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Introduction to Political Science

Module Code: PO1600

Module Name: Introduction to Political Science

  • ECTS Weighting: 10
  • Semester/Term Taught: Michaelmas + Hilary Term
  • Contact Hours: 2 Hours Lecture per week; 1 fornightly tutorial
  • Module Personnel: Lecturers - Dr. Raj S. Chari (MT) and Mr. Michele Crepaz (HT)

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to apply their knowledge to understand problems in the world of politics, by using fundamental concepts and theoretical tools learned in class.


Module Learning Aims

The course has two aims:

1. To equip students with a basic knowledge of the key problems and questions around which politics revolves.
2. To equip students with the fundamental conceptual, theoretical and analytical tools used in the consideration of political questions.


Module Content

There are 4 main sections in the course, where the first two sections are taught in Term 1 and the latter two are taught in Term 2. The first section considers the basic principles of politics, including discussions of power, the major ideologies, the state, and democracy. The second section examines main political institutions including the executive, the judiciary and interest groups. The third section examines issues such as electoral systems, political parties, and public opinion. The final section examines developments in global governance, with a particular focus on themes in European union politics and international relations.

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Recommended Reading List

Key Reading: Andrew Heywood, Politics 4th edition (Palgrave: 2013)

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Assessment Details

The module will be examined in an end-of-year exam (80%) and two end-of-term tests (each worth 10%).

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Last updated 13 December 2016 polsci@tcd.ie.