Political Science and Public Administration

Faculty & Staff

Dr. Samuel Nelson

Associate Professor
Department Chair
Undergraduate Advisor
Pre-law Advisor

Sam Nelson is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Political Science and Public Administration. He has been teaching at UToledo since 2001. He also serves as a pre-law adviser in the College of Arts & Letters. He received his B.A. from Northwestern University and his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the author of Beyond the First Amendment: The Politics of Free Speech and Pluralism. In this book he argues that First Amendment law places limits on broader political debates over the meaning and value of freedom of speech. He teaches courses such as Constitutional Law and Politics, Contemporary Issues in Law, Principles of Political Theory, and Principles of Law and appears frequently on local news stations to discuss current political and legal events.


  • Ph.D., Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • MA, Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • BA, Political Science, Northwestern University


  • Beyond the First Amendment: The Politics of Free Speech and Pluralism (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005) 

Current Research

  • The examination, using the methods of political theory, of questions arising from law and legal practice.

Personal Website

  • Includes further information about teaching, research, and other interests including syllabuses, abstracts of papers, information about my book, a few photos, and a blog of supplemental materials for my courses.
Last Updated: 10/27/20