PSIR 642 | Course Introduction and Application Information

Course Name
Public Opinion and Electoral Behavior
Code
Semester
Theory
(hour/week)
Application/Lab
(hour/week)
Local Credits
ECTS
PSIR 642
Fall/Spring
3
0
3
7.5

Prerequisites
None
Course Language
English
Course Type
Elective
Course Level
Third Cycle
Course Coordinator -
Course Lecturer(s)
Assistant(s) -
Course Objectives By the end of this course, students will be able to analyze and discuss the dynamics of and variations in public opinion and voting preferences in Turkey and other democracies.
Course Description The students who succeeded in this course;
  • Students will be able to measure public opinion.
  • Students will be able to discuss the nature of public opinion and political behavior.
  • Students will be able to identify the economic, political, cultural and demographic predictors of public opinion and electoral behavior.
  • Students will be able to discuss the impact of public opinion and electoral behavior on policy outcomes.
  • Students will be able to discuss the distribution of political attitudes in Turkey, Europe and the United States.
  • Students will be able to design public opinion surveys.
Course Content The course introduces students to the nature, formation and implications of public opinion and voting behavior in Turkey, Europe and the US.

 



Course Category

Core Courses
Major Area Courses
Supportive Courses
Media and Management Skills Courses
Transferable Skill Courses

 

WEEKLY SUBJECTS AND RELATED PREPARATION STUDIES

Week Subjects Related Preparation
1 Introduction – syllabus presentation and explanation. Syllabus and documents containing rules for the undertaking and evaluation of students’ individual analytical work
2 Different conceptions of public opinion and does public opinion matter?
 Zaller, John. 1992. The Nature and Origins of Mass Opinion. pp. 6-39. 
 Dalton, Russell J. Citizen politics: Public opinion and political parties in advanced industrial democracies. Cq Press, 2013. Chapters 1 & 2. Jacobs, Lawrence and Benjamin I. Page. 2005. “Who Influences U.S. Foreign Policy?” American 
Political Science Review 99(1): 107-123. 
 Gilens, Martin. 2005. “Inequality and Democratic Responsiveness.” Public Opinion Quarterly 69(5): 
778-96.
3 Public opinion surveys Gray, Paul S., et al. The research imagination: An introduction to qualitative and quantitative methods. Cambridge University Press, 2007. Chapter 7.
4 Public opinion surveys Eurobarometers, WWS ve ISS’nin incelenmesi.
5 Demographic explanations Jennings, M. Kent, Laura Stoker, and Jake Bowers. 2009. “Politics Across Generations: Family 
Transmission Reexamined.” Journal of Politics 71(3): 782-799. 
 Bertone, Chiara. “Constructing a Women’s Perspective on the European Union: The Danish Debate.” NORA: Nordic Journal of Women’s Studies. 6. 2 (1998): 108-121. Hakhverdian, Armen, van Elsas, Erika, van der Brug, Wouter, and Kuhn, Theresa. “Euroscepticism and Education: A Longitudinal Study of 12 EU Member States, 1973–2010.” European Union Politics 14.4 (2013): 522-541.
6 Economic Explanations Citrin, Jack, and Donald Green. 1990. “The Self-Interest Motive in American Public Opinion.” Research in Micropolitics 3: 1-28. 
 Eichenberg, Richard and Dalton, Russell. “Europeans and the European Community: The Dynamics of Public Support for European Integration.” International Organization 47.4 (1993): 507-34. Gabel, Matthew and Whitten, Guy D. “Economic Conditions, Economic Perceptions, and Public Support for European Integration.” Political Behavior 19.1 (1997): 81-96. Caplan, Bryan. "Systematically biased beliefs about economics: robust evidence of judgemental anomalies from the survey of Americans and economists on the economy." The Economic Journal 112.479 (2002): 433-458.
7 Identity-based approaches Russell J. Dalton. 2014. Citizen Politics: Public Opinion and Political Parties in Advanced Industrial Democracies. Chapter 5 and 6. Carey, Sean. “Undivided Loyalties: Is National Identity an Obstacle to European Integration?” European Union Politics 3.4 (2002): 387-413. Bruter, M., 2005. Citizens of Europe? The emergence of a mass European identity. Palgrave Macmillan. Chapters 1, 2 & 5.
8 Religious factors Azrout, Rachid, van Spanje, Joost and de Vreese, Claes. “A Threat Called Turkey: Perceived Religious Threat and Support for EU Entry of Croatia, Switzerland and Turkey.” Acta Politica 48.1 (2013): 2-21. Boomgaarden, Hajo G. and Freire, André. “Religion and Euroscepticism: Direct, Indirect or No Effects?” West European Politics 32.6 (2009): 1240–1265. Nelsen, Brent F., Guth, James L. and Fraser, Cleveland R. “Does Religion Matter? Christianity and Public Support for the European Union.” European Union Politics 2.2 (2001): 191–217.
9 Media's Impact Zaller,John.1992.TheNatureandOriginsofMassOpinion.Chapters3and6. 
 De Vreese, Claes. H. and Boomgarden, Hajo G. “Media Message Flows and Interpersonal Communication: The Conditional Nature of Effects on Public Opinion.” Communication Research 33.1 (2006a): 19-37.
10 Populism Akkerman, Agnes, Cas Mudde, and Andrej Zaslove. "How populist are the people? Measuring populist attitudes in voters." Comparative political studies47.9 (2014): 1324-1353. Spruyt, Bram, Gil Keppens, and Filip Van Droogenbroeck. "Who supports populism and what attracts people to it?." Political Research Quarterly 69.2 (2016): 335-346. Mudde, Cas. "The populist zeitgeist." Government and opposition 39.4 (2004): 541-563. Oesch, Daniel. "Explaining Workers' Support for Right-Wing Populist Parties in Western Europe: Evidence from Austria, Belgium, France, Norway, and Switzerland." International Political Science Review 29.3 (2008): 349-373.
11 Attitudes toward Immigrants Brader, Ted, Nicholas A. Valentino, and Elizabeth Suhay. 2008. “What Triggers Public Opposition to Immigration? Anxiety, Group Cues, and Immigration Threat.” American Journal of Political Science 52(4): 959-978. Schneider, Silke L. "Anti-immigrant attitudes in Europe: Outgroup size and perceived ethnic threat." European Sociological Review 24.1 (2008): 53-67. Azrout, Rachid, Joost Van Spanje, and Claes de Vreese. "Talking Turkey: Anti-immigrant attitudes and their effect on support for Turkish membership of the EU." European Union Politics 12.1 (2011): 3-19. Burns, Peter, and James G. Gimpel. "Economic insecurity, prejudicial stereotypes, and public opinion on immigration policy." Political science quarterly 115.2 (2000): 201-225. Kentmen-Cin, Cigdem, and Cengiz Erisen. "Anti-immigration attitudes and the opposition to European integration: A critical assessment." European Union Politics 18.1 (2017): 3-25. Erisen, Cengiz, and Cigdem Kentmen-Cin. "Tolerance and perceived threat toward Muslim immigrants in Germany and the Netherlands." European Union Politics 18.1 (2017): 73-97.
12 Polarization of Public Opinion Baldassarri, Delia, and Andrew Gelman. "Partisans without constraint: Political polarization and trends in American public opinion." American Journal of Sociology 114.2 (2008): 408-446. Druckman, James N., Erik Peterson, and Rune Slothuus. "How elite partisan polarization affects public opinion formation." American Political Science Review 107.1 (2013): 57-79. Fiorina, Morris P., and Samuel J. Abrams. 2008. “Political Polarization in the American Public.” Annual Review of Political Science 11: 563-88.
13 Voting Behaviour Donald P. Green, and Jennifer K. Smith. 2003. “Professionalization of Campaigns and the Secret 
History of Collective Action Problems.” Journal of Theoretical Politics 15(3): 321-339. Russell J. Dalton. 2014. Citizen Politics: Public Opinion and Political Parties in Advanced Industrial Democracies. Chapter 3, 4, 8, 9 and 10.
14 Turkish Public Opinion and Electoral Behaviour Çarkoğlu, Ali. “Who Wants Full Membership? Characteristics of Turkish Public Support for EU Membership” Turkish Studies 4.1 (2003): 171-194. Kentmen, Çiğdem “Determinants of Support for EU Membership in Turkey: Islamic Attachments, Utilitarian Considerations and National Identity.” European Union Politics 9.4 (2008): 487-510. Esmer, Yılmaz “At the Ballot Box: Determinants of Voting Behavior.” Politics, Parties, and Elections in Turkey. Pp. 91-114.
15 Review
16 Review of the Semester  

