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Political Science, Ma, Citizens and Democracy, 7,5 credits

General data

Code: SK026A
Subject/Main field: Statsvetenskap
Cycle: Second cycle
Credits: 7.5
Progressive specialization: A1N - Second cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements
Answerable department: Social Sciences
Answerable faculty: Faculty of Human Sciences
Established: 3/1/2013
Date of change: 3/21/2016
Version valid from: 8/1/2016


The course aims to provide knowledge about the development of citizens'
political behavior and how it affects the conditions for representative
democracy. Central to the course is the interaction between theoretical models of democracy and
empirical studies of citizens' attitudes to democracy.

Course objectives

After the course is completed the student should be able to:
- Evaluate the democratic processes in the light of various theoretical models of democracy and
empirical research on citizens' political behavior.
- Describe and critically reflect on the development of research in the field
including central concepts, theories and empirical results.
- Verbally and in writing be able to summarize
and critically discuss the pros and cons of research in the field.


The course covers the role of citizens in democracy from a theoretical and empirical perspective. Citizens' attitudes towards democracy have changed over time which is assumed to have affected the conditions of representative democracy. The previously clear link between citizens, political parties and decision making institutions is challenged. Some important signs of this are the new forms of civic participation, changing voting patterns and the emergence of new political parties. Within the framework of the course developments in the political behavior of citizens in terms of both the commitment and the attitudes and consequences of the changing relationship between citizens and the democratic system are presented and discussed.

Entry requirements

Bachelor's degree with a major (90 Credits) in Political Science.

Selection rules and procedures

The selectionprocess is in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance and the local order of admission.

Teaching form

Teaching will take place as lectures and obligatory seminars.
If demands for attendance are not met, the student has an opportunity to complete that the next time the course is given.

Examination form

Examination will take the form of written examination and active participation at seminars.

Grading criteria: see subject-specific grading criteria at

Grading system

The grades A, B, C, D, E, Fx and F are given on the course. On this scale the grades A through E represent pass levels, whereas Fx and F represent fail levels.

Course reading

Required literature

Author: della Porta, Donatella,
Title: Can Democracy be Saved?
Edition: Senaste upplagan
Publisher: Polity Press,

Author: Norris, Pippa
Title: Democratic Deficit: Critical Citizens Revisited
Edition: Senaste upplagan
Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Author: Smith, Graham
Title: Democratic Innovations: Designing Institutions for Citizen Participation
Edition: Senaste upplagan
Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Artiklar eller annat skriftligt material som tillhandahålls tillkommer.

Scientific articles and other written material will be added.