Politics, Communication and Democracy POLITIC4102

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • 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
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

This course examines key aspects of contemporary theory, research and practice in political communications in democratic societies during both campaign periods and day-to-day government.

Timetable

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

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements

Entry to Honours Politics requires a grade point average of 12 (Grade C) over Politics 2A and Politics 2B as a first attempt.

Excluded Courses

None

Co-requisites

None

Assessment

One essay of between 2,000 and 2,500 words (40%), a two-hour examination (50%), and oral contribution (10%).

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable

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Course Aims

This course examines key aspects of contemporary theory, research and practice in political communications in democratic societies during both campaign periods and day-to-day government. The first section focuses on examining the degree of influence and power the media have in contemporary democracies. The second section focuses on exploring how political actors, such as parties and leaders, use media to pursue their political objectives. The course also analyses how the nature of contemporary political communication affects the conduct and quality of the democratic process. The focus will be mostly on the UK and the US but it will also compare political communication across countries, and how this has changed over time.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

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

■ evaluate the main theoretical approaches regarding the relationship between political parties, politicians, citizens, media and journalists in democratic politics.

■ understand the influence of the media and its limitations on elections, public opinion and public policy.

■ identify the main similarities and differences in political communication over time and across countries, and to assess their impact in the democratic process

■ assess the impact of contemporary political communication in the conduct and quality of the democratic process

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.