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Michael Evans

Lecturer of Political Science, Georgia State University
Chapter Member: Georgia SSN
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About Michael

Evan's research examines American constitutionalism, U.S. Supreme Court decision making, public opinion about the Supreme Court, and how various educational technologies and pedagogical approaches affect learning outcomes in face-to-face, online, and hybrid college courses. Evans conceived, created, and maintains PreLaw.GSU.edu, which is the university’s central information hub for GSU students considering careers as lawyers.

Publications

Understanding the American Way of Government and Politics (with Chapman Rackaway and Thomas Patterson) (Kendall Hunt Publishing, 2016).

Interactive online digital textbook for Introduction to American Government.

"The Reality of Jurisprudence(?): The Use of Interpretive Methods in the Opinions of Justices Scalia and Breyer" (with Cynthia Cates and Wayne McIntosh). Justice System Journal 36, no. 1 (2014): 20-48.

According to influential theories of judicial behavior, Supreme Court opinions are best seen not as genuine reflections of belief about the role of the courts but, rather, as insincere cloaks for decisions based on policy preferences or other political motives.  We demonstrate, by contrast, that Justices Scalia and Breyer differ markedly in the interpretive approaches used most often in their opinions and that the differences are consistent with their distinct jurisprudential philosophies.

 

"A Comparison of Online and Face-to-Face Approaches to Teaching Introduction to American Governmen" (with Toby Bolsen and Anna McCaghren Fleming). Journal of Political Science Education 12, no. 3 (2012): 302-317.

Reports results from a large study comparing four different approaches to teaching Introduction to American Government: (1) traditional, a paper textbook with 100% face-to-face lecture-style teaching; (2) breakout, a paper textbook with 50% face-to-face lecture-style teaching and 50% face-to-face small-group breakout discussion sections moderated by graduate students; (3) blended, an interactive online textbook with face-to-face full-class meetings taught with a blend of lecture, discussions, and in-class activities; and (4) online only, an interactive online textbook with (almost) no face-to-face class meetings.