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International Security: War and Peace

I.     Course Prefix/Number: PSC 250

       Course Name: International Security: War and Peace

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

None

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course examines the causes and consequences of wars as well as strategies for peace in world politics. A variety of topics such as the nature and origins of war and peace, terrorism, ethnic and religious conflicts, intervention, globalization, and arms proliferation will be analyzed from a theoretical and historical perspective. Current world events relating to these topics will be discussed.

IV.   Learning Objectives

A. Identify and define the factors involved in the study of international security issues;
B. Describe and explain the causes of wars and the conditions for peace in world politics;
C. Analyze and interpret the causes and consequences of various historical and contemporary conflicts;
D. Analyze the conditions for security, and evaluate the nature of threats in the world today;
E. Evaluate and interpret alternatives to traditional international security arrangements.

V.    Academic Integrity

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.
Details of the Code of Academic Conduct can be found in the Student Handbook.

VI.   Sequence of Topics

1. Introduction to the Study of War and Peace.
2. The Enduring Logic of Conflict in World Politics.
3. Origins of the Great Twentieth-Century Conflicts.
4. Balance of Power and World War I.
5. The Failure of Collective Security and World War II.
6. Conflict During the Cold War.
7. Conflict in the Post-Cold War World.
8. Intervention, Institutions, and Emerging International Norms.
9. Regional, Ethnic, and Religious Conflicts.
10. Globalization and Interdependence.
11. The Information Revolution, Transnational Actors and the Diffusion of Power.
12. A New World Order, or a New Disorder? Implications for U.S. National Security Starategy.

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Classes will include a variety of instructional methods such as: lectures, in class discussions, group activities, document and film analysis, and the use of new technologies.
Course may be taught as face-to-face, media-based, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Students will be required to:
    A. Read a standard textbook and research materials.
    B. Write outside of class the equivalent of 12-14 double-spaced typed pages in the form of a term paper, summaries of journal articles, short research papers, and/or other kinds of writing.
    C. Participate in in-class and out-of-class activities.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

At least two exams will be given in addition to other required papers and assignments.

Students will also be evaluated on a combination of written assignments and in- and out-of-class assignments.

XI.   Other Course Information



If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.