Teaching plan for the course unit

(Short version)


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General information


Course unit name: Political Science II

Course unit code: 362534

Academic year: 2021-2022

Coordinator: Rafael Cesareo Martinez Martinez

Department: Department of Political Science, Constitutional Law and Philosophy of Law

Credits: 6

Single program: S



Estimated learning time

Total number of hours 150


Face-to-face and/or online activities



-  Lecture with practical component




Supervised project


Independent learning




Learning objectives


Referring to knowledge

— Explain the notion of a political system as a paradigm to be compared with other political logics.
— Describe the principle ideas that define the notion of a political system, the theories that explain it, the relationship between its different features and its strengths and weaknesses.
— Use empirical reasoning to consolidate the knowledge already gained.

Referring to skills, abilities
— Use works of reference and comment on them in writing and oral presentations.
— Gather data to support or refute a given theory and analyse the relevant social and political processes.

Referring to attitudes, values, norms

— Evaluate actions and policies aimed at redressing gender inequality.



Teaching blocks


1. The political system

*  1.1. David Easton’s approach to political systems analysis in the context of empirical studies in political science
1.2. Easton’s "black box" model - converting inputs (demands, supports) to outputs (policies)
1.3. The inadequacy of the structural-functionalist approach

2. Political culture

*  2.1. Influence of anthropology
2.2. Individual approaches and attitudes towards political systems

2.3. Systems of attitudes: civic political culture in Almond and Verba ("The Civic Culture: Political Attitudes and Democracy in Five Nations")
2.4. Political culture in Spain

2.1. Political culture in terms of continuity and change

  • Political values and value systems
  • Changes in value systems: postmaterialism
  • Social capital

3. Political socialisation

*  3.1. Definition
3.2. Stages
3.3. Agents

4. Political representation

*  4.1. Origins of the notion of representative government
4.2. Election and distinction
4.3. Evolution: political parliamentarism, party democracy and the notion of audience democracy

5. Political parties

*  5.1. Definition and history
5.2. Political parties in the context of societal and political cleavages
5.3. Functions

5.4. Organisation

5.5. Systems

6. Voting systems

*  6.1. Democratisation and reasons for adopting voting systems. Voting systems from a gender perspective.
6.2. Relationship to political party systems
6.3. Mechanical and strategic effects. Short- and long-term effects.

7. Political elites

*  7.1. Classical elite theory and approaches in political science
7.2. Elite identification: the positional, reputational and decisional methods
7.3. Recruitment, interests and values. Political elites and the gender perspective.