Dr. Anthony Gabrielli
Political Science
whole constitutional
heritage rebels
at the
of giving government
the power
to control
men's minds..."
Thurgood Marshall
Courses of 
Dr. Gabrielli 

Intro to U.S. Government


Dr. Gabrielli's Top Five


 Franklin Roosevelt
 Richard Nixon
 Ronald Reagan
 Jimmy Carter
 Woodrow Wilson
Civil Rights Leaders
 Thurgood Marshall
 Cesar Chavez
 Malcom X
 Elizabeth Stanton
 W.E.B. Du Bois
Favorite Excuses from Students
 I can't come to class because my windshield wiper is broken.
 I can't come to class because my best friend broke up with her boyfriend.
 I can't come to class because I have a party to go to.
 I can't take the test because I forgot to study.
 I can't turn in my paper because somebody broke into my car and only took my backpack which had my flashdrive and all my books in it.
Outside of Work
 Spending time with my family.
 Taking long drives.
 Watching sports.
 Going to Dodger games.


Sample Syllabus



SPRING 2014            Section 0555

TTH 9:35-11:00    EB 1202

PROFESSOR:                                                 OFFICE HOURS:

Anthony C. Gabrielli Ph.D                                M, T, W, TH:  11:15-12:15

Faculty Office 2405                                         

818-710-4275                                                    And by appointment

                        Email: gabrieac@piercecollege.edu


Required Text

Struggle for Democracy with California Government and Politics, Political Science 1 Custom Edition 2013

Access to Moodle (AKA Pierce Online).  This is a web enhanced class. Web enhanced activities may include, but are not limited to: 1. online testing, 2. online submission of work, 3. downloading documents, 4. participation in online discussions


Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Political Science 1, students will be able to:

            Identify and distinguish the basic institutions of the government of the U.S. and the State of CA.

            Identify the limitations placed on government and the rights of citizens established by the U.S. Constitution.

            Understand current policy decisions and analyze the impact of policy decisions on American society.



You are expected to turn in assignments on time and to take exams on the dates indicated.  It is also expected that you do the reading assignment before the lecture on the subject, to attend every lecture, and to participate in class discussions. Disruptive behavior will not be tolerated this includes using unapproved electronic devices during class time.  Coming to class late is disruptive to the class, if you arrive late to class you will be counted as late for that day.   

Exclusion Policy

            Regular attendance and participation are essential ingredients for success in this class. Excessive absences (1 day) during the first two weeks of the semester WILL result in exclusion from the class.  Beyond the second week students who miss a total of four class sessions or exhibit disruptive behavior described above MAY be excluded by the instructor.  Never assume exclusion by the instructor if you are not attending any longer, it is the responsibility of the student to officially withdraw.

            Note: The last day to add is February 21, the last day to drop is February 23, the last day to withdraw is May 11.  Students can only attempt a course 3 times, if you have received a D, F or W in a course that counts as an attempt.  It is important that students who do not feel they will succeed, drop before the February 23 deadline all drops after that date receive a W and hence an attempt at this course.



The requirements for this course include: Participation, two papers, and four exams.  All assignments will be graded according to the following table.



Requirements             Points                                                              Grade Scale              

Participation              60                                                                    540-600 = A

Paper 1                      100                                                                   480-539 = B

Paper 2                     100                                                                    420-479 = C

Exam 1                       70                                                                    360-419 = D

Exam 2                       70                                                        Less than 300    = F

Exam 3                     100

Exam 4                     100                               



Students are expected to participate in class discussions.  Attendance will be taken each class period through a seating chart, notations will be made on the seating chart regarding student participation.  Excused absences will only be used to prevent exclusion from the class. There are roughly 30 class meetings, students will receive 2 points for engaged attendance (including engaging in discussions and active listening), students may earn an additional point for especially insightful comments regarding the topic being discussed. Students will lose 1 point for leaving class early, arriving late, engaging in disruptive behavior, or are not actively engaged in the class. Students will not receive any points if they do not attend a class meeting.  A student cannot participate if they do not attend class. Note the grade is for participation not attendance therefore there are no excused absences, students who are not present cannot participate and therefore receive no points for that day. No student may earn more than 60 points for participation.



The first exam will concentrate on material regarding the founding of the country. federalism and state and local government. The second exam will focus on the Constitution, and civil liberties and civil rights. The third exam will cover material about the institutions of government (e.g. Congress).  The fourth exam focuses on the inputs into the system such as public opinion, media and political parties.  The exams are not comprehensive but all exams build on information from earlier in the semester. The exams will be mostly multiple choice, but will also consist of some short answer or essay questions.  The exact format of each exam will be discussed in class prior to each exam date.



General paper guidelines, both papers should adhere to these instructions.

