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Independent Study

Independent Study Guidelines

PLS and IR 399 and 499

PLS 399 Readings in Political Science
PLS 499 Independent Research
IR 399 Independent Readings
IR 499 Independent Research

1. General guidelines.

Taking an independent study (PLS 399, PLS 499, IR 399 or IR 499) class is a privilege to be granted at the discretion of the faculty. Independent studies are reserved for advanced work with a professor after a student has taken previous coursework in the relevant area of study, to be determined at the discretion of the sponsoring professor. It is possible that professors may offer readings courses open to major/minor students in general, or major/minor students of a certain class standing. Independent studies are not to be taken in duplication of an existing course or based on convenience for a student's schedule.

All independent studies are taken CR/NC (credit or no credit).

PLS major and minor:
Independent studies do not count for the 300-level requirement of the major and minor. Independent studies do not count for the requirement that students take two courses in American politics, one in international relations, one in comparative politics and one in political theory. A total of no more than nine credits of internship and independent study may count toward the major, with no more than six credits in either category. No more than six credits of internship or independent study may count toward the minor.

IR major and minor:
Independent studies do not count for the requirement that students must take one 300-level course in each of these three categories:
A. Economics and Business
B. History and Geography
C. Political Science

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David Leestma

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2. Faculty and student have a discussion to identify topic, reading assignments, and type of work to be produced. The normal equivalency would be six books and 25 pages of written work for 3 credits (or 2 books and eight pages of written work per credit), to be determined at instructor's discretion. Reading material includes books, journal articles and other published scholarly materials, with the assortment of assignments to be determined at the discretion of the instructor. Research such as data collection and analysis may be performed in place of some requirements, determined at instructor's discretion.

Student writes independent study plan and emails it to sponsoring faculty for review. Plan includes:

Readings
Assignments
Course program and number (e.g. PLS 399) with number of credits
Student name and G#
Student email address
Semester work is to take place

3. Upon approval of independent study plan, faculty sends email to PLS chair or IR director, CC to department coordinator, attaching plan and noting permission to register. Department coordinator logs plan.

4. PLS Chair or IR director grants override in Banner and notifies student via email of permission to register.

5. Upon completion of plan or before semester grades are due, whichever is sooner, sponsoring faculty emails PLS chair or IR director with grade for course (CR, NC or I). I (incomplete) would be reserved for extraordinary circumstances, not just because the student didn't complete the work in a timely manner. PLS chair or IR director is responsible for entering grade.

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News

Zac Thiel Wins PLS/IR Outstanding Paper Award

Zac Thiel Wins PLS/IR Outstanding Paper Award

April 14, 2016

Zac Thiel's paper, "Exploring the Causes of Inequality in Developed Countries" has been selected as the Outstanding Paper written in 2015.

Spring/Summer Courses 2016

Spring/Summer Courses 2016

March 16, 2016

Check out the courses offered for this Spring and Summer!

Celebrating 40 years of International Collaboration and Friendships

Celebrating 40 years of International Collaboration and Friendships

November 06, 2015

STAIR (Studies in Trans-Atlantic International Relations) is one example of the many collaborative programs and exchanges between Grand Valley and Cracow University of Economics. The two institutions are celebrating a 40-year partnership this year!

PLS 302 Winter 2016

PLS 302 Winter 2016

October 13, 2015

Interested in the politics of Planned Parenthood? The War on Women? The gender wage gap? Or women in campaign and elections? Then check out this course offering!

New U.S. citizens take oath at DeVos Center

New U.S. citizens take oath at DeVos Center

October 05, 2015

New U.S. citizens take the oath of allegiance during a naturalization ceremony at the DeVos Center September 28

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