MC419 Half Unit
Modern Campaigning Politics
This information is for the 2021/22 session.
Dr Nick Anstead
This course is available on the MSc in Politics and Communication. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.
This course is recommended for MSc Politics and Communication students. Additionally, it is open to students from other degrees in the department and from other departments.
The focus of this module is the intersection between practical politics and academic research. The course is taught by a series of invited guest lecturers who are experts in the field of political campaigning for political parties and NGOs. It will connect with theory taught on other courses in the department and will enable students to see how theory is relevant and applied to the practice of modern political campaigns in the context of the evolving nature of contemporary political communication,. It will examine core and general concepts in campaigning including political strategy and how it is developed; the shaping and measurement of public opinion; and the role of data targeting in modern campaign.
This course is delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars totalling a minimum of 20 hours across Lent Term. This year, some or all of this teaching will be delivered through a combination of online lectures and in-person classes/classes delivered online. This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of term.
This formative coursework for this course is a reduced length version of the summative assessment (see below for further details):
- A 500 word campaign memo advocating a specific strategy for a campaign of your choice (this might be for a candidate, a political party or a campaign / protest group).
- A 1000 word academic reflection on the strategy memo, where you will justify and explain your strategic recommendations with reference to relevant academic research.
- Campbell, A. (2007). The Blair years: extracts from the Alastair Campbell diaries. Knopf.Chadwick, A. 2013. The Hybrid Media System: Politics and Power. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Denton E. D. (Ed.) (2000) Political Communication Ethics: An Oxymoron?, Praeger Publishers.
- Gould, P. (1998) The Unfinished Revolution: How the Modernisers Saved the Labour Party, Little Brown.
- Issenberg, S. (2012). The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns. Crown.Kreiss, D. 2016. Prototype Politics: Technology-Intensive Campaigning and the Data of Democracy. Oxford University Press.
- Negrine, R. (2006) The Political Communication Reader, Routledge.
- Nielsen, R. K. (2012). Ground wars: Personalized communication in political campaigns. Princeton University Press.
- Nimmo, D. D. (2001) Political persuaders: the techniques of modern election campaigns, Transaction Publishers.
- Stanyer, J. (2007) Modern Political Communication, Polity.
- Swanson, D. L. & Mancini, P. (1996) Politics, Media, and Modern Democracy An International Study of Innovations in Electoral Campaigning and Their Consequences, Greenwood.
- Ross, T. (2015). Why the Tories Won. London: Biteback.
- Trent, J. S. & Friedenberg, R. V. (2007) Political Campaign Communication: Principles and Practices - 6th edition, Rowman & Littlefield.
Essay (100%, 3000 words) in the ST.
This summative assessment for this course is a two-part piece of coursework.
- A 1000 word campaign memo advocating a specific strategy for a campaign of your choice (this might be for a candidate, a political party or a campaign / protest group).
- A 2000 word academic reflection on the strategy memo, where you will justify and explain your strategic recommendations with reference to relevant academic research.
NB. One additional requirement of the summative coursework is that is cannot be on the same example used in the formative coursework.
Course selection videos
Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.
Student performance results
(2017/18 - 2019/20 combined)
|Classification||% of students|
Important information in response to COVID-19
Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.
Department: Media & Communications
Total students 2020/21: 49
Average class size 2020/21: 16
Controlled access 2020/21: Yes
Value: Half Unit
Personal development skills
- Team working
- Commercial awareness
- Specialist skills