Development Studies C

30 credits

Syllabus, Bachelor's level, 2SK041

A revised version of the syllabus is available.
Education cycle
First cycle
Main field(s) of study and in-depth level
Development Studies G2E
Grading system
Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
Finalised by
The Department Board, 3 March 2020
Responsible department
Department of Government

Entry requirements

Development Studies B or equivalent

Learning outcomes

After completion of Development Studies C the students are expected to:

  • have strengthened their knowledge of social science methods which they have gained from Development Studies B.
  • to get a deepened knowledge within a specialised field in development studies
  • independently formulate a researchable problem within development studies based on previous research and with the help of one or several methods answer the question in their own study and critically reflect on the results of the study


The course has three sub-courses:

The first part is a methods course introducing various research methods. Here some basic methodological concepts will be examined and the different stages of the research process will be discussed. Qualitative as well as quantitative methods of analysis will be introduced during the course. Special attention will be given to quantitative methods.

The next part means a choice between a number of sub-courses, where some will be offered in the Autumn semester and some in the Spring semester.

The third and final part consists of doing an independent and specific project chosen by the student and elaborated in consultation with an advisor. The work is to be presented at a final seminar in the form of a written essay.

1. Methods 7,5 credits


After completing the course the students are expected to possess:

  • the ability to undertake basic empirical research using quantitative as well as qualitative techniques.
  • satisfactory knowledge of both descriptive and causal analysis.
  • satisfactory knowledge of the relative advantages and disadvantages of quantitative and qualitative techniques.
  • satisfactory knowledge of the problems involved in establishing causal relationships.
  • satisfactory skills in interpreting results from both quantitative and qualitative analyses.
  • basic skills in computer-based statistical analysis.
  • basic knowledge of statistical inference.
  • basic knowledge of experimental design.


The focus of this course is on various research methods used in social science. It explains basic methodological concepts and discusses the main steps of the research process. Students are introduced to quantitative as well as qualitative analysis techniques, albeit with a special emphasis on quantitative techniques. An important additional aim is to communicate an understanding of the relative strengths and weaknesses of quantitative versus qualitative techniques. The question of how to provide evidence for the existence of causal relationships in political science constitutes another central component of the course.


Teaching takes the form of optional lectures and mandatory seminars. The lectures cover the central topics of the course. The seminars are the most important part of the course. Here the students are given the opportunity in smaller groups to practice their skills related to the different steps of the research process. The seminars are conducted in two different ways. In preparation of the majority of the seminars, a number of assignments with essay-like elements are completed. The students can write individually or in pairs and are required to hand in their solutions in connection to the seminar. These solutions are then extensively discussed during the subsequent seminar under the guidance of a seminar teacher, who also provides written feedback on each assignment. As a final assignment, the students conduct their own quantitative data analysis which they present in both written and oral form at the last seminar.


The course ends with a written exam. The exam provides the basis for grading the students, but it also offers the students an opportunity to review the contents of the course and thus sustain and solidify the knowledge they have acquired during the course. In the exam, the students should demonstrate that they have the ability to understand, interpret and critically examine social science research from a methodological perspective. Grades are awarded on a scale comprising the grades VG (pass with distinction), G (pass), and U (fail).

To reach the grade G (pass), students must:

  • participate in all mandatory seminars as well as present serious attempts to solve all seminar assignments.
  • obtain the grade G (pass) on the written exam.

2. Gender and Politics in Comparative Perspective 7,5 credits

The course is offered during the autumn semester resources permitting.


The course provides students with basic tools for analysing theoretical as well as empirical questions of gender and politics from a historical and global comparative perspective, with a certain emphasis on Sweden. Students are offered an introduction to central theories and concepts in gender theory relating to citizenship, political representation, and political economy, focusing on power and influence on societal as well as individual levels. The empirical parts of the course provide students with concrete examples of how such concepts and theories can be used to analyse politics from a gender perspective. We examine for example women's representation in terms of its historical development and significance for the development of democracy and policy, and global trends in labour market participation and conditions for making a living and organising care work. In addition, we discuss different policy instruments (family policy, quotas, etc.) for achieving gender equality.

