Your browser is ancient!
Upgrade to a different browser to experience this site.

Skip to main content

Why Iowa? A Primer on Primaries and Caucuses Teach-Out


The United States presidential election process is a complex one, spanning terms like “Super Tuesday,” delegates and incumbents, primaries and caucuses, and more. Some of the founding principles of this process date back to the creation and signing of the U.S. Constitution, while others began playing a role in the 1980s. In this Teach-Out, experts in Politics, Political Science, and Education at the University of Michigan, the University of Delaware, the University of Iowa, and the Iowa Caucus Project at Drake University will address the following questions:

What is the US primary process?
What are the differences and similarities between primaries vs caucuses?
Why do Iowa and New Hampshire get to go first?
What role do delegates play?
What is Super Tuesday?
Is there a difference between political parties in how the primary process functions?
Do incumbent candidates have an advantage?
How do other countries’ voting processes differ?
How are US territories are involved?

This Teach-Out is help you find avenues by which you can civically engage and politically participate in your local community, state, and country.




5 weeks



U-M Credit Eligible