POLSC102-18B (HAM)

New Zealand Politics and Policy

15 Points

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Division of Arts, Social Sciences and Law
School of Social Sciences
Political Science and Public Policy

Staff

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Convenor(s)

Lecturer(s)

Administrator(s)

: frances.douch@waikato.ac.nz

Placement Coordinator(s)

Tutor(s)

Student Representative(s)

Lab Technician(s)

Librarian(s)

: jillene.bydder@waikato.ac.nz

You can contact staff by:

  • Calling +64 7 838 4466 select option 1, then enter the extension.
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5 or 9 can also be direct dialled:
    • For extensions starting with 4: dial +64 7 838 extension.
    • For extensions starting with 5: dial +64 7 858 extension.
    • For extensions starting with 9: dial +64 7 837 extension.
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Paper Description

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This course introduces you to democracy, government and policy making in New Zealand. It begins by looking at the key institutions of government - cabinet, parliament and the judiciary - and examines the role and function of each. It covers elections and the role of interest groups and lobbyists in influencing government decisions, as well as the capacity for citizens to be involved. It thus provides a foundation for understanding how democracy in New Zealand works, and how it influences policies in areas such as international affairs, environmental policy, Maori development, and in social policy areas such as health care and housing. Policy making in these areas is political, and the course will help you to begin to understand these politics. Why is it that some problems attract government attention, and why are some solutions adopted while others are not? In examining these types of questions, the paper prepares you for the further study of politics and public policy.
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Paper Structure

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Students should sign up for one of the five weekly tutorial times using My Papers ‘Event Activity Signup’ in iWaikato for this paper.

Tutorials start in Week 2 of the semester.

As well as lecture and tutorial attendance, course work for this paper includes weekly assignments, two essays, and two tests. The expected workload for this paper is an average of about 14 hours per week. The teaching of this paper is supported online using Moodle. To access Moodle you will need to log onto iWaikato and follow the link under ‘Key Links’, or go to elearn.waikato.ac.nz.

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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the course should be able to:

  • Identify and describe the key institutions of government in New Zealand
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  • Describe the role of these institutions in government decision making
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  • Discuss the links between the policy cycle and government decision making in New Zealand
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  • Recognise and discuss contemporary political and policy issues in New Zealand
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  • Critically evaluate media portrayals of political and policy issues
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  • Understand the fundamentally political nature of policy making
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Assessment

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In addition to attending classes, you are expected to read materials and complete assignments as indicated below. You are responsible for reading the assigned material BEFORE coming to the class meeting. You are also responsible for keeping up with national policy debates through reading newspapers, the internet, or following current affairs on television or radio.
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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 0% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 0% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Weekly commentaries
20
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
2. Your Political World paper
16 Aug 2018
4:00 PM
15
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
  • Hand-In: Faculty Information Centre (J Block)
3. Test quiz one
5 Sep 2018
11:00 AM
20
  • In Class: In Lecture
4. Test quiz two
12 Oct 2018
9:00 AM
20
  • In Class: In Lecture
5. Policy problem draft
4 Oct 2018
4:00 PM
5
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
6. Policy problem paper
26 Oct 2018
4:00 PM
20
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
  • Hand-In: Faculty Information Centre (J Block)
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Required Readings

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Shaw, R. and Eichbaum, C. 2011. Public Policy in New Zealand: Institutions, processes and outcomes (3rd edition), Auckland: Pearson Prentice Hall.
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Recommended Readings

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Hayward, J., ed. 2015. New Zealand Government and Politics (6th Edition). South Melbourne, Victoria: Oxford University Press.

This is a very good introduction to New Zealand government and public policy and has relevance to a variety of disciplines. We will be drawing on this throughout the course. It is well worth having on your bookshelf.

Stone, Deborah. 1997. Policy Paradox: The Art of Political Decision Making. New York: W.W. Norton.

The 2002 and 2012 revised editions are equally recommended.

Miller, R. 2015. Democracy in New Zealand. Auckland: Auckland University Press.

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Other Resources

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The following is a list of journals (available on the Library website) that may be useful to you:

Policy Quarterly (a New Zealand publication)

Public Administration

Journal of Public Policy

Policy Sciences

Policy Studies Journal

Australian Journal of Public Administration

Governance

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Online Support

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The teaching of this paper is supported online using Moodle. To access Moodle you will need to log onto iWaikato and follow the link under ‘Key Links’ or go to elearn.waikato.ac.nz.
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Workload

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As well as lecture and tutorial attendance, course work for this paper includes weekly assignments, two essays, and two tests. The expected workload for this paper is an average of about 14 hours per week.
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Linkages to Other Papers

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Prerequisite(s)

Corequisite(s)

Equivalent(s)

Restriction(s)

Restricted papers: POLS105

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