MA Political Science - European Politics & Policy Pathway (Research Route) / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Gender in Comparative Politics

Course unit fact file
Unit code POLI71151
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


This course gives an overview of the role of gender in comparative politics. Students will have the opportunity to explore and analyse how gender operates in comparative politics, with a global focus. The course examines key dimensions, institutions, and behaviours studied by comparativists with a gender lens, including political behaviour and participation, political parties, legislatures and executives, and policy-making. This course is also designed to give students an understanding of how research is conducted in the field of gender and comparative politics, reflecting the theoretical and methodological plurality of the field, as well as develop the tools needed to critique and evaluate that research.

Learning outcomes


Students should be able to

Knowledge and Understanding:

Explain the key intellectual contributions and perspectives in the field

Explain what it means to say politics is gendered

Intellectual skills:

Analyse the role of gender in comparative politics

Critically evaluate empirical evidence presented in debates within the study of gender and politics

Assess the state of the discipline and offer suggestions for the future

Practical skills:

Argue persuasively for a conclusion

Interpret and use in arguments empirical evidence as it relates to debates in gender and politics

Transferable skills and personal qualities:

Develop ability to communicate well both verbally and in writing

Develop interpersonal and collaborative skills through cooperation with peers


Teaching and learning methods

Teaching will take place in a weekly one-hour lecture and a weekly one-hour seminar. The lectures will introduce the key issues and debates within each topic, and the seminars will comprise a discussion of key questions, concepts, theories, and evidence, drawing on key readings (circulated in advance) that often build on or challenge the key themes introduced in the lecture. This structure is designed to encourage peer discussion, interpersonal collaboration, and critical evaluation of the material.

Assessment methods

Assessment task

Length required

Weighting within unit (if relevant)



2400 words



Critical Review

1000 words



Written Seminar Tasks


not exceeding 600 words 15% Summative


Recommended reading

  • Krook, Mona Lena and Childs, Sarah (2010) Women, Gender, and Politics: A Reader. Oxford: Oxford University Press
  • Kenny, Meryl and Mackay, Fiona (2018) Feminist and Gender Approaches in Lowndes, Vivien et al. (eds) Theory and Methods in Political Science, 4th Edition
  • Celis, Karen et al. (2014) Gender and Politics: A Gendered World, A Gendered Discipline in Waylen, Georgina et al. (eds) The Oxford Handbook of Gender and Politics, Oxford: Oxford University Press. London: Palgrave

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Seminars 20
Independent study hours
Independent study 130

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Rosalind Shorrocks Unit coordinator
Ceri Fowler Unit coordinator

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