How to use this site


This website was developed as a companion site for the textbook, a general OER, and also as a supplemental learning tool for eCore© courses. Please note that this website is not a complete course on American Government.

eCore© is a collaborative program offered through the University System of Georgia, where students at USG institutions can take quality core level college courses online. eCore© was designed to make college courses more affordable and accessible to Georgia college students. Part of the effort to make college more affordable is through the use of OER (Open Educational Resources) textbooks and materials in eCore© courses.

The goal of this website is to offer independent study opportunities that accompany the OER textbook listed here for students using this textbook in their American Governemnt course, anyone worldwide who wishes to further their knowledge of American Government, but also to support and supplement student learning inside their eCore© courses.

What's on this site, in a nutshell

This site contains links to the OER textbook in each chapter page, but also supplemental resources and learning materials.

The supplemental learning materials include news clips, articles, links to historical documents, documentaries, links to other learning based websites, and interactive knowledge checking tools. All of the supporting materials are organized by chapter to facilitate ease of use.

Creative Commons License

This website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Likewise, all works on this website are licenced under these same terms, unless otherwise noted. These terms do not apply to supplemental readings, websites, dcumentaries, etc., which are linked on each page.


We would like to thank the authors for creating additional content specifically for this site. We would like to offer an additional debt of gratitude to Maria Albo for assisting us with gathering additional content. Finally, we would like to thank you, the student, for visiting this site. We hope it assists you in your pursuit of knowledge as your read, analyze and study our textbook. We hope it enriches your life as much as you enrich ours by allowing us to teach you.

-Carl D. Cavalli

About the Textbook

Newly revised, The Basics of American Government offers a comprehensive overview of the American political system for students taking introductory courses in American national government and combines the best aspects of both a traditional textbook and a reader. The Basics of American Government is a collaborative effort among six current and three former faculty members in the Department of Political Science & International Affairs and the Department of Criminal Justice, and a student contributor, at the University of North Georgia. Most of its chapters offer a piece of original scholarship as a case study bolstering the material in the chapter. Additionally, most chapters present a civic engagement-type exercise and discussion questions that are challenging and engaging, and help foster student participation in the political system. The purpose of this book is to offer a no-frills, low-cost, yet comprehensive overview of the American political system for students taking introductory courses in American national government.

The authors undertook this project for several reasons, most notably the high costs of textbooks for students and the lack of college-level scholarship found in most American Government texts. This 470-page, peer-reviewed, edited book that combines traditional material with original scholarship will cost students $27.99, well below market standards. All of the authors are experienced classroom instructors, subject matter experts, and published researchers in the field of American politics.


  • Carl Cavalli, Ph.D

Contributing Authors

  • Maria Albo, M.P.A.
  • Ross Alexander, Ph.D
  • Carl Cavalli, Ph.D
  • Barry Friedman, Ph.D
  • Craig Greathouse, Ph.D
  • Jonathan Miner, Ph.D
  • Brian Murphy, Ph.D
  • K. Michael Reese, Ph.D
  • Charles “Trey” Wilson, Ph.D
  • Student Author: Mary Catherine Beutel

Purchase Printed Copy

You can purchase your printed copy of The Basics of American Government at the Dahlonega and Gainesville Campuses of the University of North Georgia.

Previous versions of this textbook can be purchased on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

Review Copy

Are you an instructor who’s interested in receiving a review copy? Just e-mail us at  to request a desk copy. Subject to verification.