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TX.GOV 1st Edition

William Earl Maxwell, Ernest Crain, Adolfo Santos

  • Published
  • 344 Pages


Created by the continuous feedback of a “student-tested, faculty-approved” process, TX.GOV delivers a visually appealing, succinct print component, tear-out review cards for students and prep cards for instructors, and a consistent online offering with CourseMate that includes an eBook in addition to a set of interactive digital tools all at a value-based price and proven to increase retention and outcomes. Affordable, high-quality, and trusted content, TX.GOV employs a motivating debate theme and focuses on the current and historical conflicts and controversies that define Texas politics.

William Earl Maxwell, San Antonio College, Emeritus

William Earl Maxwell is a professor emeritus at San Antonio College, where he has taught courses in U.S. and Texas government since 1971. Throughout his career Maxwell has focused on innovative teaching techniques and improving the teaching and learning environments for students. As part of that effort, in 1975 Maxwell co-authored UNDERSTANDING TEXAS POLITICS, his first text on Texas government. He also co-authored such texts as POLITICS IN TEXAS and THE CHALLENGE OF TEXAS POLITICS: TEXT WITH READINGS. He completed his undergraduate and graduate work at Sam Houston State University.

Ernest Crain, San Antonio College, Emeritus

Ernest Crain did his graduate work at the University of Texas at Austin, spent 35 years teaching Texas government at San Antonio College, and now lives in Montgomery County, Texas. Crain has co-authored UNDERSTANDING TEXAS POLITICS, POLITICS IN TEXAS: AN INTRODUCTION TO TEXAS POLITICS, THE CHALLENGE OF TEXAS POLITICS: TEXT WITH READINGS, AMERICAN GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS TODAY: TEXAS EDITION, and TEXAS POLITICS TODAY. His special areas of interest include party competition, comparative state politics, and Texas public policy.

Adolfo Santos, University of Houston - Downtown

Adolfo Santos is the chair of the Department of Social Sciences at the University of Houston-Downtown and Associate Professor of Political Science. Dr. Santos received a Ph.D. from the University of Houston in 1998. He is the author of DO MEMBERS OF CONGRESS REWARD THEIR FUTURE EMPLOYERS?: EVALUATING THE REVOLVING DOOR SYNDROME. He also writes about Hispanic representation in the U.S. Congress and the Texas legislature.
  • An innovative combination of content delivery both in print and online provides a core text with a wealth of comprehensive multimedia assets based on input from student focus groups, surveys, and instructor reviews.
  • “Study Tools” provides a full-page quiz at the end of every chapter to ensure that students succeed on their exams, helping them assess whether they truly understand the chapter content.
  • “Chapter in Review Cards” at the back of the Student Edition provide students with a portable study tool containing all of the pertinent information for class preparation, including a “Student Study Skills” primer, additional maps, and demographic coverage.
  • “Instructor Prep Cards” at the back of the Instructor Edition make preparation simple with detachable cards for each chapter, offering a quick map of chapter content, a list of corresponding PowerPoint® and video resources, additional examples, and suggested assignments and discussion questions to help you organize chapter content efficiently.
  • A full suite of unique learning tools that appeal to different learning styles is available to students with the purchase of a new book. Quizzes, audio downloads, videos, simulations, and more are only a click away.
  • Shorter comprehensive chapters in a modern design present content in a more engaging and accessible format without minimizing coverage of the course topics.
  • “Learning Outcomes” open each chapter, giving students a first look at the chapter’s key concepts. These learning outcomes are revisited throughout the chapter, providing students with a roadmap to guide their reading and assess their comprehension.
  • “Texans in Conflict”--a chapter-opening debate--asks students to critically evaluate both sides of a current controversy in Texas politics. A corresponding section closes each chapter, along with relevant questions for discussion and debate.
  • “Join the Debate” features expand on the book’s theme, giving students an opportunity to review opposing opinions and form their own.
  • Four Critical Thinking questions follow each major section and correlate with each of the chapter’s Learning Outcomes.
  • “How Texas Compares” provides a comparative approach that evaluates how other states deal with the topic at hand.
  • “Texas Political Social Media” connects students to relevant political blogs and other social media sites to explore current issues and opinions.
  • “Take Action” ties the chapter topic to easy ways students can get involved in the political process.
1. Texas History and Culture.
2. Texas in the Federal System.
3. The Texas Constitution in Perspective.
4. Voting and Elections.
5. Political Parties.
6. Interest Groups.
7. The Legislature.
8. The Executive.
9. Texas Judiciary.
10. Law and Due Process.
11. Public Policy in Texas.
12. Local Government.

“I think the debate style approach offers the starting point that many classes are missing for the students to engage with both the instructor and their fellow classmates.”

“I am very excited about the list of special features! It seems like this textbook is grounded in a thought-out pedagogical approach, with a special emphasis on fostering student-teacher interaction and critical discussion. I very much like the idea of opening each chapter with a debate because this will get students’ attention as they will seek to assert their own position. Motivating students to pay attention and care about the material is one of the hardest tasks in teaching government courses. Introducing controversial issues and different sides of the debate is a good way to draw students into discussion, have them read, formulate questions, etc. I also very much like the special feature on Critical Thinking. It encourages students to both review the material and major concepts, as well as to think about them critically. The latter leaves room for students to provide their input so they do not feel separated or alienated from the subject they study. In democratic spirit, this lets them know that their opinion matters. Texas political and social media is another fascinating feature of this textbook. In the age of technology and information students are more likely to take interest in the subject when they can utilize internet resources. In addition, it provides students with a sense of democratic citizenship because it shows them channels for expressing their views and hearing other people’s ideas on relevant issues. Take Action feature serves a similar purpose and it is such a pleasure to see it included into the textbook. It provides students with starting resources to get involved without leaving their room or computer screen. Chapter quizzes provided in the end are surely a great way to give students an opportunity to self-test and it will be greatly appreciated by both students and instructors.”

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.


CourseMate with American Government NewsWatch Instant Access

ISBN: 9781285065687
Cengage Learning’s Political Science CourseMate brings course concepts to life with interactive learning, study tools, and exam preparation tools that support the printed textbook. Use Engagement Tracker to assess student preparation and engagement in the course, and watch student comprehension soar as your class works with the textbook-specific website. An interactive eBook allows students to take notes, highlight, search, and interact with embedded media. Other resources include video activities, animated learning modules, simulations, case studies, interactive quizzes, and timelines. CourseMate now includes American Government NewsWatch, a real-time news and information resource, updated daily, which includes interactive maps, videos, podcasts, and hundreds of articles from leading journals, magazines, and newspapers from the United States and the world. Also included is the KnowNow! American Government Blog, which highlights three current events stories per week and consists of a succinct analysis of the story, multimedia, and discussion-starter questions. Access your course today via


CourseMate with American Government NewsWatch Instant Access

ISBN: 9781285065687
Cengage Learning's CourseMate brings course concepts to life with interactive learning, study, and exam preparation tools that support the printed textbook. Maximize your course success with the integrated eBook and chapter-specific learning tools that include flashcards, quizzes, videos, and more in your CourseMate. Key Features: Interactive eBook, Engagement Tracker, Learning Objectives, Tutorial Quizzes, Glossary and Flashcards, and Web Links and References.