IR Syllabus

General Overview:This course is designed to help students understand the diplomatic process as well as the nature of many international decisions of the past & present. We will also examine international problems, controversies, and conflicts, while exploring United States involvement in these issues.  The course will consist of case studies that will entail extensive discussion, debate, and research.  Participation in oral discussions will be pertinent to the success of this class and therefore required in daily open forums.   Maintaining updated knowledge of current events will help contribute to these discussions.  This class is to be treated as a current events class as well as an international relations course.  In order for you to keep up with the ever changing world, it will be imperative for you to watch world news, read newspapers or news magazines, or stay up to date through use of the internet!   

Grading Policy: All assignments for this course will be allotted a point value.  At the end of the marking period the total number of points the student has earned will be divided by the total number of possible earned points.  This value is then turned into a percentage.  Any assignment not turned in on the day it is due will only be accepted one day late and for half credit.  It is your responsibility to contact the teacher for any work missed due to an excused absence.  You will have as many days as you were absent to turn in any work that you missed due to that absence.  Failure to turn in missed work on time will result in a 0.  Remember there is a participation grade for this course; therefore, it is vital that you speak up in class as much as possible to ensure full participation points!   

Issues to be addressed:
International Relations Theory
History of International Relations
Cold War to War on Terror: Realigning World Powers
State vs. Non State Actors
Why nations go to war
Foreign Policy & Diplomacy
Creation and Role of the United Nations
Terrorism, WMD, and National Security: Past and Present
Ethnic Conflicts of the World
Genocide: Can it be prevented? A look at historic genocide
Global North & Global South: Closing or widening the gap
International Trade: Is all trade fair trade?
Globalization and its Effects: Pro vs. Anti Globalization
Human Rights & Social Justice: Sovereignty and Nation building
Islam and Democracy: Future of the Middle East
Poverty, Disease and Starvation: Global epidemics
Population Growth and Scarce Resources
Global Environmental Problems

Specific Topics of Study:
North Korea, Iran, Rogue actors and nuclear weapons
Arab Israeli Conflict: Will there ever be a solution?
CAFTA: Will it really help?
Kashmir: Is nuclear war inevitable?
NATO: Redefining Roles
Darfur: Genocide in Action
The European Union: More than the Euro
Chiapas: The Native Issue
Nigeria: Oil Rich, Political Stability Poor
China: Economic Reform and World Power
Somalia: Constant anarchy
India: Rise of the Middle Class

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