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Columbia College
Evening Campus
1001 Rogers Street
Columbia, MO 65216
(800) 231-2391


17 / SPRG2 - Late Spring 8-week Session

Course Syllabus

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Course Syllabus
17 / SPRG2 - Late Spring 8-week Session
Evening Campus
1001 Rogers Street
Columbia, MO 65216
(800) 231-2391

Course Prefix and Number: POSC 340
Course Title: Judicial Process
Semester Credit Hours: 3
Class Day and Time: Thu 
5:30 PM-9:30 PM
Additional Notes:

This course is web-enhanced, taught entirely in a classroom setting using D2L course management software to supplement in-seat content.


Catalog Description

Study of the state and federal court systems and the impact those systems have on American politics and society. Prerequisite: POSC 111.


POSC 111.


Judicial Process in America 10th edition
Author: Carp (Congressional Quarterly Press)
ISBN: 9781483378251

Course Objectives

· To understand the structure and functions of the American court system on both the national and state levels.
· To understand the role of judges, lawyers and litigants.
· To understand trial and appellate processes.
· To understand the types of American law and the role of law in the American political and legal system.
· To understand the structure, processes and power of the U.S. Supreme Court and the impact that Court has had in America’s historical development.

Additional Instructor Objectives

Study of the legal system can be thought provoking as the system affects our everyday lives. Because the judicial system is frequently in the news, we will examine current events in consideration of the judicial process and its role in current events. We will also incorporate Missouri's judicial system for a better understanding of how the judicial process works.
Class time will be interactive. Students are expected to be prepared and to participate in class discussions. Students are encouraged to submit written graded assignments electronically to ensure prompt and effective feedback from the instructor.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

· Describe and explain the development of the various types of American law. · Describe the structure of both state and national court systems. · Explain the basic processes for trials and appeals. · Explain the basic rules of evidence used by civil and criminal trial courts. · Describe the legal profession and the various ways judges are selected. · Describe the historical development of the U.S. Supreme Court and the procedures it employs. · Evaluate the role of courts in American society.

Special Course Requirements

Regular attendance and actual participation are expected. Attendance will be taken at each class. Assigned reading material should be completed PRIOR to the designated class session. Be prepared to be involved in all class discussions and exercises.
Students are expected to notify the instructor that they will be absent prior to class time. Students who miss a test will receive a failing grade for that activity unless previous arrangements have been made and approved. Students who have been approved to make up a test must complete the test before the next class period.
Class presentations and written assignments are due on the date assigned. Students will be allowed one extension on a graded assignment (which must be turned in no later than the next scheduled class date) which may be used on any one assignment during the semester.  No further extensions will be allowed.
All written assignments must be typed, Microsoft Word compatible, Times New Roman 12 pt. font preferred. Please do not use Wikipedia as a primary source. All written work and oral presentations must be an original work. Written assignments may be submitted through

Instructional Methods

Lecture, Homework, Class Presentations, and Tests. There are 3 tests, discussion of written homework, oral presentations, and a final written assignment in which students will be asked to research and write an opinion paper on a current topic facing the State and Federal Judiciary. Depending on class size, for oral presentations, students will work independently or in groups of 2 and will present one presentation on an issue for discussion in class. 

Out of Class Activities

Preparation of Homework assignments, preparation for Oral Presentations, and preparation for Final Assignments. Students may be asked to research case law and news articles for weekly homework assignments, and oral presentations. Students may be directed to Internet sites for weekly homework assignments. 

Graded Activities

Written Homework Assignments100 Points
Description -

Five written homework questions will be answered and discussed in class. We will focus on weekly topics and may incorporate recent events in the news. Written homework will be designed to help student understanding. Up to 20 points will be given for each written assignment. Written assignments will be submitted via Dropbox on D2L.

Method of Evaluation -

Grading based on completeness, accuracy, and explanations. The demonstration of ability to analyze, compare and contrast, and propose reasonable solutions is emphasized. Assignments should be a minimum of one full page, typed, and double spaced. Written assignments should address the assigned issue but are not research papers. Any material necessary will be covered in class, distributed by the instructor, or available on the Internet. All written work must be original. Please do not use Wikipedia as a primary source.

Examination 1 (Chapters 1-4)100 Points
Description -

Examinations may be a combination of multiple choice, true and false, fill-in the blank, and short answer.

Examination 2 (Chapters 5-8)100 Points
Description -

Examinations may be a combination of multiple choice, true and false, fill-in the blank, and short answer.

Examination 3 (Chapters 9-14)100 Points
Description -

Examinations may be a combination of multiple choice, true and false, fill-in the blank, and short answer.