Learning outcomes

After completion of the course the students are expected to:

  • Be able to account for and critically discuss the central concepts and theories on gender, representation, and power that are introduced in the course
  • Be able to describe and critically discuss empirical gender research on political actors, political processes and policy relating to gender quality in different parts of the world
  • Independently be able to identify a question that is relevant for the course content, and discuss it from a gender perspective in a shorter course paper.


The teaching consists of lectures and seminars. Seminars are compulsory, along with handing in preparatory assignments. Students are expected to independently study the course literature, preferably before the corresponding lecture and certainly before the corresponding seminar. The total time of study is expected to be around 40 hours per week. The course language is English.


Examination is done continuously throughout the course through compulsory seminar work that includes presence, active participation in discussions, and preparation of oral as well as written assignments. In the end of the course students write a final course paper that is discussed during a seminar and examined by the teacher. The course paper should address themes discussed in the course. The following grades will be applied: pass with distinction (VG), pass (G), and fail (U).

In order to pass the course the following is required:

  • The student has achieved the learning outcomes
  • The student has participated in and passed all compulsory elements of the course
  • The course paper has been handed in before deadline, and passed

2. (En)gendering Development: historical genealogies/contemporary convergences 7.5 credits

The course is offered during the autumn semester resources permitting.

The central aim of this course is to provide an understanding of how specific historical events have shaped debates on development in colonial and post-colonial contexts. A unique contribution of this course is to relate historical processes to contemporary development concerns around gendered global inequalities, how these processes co-exist in contemporary societies and how structural processes impact on everyday lives of people. The course draws on literature from different sources and is not confined to mainstream academic literature. For example, we will look at news media, documentaries, movies, policy reports, biographical narratives and historical texts together with the assigned mandatory readings.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the course, students are expected to be able to:

  • Understand how contemporary development interventions are shaped by historical processes of imperialism, colonialism and orientalism.
  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of dominant (post)colonial paradigms and how they shape global understandings.
  • Demonstrate an advanced understanding of key theoretical ideas by delving deeper into feminist postcolonial debates on coloniality of power
  • Demonstrate ability to use their conceptual knowledge to re-think empirical case studies in historical and contemporary development contexts.
  • Grasp seminal (post)colonial and decolonial feminist debates. Decoloniality is an epistemic, political and cultural movement for emancipation that draws attention to the fact that the achievements of modernity are inseparable from racism, hetero-patriarchy, economic exploitation and discrimination of non-European knowledge systems.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of structural and symbolic forms of violence
  • Understand the gendered violence(s) of development.
  • Demonstrate advanced knowledge on how development processes both alleviate suffering and impoverish livelihoods.


The course is structured in the following way. We will analyse development issues, historically, conceptually and theoretically and then understand their (post)colonial continuities through an empirical case study. We will analyse historical continuities and convergences with contemporary events, ranging from global 'war on terror', the rise of new forms of nationalism, cycles of poverty and deprivation and armed conflict. Focusing primarily on the global South, the unit will draw empirical examples from Africa, the Middle East, South and South East Asia and Latin America. The course covers the themes of: Orientalism, Eroticism and Control of the 'Native'; Orientalism, Feminism and the 'War on Terror; Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAP); Structurally Adjusted Economies, Border Industries and Femicide; Population, Eugenics and Neoliberalism; Transnational Surrogacy, Global South and the Politics of Reproduction; Gender, Conflict and Migrant Border Crossings and Migrants, Hospitality and Hostility.


The teaching consists of lectures and mandatory seminars. The course is taught in English.


Students will be examined through a written exam. Grades are awarded according to the scale "failed", "pass" or "pass with distinction".

