Post-Exam Goings-On

Sign-Up for Our CoGo Fiesta on Wednesday, June 12


As noted prior to the AP Exam, there will be 120 points available in Aeries during the last month of school.¬† Mr. Cameron spent Monday, May 20 outlining the options available to students, and grouped students according to their preferences.¬† Here’s what’s available:

U.S. Constitutional Law:¬†Want to learn the basics of 4th Amendment Constitutional Law¬†(see pg. 3… Unit 4) and how to write legal responses?¬† If you’re interested in any issues related to policing, implicit bias, use of force, what the difference between a ‘stop,’ ‘frisk,’ ‘search,’ and an ‘arrest’ is, or want to pursue law, this is for you.¬† There will be FIVE 1-2 page extremely formulaic ‘legal responses,’ and one Socratic Seminar discussion, each worth 20 points.

Assessing Democratization:¬†Want to apply the concepts and utilize the resources we’ve worked with to assess democratization in ANY country?¬† Cool.¬† For the available sources related to the U.S., consult the following sections of Mr. Cameron’s Working AP U.S. GOV’T Course Reader.¬† If you want to assess democratization in any of our AP 6 countries, check out the APCOGOnPO Units page of the course website for additional material.¬† If you’re writing on any other country, you’re on your own.¬† No matter what your country-focus is, you’ll write a research proposal of your own design (here’s an example) worth 20 points that’s due Friday, May 24, as well as a non-rubric-based research paper due Wednesday, June 12.

Week of May 13 – 17: EXAM REVIEW!

Quick Exam logistics review & quick tips.  Then onto the bulk: discussion prompts for review.  Get with a group and talk through the following:

Play Cranium:  Directions; Categories; The Board.  Use that brainium.

Straight-Up Info. to Know:¬†AP 6 comparative¬†5-pager. Check out the bottom of the “Comparative Gov’t UNITS” page of this here course website for additional review material.¬† Here is a list of all FRQ topics since 2006.

PRE-EXAM HOMEWORK: Make study groups.  Spend time talking through the above discussion prompts.  Have a snack.  Go back to studying with your pals by playing Cranium. Hydrate and Sleep.  Eat and Hydrate.  You got this.  Mr. C looks forward to hearing all about the Exam upon your collective return.

Week of May 6 – 10: IRAN!


Mr. Cameron straightaway passed out the following review materials on Iran:

Monday night HOMEWORK:

Begin your inquiry into the Making of the Modern Iranian State by watching the below video and responding to the following video questions.

We’ll begin our inquiry into IRAN with a lecture on the¬†Making of the Modern Iranian State.¬† At home, read this article from the¬†New York Times ‚Äď Overview of Iran in Historical Context (2009), and watch:¬†

Later into the week we’ll address Iranian Political Institutions¬†as well as Iranian Citizens, Society, and the State.¬†¬†Readings on these topics include:

Iran Student Presentations!

Week of April 29 thru May 3: NIGERIA!


The only work that is DUE for Nigeria is the¬†Nigeria Group Lesson ‚Äď Questions, which can be completed with the¬†Nigeria Group Lesson ‚Äď DATA!¬† Sign-up with your group members HERE.¬† Mr. Cameron would like to review this material THURSDAY, MAY 2, so have it done by then. ¬†There will be minimal time in class to complete this work.

As far as information that is integral to understanding Nigeria, let’s start with the variety of readings.¬†¬†The purpose of these readings is to familiarize students with some of the¬†foundational¬†topics of comparative government and how they tie-into Nigerian politics.

We will spend some time this week covering the three lectures on Nigeria to address any questions that elude students while they’re working on the Group Lesson.  Notice how the progression of readings and lectures correspond topically.

Finally, some helpful review materials:

Student Presentations: Thursday, May 2:


Weeks of April 15-19 & April 22-26

After wrapping up the People’s Republic of China EXAM on Wednesday, April 17, we begin our inquiry into the UNITED MEXICAN STATES.


To begin the Unit, Mr. Cameron will lecture on the Making of the Modern Mexican State.  Into the following week he will address Mexican Political Institutions and Mexican Citizens, Society, and the State.

DUE MONDAY, April 22: 


Student Presentations on Wednesday, April 24:

Socratic Seminar on Thursday, April 25:


To continue the topic of violence and extend it to the contest for public office in Mexico, we should note the 1994 assassination of Luis Donaldo Colosio¬†as well as a¬†longitudinal tracking of assassinations of candidates to Mexico’s public offices.¬† What correlations can you draw between your work with understanding how Mexico compares with Russia’s electoral systems and party systems, the topics related to corruption and violence, and civil society expressed in the lead up to July’s 2018 Presidential election?¬† Note recent polls suggesting a tightening field of three candidates.¬† Finally, inquire into AS/COA’s assessment¬†of the recent Presidential electoral field.

Thursday & Friday! April 4-5


Let’s now consider the role of geography and reactions to supranational organizations in China’s attempts to expand territorial claims in the South China Sea.  The nine-dash line is addressed in the below Vox video, as well as in Robert Blackwill and Jennifer Harris’ War by Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft (ed. 2017); pages 111-120 address China’s commerce and transportation aspirations from the South China Sea to the broader Indian Ocean Basin.

Cole Gonzales c’o’ ’18 mentioned the fact that the official SDA daily planner has a map with the 9-dash line. ???¬† The actions of the Chinese state should be geographically contextualized:

How will China engage a wider network, the BRI, a contemporary Silk Road (incl. Maritime networking) in the face of these geographic challenges?  Similarly, explain any connections between the 9-Dash Line and the String of Pearls Theory.

