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Urbst 227 law urban studies syllabus fall 2012 queens college


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  • 1. CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK QUEENS COLLEGE DEPARTMENT OF URBAN STUDIES AND THE JOSEPH S. MURPHY INSTITUTE FOR WORKER EDUCATION AND LABOR STUDIES LAW AND URBAN STUDIES COURSE SYLLABUS – On Line FALL 2012 Instructor: Charlene Bryant, J.D. E-mail: (anytime) Telephone/Text: 347- 866- 8069 (between the hours of 3pm-6pm) Course Title: LAW AND URBAN STUDIES – Graduate/Undergraduate Meeting Dates: On - Line Course Number: URB 227(12425)/756(12438) Course Credit: (3) Credit hours Required Text and Material:  U.S. Constitution  Websites for reading materials have been listed. Additional materials will be listed on Blackboard throughout the semester. Course Description: This course will begin with an overview of American legal processes. The course work will encourage the student to examine the basic tenants of the legal system in this country; the Constitution and its impact on American government and policies. This course will also examine the relationship between the law and issue that directly impact urban cities and their residents. The course will examine the ideologies and laws that have shaped urban cities. We will discuss how these issues should be addressed by the communities and government. The course assignments will require the students to consider possible solutions to the existing problems that often times impede on our individual choices and rights within these communities. Examining current events, hypothetical’s, legal cases and hotly debated legal issues within these communities this course will encourage the student to seek out solutions that will impact the 1
  • 2. common good. ” Learning Objectives: Following the successful completion of this course, students should be able to:  Identify the challenges faced by urban communities.  Identify and discuss the differences between criminal and civil law.  Understand the difference between procedural and substantive law.  Understand criminal process.  Have a basic understanding of the Constitution.  Become familiar with the differences between state, federal and administrative laws and how they impact local city policy.  Consider how these laws impact the lives of the greater good.  Develop critical analysis skills by reviewing court cases and current contentious issues.  Develop an opinion: Should the community be more involved in the decision making process as it relates to the problems in their community.  Research, write and develop proposals that challenge the student to effect change in their urban communities.  Brief and analyze cases.  Have some understanding of the legislative process; be able to draft a bill, law and Constitutional amendment.  Identify their local political representatives and precincts. Learning Tasks and Activities: Coursework execution will further develop the students: 1. Comprehension skills. 2. Problem solving skills. 3. Research and writing. 4. Presentations skills. 5. Develop writing skills through weekly homework assignments and term papers. 6. Critical Analysis skills. Resources: All information for this course can be obtained on Blackboard or can be researched on line. Course Requirements: 2
  • 3. 1) Reading assignments: Please check Blackboard periodically for additional reading assignments. Unless otherwise notified, all assigned readings have been posted on syllabus. 2) Conference Calls: This is an on line class. The class will be expected to participate in bi -monthly conference call discussions. During these calls we will address student questions, briefly discuss subject matter. Attendance will be taken during these calls. 3) Paper and Project topics: Please email your topic and accompanying case to the address listed on this syllabus.  Paper topic due: September 27, 2102  Project topic due: October 4, 2012 If I disapprove of your topic you will have 48 hours to resubmit the topic. Your topic will not be considered approved until I have sent you an email providing approval. Topics submitted will reduce the overall grade of assignment. 4) Weekly Paper Assignments: A student is also encouraged to check Blackboard weekly for assignments not listed on syllabus. Due dates for these assignment will be provided. Students will be required to complete all weekly assignments. These assignments must be typed. Handwritten assignments will not be accepted. These assignments will be due before the beginning of each class the following week. All homework must be handed in on time each week. No assignment will be accepted after the due date. If more than (3) weekly assignments are missed a students’ grade will be reduced. If a new or additional assignment is post on Blackboard you should receive an email alert (check the email you have listed on Blackboard). Unless arrangements are made with the instructor in the case of an emergency, there will be no assignment accepted after the due date. 5) Midterm Project: Is there a law or policy that you can modify that will have a positive impact on your community? Review a NYS Penal, Administrative or Procedural Law/Code and execute one of the following:  Create a new law.  Amend an existing section of the law.  Create a new Amendment to the State or U.S. Constitution. The purpose of this exercise to propose a legal solution to an existing issue that has 3
  • 4. had some negative impact on the students’ community. As New Yorker’s we read, see, experience and hear every day (i.e. Murders, Education, Taxes, Crime). If you were a legislator how would you use the law to fix these problems? Examine articles, case law and other sources to support and exemplify your thesis. Use the existing laws as a model to draft your new law or amendment. Make sure you include the content of the section that precede and precede you modification; so I have a reference point to see how you have change the law (cut and paste before and after your modification). Provide an explanation as to why you feel this section of the code requires amending and how it will improve the law and subsequently improve your community. This project will be due on Monday, October 29th , 2012 @ or before 11:59 p.m. (when sent by email). Late final papers will be reduced by one grade for each late day. 6) Final Paper: Each student in the class will be responsible for writing a (12) – (15) page double spaced well organized research paper (font must be at least 10 pt). The topic of this paper must analyze and discuss an existing or emerging urban law issue that has been argued or is expected to be argued before the Supreme Court. The student is expected to choose one or more Supreme Court or lower court cases to provide a legal discussion of the issue through an analysis of the (if available) the court decision and concepts learned during the semester. The paper should also address additional positions held by the public related to the issue. The balance of your paper (approximately 65%) should discuss your position (do you agree or disagree with the court decision, the public opinion?) regarding the issue. Students are allowed to use newspaper articles or any other media as resources. If the case or cases chosen have not been decided by a court or if it is a current case being tried (Supreme Court has not decided but certiorari has been granted) the student will be expected to take the role of a judge or Supreme Court Justice and complete an opinion/decision (see cases for a model of a Supreme Court decisions). The student will also use existing or already decided cases to support his/her decision. In the body of this paper the student will be expected to answer the following questions or execute the following instructions:  Present the issue(s) in question  Brief background of the case and courts decision (if applicable) 4
  • 5.  Based on the information discussed do you agree or disagree with the outcome of the case? Why?  Present and discuss the public sides of the issue.  Do you agree or disagree with public opinion? Do you have a different opinion? Please state.  If there is no court opinion regarding the case the student must write a decision (use other judges decisions as a model) using precedent to support his/her position. I expect students not to directly use extensive quotes from the resources used. I require that the student will use his/her own language to interpret the information from the resource. The aforementioned questions should be the majority of the substance discussed in the paper. Details of this paper will be discussed further during our bi-monthly calls. All topics must be pre-approved by Instructor. Please timely email topic and a preliminary list of court case(s) that will be used. Upon review or your topic and list of case(s) I will return email an approval or disapproval. If I disapprove you will have 48 hours to resubmit the topic. . If your topic is not submitted or submitted late your grade will be reduced. Topics cannot be changed once submitted. Court cases cannot be older than 1985. No exceptions. All resources used to compose this paper must be submitted with the draft and completed paper. A list of Resources and citations will be required for this paper. All internet resources must also be cited and the first page of the resource should be printed and submitted with final paper. You will be graded on its thoroughness, organization, clarity, grammar, and references. Your grade will be reduced if the instructor determines you have used excessive direct quotes, failed to provide sufficient opinions and explanations, used poor grammar, sentence structure and not followed the instructions as indicated by this syllabus. A grade reduction will occur if a list of resources used is not submitted with final paper. The final paper will be due on Monday, December 17, 2012 @ or before 11:59 p.m. (one minute after due date will be considered late). Late final papers will be reduced by one grade for each late day. Please forward a copy of your final 5
