POL116 is a Local Government Simulation course that is only offered over J-term (January). This term only offers 3 hour courses every day for the entire month, and that is the only way this class can be taken. There is a week of a grace period prior to the simulation to study how local governments work followed by a quiz within the first week, but then you jump right into it. Everyone is designated a character from big business owner, single mother, council member, committee member, mayor, ext.
1. It’s Fun
POL116 is known as one of the most interactive and enjoyable classes at all of Elon. Every class there tends to be a twist, and you are genuinely interested in the outcome of most decisions made by the council and committee. Pacts are made based on role characters, friends, and selfish strategies, and again each day is jam packed with major decisions. Students consistently spread the word and this class fills up almost immediately after opening-up as its reputation precedes itself.
2. Real World Applicability
Often students and ‘kids’ more generally view the world outside of schooling as intimidating and see their own classes as non-applicable. This class allows for all the students involved to understand the reality of what goes on behind the scenes of a local government, and how it is not that different from what one would expect.
3. The Professor
Professor Colbert is the main professor for this course. It is supplemented by a second teacher due to Elon’s policy (33 students per teacher max), but as the supplementary teacher has changed over the years, Professor Colbert has remained the professor in charge of this course since its inception. He is an engaging, intelligent and most importantly comical professor who will tell at least 4-5 stories per class.
4. It’s Easy for a J-term Class
After the first week of this course there is little to no information needed for the remainder of the class itself. There are journals due, but these take 10-15 minutes a day in comparison with other classes during this term that take 60-120 minutes. The grades in this class are largely based off participation as well as the two major exams (the second of which is almost exclusively opinion based). This class should be taken for the interest in political science and more specifically local government, but if you’re looking for a grade that doesn’t take much effort, this is a class for you.
5. It’s a 4 Credit Course
If you are a political science major or minor this will count as a full elective, and if you are not a political science major this will count as a typical 4 credit course towards graduation. Referring to earlier points, with minimal effort this can boost your GPA and give you the necessary requirements to graduate.
Make sure to participate in this class as there is little work and the participation will make up for that. This class comes highly recommended by all the students that take it. Very few people get a C or below and the teacher is incredible. This is the perfect combination for any course at any university, and this should be taken advantage of.