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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Elizabeth L. Kier
POL S 524
Seattle Campus

International Security

Introduces some of the major debates concerning the use of force in international politics. Covers traditional issues in international security such as alliances and the causes of war, as well as some of the new and important questions, such as explaining war outcomes and war termination.

Class description

Description: The course introduces students to some of the major debates and issues concerning the use of force in international politics. It has three goals: 1) to cover some of the traditional issues in international security, such as deterrence theory and the use of air power, some of the newer debates, such as ethnic conflict and terrorism, and some emerging topics, such as occupation and nation-building; 2) to introduce students to contending levels of analysis and paradigms in international security studies; and 3) to encourage students to think critically and constructively about research design. The course is designed for Ph.D. students in political science and assumes a background in IR theory.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Text: Arms & Influence, Schelling; Army & Vietnam, Krepinevich; Democracies At War, Reiter; Limits Of Safety, Sagan; Partisan Inventions, Rathbun; Reputation & International Politics, Mercer.

Class assignments and grading

Assignments: research paper (80%) and participation (20%).


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Suman C. Chhabra
Date: 12/01/2006