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Seminar in Political Communication

Code: MECC011     Acronym: SCP

Instance: 2012/2013 - 2S Ícone do Moodle

Active? Yes
Web Page: http://moodle.up.pt/course/view.php?id=3869
Responsible unit: Department of Journalism and Communication Sciences
Course/CS Responsible: Master in Communication Sciences

Cycles of Study/Courses

Acronym No. of Students Study Plan Curricular Years Credits UCN Credits ECTS Contact hours Total Time
MECC 11 (OLD STUDY PLAN - do not choose this one) Study Plan: Master's in Communication Sciences 1 - 20 4 4

Teaching Staff - Responsibilities

Teacher Responsibility
Helena Laura Dias de Lima

Teaching - Hours

Theoretical and practical : 3,00
Tutorial Supervision: 1,00
Seminar: 3,50
Type Teacher Classes Hour
Theoretical and practical Totals 1 3,00
Helena Laura Dias de Lima 1,50
Fernando António Dias Zamith Silva 1,50
Tutorial Supervision Totals 1 1,00
Helena Laura Dias de Lima 0,50
Fernando António Dias Zamith Silva 0,50

Teaching language



This course unit focuses on the main concepts and aspects of political communication, including the democratic performance of the media, mediatisation of politics and the media representation of politics. In addition to propaganda and info-entertainment, the personalisation of politics and exploitation of scandals, special attention is paid to strategic communication in election campaigns and political marketing, and the issues related to the political use of interactive digital media and the implications for the public sphere and for democracy.
The seminars look at the main theoretical streams of political communication, juxtaposing empirical evidence from national case studies with that in Portugal. The many topics and diversity of speakers proposed, plus the tutorials offered throughout the semester, will enable students to engage in a critical analysis of the most immediate issues in this area. At the end of the course unit students will have the competences they need to pursue research in the field of political communication.


1 – Introduction and trends in political communication
2 – The political communication of institutions
3 – Political communication in election campaigns
4 – Media, democracy and citizenship
5 – Propaganda
6 – Impact of the media on politics
7 – New media and future scenarios in political communication

Mandatory literature

Correia, João Carlos et al. (org.); Conceitos de Comunicação Política, Livros Labcom, 2010. ISBN: 978-989-654-039-5
Hallin, Daniel C. & Mancini, Paolo; Sistemas de Media: Estudo Comparativo - Três modelos de comunicação e política, Livros Horizonte, 2010. ISBN: 978-972-24-1688-7
Hallin, Daniel C. and Mancini, Paolo; Comparing Media Systems : Three Models of Media and Politics, Cambridge University Press, 2004
Karen Sanders; Communicating Politics in the XXI Century, Palgrave, 2009
Negrine, Ralph; The Communication of Politics, London:Sage, 1996
Negrine, R. & Stanyer, J.; The Political Communication Reader, Routledge , 2007
Norris, Pippa; Virtuous Circle: Political Communication in Post-Industrial Societies, Cambridge University Press, 2000
Quivy, R. & Campenhoudt, L.V.; Manuel de Investigação em Ciências Sociais, Gradiva, 1992
Rawnsley, G.; Political Communication and Democracy, Palgrave Macmillan , 2005

Complementary Bibliography

Baum, Matthew ; Soft News Goes to War, Oxfordshire:Princeton University Press, 2003
Bezzon, Lara C; Comunicação, Política e Sociedade, Alinea, 2005
Blumler, Jay G. & Kavanagh, D.; The Third Age of Political Communication: Influences and Features, 1999
Castells, Manuel; Communication, Power and Counter-power in the Network Society, 2007
Mesquita, Mário; O quarto equívoco – O poder dos media na sociedade contemporânea, Minerva Coimbra, 2003
Santos, Hália C.; A Comunicação Política do XVII Governo de Portugal, 2005
Zaller, John; A Theory of Media Politics - How the Interests of Politicians, Journalists, and Citizens Shape the News, 1999

Teaching methods and learning activities

Expository method, seminars, tutorials and preparation/oral presentation of research projects.

Evaluation Type

Distributed evaluation without final exam

Assessment Components

Description Type Time (hours) Weight (%) End date
Attendance (estimated) Participação presencial 116,00
Exame 16,00
Trabalho escrito 408,00
Total: - 0,00

Eligibility for exams

Preparing and presenting (orally) 1 project, attending and participating in the seminars and tutorial sessions (compulsory 75% attendance of seminars and tutorials), plus a critical review of 3 suggested lectures.

Calculation formula of final grade

80% for each compulsory piece of work
20% attendance, participation in teaching sessions and producing 3 critical reviews

Examinations or Special Assignments

In accordance with the Faculty of Letters regulations.

Classification improvement

In accordance with the Faculty of Letters regulations.
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