In order to successfully complete this course, you must demonstrate your understanding of the course materials by:

Here is an overview of all of the different types of assignments in the course. You can find detailed directions for the assignments and the grading rubrics in the lesson where they are assigned.

IMPORTANT: For all assignments in this class, proper citation guidelines should be followed.  

NOVA’s Library team can help with this, and you can find out more about getting in touch with them on the NOVA Library website.

The Library has more specific help on how to cite sources and avoid plagiarism.

You will see a number of different guide options, like APA, MLA, and Chicago/Turabian. You can work with whichever one you like, but just be consistent with it in any paper or assignment. It is highly recommended to use parenthetical in-text citations with a “works cited” or “references” list at the end of the paper, rather than footnotes throughout the paper. The different guides will explain all of that. It is also important to follow these guides when it comes to properly formatting the overall paper or assignment (though paper formatting is not applicable for discussion board assignments, and only useful when submitting Word doc files). 

Discussion Activities

Online discussion allows time to weave your thoughts and reflect on the learning materials and your experiences. The discussion activities can prepare you for the essays and the proctored assessments. All of the posts on the discussion board must be thoughtful, reflective, respective, and concise. 

Writing Assignments

The writing assignments require you to reflect on the textbook chapters and answer questions.


The essays allow you to examine political issues in the US. You will apply what you learn to analyze and discuss real-world problems.

Chapter Quizzes

The chapter quizzes can help you monitor your learning progress and learn fundamental concepts.

Proctored Assessments 

There are three proctored assessments in the course. They are to check your understanding of the concepts learned in the course. The identity verification assignment and two of the proctored assessments require you to submit your pictures/videos. Failure to follow the directions to submit pictures/videos will result in a grade penalty. The final proctored assessment requires you to write a letter to a public official of your choice, on the topic of your choice. Although this is a letter, it is also a college paper and should be formatted as such, according to a college paper manual, and with citations.

Please find the information on how to complete proctored assessments in the Taking Proctored Assessments section of the Syllabus.