Core 139
, Spring, 2010

The course description contains details about the topics of this course and the organization of the course, including grading.

This syllabus presents the weekly topics and assignments. The details of the syllabus and adjustments will be filled in as the course proceeds.

The assignments are due on the day they are listed and the quizzes should be done online before the class for which they are listed. Quizzes are on Blackboard.

The readings refere by author to the following books:

Chaotic Elections, Donald Saari
Deliver the Vote, Tracy Campbell
Stealing Elections, John Fund
Hacked, High Tech Election Theft in America, DeLozier and Karp eds.
Electronic Elections, Michael Alvarez and Thad Hall

Other readings will be given as handouts or links to web pages.      Link to Blackboard

Course Schedule

date                topic                                   reading                                       assignment/quiz

Jan    18         Get syllabus and first assignment
         20         Weighted voting                                                                    solution to Nassau County problem due

         25        Banzhaf index of power         Banzhaf-1
                     apply to methods developed in class
         27        Lab on weighted voting         Banzhaf-2                 lab1   

Feb     1         Lab continued                                                                        Quiz 1 on Banzhaf readings due
           3         Electoral College, fair?          Saari pp 1-16                            

           8         Third candidates,                  Saari pp 17-27                          
                      Voting methods overview 
         10         Arrow's theorem                  Saari pp 27-31                           Quiz 2 on voting methods due

         15           Analysis of voting methods   Saari pp 33-45                            
         17           Analysis of voting methods   Saari pp 45-68                           Quiz 3 on Arrow's theorem due

         22           Other methods                     Saari, ch 3                                    
         24          Lab on voting methods -- constructing a profile                        lab 2

Mar    1           Strategic voting                     Saari, ch. 4, Sections 1-4
          3            What voters want?               Saari, ch. 5   

          8           Review                                                                                Quiz 3A on strategic voting and solutions (Saari, ch 4 and 5)
        10           Exam                                    Exam Solutions

        15           Spring Break

        22          No Class                              Read Deliver the Vote, Introduction and part 1            Voting Fraud Paper assignment
        24          Discussion: How voting methods and technology developed in the early years -- up to 1900
                                                                  Read Deliver the Vote, parts 2 and 3                 Quiz 4 on Deliver the Vote part 1 due

       29          Discussion: Fraud in voting -- can we depend on the politicians? What can be done?    Quiz 5 on Deliver the Vote part 2 due
       31          Current issues, overview                                                                                      Topic and Sources due for paper

         5          Voter Registration - issues and problems    Read Stealing Elections
         7          Voting Machines - issues and problems      Read Hacked

       12         Criticisms of electronic voting                     Read Alvarez and Hall, Ch 1-3, Ch 6      Also read Alavarez and Hall ch 8 to get ready for presentation selection
       14         Voter eleigibility and registration                 Read Alvarez and Hall, Ch 4-7                  Voting fraud paper due    Group project selection

       19         Assessing different systems                        Read Alvarez and Hall, Ch 8
       21         No class -- office hours for consultation about presentations during class time   articles on voting technology
                                                                                                                                          articles on voter registration
                                                                                                                                          articles on voting problems 2008

       26         Group project presentations
       28         Group project presentations                       project presentations

Final Exam -- Monday, May 3, 9-11