The Silk Road Economic Belt and the Maritime Belt combine to form the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Identify and Describe the revenue generators and regulators of the BRI in China. Compare the BRI to other (?) organizations.

One of our mini-presentations (w’ Jack & Cruz, and the Julias, Wyatt, Catalina, and Gracie) is on¬†China’s Relations/Policies Toward Tibet.¬† On this topic, read Evan Osnos’:¬†The Next Incarnation (Oct. 2010), and watch:

Looking Ahead/Spring Break HOMEWORK:

Y‚Äôall have a grip of reading on China.¬† Absolutely required is¬†China‚Äôs Geopolitics ‚Äď Tim Marshall¬†(2016) and¬†China‚Äôs Geoeconomics ‚Äď R. Blackwell & J. Harris¬†(2016).

Upon our return on Monday & Tuesday, April 15-16, we have Presentations:


Monday, April 1 thru Wed., April 5

Let’s connect what we know about the Making of the Modern Chinese State and Chinese Political Institutions to issues that face China today, specifically, the issue of the border between China and Hong Kong.

Continuing our inquiry into the People’s Republic of China regarding¬†Chinese Political Institutions and leaders of those institutions, we should address the recent shift in China to allow for President Xi Jinping to serve indefinitely. We’ll Begin by establishing context with this¬†BBC segment from a few months ago, and then move onto the ultra-current with this¬†Washington Post article¬†from late February 2018.

We moved onto the lecture on Chinese Citizens, Society, and the State.  Consider new sources of revenue generated by fusing the powers of technology and public policy.

Similarly to the revenue being generated by Desert Conversion, consider too new connections between agriculture and industry in China with Jiayang Fan’s:¬†A Chinese Region‚Äôs Winery Boom is About More Than Just Wine¬†(March, 2018).¬† Fan’s article from July of 2018 describes How E-Commerce is Transforming Rural China.

Regarding civil society and political discourse, watch ‚ÄúChina‚Äôs Youth Breaking Through the Great Firewall.‚ÄĚ Consider connections between any FOUNDATIONAL CONCEPTS & METHODS.

On the topic of state control of media, read¬†Jinyang Fan’s¬†Why China Cracked Down on the Social-Media Giant Bytedance¬†from April of 2018.¬† Pay particular attention to the institutional shifts taking place that allow the state to further control media, and watch the following video on how China is creating an “omnipotent video surveillance network to track where people are and what they’re up to.” ¬†On this topic, read¬†Jianying Zha’s December, 2018 article¬†Tourist Trap: Why China Sends Dissidents on Luxury Vacations¬†to further consider the role of the state in dictating civil society.

HOMEWORK & Looking Ahead:

Thursday & Friday! March 28-29

Mr. Cameron will straightaway introduce our next country case study, The People’s Republic of China, w’ a lecture on the¬†Making of the Modern Chinese State.¬† Early next week, Mr. Cameron will lecture content to upcoming homework regarding¬†Chinese Political Institutions.

Be aware of the dates of your CHINA presentations:


DUE¬†Monday:¬†Concerning the Making of the Modern Chinese State, students will watch¬†PBS Frontline documentary: The Tank Man¬†and respond to the associated video questions, AND complete questions from the Hauss textbook:¬†Qs for ‚ÄėMaking of the Modern Chinese State‚Äô.¬†(Watch the Tank Man Documentary HERE.¬† Please note that this documentary was produced in 2008.)

DUE Wednesday: An Inquiry into the Structure of the PRC (Qs) (use the embedded sources).  Using the Structure of Chinese Gov’t cheat sheet will be handy.

Monday thru Wednesday, March 25-27

With the Russian Federation EXAM scheduled for Wednesday, Monday’s class began straightaway with¬†reviewing the Russian Constitution¬†and considering one of the questions asked at the end of that assignment: “Based on your knowledge of the Russian Federation, which parts of the Constitution have not been upheld under Putin?”¬† To unpack this question, we will read¬†Boris Yeltsin Quietly Challenges Putin¬†from Dec. of 2015.¬† We then heard our¬†current events and public policy in the Russian Federation.¬†¬†Monday and Tuesday’s classes¬†revolved around¬†Debating President Putin‚Äôs Reforms¬†(here’re the student groups) and exam preparation: 25 MC Qs & 3 FRQs.¬† Consult your¬†Structure of Russian Gov‚Äôt cheat sheet,¬†Study Guide and Possible FRQs ‚Äď Russia, and¬†Russia Key Concepts and Vocabulary.

A very well-substantiated hypothesis on Putin’s Russia from August of 2016:

As we do with all of our 6 countries in Comparative Gov’t, let’s take an inquiry into socialization and separation from the State.¬† From December of 2017:

And from February of 2018:

Of course, recall the Presidential election outcomes of March, 2018…

Thursday thru Friday! March 21-22

After collecting and passing back work related to the making of the modern Russian state and Russian political institutions, Mr. Cameron lectured on both Russian Political Institutions and Russian Citizens, Society, and the State.  Notice the how the data seen in the last few slides of the latter lecture is a contributing factor to the argument made by this here video by the Caspian Report.  Similarly, students should read Russia Tries, Once Again, to Rein in Vodka Habit (Nov. 2009) tonight to reinforce some of the topics addressed in the video and lecture: