The BA Project Seminar (PBPL 29500) focuses on critical writing about public policy. In the seminar, students zoom into substantive policy questions, analyze them using the knowledge and tools developed throughout their studies in the major, and convey their conclusions in a capstone project. The capstone project may take the form of a policy memo, book chapter, blog posts, or other types of publications. This Seminar is recommended for students who want to hone their skills in policy communication.

The BA Project Seminar (PBPL 29500) is a one-quarter course. Students typically will complete the Project Seminar in their fourth year, though students are eligible for the Seminar beginning in the Spring quarter of their third year. Multiple sections of the BA Project Seminar are offered over the course of each year, and vary in the substantive topics they cover. The capstone project is due at the end of the quarter in which students take the BA Project Seminar and it is graded by the Seminar instructor.

Chicago Through a Policy Lens

In the academic year 2022/2023, the University of Chicago introduced the Policy Project Seminar as a new option for fourth-year students to fulfill their Capstone requirement. For the Autumn seminar, students were given the task of creating a policy essay and op-ed with a focus on Chicago-related policy, even if they had little prior experience, and successfully met the challenge within a ten-week time frame, as shown by the collected essays. You can explore the complete volume of Chicago Through a Policy Lens here, or individual chapters below.

Introduction, Jim Leitzel

Chapter 1 - Lead Removal, Brianna Gonzalez

Chapter 2 - Assessor's Office, Kristina Kim

Chapter 3 - Ward Boundaries, Anonymous

Chapter 4 - Guaranteed Income, Jeesu Choi

Chapter 5 - Soldier Field, Mark Siedentopf

Chapter 6 - Casino, Katelyn Wang

Chapter 7 - Implosion, Tanya Joshi

Chapter 8 - Perceiving Police, David Calahan

Chapter 9 - Universal Preschool, Celeste del Valle