POLSC102-20B (TGA)

New Zealand Politics and Policy

15 Points

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

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: melanie.chivers@waikato.ac.nz

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  • Calling +64 7 838 4466 select option 1, then enter the extension.
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5, 9 or 3 can also be direct dialled:
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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, Māori 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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In line with University policy, this course will offer online 'mini' lectures complemented with weekly online lessons on Moodle. Zoom drop-in sessions will be offered for students looking for an alternative to physical tutorials. The drop-in sessions will be broadcast from the allocated tutorial room – starting in Week 2 - on Thursday from 1-2pm, providing a blended online and face-to-face learning environment.

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

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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 online lessons
20
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
2. Weekly reading commentary
10
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
3. Your Political World Paper
21 Aug 2020
5:00 PM
15
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
4. Online test
21 Sep 2020
5:00 PM
20
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
5. Essay proposal
28 Sep 2020
5:00 PM
5
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
6. Essay
16 Oct 2020
5:00 PM
30
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
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.

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

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

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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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Students should spend approximately 150 hours on this course over the semester. This equates to 12.5 hours per week and includes working on and preparing for all assessment items.
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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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