  • 6. paper before the due date to me via email and to “Turn it in”. Set up your account and use the following information to submit the paper before the due date. Below find the Turn it in submission information. Class id number - Class name - 7) Final Project: Student may reuse and expand on the midterm project topic. Students will be responsible for developing a proposal or grant to be used to facilitate change in an urban community. The proposal will be created and can be used as a formal submission to community organizations and/or a government agency. The student must identify and analyze a current challenge that impacts urban America. This includes the history of the problem and how it impacts the community. The students will explore and analyze the ethical, legal and political arguments attached to the challenge. Student will be expected to solicit various resources to provide extensive accurate information regarding the problem and any government or community attempts to resolved the challenge. The conclusion will require the student to create a workable proposition and take a moral, political and legal position associated with the urban driven challenge. It is suggested that the student use Google or other internet resources to research and use the actual format used to create a proposal and grant. The final project will be due on Monday, December 3, 2012 before 11:59 p.m. The project will count towards 30% of your final grade. Late and or final projects will not be accepted beyond the due date. 8) Grading:  Conference Call Participation will count for 10% your final grade.  Weekly Paper Assignments will be optional and will provide you with the ability to increase your final grade. In order to receive these credits the student must successful complete each weekly assignment. This will provide the student the opportunity to increase their by an additional 205%. 6
  • 7.  Midterm Project will count for 20% your final grade.  Final Paper will count for 30% your final grade.  Final Project will count for 30% your final grade.  Letter grades will be assigned as follows: A = 90 and above; B+ = 85-89; B = 80-84; C+ = 75-79; C = 70-74; D+ = 65-69; D = 60-64; F = 59 and below.  The instructor will consider INC only under compelling circumstances. Those circumstances will be determined on an ad hoc basis.  IF YOU DID NOT DO THE WORK DO NOT EXPECT DO GET THE GRADE. ATTEMPTING TO NEGOTIATE A HIGHER GRADE ABSENT PROOF OF COMPLETED WORK IS FUTILE.  All grades earned by the student will be totaled and averaged to produce the final grade. Instructor reserves the right to alter grades as necessary. There will be NO extra credit, no extensions, no make-ups, and no excuse. Anyone who chronically submits assignments late will not receive an A, regardless of your grades earned scores. The instructor will consider INC only under compelling circumstances.  Financial Aid: If your grade will affect your financial aid, I would highly suggest adhere to the tenants of this syllabus and contact the instructor with any questions. 9) Extra credit is not an option in this course. Don’t ask. 10) Plagiarism detection software will be used during this course. 11) Academic Integrity: CUNY prohibits cheating, plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty. Students are expected to be familiar with its contents and to abide by its requirements. No one may leave the class during an exam until their exam is complete and no one will be allowed to enter once the first person has completed a test and left the room. The use of any electronic device (e.g., cell phone) during a test will be considered cheating. 12) Students with Disabilities: Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 require CUNY to provide academic adjustments or accommodations for students with documented disabilities. 13) Hate speech or hostile class environment: Make an appointment to see me if anything in class irritates or upsets you and is unsuitable for resolution in class. The instructor will not permit any expressions that will make any student 7
  • 8. uncomfortable in any manner. 14) Financial Aid: If your grade will affect your financial aid, I would highly suggest participating in class, handing in all assignments on time and passing both exams. No make-ups or extra credit will be given and final grades will not be changed. 15) Statement of Plagiarism: Plagiarism is the presentation of someone else‘s ideas, words, or artistic, scientific, or technical work as one‘s own creation. Using the ideas or work of another is permissible only when the original author is identified. Paraphrasing and summarizing, as well as direct quotations require citations to the original source. Plagiarism may be intentional or unintentional. Lack of dishonest intent does not necessarily absolve a student of responsibility for plagiarism. It is the student‘s responsibility to recognize the difference between statements that are common knowledge (which do not require documentation) and restatements of the ideas of others. Paraphrase, summary, and direct quotation are acceptable forms of restatement, as long as the source is cited. Students who are unsure how and when to provide documentation is advised to consult with their instructors. The Library has free guides designed to help students with problems of documentation. 