This unit is designed to welcome you into the discipline of Political Science, to help you navigate this discipline, and to give you a sense of where the skills and knowledge associated with Political Science are used out in the real world. Rather than adopting a standard approach to this unit, one that examines each of a range of diverse topics, this unit is centrally focused on the concept of 'power'. This is not because power is the only concept of importance within political science, but instead because it is both an important concept and a complex one. Concentrating on power offers two advantages. Firstly, the concept of power is central to much of political science, which means that it offers us a common entry point to discussions of many relevant ideas, concepts and theories. Secondly, grappling with a concept as complex as this one is an important part of university study – this approach gives us the time to untangle power and its many elements.

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Analyse and compare core concepts of political science;  
  2. Apply political concepts to the examination of contemporary events;  
  3. Locate primary and secondary materials and review their content as it relates to political concepts and events; and  
  4. Articulate their ideas and arguments precisely and concisely in a range of settings and forms following academic conventions..  


Assessment type Description Grade
Test Online quizzes x 3 15%
Essay Analytical Essay 50%
Journal Responses to key questions 35%

Where to next?

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