful completion of the doctoral comprehensive exam.

LPSC 9984. Research. 1-4 Hours.

Offers an opportunity to conduct research under faculty supervision.

LPSC 9986. Research. 0 Hours.

Offers an opportunity to conduct full-time research under faculty supervision.

LPSC 9990. Dissertation. 0 Hours.

Offers dissertation supervision by members of the department.

LPSC 9996. Dissertation Continuation. 0 Hours.

Offers continued dissertation supervision by members of the department. Prereq. LPSC 9990.