 

Course Notes/Textbooks Books (see above), power point presentations
Suggested Readings/Materials

 

EVALUATION SYSTEM

Semester Activities Number Weigthing
Participation
Laboratory / Application
Field Work
Quizzes / Studio Critiques
Homework / Assignments
15
70
Presentation / Jury
Project
Seminar / Workshop
Oral Exams
Midterm
Final Exam
1
30
Total

Weighting of Semester Activities on the Final Grade
15
70
Weighting of End-of-Semester Activities on the Final Grade
1
30
Total

ECTS / WORKLOAD TABLE

Semester Activities Number Duration (Hours) Workload
Theoretical Course Hours
(Including exam week: 16 x total hours)
16
3
48
Laboratory / Application Hours
(Including exam week: 16 x total hours)
16
Study Hours Out of Class
14
10
Field Work
Quizzes / Studio Critiques
Homework / Assignments
15
7
Presentation / Jury
10
Project
Seminar / Workshop
Oral Exam
Midterms
Final Exam
1
    Total
293

 

COURSE LEARNING OUTCOMES AND PROGRAM QUALIFICATIONS RELATIONSHIP

#
Program Competencies/Outcomes
* Contribution Level
1
2
3
4
5
1

To be able to improve and deepen the theoretical and conceptual proficiencies on Political Science and International Relations.

X
2

To be able to evaluate critically and analytically the relationships between various factors in the discipline of Political Science and International Relations such as structures, actors, institutions and culture at an advanced level.

X
3

To be able to determine the theoretical and empirical gaps in Political Science and International Relations literature and gain the ability of questioning at an advanced level.

X
4

To be able to gain the ability to develop innovative, leading and original arguments in order to fill the gaps in Political Science and International Relations literature.

X
5

To be able to gather, analyze, and interpret the data by using advanced qualitative or quantitative research methods in Political Science and International Relations.

X
6

To be able to develop original academic works and publish scientific articles in refereed national or international indexed journals in the field of Political Science and International Relations.

X
7

To be able to describe individual research and contemporary developments in Political Science and International Relations in written, oral, and visual forms.

X
8

To be able to take responsibility in an individual capacity and/or as part of a team in generating innovative and analytical solutions to the problems that arise in relation to the politics in daily life.

X
9

To be able to develop projects in determining the institutional and political instruments for conflict resolution in national and international politics.

X
10

To be able to prepare an original thesis in Political Science and International Relations based on scientific criteria.

11

To be able to follow new research and developments, publish scientific articles and participate the debates in academic meetings in Political Science and International Relations through a foreign language.

X
12

To be able to have ethical, social and scientific values in the stages throughout the processes of gathering, interpreting, disseminating and implementing data relevant to Political Science and International Relations. 

*1 Lowest, 2 Low, 3 Average, 4 High, 5 Highest