Steffen Schmidt




Dr. Steffen W. Schmidt is a University Professor of political science at Iowa State University. He grew up in Colombia, South America and has studied in Switzerland and France. Dr. Schmidt obtained his Ph.D. from Columbia University, New York, in public law and government. He has published six books and over 70 articles in scholarly journals, and is the recipient of numerous prestigious teaching prizes, including the Amoco Award for Lifetime Career Achievement in Teaching and the Teacher of the Year Award.

Dr. Schmidt is co-author of the book American Government and Politics Today (Cengage) now in its 18th edition.

Dr. Schmidt is one of the most quoted political scientists on the Iowa First in the Nation Presidential Political Caucuses. He analyzes politics for Iowa Public Radio where he is known as Dr. Politics. He has covered the Iowa Caucuses for WNYC’s “It’s a Free Country” and is a frequent analyst for CNN en Español on American politics, especially regarding Presidential selection and elections. He writes political columns for Gannett media, particularly for the Des Moines Register and blogs for the Register in the “Across the Spectrum” feature.

Dr. Schmidt is Chief Political Correspondent for His blog will cover the 2016 Iowa Caucuses in depth and will be integrated into the Iowa Presidential Caucuses MOOC. Dr. Schmidt is a pioneer in the use of web-based and real-time video courses and is a founding member of the American Political Science Association’s section on Computers and Multimedia. He has developed and taught numerous online courses at Iowa State University, including a for-credit Iowa Caucuses course in 2008 with over 300 online students.

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Jan 5th 2016

It happens every four years. Iowa voters meet in churches, schools, even living rooms, to be part of the first-in-the-nation stop for US presidential hopefuls. The Iowa Caucuses have helped launch and end the aspirations of many candidates. This initial test in the presidential selection process will be the focus of a new massive open online course (MOOC) at Iowa State University, the Iowa Presidential Caucuses.

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