Oral Presentation50 Points
Description -

Students will participate in one oral presentation independently or in teams of two during the semester. Assignments will be made the first or second week of class.  Presentations will address the topic (both pro and con) regarding the issue and encourage class discussion and debate of the issue.  All students must participate in the oral presentation to the class.

Method of Evaluation -

Standard A-F grading based on completeness, accuracy, and explanations.  Oral presentations should provide substantive information and encourage class discussion and interaction.

Final Assignment50 Points
Description -

The foundation of this assignment will develop as students study the role of judges in the American Judicial System. Students will be given a topic currently facing the American Judicial System and asked to write an opinion/research paper on the topic. Students will be asked to research the history of the issue, discuss any pending cases facing State and Federal judiciaries and render an opinion as to the appropriate disposition of the issue through the American Judicial System.

Method of Evaluation -

This project will be graded according to standard written assignment guidelines as well as participation in the class discussions. The assignment should be a minimum of 7 full pages, typed, and double spaced and include all appropriate citations and references to sources. 


Grading Scale

90-100 A
80-89 B
70-79 C
60-69 D
0-59 F

Schedule of Activities and Assignments

Week 1
Foundation of Law in the U.S./Jurisdiction

Overview of Class, Outline Goals and Objectives, Review Policies, and discussions. Weekly homework assignments will be discussed for weeks 2-8. Oral presentation topics will be discussed.


Chapters 1 and 4.

Week 2
The Federal and State Judicial System

Discussion and assignment of oral presentations. Weekly Homework assignment due online by Saturday.


Chapters 2 and 3


Prepare answers to homework assignment and submit by Saturday 11:59 pm.

Week 3
Federal and State Judges

Weekly homework assignment due online by Saturday.
Examination 1.  


Chapter 5 and 6


Prepare answers to homework assignment and submit by Saturday 11:59 pm.


Examination 1 covering Chapters 1-4.  

Week 4
Policy Links between Citizenry, President, and Judiciary

Weekly homework assignment due online by Saturday.
Topics for Final Paper due in Week 7 will be discussed.


Chapters 7 and 8


Prepare answers to homework assignment and submit by Saturday 11:59 pm.

Week 5
Criminal Trials and Procedures

Weekly Homework assignment due online by Saturday.
Begin Oral Presentations.  
Examination 2.  


Chapter 9 and 10.


Prepare answers to homework assignment and submit by Saturday 11:59 pm.
Oral presentations.  


Examination 2 covering Chapters 5-8.  

Week 6
Civil Court Process and Decision Making by Trial/Collegial Court Judges

Weekly Homework assignment due online by Saturday. 
Oral presentations continue.  


Chapters 11, 12, and 13


Prepare answers to homework assignment and submit by Saturday 11:59 pm.
Oral presentations.  

Week 7
Implementation and Impact of Judicial Policies

Oral Presentations continue.  
Final written assignment is due by Sunday 11:59 pm.   


Chapter 14 and 15.


Oral presentations.
Final written assignments are due by Sunday 11:59 pm

Week 8
The Judiciary

Examination 3 covering Chapters 9-14.


Examination 3 covering Chapters 9-14.  


Library Resources

Columbia College Resources - Online databases are available at the Columbia College Stafford Library.  You may access them using your CougarTrack login and password when prompted.

Course Policies and Procedures


Columbia College Policy - Columbia College students are expected to attend all classes and laboratory periods for which they are enrolled.  Students are directly responsible to instructors for class attendance and work missed during an absence for any cause.  If absences jeopardize progress in a course, an instructor may withdraw a student from the course with a grade of "F" or "W" at the discretion of the instructor.  For additional information, see the Columbia College policy on Student Attendance.

Academic Integrity

Columbia College Policy - Columbia College students must fulfill their academic obligations through honest, independent effort.  Dishonesty is considered a serious offense subject to strong disciplinary actions.  Activities which constitute academic dishonesty include plagiarism, unauthorized joint effort on exams or assignments, falsification of forms or records, providing false or misleading information, or aiding another in an act of academic dishonesty.  For more information, see the Columbia College Academic Integrity Policy and Procedures.

Class Conduct and Personal Conduct

Columbia College Policy - Students must conduct themselves so others will not be distracted from the pursuit of learning.  Students may be disciplined for any conduct which constitutes a hazard to the health, safety, or well-being of members of the College community or which is deemed detrimental to the College's interests. Discourteous or unseemly conduct may result in a student being asked to leave the classroom.  For more information, see the Columbia College Student Code of Conduct and Student Behavioral Misconduct Policy and Procedures.

Cancelled Class Make-Up

Columbia College Policy - Classes cancelled because of inclement weather or other reasons must be rescheduled.  For more information, see the Columbia College Inclement Weather Policy.