16) SEND ALL ASSIGNMENTS TO THE TO EMAIL ADDRESS LISTED ON THIS SYLLABUS. I WILL NOT BE RETRIEVING EMAILS FROM ANY OTHER SOURCE. 17) Reservation Statement: The below Reservation Statement must be signed and return via scanned email. Reservation Statement: I, certify that I ________________________________________________ have read this document thoroughly and will adhere to the aforementioned terms and 8
  • 9. conditions as stated in this syllabus. Furthermore, I understand what is expected of me in accordance with the terms and conditions of this syllabus. I will try my best to realize my full potential for the entire fall 2012 semester. The instructor reserves the right to make adjustments to this syllabus as needed. Any changes to this syllabus will be provided to the students in a timely manner. Please sign and return this sheet to the instructor. _____________________________________________ __________________ (Student Signature) (Date) Class Schedule Week 1– September 3, 2012 Topic: Introduction to Course and Syllabus Review  Introductions  Discuss Syllabus and Review Questions.  Assign Presentation Dates.  Distribute Handouts and Assignments - Criminal Justice flow chart.  Homework:  Review Criminal Justice flowchart listed on Blackboard.  Find a form for a grant or proposal that can be used to create and submit a formal proposition to a government or community agency.  Research Paper and Presentation topics 9
  • 10.  Read Constitution Week 2- September 10, 2102 Topic: Which Constitutional amendments impact the urban America?  1st amendment  2nd amendment  4th amendment  5th amendment  6th amendment  8th amendment  11th amendment  14th amendment  Articles 1-3  Weekly Assignment: Chose one of the aforementioned amendments. Write a (5) page paper that examines the purpose of the Constitution. Identify each amendment and provide an explanation for which of your individual rights it safeguards. Identify one amendment and briefly discuss the following: What is the direct or indirect impact this amendment has within the urban communities? Assignment due: 9/14  Reading:   Week 3 – September 17, 2012 Topic: The law  What are the different types of law?  Administrative  Federal law  State Law  Case law  Common law  Procedural law 10
  • 11.  Substantive law  Criminal law  Civil law  How to analyze case law – Lawyers use the I-R-A-C method to deconstruct a case. You will use this method to assist you to analyze case law and with the development of projects and papers. We will discuss during our call and I will post an example on Blackboard.  Weekly Assignment: # 1- Please provide a brief definition for each the aforementioned type of laws and explain the differences and similarities. Provide examples for each. Reading: Use the internet or library to research and REVIEW the Laws of NYS. At the sites below you will find the codified laws that will assist you with course work; they will provide you with some insight regarding (the codification) how laws are organized and constructed. See sites below.   # 2 -Visit the following site to obtain information regarding the IRAC method. Review the article carefully. Use IRAC to deconstruct the following case: Shelley v. Kraemer (1948)   Assignment due: 9/21 Week 4– September 24, 2012 Topic: The role of the legislature.  Why do we elect?  Who do we elect?  How is legislation created?  What role does the Constitution play in creating legislation?  American values and the creation of legislation.  What are the responsibilities of our elected officials?  Identify your local, state elected officials. 11
  • 12.  How does capitalism impact democracy?  Identify your Government hierarchy (Local, State and federal).  Is wealth and race the major players in inequitable application of the law?  Weekly Assignment: Please respond to the inquiries above. Also discuss the sections of the Constitution that define who and how legislation is created. Briefly identify what problems you think exist in urban America. Do you think legislation effectively address’ the problems?  Assignment due: 9/28  Reading:   tml   and-representatives Week 5– October 1, 2012 Topic: What are the origins of Urban America?  Is there a difference between an urban city and a ghetto?  Are there different definitions of “urban”? Please identify.  Is there a difference between urban, rural and suburban?  The new Urban America versus the old – “Urbanism.” Does it make a difference? Does the idea of urbanism expand the idea of the urban city?  Weekly Assignment: Please address the above inquiries above.  Assignment due: 10/5  Reading:  america   nism.htm  cities.-a0287109309 12