Course readings

The readings for the course consist of a large number of academic articles. Additional readings include news media items, documentaries, movies, policy reports, biographical narratives and historical texts

2. Internationell politik 7,5 hp

The course is offered during the autumn and spring semester resources permitting

Course content

This course provides students with a deeper introduction to the conceptual and theoretical tools used in the study of international politics. The course also examines a number of enduring and contemporary topics in international relations, such as international cooperation, security issues, nuclear proliferation, arms control, environmental politics, foreign policy analysis, warning-response problems and humanitarian intervention. The course concludes with a role-playing game where students have the opportunity to apply the concepts they have learned by engaging in simulated international negotiations.


The overarching goal of this course is to impart how the fundamental concepts, theoretical approaches, and methods from International Relations and social science can be applied to make sense of and study world politics and global affairs. The course also aims to help students develop a set of general skills - the ability to think critically, analyse information, and express themselves orally and in writing - that will serve them well in their future educational and professional endeavours. Upon completion of this course students should be able to able to deploy key theoretical concepts from the main schools of thought in the field to analyse global issues and assess and evaluate various policy prescriptions designed to address transnational problems.

This class serves as the intermediate level course within the sub-discipline of International Politics. The completion of this course with a passing grade should serve as useful preparation for the MA course in International Politics course. The intent is also to provide a good foundation for students who want to pursue this topic in a C level essay.


The instruction of this course is comprised of a combination of lectures and seminars. The course also includes a simulation (role-playing) exercise.

The literature includes books, articles and working material.

The language of instruction for this course is English.


  • Mandatory attendance and active participation in the seminars and simulation exercise.
  • Written assignments.
  • Written Test (Final examination).

Examination is based upon participation in compulsory elements of the course and a written exam. The following grades will be applied: passed with distinction (VG), passed (G) and failed (U).

In order to pass the following is required:

(1) The completion of compulsory elements of the course (seminars, simulation, written assignments);

(2) A passing grade on the written exam.

To pass the course with distinction the student is required to participate in compulsory elements of the course as well as receiving a grade of 'passed with distinction' on the written exam.

2. Comparative Politics 7,5 credits

The course is offered during the spring semester resources permitting.

Learning Outcomes

The course aims at providing a good understanding of research in the field of comparative politics. It should provide good knowledge of important research contributions and research strategies that aim at, or are useful for, describing and explaining political and ethnic conflicts, tolerance, socialisation, democratisation and development, in an extensive geographical comparative context, in developed as well as developing parts of the world. Also, the choice of literature and the cases selected to be studied have been made to give examples of different designs of research projects that should be useful for students preparing their C/master-level thesis project. In short, after the course, the students should:

  • have a good idea of what comparative politics is
  • understand when and why different groups enter into conflicts, how groups are mobilized, and why they sometimes manage to establish peaceful coexistence, and even manage to build democratic systems
  • know the comparative politics discourse better
  • be better prepared to write a thesis


Comparative politics is a strange name for a field of research. It is strange because what you find under the label comparative politics - and its synonyms in other languages - often is not (explicitly) comparative. Most of the time it simply is "politics in some country/countries". The conventional distinction between comparative and international politics is that the former deals with politics in other countries, and the latter between countries; this is easier to remember if one thinks of another common name for the latter - international relations.

If comparative politics is politics in other countries, then it is indeed a lot. Therefore we must make choices of what to study. One option would be to attempt to classify the world's political systems in a number of fairly distinct categories, and to learn about these categories and their cases. This has been attempted by numerous authors. Another choice is to study a number of constitutional systems in the world. This course is built on another kind of logic. We have chosen to focus on some central research problems in comparative politics.

The overall problems concern democracy, conflicts, institutions (rules), tolerance, justice and development. These are chosen because important parts of research in political science concern these issues, and secondly because these issues are important to many people in many countries; two overriding criteria for any research or teaching in social science. The course is divided into four themes:

  • Ethnic conflicts, tolerance and democracy
  • Populism and challenges in multicultural societies
  • Political activism
  • Classics of comparative politics

The choice of theme(s) and literature is a conscious attempt to bridge the unfortunate divide between studies of the West and "the rest". The idea is that we can learn more about industrialised countries, former socialist countries and so-called low- or middle income countries not by separating them, but by studying them together.

