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Admission requirements

This course is only available for students in the BA International Studies.
Limited places are also open for exchange students. Please note: this course takes place in The Hague.


This course discusses key theoretical and empirical concepts and approaches used to study politics at a global level. The focus will be on ideational aspects, institutional structures and processes in a variety of political systems, starting from their current relevance, but always including a clear historical dimension. The comparison between global phenomena and regional and national specifics is at the core of this course.
Students are expected to do pre-assigned readings prior to each lecture and tutorial, write individual assignments, participate fully in class, and sit an end-term exam.

Course objectives

The goal of the course is to offer a systematic and comparative analysis of crucial issues within the wide range of global comparative politics. Students will acquaint themselves with a range of global issues, and with relevant theories and concepts. Students will be challenged to apply these concepts to specific regional and national settings, and to draw comparisons. Students will also develop a critical, comparative approach to the study of their region of choice, to be further elaborated in tutorials and in area politics courses. They will be challenged to contrast and discuss different national cases and to put these in a comparative, global context.


The timetable is available on the BA International Studies website

Mode of instruction

One two hour lecture per week; tri-weekly tutorials.

Attending all tutorial sessions is compulsory. If you are unable to attend a session, please inform the tutor of the course in advance, providing a valid reason for your absence. Being absent without notification and valid reason or not being present at half or more of the tutorial sessions will mean your assignments will not be assessed, and result in a 1.0 for the tutorial (30% of the final grade).

Course Load

Total course load for this course is 5 EC (1 EC = 28 hours), this equals 140 hours, broken down by:

  • Atending lectures: 2 hours per week x 12 weeks: 24 hrs

  • Atending attending tutorials 2 hours per three weeks: 8 hrs

  • Assessment hours (midterms and final exam): 4 hrs

  • Time for studying the compulsory literature: 64 hrs

  • Time for completing assignments, preparation classes and exams: 40 hrs

Assessment method


Midterm exam:

  • written examination with closed questions and short open questions
    Final exam:

  • written examination with closed questions and short open questions


Tutorials 30%;
Midterm exam 30%;
Final exam 40%
To complete the final mark, please take notice of the following:
the final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average


If the final grade is insufficient (lower than a 6), there is the possibility of retaking the full 70% of the exam material, replacing both the earlier mid- and endterm grades. No resit for the tutorials is possible.

The resit exam will be a

  • written examination with closed questions and short open questions


Blackboard will be used. For tutorial groups: please enroll in blackboard after your enrolment in uSis

Students are requested to register on Blackboard for this course.

Reading list

David J. Samuels, Comparative Politics. New York: Pearson, 2012 (latest edition).
Additional literature will be announced on Blackboard before the start of the course.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable


For tutorials
Prof. Dr. A.W.M. Gerrits
Dr. B.A. Wakefield