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Code POLS 304
Term 201702
Title Comparative Party Systems and Interest Groups
Faculty Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Subject Political Science(POLS)
SU Credit 3
ECTS Credit 6.00 / 6.00 ECTS (for students admitted in the 2013-14 Academic Year or following years)
Instructor(s) Kerem Y?ld?r?m,
Detailed Syllabus
Language of Instruction English
Level of Course Undergraduate
Type of Course Click here to view.
(only for SU students)
SPS102 SPS101

This course is designed to introduce undergraduate students to theories and facts about political parties, comparative political party systems, interest or pressure groups, and interest group systems. The objective of the course is to teach students how organized political action takes shape, and how such action influence the structure of party and interest group systems.


This course is devoted to the study of political parties and interest group politics. Our primary aim is to review the theoretical literature and try to answer some fundamental questions of modern political science: Why do we have political parties? What are their functions? How are they different from interest groups in general? How do they perform their functions? Do parties make a difference? What effect do the rules of the game have on the outcome of the competition between parties and interest groups? Are parties in decline? In answering all these questions we will also have to rely on data about parties not only in the developed Western democracies but also in the second and third world countries. The rules of party competition, institutional differences and election systems will have to be touched upon. Any attempt to understand the working of a democratic system in which parties and interest groups compete and cooperate with each other inevitably leads to an understanding of voting behavior. We will also touch upon the basics of voting behavior as it relates to the behavior of political parties.

Learning Outcome

At the end of the module students will be able:
1) Comprehend how individuals organize as political groups, how they sustain and institutionalize such groups, and how groups evolve into interest groups and political parties.
2) Identify theories of political parties and party systems and theories on interest group formation and evolution.
3) Identify political party system typologies and the main traits and properties of each type,
4) Describe the relationships between theory and practice in the context of various case studies of parties and party systems
5) Evaluate the way theory help facilitate an understanding how parties and interest groups interact, and work in various empirical cases.
6) Identify the major concepts on political parties and interest groups and of their systems, and employ them in appropriate circumstances.
7) Engage in interpretation and reasoned criticism of theories
8) Describe different interpretations in the light of appropriate evidence
9) Apply abstract theoretical ideas and concepts to actual events and outcomes while using relevant literature
10) Refer to theories, typologies and concepts in appropriate contexts while critically evaluating information

Programme Outcomes
Common Outcomes For All Programs
1 Understand the world, their country, their society, as well as themselves and have awareness of ethical problems, social rights, values and responsibility to the self and to others. 5
2 Understand different disciplines from natural and social sciences to mathematics and art, and develop interdisciplinary approaches in thinking and practice. 4
3 Think critically, follow innovations and developments in science and technology, demonstrate personal and organizational entrepreneurship and engage in life-long learning in various subjects. 4
4 Communicate effectively in Turkish and English by oral, written, graphical and technological means. 5
5 Take individual and team responsibility, function effectively and respectively as an individual and a member or a leader of a team; and have the skills to work effectively in multi-disciplinary teams. 3
Common Outcomes ForFaculty of Arts & Social Sci.
1 Develop a thorough knowledge of theories, concepts, and research methods in the field and apply them in research design and data analysis. 4
2 Assess the impact of the economic, social, and political environment from a global, national and regional level. 5
3 Know how to access written and visual, primary and secondary sources of information, interpret concepts and data from a variety of sources in developing disciplinary and interdisciplinary analyses. 5
Political Science Program Outcomes Area Electives
1 Understand and follow changes in patterns of political behavior, ideas and structures. 5
2 Develop the ability to make logical inferences about social and political issues on the basis of comparative and historical knowledge. 5