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AMERICAN GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS TODAY: THE ESSENTIALS, 2015-2016 Edition inspires students to join the exciting process of being active, informed citizens. Unbiased, concisely organized, and updated with Election 2014 coverage, the text's fundamental theme continues to be the importance of participating in active citizenship, emphasizing critical thinking about political issues and encouraging students to become involved in the political process. With a keen understanding of the needs and interests of today's students, the authors incorporate compelling and thought-provoking current examples to stimulate learning and excitement. MindTap™ for Bardes, Shelley, and Schmidt's AMERICAN GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS TODAY: THE ESSENTIALS-Cengage Learning's fully online learning solution-is automatically included with this text.
- “2014 Elections” features highlight the important impact of the 2014 midterm elections, including an analysis of the campaigns and election results. These features help students think critically about recent events and consider them in the context of American political theory and history.
- In addition, updated discussions cover: the concept of concentrated benefits and dispersed costs; the fact that many interest groups are considered part of political party coalitions; the latest Supreme Court rulings on campaign finance and the voting rights act; the concept of the invisible primary; laws restricting voting rights; talk radio and threats to the independence of the Internet; bias, blogging, and social media; the concept of priming; new limits to filibustering; recent news on Snowden and Manning; and foreign policy as it relates to Syria and Ukraine.
- New sections cover Latinos, American Indians, and Asians (in the Civil Rights chapter); different kinds of Republicans and Democrats as well as forces that persuade party members to think alike; and the party in the electorate.
- This edition is significantly more affordable than the previous edition.
- New “Why You Should Care About. . .” marginal features boost students' engagement by demonstrating why the topic at hand directly affects them.
- More demographics are included throughout, particularly in Chapter 1, which presents material on positive and negative trends such as unemployment, inequality, falling crime, and teen pregnancy rates.
- Critical thinking questions now accompany all figures, tables, and photo captions, helping students apply and analyze the information presented.
- More photos of young, active citizens-in new chapter-opening photo spreads and throughout the text-show democracy in action and inspire students to get involved themselves.
- Chapter summaries and end-of-chapter quizzes are now correlated to the chapter Learning Outcomes, helping students assess their comprehension of each chapter and prepare for tests. Quizzes now include multiple-choice, fill-in, and essay questions.
- The book is now seamlessly integrated with MindTap™, included with this edition. Marginal icons direct students to a variety of assignable, gradable activities that get them up to speed with current events materials, promote their interaction with one another through online discussion boards and polling questions, and engage them with interactive activities and quizzes that are correlated to clearly defined learning outcomes-all while keeping instructors deeply informed of student progress and time spent in the course.
- Coverage of public opinion, interest groups, modern political parties, social media in politics, and the Obama legacy has received major updates. The chapters on Domestic and Economic Policy (Ch. 15) and Foreign Policy (Ch. 16) have been completely updated and modernized to reflect recent events.
- Additional content changes and updates include discussions of: how the electoral college was chosen in the early days of the Republic; Supreme Court rulings on marijuana, same-sex marriage, and how the states are administering Obamacare; obscenity (rewritten section); the NSA revelation; women in the military; poverty and race, same-sex marriage, and affirmative action; the gender gap, Southern conservatism, and other public opinion and political socialization issues; and the new farm bill.
- The MindTap for this title is Quality Matters certified, assuring the very highest quality and accessibility in online and blended courses.
- The 2015-2016 Edition engages students by focusing on how government impacts them: Chapter 1 shows students how government is everywhere, at every stage of their lives; “Why Should You Care About. . .” and “How You Can Make a Difference” features encourage community and political participation, and student demographics, social media, and cross-generational information is incorporated throughout.
- Learning Outcomes appear in the opener and correlate to each major section to help students target their reading, and are revisited in the chapter summary and end-of-chapter quiz. These outcomes are tied to the Introduction to American Government outcomes that are expected from most courses across the country.
- “What If . . . ,” “Beyond Our Borders,” and “Did You Know?” features engage students' interest while encouraging them to think critically about key concepts and current events and to develop a more informed and global perspective.
- “Which Side Are You On?” features challenge students to take a stand on controversial issues and explore ways to take action.
- “How You Can Make A Difference” features conclude each chapter with ways in which students can become actively involved in American politics.
- Every chapter concludes with key terms, a chapter summary, and a quiz correlated to the Learning Outcomes, a reminder of available MindTap activities that assess and deepen understanding of the chapter's key concepts, and additional print and media resources.
- A “Skill Prep” module opens the book, outlining tips for studying, writing papers and essays, and taking tests.
1. The Democratic Republic.
2. The Constitution.
Part II: CIVIL RIGHTS AND LIBERTIES.
4. Civil Liberties.
5. Civil Rights.
Part III: PEOPLE AND POLITICS.
6. Public Opinion and Political Socialization.
7. Interest Groups.
8. Political Parties.
9. Campaigns and Elections.
10. The Media.
Part IV: POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS.
11. The Congress.
12. The President.
13. The Bureaucracy.
14. The Courts.
Part V: PUBLIC POLICY.
15. Domestic and Economic Policy.
16. Foreign Policy.
Appendix A: The Declaration of Independence.
Appendix B: Federalist Papers Nos. 10, 51, and No. 78.
Appendix C: Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court since 1900.
Appendix D: Party Control of Congress since 1900.
Appendix E: The Presidents of the United States.
“The book generally does a nice job with useful pictures, charts, graphs, etc. These should help visual learners grasp some important concepts and drive home key issues.”
“A real strength is how the Learning Outcomes are noted not only at the front of the chapter but on the page where the information is provided. I think this book's descriptions about the difference in direct democracy and a democratic republic are the most understandable for students of any text I've read.”
Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.
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