Catalogue of Modules, University of Nottingham

M11003 Introduction to Comparative Politics
(Last Updated:22 July 2017)

Year  14/15

Total Credits: 10

Level: Level 1

Target Students:  There is a limited number of places on this module. Students are reminded that enrolments which are not agreed by the Offering School in advance may be cancelled without notice.  Available to JYA/Erasmus students.

Taught Semesters:

Autumn Assessed by end of Autumn Semester 

Prerequisites: None

Corequisites:  None.

Summary of Content:  This module seeks to compare and contrast the decision-making structures of modern democratic states. Topics to be covered will include: politics, government and the state; the comparative approach; constitutions and the legal framework; democratic and authoritarian rule; political culture; the political executive; legislatures; political parties and party systems; electoral systems and voting behaviour; the crisis of democracy.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber Of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks2 per week1 hour
Seminar 11 weeks1 per week1 hour

Activities may take place every teaching week of the Semester or only in specified weeks. It is usually specified above if an activity only takes place in some weeks of a Semester

Further Activity Details:
Primarily lectures (weekly) and seminars (fortnightly), although a variety of other methods, such as workshops, may also be used as appropriate.

Method of Assessment: 

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 100 1 hour exam 

Dr C Milazzo

Education Aims:  The purpose of this module is to introduce students to the study of comparative politics by studying the structure and politics of modern democratic states. The lectures and readings will encompass a number of contemporary examples, and the module will help the students to understand similarities and differences between politics as practiced in a wide range of countries. Moreover, the module will introduce students to the methods of comparative politics, and explore hypothesis construction and theory testing.

Learning Outcomes:  Students will be able to: Intellectual skills Show aptitude in applying comparative and conceptual thinking to concrete examples. Demonstrate skills of critical analysis, synthesis and reasoned argument. Professional and practical skills Contribute to seminar discussions by preparing in advance. Study independently to develop familiarity with key concepts and issues and gather evidence. Transferable (key) skills Use skills of assessment and judgement by discriminating between competing arguments. Learn to plan, manage time effectively, prioritise tasks and work to deadlines. Demonstrate the ability to read primary and secondary material critically and use it selectively. Show strong written communication skills based on clear expression and coherent, well-referenced arguments.

Offering School:  Politics and International Relations

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