Making Public Policy

A photograph of a piece of paper, with President Barack Obama's signature at the bottom and a stamp above it that reads "APPROVED MAR 23 2010."

President Barack Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law on March 23, 2010. The bill, which reformed health care throughout the United States, provoked a highly partisan political battle during its passage through Congress. (Image is an Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy and is in the public domain.)


MIT Course Number

11.002J / 17.30J

As Taught In

Fall 2014



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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

This course aims to get students thinking about politics and policy as a part of their everyday life. We treat politics as a struggle among competing advocates trying to persuade others to see the world as they do, working within a context that is structured primarily by institutions and cultural ideas. We’ll begin by developing a policymaking framework, understanding ideology, and taking a whirlwind tour of the American political system. Then, we’ll examine six policy issues in depth: health care, gun control, the federal budget, immigration reform, same-sex marriage, and energy and climate change.

Other Versions

Related Content

Christopher Warshaw, and Leah Stokes. 11.002J Making Public Policy. Fall 2014. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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