Make-Up Examinations

Columbia College Policy - Make-up examinations may be authorized for students who miss regularly scheduled examinations due to circumstances beyond their control.  Make-up examinations must be administered as soon as possible after the regularly scheduled examination period and must be administered in a controlled environment.

Campus Policy - Make up examinations are scheduled on designated Saturday mornings 9am in 103 Buchanan. Students must present a picture I.D. in order to be admitted to the testing session. Students must arrange with the instructor to take the exam before or after it is given in class and permission to take a makeup examination (or any graded activity) is granted at the discretion of the instructor.

Adding, Dropping, or Withdrawing from a Course

Columbia College Policy - Students may add a course through Wednesday of the first week of the session and drop a course without academic or financial liability through close of business on Monday of the second week of the session.  Once enrolled, a student is considered a member of that class until he or she officially drops or withdraws in accordance with College policy.  An official drop/withdrawal takes place only when a student has submitted a Drop/Add/Withdrawal form.  A failure to attend class, or advising a fellow student, staff or adjunct faculty member of an intent to withdraw from a class does not constitute official drop/withdrawal.  The drop/add/withdrawal periods begin the same day/date the session starts, not the first day a particular class begins. If a student stops attending a class but does not submit the required Drop/Withdrawal form a grade of "F" will be awarded.  For more information, see the Columbia College Registration Policy and Procedures.

Withdrawal Excused

Columbia College Policy - A student may request an excused withdrawal (WE) under extraordinary circumstances by submitting a Drop/Withdrawal form accompanied by a complete explanation of the circumstances and supporting documentation to the location director.  The WE request must include all classes in which the student is currently enrolled.  The Vice President for Adult Higher Education is the approving authority for all WE requests.  A student who receives approval of their WE request may still be required to return some or all of the federal financial assistance received for the session.  For more information, see the Columbia College Withdrawal Policy.


Columbia College Policy - A student may request that the instructor award a grade of "I" due to extraordinary circumstances (unforeseen or unexpected circumstances beyond the student's control) that prevent a student from completing the requirements of a course by the end of a session.  An "I" will not be given because a student is failing, negligent or not meeting requirements.  If the instructor believes an "I" is appropriate, the instructor will specify the work needed to complete the course and the time allowed to complete the work.  Work missed must be made up within two subsequent sessions unless the instructor specifies an earlier date.  Extensions beyond two sessions must be approved by the Vice President for Adult Higher Education.  If the work is completed during the specified time period, the instructor will change the "I" to the grade earned.  If the work is not completed during the specified time, the instructor may allow the incomplete to remain on the student's permanent record or change it to any other letter grade.  For more information, see the Columbia College Undergraduate Grading Policy.

Grade Appeal

Columbia College Policy - A student may appeal any grade given if it is believed to be in error or in conflict with Columbia College policy and procedures.  The student must state in writing to the location director why the grade awarded is believed to be in error and request a desired remedy.  The faculty member who awarded the grade will be given the opportunity to comment on all student allegations.  If the issue cannot be resolved at the location the appeal will be transmitted through the location director to the Vice President for Adult Higher Education.  A grade appeal must be received for review by the Vice President for Adult Higher Education prior to the end of 60 days from the date the grade was awarded.  For more information, see the Columbia College Undergraduate Grading Policy.


Columbia College Policy - Course prerequisites are established to ensure that a student has adequate academic preparation to succeed in a particular course.  Staff members will attempt to ensure that students meet prerequisite requirements.  However, it is the student's responsibility to closely examine the course descriptions to determine if prerequisites exist and to enroll in courses in the proper sequence.  In some exceptional cases it may be apparent that the student possesses the required skills and knowledge to succeed in a particular course, even though they have not taken the prerequisite course.  In this case the prerequisite course may be waived by the location director.  Waiver of a course as a prerequisite does not remove the requirement to complete the course if it is a requirement for the student's degree program.


Columbia College Policy - The College provides all students access to CougarMail (the official means of e-mail communication for the College), online resources from the Stafford Library, and their Columbia College records (transcripts, grades, student schedules, etc.) through CougarTrack.


Columbia College Policy - The official student email address (also known as CougarMail) will be used for all official correspondence from faculty and staff.  Students are responsible for the information received and are required to monitor their CougarMail account on a regular basis.  Students may forward their CougarMail to another email account but will be held responsible for the information sent over CougarMail, even if there is a problem with the alternate mail service.

Cell Phones

Columbia College Policy - Cell phones can be a distraction to the learning process.  Location directors or course instructors may require that cell phones be turned off or set to vibrate during class periods.  Students requiring special arrangements to receive a cell phone call during class should make prior arrangements with their location director or course instructor.

