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  Recommendation Letters Policy  
  I am happy to write letters of recommendation for students who have received a grade of A- or higher in any of my classes with enrollments of less than 40 students. If you received a grade of A- or higher in one of my large lecture classes, the TA who graded your work would be better suited to write you a recommendation letter. I only write recommendation letters for students after the successful completion of one of my reasonably-sized classes (unless they have already completed one of my classes, and are currently enrolled in another).

If I do agree to write a letter, I require the following:

  1. Statement of purpose or cover letter for the intended application. If you are applying to graduate (including law) school, then I also require a three-page statement explaining why you think that attending immediately after graduation is essential for your personal and professional development.
  2. Explicit instructions to me about the deadline (which should be at least two weeks prior to your request for a letter from me)
  3. Prior work submitted in my class (exams and papers)
  4. Your resume or c.v.
  5. Photocopy of your transcript
  6. Addressed envelopes with sufficient postage
  7. Large self-addressed envelope if you would like me to return your papers and exams.
  Course Syllabi  

2403 - China under Revolution and Reform
This course examines the political evolution of the Chinese state during the 20th century. Although we will cover the late Qing Dynasty and the Nationalist era, the main focus will be on the People´s Republic of China from 1949 to the present. The course is divided into three parts. The first traces the political history of China over the past century, with particular emphasis on China under Mao Zedong (1949 - 1976) and the reform era under Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao (1978 - present). The second part looks at the mechanics of the Chinese state, in particular, its governing apparatus, including the government, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and the People´s Liberation Army (PLA). The third part of the course looks at several contemporary "hot button" issues, using information from earlier sections of this course to analyze these issues in an in-depth, scholarly fashion. Topics may include China´s one-child policy, cross-straits relations with Taiwan, structural economic reform, the environment, state-society relations, and Chinese foreign policy.