Apart from the books required to be read, the course will make use of some academic articles. One purpose of using these articles is to give the students an idea about current debates in international research. All articles will be available for free via the Uppsala University Library.

The students are encouraged to participate actively in the discussions. We have achieved our objective with this course if, in at the end of it, the students think they have a better (or even much better) grasp of some substantial empirical, or political, problems in the contemporary world and some orientation in a few current debates in international research in general and comparative politics in particular.


The instruction of this course is comprised of a combination of lectures and seminars. The language of instruction is English. The written assignment (classic review) should be written in English (so everyone can read and comment on the proposal/text). Regarding the written exam, students may give answers in English or Swedish. They may use a language dictionary at the exam.

Attendance is compulsory for all seminars. If students fail to attend a seminar they will have to hand in an extra written assignment. Additional instructions for the seminars may be handed out by the lecturers.


The requirements of the course are:

  • Attendance at some lectures (such as guest lectures - this is specified in the course description)
  • Attendance and active participation in the seminars.
  • Writing a review of a "classic" in comparative politics
  • Written exam

The grade

Participation in the seminars is only graded as "pass" or "fail." If the students come to the seminars and actively participate in the debates, and if they have done their best to absorb the literature before the seminar, then it is very likely that they will pass.

One grade for the whole course will be given according to the Swedish three-level system: Pass with distinction= Väl godkänd (Vg), Pass = Godkänd (G), and Fail = Underkänd (U).

* The book report for the "Classics" will be graded. The students need at least a 50% score to pass, and at least 75% to pass with distinction. The grade for the "Classics"-assignment constitutes 20% of the final grade.

* The exam will be graded. The students need at least 50% to pass, and at least 75% to pass with distinction. The grade for the exam constitutes 80% of the final grade.

2. Environmental Politics and Its Challenges 7,5 credits

The course is offered during the spring semester resources permitting.


The course consists of three parts:

(1) Collective action problems and environmental challenges in developing and developed countries; (2) Energy and technology; (3) Regional and international efforts to address climate change.


The course has two overarching goals. The first is to deepen the students' knowledge and understanding of the 'collective action dilemma' from a social science perspective. The second goal is to acquaint the students with two important, and interdependent, global problems: climate change and energy. As a corollary to these two goals the course will also analyse and discuss possible political solutions to the management of climate and energy issues (as well as dilemmas over natural resources more generally). To this end, the course will examine possible solutions at the local, regional, and international levels.

At the global and the regional level, emphasis will be placed on international cooperation on climate change and the European Union's role in the struggle to combat climate change. At the local level, the course will focus on how energy and climate politics are played out in developing countries.

Upon the completion of this course the students are expected to thoroughly understand the logic of collective action problems, and the interface between politics and the challenge of addressing environmental problems and managing limited natural resources. The intent is also to provide a good foundation for students who want to pursue this topic in a C level essay in Development studies or Political Science.


The course is composed of a mixture of lectures and seminars. The lectures address the basic themes and issues. During the seminar students get the opportunity to discuss questions linked to the basic themes.

The literature includes articles and working material.

The course is taught in English.


Examination is based upon participation in compulsory elements of the course and a written exam. The following grades will be applied: passed with distinction (VG), passed (G) and failed (U).

In order to pass the following is required

(1) Active participation during compulsory elements of the course (seminars);

(2) A passing grade on the written exam.

To pass the course with distinction the student is required to participate in compulsory elements of the course as well as receiving a grade of 'passed with distinction' on the written exam.

3. Bachelor's Thesis 15 credits


The instruction is done in the form of lectures and seminars of varying content and disposition.

Additional information regarding instruction and examination will be handed out before each sub-course.


The students are examined by means of a written test, assignments, and active participation in seminars. The third part is examined by means of writing and defending a thesis, commenting on a thesis and active participation in thesis seminars.

Grades are awarded according the scale "failed", "pass" or "pass with distinction".

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the University's disability coordinator.