Bookstore Information

Columbia College Policy - As part of Truition, students will receive their course materials automatically as described below. 

eText Information

If a course uses an eText, (see Textbook information above) the book will be available directly in Desire2Learn (D2L) and through the VitalSource eText reader the Friday before the session begins, if registered for courses prior to that date.  Students will have a VitalSource account created for them using their CougarMail email address.  Upon first login to VitalSource, students may need to verify their account and update their VitalSource password.  More information about how to use the VitalSource platform, including offline access to eTexts, can be found in D2L.  Students that would like to order an optional loose-leaf print-on-demand copy of eligible eTexts can do so through the VitalSource Bookshelf at an additional cost.  Once orders are placed, it can take approximately five to seven business days for students to receive their print-on-demand books.

Physical Course Materials Information

Students enrolled in courses that require physical materials will receive these materials automatically at the address on file with Columbia College.  Delivery date of physical materials is dependent on registration date and shipping location.  Please refer to confirmation emails sent from Ed Map for more details on shipping status.

Returns:  Students who drop a course with physical course materials will be responsible for returning those items to Ed Map within 30 days of receipt of the order.  More specific information on how to do so will be included in the package received from Ed Map.  See here for Ed Map's return policy.  Failure to return physical items from a dropped course will result in a charge to the student account for all unreturned items.

Students who opt-out of having their books provided as part of TruitionSM are responsible for purchasing their own course materials.  Visit for details.


Columbia College Policy - The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records.  For more information, see the Columbia College Family Education Rights and Privacy Policy.

Student Accessibility Resources

Columbia College Policy - Students with documented disabilities who may need academic services for this course are required to register with the office of Student Accessibility Resources.  Until the student has been cleared through this office, accommodations do not have to be granted.  If you are a student who has a documented disability, it is important for you to read the entire syllabus as soon as possible.  The structure or the content of the course may make an accommodation not feasible.  Student Accessibility Resources is located in Student Affairs in AHSC 215 and can be reached by phone at (573) 875-7626.  For more information, see the Columbia College ADA and Section 504 Policy for Students.

Alcohol and Other Drugs: Columbia College Policies & Resources

Columbia College Policy - Columbia College recognizes the negative health effects associated with the use, possession, and distribution of controlled and/or illicit substances, and their detrimental impact on the quality of the educational environment.  Therefore, all members of the College community share in the responsibility of protecting the campus environment by exemplifying high standards of professional and personal conduct.  For more information and resources, see the Columbia College Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy.

Tobacco-Free Policy

Columbia College Policy - The following policy goes into effect on August 21, 2017.  Columbia College values and is concerned for the health and well-being of its students, employees and visitors. The College is committed to providing a healthful and productive educational and employment environment for members of the College community. Consistent with this commitment and in the interest of the general health and welfare of the College community, the College prohibits the use of all tobacco products and related devices on all College property and premises.  For more information, see the Columbia College Tobacco-Free Policy.


Columbia College Policy - Discrimination, harassment, and retaliation on the basis of protected status (see Notice of Non-Discrimination and Equal Opportunity for a definition of "protected status") are strictly prohibited. Persons who engage in such conduct are subject to discipline up to and including termination or dismissal.  For more information, see the Columbia College Non-Discrimination and Equal Opportunity Policy and Complaint Resolution Procedure.

Columbia College Policy Library

Columbia College Policy - The policies set forth in the Online Policy Library are the current official versions of College policies and supersede and replace any other existing or conflicting policies covering the same subject matter.  The Online Policy Library is currently under construction with new policies being added on a frequent basis and the policies currently listed are not comprehensive of every College policy.  Questions regarding the Online Policy Library should be directed to the Office of the General Counsel.  For more information on policies applicable to students, see Student Policies.  For more information on policies applicable to the entire Columbia College community, see College-Wide Policies.

Technical Support

Columbia College Policy - If you have problems accessing the course or posting your assignments, contact your instructor, the Columbia College Technology Solutions Center, or the D2L Helpdesk for assistance.  If you have technical problems with the VitalSource eText reader, please contact VitalSource.  Contact information is also available within the online course environment.

        - Columbia College Technology Solutions Center:, 1-800-231-2391 ext. 4357

        - D2L Helpdesk:, 1-877-325-7778

        - VitalSource:, 1-855-200-4146


Course Evaluations - All students are encouraged to complete the online course evaluations. Students are notified by way of CougarMail when the evaluations are available. The evaluations are used to help instructors improve their teaching techniques. They are reviewed carefully by the Evening Campus Director, Assistant Director, and several AHE Administrators. Student should know that all responses are completely confidential, instructors only view results after grades are posted. Your input is valued and appreciated.

Late graded assignment/activity policy - All graded assignments or activities are due when stated in the syllabus or by the instructor. Graded assignments or activities submitted after the stated due date/time will not receive any credit unless the instructor has specifically stated that full or partial credit may be awarded to late submissions.


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