Final Exam Study Guide POL 104-A
Summer 2019 Dr. Schroeder
Understand that political socialization is the process by which individuals acquire political opinions. Know that studies on the influence of ideology on public opinion agree that only a minority of Americans have a true ideology in the sense of having consistent attitudes on public issues. Understand the role that public opinion polls play is shaping the positions taken by public officials, especially when they show people’s opinions are clear and intense. Know the relationship between a poll’s sample size and its accuracy. Know the definition of sampling error. Know the definition of a focus group. Know that opinion leaders are citizens who are highly attentive to and involved in politics or some related area, to whom citizens turn for political information and cues. Know the concept of voter cues. Know and understand the use of the secret ballot and its role in elections. Know how suffrage for women and voters 18 years of age and older was secured in America. Understand approximate U.S. voter turnout in both congressional presidential elections.
Know that in the US, voter registration is an individual responsibility. Be able to define and characterize party organizations at the federal, state and local level of politics.
Know the relationship in the US between political participation (voting) and income level. Understand the definition of unconventional political activism and be able to provide examples. Know what the foundational characteristics of the American two-party system have been since 1856. Understand the purpose for the formation of political parties in terms of mobilization and collective action.
Know the best predictor for individual voting behavior.
Be able to define political ideologies and understand the difference between those of American liberals and conservatives. Be able to define the major reason for the high cost of campaigns in the United States. Know the definition and purposes for using a focus group in a political campaign. Know the major change in party voting behavior and political activity in the U.S. South since the 1960s. Understand primary elections, and the variations that the states use: open, closed, partially open, top-two. Know the two chief electoral factors supporting a two-party system in the United States. Know the differences between the political coalitions of voters that make up the Republican and Democratic parties. Know the definition of the term “Hard money” in campaign finance. Know examples of a political realignment in the U.S. – one in which an election of set of elections involves the electorate responding to an
extraordinarily powerful issue that has disrupted the established political order.
Know the goals and purposes of interest groups in the American political system. Understand the stages at which interest group wants can attempt to influence policy decisions (electoral, legislative and implementation), and what units in the political system it should approach in its attempt to affect change. Know the difference between Outside Lobbying and Inside Lobbying. Know approximately how many lobbyists are engaged in Washington. Know the difference between the FEC regulations on regular corporate and union political action committees (PACs) and Super PACs. Know the importance of the Buckley v. Valeo and Citizens United v. FEC Supreme Court rulings on campaign finance. Know that recent trends in the news media include an increase in partisan news outlets, especially on the Internet and the blogoshpere. Know how the Internet has revolutionized the American media. Understand the difference between objective and partisan journalism.
Know the definitions of agenda setting and priming for the media.
. Know the role of The 2010 Health Care Reform Act (also known as “Obama Care”) in expanding medical coverage in the U.S. Know why Immigration is a major public policy issue in the United States, and be able to define its key public policy concerns.
Be able to define both Interest Groups and Social Movements. Be able to give an example of each.