Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POL3227: Politics, Elections, and the State in Africa

This module descriptor refers to the 2018/9 academic year.

Module Aims

This module aims to furnish you with the conceptual and analytical tools required to understand Africa’s evolving states and their politics. On completing the module, you will be able to critically engage with different conceptions of African statehood, understand the historical roots and evolution of the social identities driving politics in Africa, and evaluate past and present dangers to democracy on the continent. Through detailed case studies, you will gain in-depth knowledge of the history, culture, and contemporary politics of at least one country in Africa. The module aims to foster a genuine appreciation for the complexities of societies in Africa and inspire you to delve deeper into issues related to the governance of highly diverse states in Africa and beyond.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here – you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. Critically engage with common conceptions of the African state and some of their critiques.
2. Substantively converse about Africa and contemporary African politics.
3. Critically assess the process of and challenges to nation-building in at least one African country.
4. Clearly articulate and evaluate some of the main challenges to good governance and democracy in Africa.
Discipline-Specific Skills5. Understand theories of state-building, political parties, party competition, ethnic politics, and clientelistic politics, particularly as they relate to Africa.
6. Improve your understanding of the comparative method in Political Science.
7. Improve your grasp of elements of research design in Political Science.
Personal and Key Skills8. Demonstrate improved presentation, writing, and exposition skills.
9. Demonstrate improve analytical skills.
10. provide constructive feedback to peers.
11. synthesize empirical material and communicate it effectively.