            Each paper MUST be a minimum of 5 pages of text (1500 words) and should not exceed 7 pages in length.  All papers must be written in a paragraph format, typed double spaced, with one inch margins, a 12 cpi times new roman font, using APA style citations, including page numbers, a title page and works cited page.  Direct quotes should be kept to a minimum, on average a sentence or two or four lines per page. PAPERS THAT DO NOT MEET THE 5 PAGES (1500 WORDS) OF TEXT REQUIREMENT WILL NOT RECEIVE A PASSING GRADE.

            No late papers or electronic versions will be accepted.  Please do not use folders to place the paper, I only require that they be stapled, papers in folders are difficult to read.  A grading rubric will be provided on Moodle under the course documents heading at the top of the course page.


Paper 1-  Advocacy Paper

The paper is an advocacy paper, each student will find a contemporary (within the last 3 months) controversial issue in American or California politics. The paper will describe the issue, discuss both/all sides of the issues, and provide the student's opinion of the issue.  The paper should be written as an advocacy paper, the student should support their stance--a good advocacy paper addresses the opposing side’s strongest arguments.  Three outside sources are required for this assignment, encyclopedias and dictionaries do not count as sources.

Papers will be turned in at the beginning of the class period on 3-25, only hard copies turned in at the beginning of the class on 3-25 will be accepted.


Paper 2- Interest Group Paper

 Students will find a national interest group and describe what the agency does, how they do it, and how it affects society.  In describing the interest the students should discuss the group’s goal what is it trying to achieve.  In discussing how the group operates students should give examples of lobbying or mobilization techniques used by the group.  Finally, students should discuss whether the group is effective and what is its effect on society as a whole. A few examples of interest groups are: American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), National Rifle Association (NRA), and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). Three outside sources are required for this assignment, encyclopedias and dictionaries do not count as sources.     

            Papers will be turned in at the beginning of the class period on 5-15, only hard copies turned in at the beginning of the class on 5-15 will be accepted.



            The professor reserves the right to offer bonus points for activities as they may arise during the course of the semester e.g. attending an on campus event.  Bonus points are due within two weeks of the announcement in class or the end of the event. Students may request bonus points for activities they believe are relevant to the course material, only activities conducted during the semester will be considered for bonus points, and students should always ask the professor if the activity is appropriate before taking on an activity.  No student is eligible for more than 25 bonus points.  The last day to turn in bonus point work is 5-20.


            The text book is two books in one, the first 3/4ths of the book is the U.S. Government text the Greenberg Struggle for Democracy text, the second 1/4 of the text is the Field California Government and Politics Today text.  In the course outline the reading is described by the corresponding chapter in the text, I have also included notations regarding the California Government text, along with the chapter I have included the starting page number in the custom text, I have also included the chapter number for the ebook.  Here is an example:

            US text: Ch. 11

            CA text: Ch.  26 p. 795 (ebook ch. 8)

            Documents: None

Be aware this course does not follow the same chapter order as the textbook; be sure to follow the course outline provided on the course page or the course outline below.

            For a limited time the publisher will sell the ebook of the custom text and MPL access for ~$50, but you will need the course id before ordering the text. Course id gabrielli60386. Information on how to access the MPL web site is provided on the course page on moodle, please use and follow the instructions.



            To access moodle go to http://moodle.piercecollege.edu/, you should be automatically enrolled in the course using your Pierce email and ID.  If you need help go to Onlinehelp@piercecollege.edu Moodle is a useful tool for communicating.  I will post any significant announcements on moodle in the recent news block which will result in you receiving an email about the announcement.  I will also use moodle to provide supplementary course materials, such as grading rubrics, study guides, and the course syllabus. 

Using MyPoliscilab

A new textbook comes with access to Mypoliscilab (MPL) a website created by the publisher. While use of the website is NOT required for the course it is a wonderful resource to help students understand the content of the textbook.  A how to guide for registering for MPL is posted on moodle under course documents the Course ID for this course is gabrielli60386



No makeup exams will be granted without the PRIOR approval of the instructor.  It is the student's responsibility to inform the professor of any religious observational conflicts with attendance or assignment due dates. It is the students responsibility to turn in all work PRIOR to missing class for religious observation.

The professor does not accept assignments turned in via e-mail, only hard copies are accepted. 

NO LATE WORK WILL BE ACCEPTED.  If it is not turned in on time do not turn it in.

A course outline is provided with tentative due dates for each assignment, but this is subject to change.  Therefore, it is important for you to attend class and be aware of any changes made in assignment due dates as well as other changes in the course outline.

            Cell phones will remain OFF and out of sight during class.  Cell phones used during class will be confiscated for the remainder of the class period (ringing-vibrating, talking on, texting, taking pictures, using as a clock, or browsing the web).  Upon a third offense of using a cell phone during class the student will be excluded from the class.

Papers that are less than 5 pages of text (1500 words) will not receive a passing grade.