  • 13. Week 6– October 8, 2012 Topic (s):  Is the urban city a byproduct of a political ideology? Or is urban America a direct result of industrialization that is perpetuated by Capitalism?  What is the difference between Capitalism and Democracy?  Weekly Assignment: If urban cities were designed to address the needs of industrialization, should the needs of those who choose to live in these cities be protected by the Constitution? Should the needs of the individual outweigh those of the entity that created the city? Can we really balance the needs of the Corporation with the individual? Should we revitalize the idea of deliberative democracy and the ideals of the Constitution?  Assignment due: 10/12  Reading:  : 25238,articleId-25184.html#ixzz1Cv2gNqk1  es_in_the_global_economy   democracy.html    deliberative democracy at the grassroots: prioritizing the...-a0301181012 Week 7– October 15, 2012 Topic: What are the problems faced by urban America? Over the next few weeks you will be charged with examining some of these issues and exploring the impact they have on urban America. 13
  • 14.  Economic  Employment  Education  Children  Military  Religion  Media  War  Public health and biological research  Government  The Internet and technology  Immigration  Crime  Reading: Additional reading will be assigned.   Week 8– October 22, 2012 Topic: Examine the following as it relates to Urban America.  Economic  Employment  Education  Weekly Assignment: TBD  Readings:  Systems-the-Rise-of.html  14
  • 15. record_id=1539&page=68  edmonds.pdf  e/academic/lees/supergentrificationbrooklynheights.pdf  Week 9– October 29, 2012 Topic: Examine the following as it relates to Urban America.  Children  Military  Religion  The Midterm project due  Weekly Assignment: TBD  Reading: Additional readings will be assigned.  Military Families Achieve the American Dream They Are...-a0122099146 Week 10– November 5, 2012 Topic: Examine the following as it relates to Urban America.  Media  War  Public health and biological research  Weekly Assignment: Has the government adequately responded to the public health needs of its citizens? What types of resources are available to citizens; have they been properly educated? Does Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) solve the healthcare solution?  Assignment due 11/9  Reading: Additional readings will be assigned.  and violence in an urbanizing world.-a094337333  15
  • 16. Week11– November 12, 2012 Topic: Examine the following as it relates to Urban America.  Government involvement  The Internet and technology  Immigration  Weekly Assignment: TBD  Reading: Additional readings will be assigned.   htm  net-access-and-the-new-divide.html? _r=1&pagewanted=all Week 12– November 19, 2012 Topic: Examine the following as it relates to Urban America.  Crime  Environment  Weekly Assignment: Would the Zipfs law be a possible solution to the urban environmental resource problem?  Assignment due date 11/23  Reading:  18261.pdf  and violence in an urbanizing world.-a094337333  p:// Zipfs power law over population density and growth as...-a0281682479 Week 13– November 26, 2012 16
  • 17. Topic: NO ASSIGNMENTS – HAPPY HOLIDAY Week 14– December 3, 2012 Topic: Governments response to public needs. Does Government have the answers? Are there answers being properly employed?  11th Amendment  Local government agencies  Department of Labor  Department of Justice  Housing and Urban Development  Department of Health and Human Services  Department of Education  Department of State  Administration of Children and Families  Weekly Assignment: Research and identify the federal and state level administrative government agencies that have some impact on urban cities. Choose (1) agency and discuss the agencies policies and how they can be modified to better serve the urban communities.  Assignment due 12/7  The final project due Week 15– December 10, 2012 Topic: How should we address the problems in Urban America?  When should the government be neutral?  How do we determine when government should make decisions for the community?  Collaborative government – does it work?  What is the common good?  Should communities be held responsible for its own challenges?  How should communities take charge of their communities?  Can the community and government find a balance to achieve their 17
  • 18. objectives?  Do the government and the community have the same objectives?  Weekly Assignment: TBD  Readings: Additional readings will be assigned.  space: a place on the way to collaborative government?-a0216412258  Week 16– December 17, 2012 Topic: Activism and grass roots  The Vote  Volunteerism  Influencing politicians  Active role in the government systems  Creating and effectuating policy  Community and self education  The final paper due  Reading:  Ventures Partners With General Colin Powell and America's...-a062714617  Street and neighborhood change: a thing of beauty is a joy forever.-a0256684874 18