Issues in Comparative Politics POLITIC4004

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course is a survey of some key issues in contemporary politics. It will examine both some current manifestations of perennial political problems and some issues that are new to our time. As such, it is not simply a descriptive course on 'current events' but is rather an in-depth analytical evaluation of the challenges posed by a range of issues.


This course may not be running this year. For further information please check the Politics and IR Moodle page or contact the subject directly.

Requirements of Entry

Standard entry requirements to Honours Politics or International Relations.

Excluded Courses





Two essays, 2500 words each (50% each)

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses


Course Aims

The aim of this course is to introduce student to variety of contemporary political issues and equip students with the skills to analyse these issues using diverse approaches within Comparative Politics. This course is designed to be responsive, with the course content being adapted to address salient and novel political issues while also allowing students to examine the current manifestations of perennial political problems. It will also cover the basics of the comparative method in social science research and attempt to train students to see analyse issues through this lens.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Critically analyse a range of key issues and challenges in contemporary politics

■ Evaluate political research that draws from diverse methodological and theoretical approaches

■ Synthesise different approaches to develop a more holistic and empirically grounded understanding of contemporary political issues.

■ Advance reasoned, factually supported and critically aware arguments

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.