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Бакалаврская программа «Социология и социальная информатика»

Research Seminar “Civil and Political Processes”

Учебный год
Обучение ведется на английском языке
Курс по выбору
Когда читается:
3-й курс, 1-4 модуль


Course Syllabus


This seminar offers a cross-disciplinary perspective on political power, institutions, civic movements, and their socio-cultural context. It draws mainly from sociology, political science, and media studies and will be most useful to the students interested in how modern societies are organized and negotiated through politics, and how this can be studied. Key to this seminar is reading and discussing original research papers. As a result, the students will expand their knowledge of the subject and their skills of critical reading, participating in discussions, and writing abstracts of academic papers. The seminar starts with a discussion of academic culture, followed by political media experiments, the meaning of political debates, applied political analysis, and to information literacy. This year, the focus will be on applied formats of analysis and communication.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • The objectives of this seminar are to get the students acquainted with current research perspectives and techniques in political and civic processes and to train students' skills or academic speaking, reading, and writing.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • to be able to apply the ideas and concepts of comparative politics in the analysis of media agenda
  • to know the basics of academic reading and writing, academic culture, and the variety of non-academic research output formats
  • to discuss current research perspectives and techniques in political and civic processes, including web and survey experiments
  • to identify common rhetoric patterns in political debates and their media coverage
  • to create a game informing the public about an acute civic issue or agenda
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Academic Culture
    Authorship in the digital age. What is academic integrity? What are the principles of open science and reproducible research? Ethical issues and practical cases of plagiarism detection.
  • Experiments in Political Media
    Survey experiments, web experiments and their use. Experimental evidence of television news watching. The effects of partisan personalisation in a news portal experiment. Political blame attribution in a survey experiment.
  • Critical reading. Writing an abstract to a paper
    Reading strategies. Critical reading techniques. Types of articles. Types of articles and their structure. Extracting information from the article. Reading and writing an abstract to an empirical research paper.
  • Applied Political Analysis
    The media eco-system of a research group. Policy papers and memos. Varieties of applied research: UX, design, field studies, data journalism. Writing a policy paper.
  • Perspectives on comparative politics
    What is comparative politics? Comparative method as a type of research designs (Lijphart). The history and variety of methodological approaches in comparative politics. The core concepts in comparative politics. Political regimes. Political parties and party systems. Institutional designs. Electoral systems. Voting behavior. Political culture and values.
  • The Language and Techniques of Political Debates
    The role of debates in a comparative politics perspective. Rhetoric in debates. The process of electoral debates. Interpretation of political debates in the media: how to analyse?
  • Information literacy
    The concept and use of information literacy. Fake news, algorithms, and new challenges of mobilization. Gamification principles. Creating a politics-relevant board game.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Home work in module 1 (abstract)
  • non-blocking Participation in module 2
    Part of the mark is a home task to write a position paper (a take-home task) of 500-700 words.
  • non-blocking Policy Paper module 3
  • non-blocking Exam
    2 questions on seminar reading with your analysis
  • non-blocking Game design module 4
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (4 module)
    0.2 * Exam + 0.2 * Game design module 4 + 0.2 * Home work in module 1 (abstract) + 0.2 * Participation in module 2 + 0.2 * Policy Paper module 3


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Iyengar, S., Peters, M. D., & Kinder, D. R. (1982). Experimental Demonstrations of the “Not-So-Minimal” Consequences of Television News Programs. American Political Science Review, 04, 848.

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Abelson, D. E. (2018). Do Think Tanks Matter? Third Edition : Assessing the Impact of Public Policy Institutes (Vol. Third edition, revvised and expanded). Montreal: MQUP. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1944843
  • Benkler, Y., Faris, R., & Roberts, H. (2018). Network Propaganda : Manipulation, Disinformation, and Radicalization in American Politics. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1894211
  • Comparative politics ed. by Daniele Caramani. (2011).
  • Darr, T. (2019). Combating Plagiarism: A Hands-On Guide for Librarians, Teachers, and Students. Santa Barbara, California: Libraries Unlimited. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=2249275
  • Johnston, J. (1985). Information literacy : academic skills for a new age / Jerome Johnston. [Ann Arbor, Mich.] : Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan, 1985. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsgpr&AN=edsgpr.000305766
  • Kazumi Okamoto. (2016). Academic Culture: An Analytical Framework for Understanding Academic Work : A Case Study About the Social Science Academe in Japan. [N.p.]: Ibidem Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1821524
  • Manarin, K., Carey, M., Rathburn, M., Ryland, G., Hutchings, P. Critical Reading in Higher Education : Academic Goals and Social Engagement. - Indiana University Press, 2015. - ISBN 9780253018830, 9780253018984 - Electronic text // ProQuest Ebook Central. - URL: https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/hselibrary-ebooks/detail.action?docID=4088470&query=Critical+Reading+in+Higher+Education+%3A+Academic+Goals+and+Social+Engagement (accessed 6.11.19)