California State and Local Government Challenge Exam

Fall 2014 Test Date

Test Date: Saturday, December 6th
Room:
TBD
Required:
Scantron sheet, blue book, photo ID, pencil and pen

*Students may only attempt the test twice

The Political Science Department offers students the option of Credit by Examination to fulfill the California State and Local portion of the CSU U.S. Constitution/General Education Area D4 graduation requirement. Please note that passing this exam will not satisfy the D4 GE requirement unless you have satisfied the U.S. Constitution requirement elsewhere. A student can obtain information on challenging the U.S. Constitution General Education requirement by calling the SSU Testing services at (707) 664-2947. You may also consult the SSU catalog or the department for further information.

You must be a currently enrolled student at SSU to take the exam. Students may register for POLS 151 to receive one unit for successfully completing the exam. To earn the unit of credit, you must enroll in POLS 151 by census date and pass the exam. You may not use this exam to obtain a unit credit if you have already fulfilled the CSU requirement. It is not necessary to enroll in POLS 151 to take the examination merely to fulfill the statutory requirement (with no unit credit). If you are not enrolled in Pols 151, you must sign up to take the exam no later than the Monday prior to the exam. Sign up for the exam in the Political Science Department. The examination will be in two parts. Part one will be objective with multiple-choice questions. Part two will be brief descriptive and explanatory essays. To pass the examination you need to receive a grade of 70%.

Listed below are a number of texts and articles on California government and politics. Reading a number of these should provide the kind of information and knowledge you will need to take this examination. This list is not comprehensive, nor do you have to read everything on it to be prepared. You may prepare by reading other sources as well. The department recommends that you start with the latest edition of Larry Gerston's book (highlighted in bold on the list), and then read at least a few of the other books on the list. The list is also available on the department website at www.sonoma.edu/polisci/ca-exam. Check the library or online for copies of the books.

If you have any additional questions about the content or the structure of the examination please contact a faculty member of the department.

Reading List:

  • Baldassare, Mark. A California State of Mind: The Conflicted Voter in a Changing World.
  • Blackford, Mansel. The Politics of California Business: 1890-1920.
  • Brewster, Lawrence and Leonard Kooperman. A Primer of California Politics.
  • DeBow, Ken and John C. Syer. Power and Politics in California.
  • Field, Mona and Charles Sohner. California Politics and Government Today.
  • Gerston, Larry N. and Terry Christensen. California Politics and Government: A Practical Approach.
  • Korey, John L. California Government.
  • Krolak, Richard. California’s Budget Dance: Issues and Processes.
  • Lamare, James. California: Economics, Power and Policy.
  • Lawrence, David. G. California: The Politics of Diversity.
  • Mathews, Joe and Mark Paul. California Crackup.
  • Price, Charles and Charles Bell. California Government Today.
  • Reynolds, Ray. California the Curious.
  • Ross, Michael J. California: Its Government and Politics.
  • Walters, Dan. The New California.

In addition to these books on California you might also read:

  • The California Journal of Politics and Policy
  • The Constitution of the State of California

Websites for additional information, news, analysis and policy information: