You should be prepared to discuss controversial topical issues, even where this postpones part of the syllabus. You should also consider commenting on aspects of American society arising out of the materials. You are expected frequently to attend, to read most course materials, to write proper essays and a research paper, and contribute intelligently to class discussion. Class participation points may be awarded at the sole discretion of the instructor.
You must expect to meet deadlines for any homework, Presenting your work at the beginning of the class period. To encourage students to meet deadlines, the instructor will reduce scores substantially for late work.
You will probably find a contrast in the course between religious or
civics ideals and the machiavellian world of society and practical politics.
You must also accept that any course on society may contain distressing
material: racism, sexism, human sexuality, corruption, religious intolerance,
suppression of individual rights, brutality and war. Since scholars find
it tedious to bemoan so many moral outrages on a daily basis, you must
expect that some of the discussion will seem on the surface to be cold-hearted.
Scholars like lawyers also expect to present fairly some arguments with
which they disagree. You should not be shocked unreasonably by these materials.