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Term 1 Week 7

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the basics of probability theory
  • Develop presentation skills
  • Undertand how to conceptualise and operationalise the concept of democracy


  • Homework week 7: Read the required literature (see below). This week, also have a look at the recommended reading further below, as it contains some excellent (if slightly more mathsy) discussions of probability theory.
  • Required reading week 7:
    • Gill, Jeff (2006) Essential Mathematics for Political and Social Research, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Chapter 7
    • Lomax, Richard G. and Debbie L. Hahs-Vaughn. 2012. An Introduction to Statistical Concepts, 3rd edition. Routledge, Section 5.1.


  • Homework part 1: Prepare a short presentation (5 mins.) of the results you have obtained from the seminar in week 5, explaining how students have experienced intro week. Please make sure you use tables as well as graphs.
    Send the finished presentation AT LEAST 24h BEFORE THE SEMINAR to
  • Homework part 2:
    • Read the required literature, and familiarise yourself with the three indexes of democracy given below (Polity IV, Freedom House, Przeworski et al.), evaluate their perfromance in conceptualisation, measurement and aggregation (the Munck article is very helpful here). Prepare to discuss these features in the seminar. There will be group work and short presentations in the seminar.
  • Required Reading:
    • Munck, Gerardo L. and Jay Verkuilen. 2002. Conceptualizing and Measuring Democracy: Evaluating Alternative Indices. Comparative Political Studies 35(5):5–34.
    • Przeworski, Adam et al. 2000. Democracy and Development - Political Institutions and Well-Being in the World, 1950-1990. Cambridge University Press. Chapter 1
    • Polity IV Project
    • Freedom House website

Recommended reading for week 7:

  • Hogg, Robert V. and McKean Joseph and Allen T. Craig. 2013. Introduction to Mathematical Statistics. Pearson. Chapter 1
  • Kellstedt, Paul M. and Guy D. Whitten. 2013. The Fundamentals of Political Science Research, 2nd edition. Cambridge University Press. Section 6.2.
  • Larsen, Richard J. and Marx Morris L. 2013. Introduction to Mathematical Statistics and its Applications. Pearson. Chapter 2

Additional resources