civil liberties amp rights the role of supreme court decisions in policy making civil rights legislation 2

Assignment 1

You might not realize how often our civil liberties — particularly the right to privacy — are put to the test on a daily basis. Many of the current news stories reflect the line between a citizen’s right for privacy. Do you wonder about your privacy on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, for example? How do you feel about wiretapping and government accessing phone records? All these concerns are things that affect our lives.


Choose a current or recent event that illustrates a privacy concern. Use and cite at least one quality news article or story. How does the article explain a theme or themes from our textbook or other class sources? Offer your opinion, thoughts or insight as well.

Some ideas of places to go for your news story:


  1. Create a 500-word summary of your article. Make certain to include a citation. There are many resources to help you.
  2. Create 1 or 2 thought questions about the article. These should be questions that help your classmates’ think more deeply about the topic and their own perspective.

Assignment 2

Creating academic papers often begin with an outline. For this assignment, you will use the research you have collected for your Final Assignment and create an outline of your information. An outline generally follows this type of format:

I. Main Idea

A. Supporting Idea

1. Research, data, facts

Many word processing programs have outline formatting tools to help you. This Purdue OWL Sample Outlines PDF gives examples of outline formats as well.

A reminder of resources to help you:


  1. Choose your topic + Find 2-3 external sources for your final project
  2. Create an outline, making certain to note where you got your resources. The best kind of outline to use for a paper is the TOPIC SENTENCE OUTLINE (an example is on the Purdue OWL page link listed above).

Final Assignment

In the Social Sciences it is necessary to make connections between what is happening in the world and what you are learning in your course. You may be used to taking more tradtional exams online. In addition to a short essay exam reviewing the textbook (next week), you will need to complete several small assignments for a Final Project that builds upon each other to help you tie in the following key course concepts:

  • Civil Liberties & Rights
  • The role of Supreme Court decisions in policymaking
  • Civil Rights Legislation

You have been asked to create a 5 page double-spaced report on an underserved population, detailing the case law and legislation that has been passed related to the community you have chosen. You will need to have at least 3-5 external resources to complete your paper.

This report should include the following:

  • Definition of your community
  • Description of at least 2 Supreme Court cases and/or laws that have affected your community (either positively or negatively)
  • Your assessment of the current status of your community (think about whether anything else may be needed to ensure equality for this group)
  • Citations properly formatted

The first parts of your final paper will be graded based on the completion of the assignment and will help you do the research for your final paper. The final assignment will be graded based on the analysis of your findings and must include key course concepts from the Greenberg-Page text.

What communities can you choose?

Some examples of groups you can examine include:

  • Women
  • Minority Group (African-American, Hispanic, Asian-American, Native American, etc.)
  • Disabled Persons
  • Immigrants
  • Prisoners
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