Teaching

My teaching covers a broad range of topics in comparative politics and international relations.  I have served as the primary instructor on the courses below.  The syllabus for each can be made available upon request.

 Undergraduate

Comparative Political Systems

This course serves as an introduction to comparative politics for undergraduate students.  It provides students with basic training in comparative methods and introduces them to major topics in research agendas from across the field.

Democracy and Violence

This upper-level seminar offers advanced undergraduates the opportunity to engage with theoretical and empirical questions about the relationship between democracy and violence.  It addresses questions of mass mobilization, political rights, institutional design, and the incentives for political violence sometimes presented by the very practice of democracy.

Fundamentals of Foreign Policy

This course introduces students to the study of US foreign policy. Beginning with traditions stretching back to the founding of the country and continuing to the present day, it offers students a structured approach to understanding historical trends, policy processes, and contemporary debates in the practice of American foreign policy.  The course combines lecture, discussion, and simulations to fully immerse students in the challenges of creating and implementing policy in this sphere.

Named the  2012-2013 “Best Course Taught by a Graduate Student” (with co-instructor Paul Musgrave) by the Georgetown University Government Department.

African Comparative Politics

This lecture-based survey course serves as an introduction to contemporary African politics.  It covers the basic history of colonialism, independence, and post-independence regimes in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as the challenges and patterns of governance since the end of the Cold War.  The course focuses on this latter period, while still highlighting themes and issues that have been consistent features of African political life.


 

Graduate (M.A.- level)

Conflict and Democracy

This M.A. seminar looks at the challenges of introducing democratic reforms in the aftermath of civil war.  Students are exposed to various perspectives on the challenges to building institutions, channeling conflict, and protecting civil and political rights in this context.

Democratization in Africa

Students in this M.A. seminar are introduced to the challenges and opportunities faced by democracy in contemporary Africa.  Taking into consideration the weight of colonial and post-independence legacies, they examine the institutions and politics of popular participation in Africa today and consider possible paths towards democratic consolidation.

Comparative Democratization

This core course in the Democracy & Governance M.A. program introduces students to the intellectual history of democracy studies by examining the main theories of democratization introduced since World War II.  Broad theoretical frameworks and issues are then re-visited in the context of key moments of democratization (and non-democratization) in a variety of geographical regions.

Research Methods in Democracy & Governance

This course introduces M.A. students to the basics of research design and introduces them to major methods in the social sciences.  By the end of the course, students are expected to be “literate” in a variety of types of scholarship and able to produce a prospectus for a significant piece of novel research.

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