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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Kirsten A Foot
COM 551
Seattle Campus

Political Communication

Surveys classic works and new directions in political communication, including functionalist, structuralist, constructivist, network, and comparative approaches, reflecting a range of methods. Examines political organizing, electoral and legislative processes, civic (dis)engagement, media and politics, public deliberation and opinion formation, political identify and discourse. Offered: jointly with POL S 551.

Class description

Description: This course will be taught as a survey of classic works and new directions in the field of political communication, including both functionalist and structuralist approaches and reflecting a range of methods. Emerging issues as well as traditional topics in political communication research will be covered. The role of communication in and through political organizing, electoral and legislative processes and outcomes, civic (dis)engagement, and political identity-- at local, national, and transnational levels-- will be examined through critical literature reviews, interviews with UW faculty, course discussions, and student papers exploring their own research interests in light of the literature in the course.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

Assignments: This course is appropriate for graduate students in communication, political science, public affairs, and other social sciences who plan to specialize in political communication, as well as for students who want to supplement their core work with knowledge of literature and research in this area. The basic goals of the course include gaining knowledge of core literature in the field, and becoming comfortable using this literature in a variety of ways, including: knowing basic theories, definitions, concepts; understanding research applications of theories and concepts; and finding broad applications of the literature to questions or problems relevant to each student.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Suman C. Chhabra
Date: 07/08/2004