            There are no excused absences for the purposes of the participation grade.

            Students arriving late--after attendance has been taken--will be counted late for the day.

            It is disruptive for students to leave class early, life happens and sometimes you just have to go, but do not make a habit of leaving early. Leaving early even if you return to class is disruptive and will be deducted from your participation grade.


            Cheating or plagiarism will not be tolerated in any form.  Anyone caught cheating on an exam or plagiarizing a paper will automatically receive a 0 on the assignment.  Plagiarism is defined as turning in someone else’s work as your own.  Work that is not your own must be cited, direct quotes from authors must be placed in quotations and the author cited.  Taking another person’s idea is plagiarism, as well, you must give proper credit to the person from which the idea came.  Another form of cheating is students working together on papers, quizzes or projects without the prior approval of the instructor.



            Professor contact information and office hours are provided at the top of this syllabus. Be aware that the professor has over 250 students each semester, following the instructions below is essential if you wish a response to your correspondence:

            Email: In the subject line please indicate your course and section number. Please make sure your Email is signed with your full name and email address.  Please use professional language, and proof read your email for typos.  Most emails will be responded to within 24 hours Monday-Thursday.  Emails sent Friday, Saturday or Sunday will be responded to on Monday. Please use gabrieac@piercecollege.edu to email me.  If you use the direct link from moodle to email you will need to include your email as this is a no reply email.

            Phone:  Provide your name and the day and time your class meets. Please leave a call back number speak slowly and clearly, repeat your call back number.  The professor prefers communication by email over phone.  The best time to talk to the professor by phone is during posted office hours.

            In Person: If you need to meet with the professor outside of office hours please make an appointment.  If you cannot keep the appointment please notify the professor as soon as possible via email.


ADA Compliance Statement

          Students with disabilities, whether physical, learning, or psychological, who believe that they may need accommodations in this class, are encouraged to contact the office of Special Services as soon as possible to ensure that such accommodations are implemented in a timely fashion. Authorization, based on verification of disability, is required before any accommodation can be made. The phone number for Special Services is 818-719-6430 and they are located in the Student Services Building.

Financial Assistance

If you need help paying for books and other college expenses, please contact the Financial Aid Office at 818-719-6428 or visit them on the web at http://www.piercecollege.edu/offices/financial_aid Financial Aid is located in the Student Services Building.





Week 1 (2-11) Introduction, and  Theoretical background  

                                    Reading:         US text: None

                                                            CA text: Ch. 19 p. 719 (ebook ch. 1)

                                                            Documents: Syllabus

Week 2 (2-18) Historical background

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 1

                                                            CA text: Ch. 21 p. 741 (ebook ch. 3)

                                                            Documents: Declaration of Independence p. 891

Week 3 (2-25) Federalism, and State and Local Government

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 3

                                                            CA text: Ch. 31 p. 851, Ch. 32 p. 861 (ebook chs. 13-14)

Week 4 (3-4) Constitution

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 2

                                                            CA text: None

                                                            Documents: Constitution p. 895

                        EXAM 1 3/4

Week 5 (3-11) Constitution continued

Week 6 (3-18) Civil Liberties

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 15

                                                            CA text: Ch. 30 p. 841 (ebook ch. 12)

Week 7 (3-25) Civil Rights

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 16

                                                            CA text: Ch. 22 p. 751 (ebook ch. 4)

                                    Paper 1 due 3/25

Week 8 (4-1) EXAM 2

                        EXAM 2 4/3


Week 10 (4-15) The Legislature

                        Reading:         US text: Ch. 11

                                                CA text: Ch. 26 p. 795 (ebook ch. 8)

Week 10 (4-22) The Executive

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 12

                                                            CA text: Ch. 27 p. 807 (ebook ch. 9)

Week 11 (4-29) The Bureaucracy

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 13

                                                            CA text: Ch. 28 p. 819 (ebook ch. 10)

Week 12 (5-6) The Judiciary

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 14

                                                            CA text: Ch. 29 p. 831 (ebook ch. 11)

                        EXAM 3 5/8

Week 13 (5-13) Public Opinion, The Media

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch's. 4, 5, and 6

                                                            CA text: Ch's. 20 and 23 p. 729, 763 (ebook ch. 2, and 5)

                        Paper 2 due 5/15

Week 14 (5-20) Interest Groups, Political Parties

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch's. 7, 8, and 9

                                                            CA text: Ch. 24 p. 773 (ebook ch. 6)

                        Last Day to turn in Bonus Points 5/20

Week 15 (5-26) Campaigns and Elections

                                    Reading:         US text: Ch. 10

                        CA text: Ch. 25 p. 783 (ebook ch. 7)

                        NO CLASS 5/27 Memorial Day

Week 16 (6-5)  FINAL EXAM THURSDAY 6/5, 9-11am



Dr. Gabrielli's Family