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2024/25 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

COMM5601M Innovations in Political Communication

30 creditsClass Size: 30

Module manager: Lone Sorensen

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

This module explores innovations in political communication resulting from changes in culture, technology and global power dynamics. It focuses on a series of broad innovations, with particular emphasis upon examples and case studies. Particular emphasis will be laid on political communications in established democracies in Western Europe and North America, with some secondary references to democratising nations and regions.


The module aims to consider why innovation in political communication has been thought necessary. It will focus on weaknesses and deficits in both dominant practical and academic approaches to political communication. In subsequent weeks, the module will consider a series of recent ‘turns’ in political communication: deliberative, digital, performative, anti-political, transnational etc. Each ‘turn’ will be illustrated by at least one case study/example and students will be required to provide their own examples. The final classes will involve student presentations.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students should be able to:
1. Explain the role of communications in democratic politics
2. Critically evaluate a series of contemporary innovations in political communication
3. Discuss the relationship between these innovations and democratic norms
4. Compare the effectiveness and risks of such innovations in political communications and their implications/effects on wider societal structures.

Skills Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of the module students will have demonstrated the following skills learning outcomes:
5. Advanced communications skills – the ability to effectively communicate ideas and arguments, both in oral and written form, on political communication and its relationship with democracy.
6. Critical thinking skills – the ability to evaluate contrasting scholarly arguments on political communication in order to form a nuanced argument.
7. Teamwork – the ability to collaborate with others in planning, researching and presenting on a case study of political communication.


Details of the syllabus will be provided on the Minerva organisation (or equivalent) for the module

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours278.00
Total Contact hours22.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)300.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Formative feedback on understanding of the topics in the module is given through constructive discussion in seminars. Students are also encouraged to make use of office hours to receive more feedback on their work and to gauge their progress in the module.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay or Dissertation3500-4000 words60.00
PresentationGroup Presentation - 15 minutes40.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Resits available through original form of submission. Resit of the group presentation may take form of an individual presentation of a specified (reduced) duration.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 30/05/2024 09:20:42


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