Research on the Congress

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Fall 2014                  Political Science 1 – Introduction to Government

College of the Desert




Extra Credit Assignment


This assignment is optional and may be submitted for extra credit. It is a research project, not an essay.


It is due no later than noon on Friday, December 12, 2014.  Papers can be turned into me at any time in class.  You may also have them placed in my mailbox at the Faculty Resource Center any time before 12 noon on December 11, 2014—it takes an extra day to get to me.  I will not accept emailed papers.


This assignment carries a maximum possible 25 points.  These points will be added to the points you earn through the scheduled exams.


You select the topic of your work.  It must have a direct connection with a process or structure of government that we have studied in class or is included in your reading.  How you want to address the assignment is up to you but you will need to describe the structure and approach to this assignment in your report to me.  The extra credit assignment will result in a 3-5 page paper explaining what you have done and what information you have found out. I recommend you submit your topic to me in advance by email so you do not waste your time researching an impractical or unrelated topic.


You may want to research a particular subject we have studied and write a report of your research. You will need to include a bibliography (works cited: 3-5 sources) of the resources you consulted in your research in your written report. You may wish to interview an elected official or candidate, find out why he/she decided to run for office, what the election process was like and whether they would do it again.  You may wish to create a list of questions and ask people on the street in your own public opinion poll.  You may need to get permission from the manager of a store if you stand in front.


Or, you might want to attend a session of a city council meeting or a Board of Supervisor’s meeting and report on the respective roles of the participants and how it relates to our democracy.  You may wish to attend a meeting of a political party or an interest group as an observer and relate that experience to our discussions.  You may wish to spend several hours registering voters and listen to what people say about the electoral process or why they select the Party they do when they register. These are just suggestions—you can come up with different ideas.


If you wish to discuss your ideas of a topic to select, see me after class or email me your questions.