POLS 281: Introduction to International Relations and World Politics
Fall 2023 at UNC Asheville
Spring & Summer 2021 at UNC Chapel Hill
Course description: This course is designed to introduce students to the study of international relations within the field of political science. International relations (IR) seeks to understand answers to questions such as: Who are the main actors in global politics? How does power and order operate in the international system? What explains trends in cooperation or discord in security and conflict, global trade and finance, and international institutions? What is the relationship between conflict and political economy? In answering these questions, this course takes somewhat of a reflexive (one might say “meta”) approach. Students will not only develop an understanding of the core theories and evidence employed in the contemporary study of IR, but will also explore the historical development of key concepts and theories in IR. The aim of this approach is to historically situate theories of international relations in their sociopolitical contexts as a means to both learn the content of these theories and promote critical reflection on their premises. Students should come away with historical background knowledge of major events and actors in the last century of world politics and an understanding of core theoretical frameworks in the contemporary study of IR that can be applied to current issues and debates.
POLI 783: Probability & Statistics Lab (graduate level)
Fall 2019, 2020, & 2021 at UNC Chapel Hill
Course description: The purpose of this lab is to introduce students to calculus, linear algebra, and R (the statistical software). I designed the lab section to not only support and supplement lecture material, but also to serve as a foundation for future courses in the political science department's graduate statistics sequence. While we move quickly through these three main (and broad) topics, I draw connections between them and with lecture material, as well as how they pertain to topics covered in future methods courses. Students should come away from the course with a basic familiarity and competence with the R language, including tools for data manipulation and visualization, probability (distributions and sampling), linear algebra, and general problem solving.
POLI 272: Ethics of Peace, War, and Defense
Teaching Assistant: Spring 2022 at UNC Chapel Hill
Course description: When is a war considered just or unjust? Can war ever be just? Under what circumstances is a war fought justly or unjustly? What moral and ethical principles should be used in evaluating war? How might real world cases inform our reasoning about the ethics of war? These are several core questions considered throughout this semester. The aim of recitation is to provide space for students to reflect on the readings and lecture material, clarify terms and arguments, and articulate their own understanding and point of view.