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PICT313 – Strategies of Political Violence

2017 – S2 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Sheryn Lee
Contact via Email
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
48cp at 100 level or above including 24cp from PICT units
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
One of the most pervasive contemporary security challenges is the threats to the state and its population from political violence emerging from within state borders. Internal sources of armed conflict—such as communal violence, subversion and insurgency—have significant implications for national, regional and global security, and are increasingly acknowledged to be the most important foreign policy challenges and threats in the world today. This unit examines the strategies which underpin the use of political violence by state and non-state actors, including coercion, co-optation, undercutting and concession. It will use a range of international case studies to examine the causal factors behind the campaigns of political violence perpetrated by states and non-state actors and the responses of targets. The unit complements PICT110 which looks at the dynamics of coercion, PICT111 that addresses non-traditional security challenges, and PICT113 understanding terrorism in the twenty-first century.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  2. Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  4. Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.
  5. Demonstrate critical communication skills, including the ability to present sustained, persuasive and original verbal and written arguments cogently and coherently, and mediate in-class debate and discussion.
  6. Engage consistently with the unit through proactive communication with peers and the convener, and demonstrate professional conduct in all class activities and in the submission of assessments.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Due
Engagement 20% Ongoing
Research Essay Proposal 30% Week 7
Research Essay 50% Week 13

Engagement

Due: Ongoing
Weighting: 20%

Ongoing assessment. Hurdle assessment. For internal students, engagement and active participation in a one-hour lecture and one-hour tutorial each week (11/13 sessions) is expected. For external students, engagement and actie participation in a minimum of 11/13 online forums is required. (minimum 250 words and maximum 500 words).

Engagement involves reflective thinking on the focus questions, demonstrating critical thinking and understanding of the required readings, as well as demonstrated ability to address the focus questions with regards to all unit materials (readings, and pre-recorded lectures and seminars). Engagement in seminar activities must be completed by the end of the week (for example, if the week begins on Monday 1 August, the week ends on the following Sunday 7 August). Engagement will not be counted beyond the allocated timeframe. Grades are Pass/Fail.

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Demonstrate critical communication skills, including the ability to present sustained, persuasive and original verbal and written arguments cogently and coherently, and mediate in-class debate and discussion.
  • Engage consistently with the unit through proactive communication with peers and the convener, and demonstrate professional conduct in all class activities and in the submission of assessments.

Research Essay Proposal

Due: Week 7
Weighting: 30%

Proposal of research essay question, and outline of research significance for theory and practice. Outline research argument as well as possible counter-arguments and how you will deal with them, outline of essay structure, and preliminary research findings demonstrating research from theoretical sources and empirical evidence.

Please see marking rubric for further guidance as to how this assessment will be marked


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.

Research Essay

Due: Week 13
Weighting: 50%

The completion of a research essay is intended to encourage students to develop core disciplinary knowledge, enhance research skills, display effective communication through academic writing, and demonstrate original and critical thinking. This final assessment is 3000-word essay.

All word limits include references (either in-text citations or footnotes), and all referencing must use a consistent style. For referencing guidelines please see the library site: http://libguides.mq.edu.au/Referencing


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.

Delivery and Resources

DELIVERY AND RESOURCES

 

UNIT REQUIREMENTS AND EXPECTATIONS

  • You should spend an average of 12 hours per week on this unit. This includes listening to lectures prior to seminar or tutorial, reading weekly required materials as detailed in iLearn, participating in Ilearn discussion forums and preparing assessments.
  • Internal students are expected to attend all seminar or tutorial sessions, and external students are expected to make significant contributions to on-line activities.
  • In most cases students are required to attempt and submit all major assessment tasks in order to pass the unit. 

REQUIRED READINGS

  • The citations for all the required readings for this unit are available to enrolled students through the unit iLearn site, and at Macquarie University's library site.  Electronic copies of required readings may be accessed through the library or will be made available by other means. 

TECHNOLOGY USED AND REQUIRED

  • Computer and internet access are essential for this unit. Basic computer skills and skills in word processing are also a requirement.
  • This unit has an online presence. Login is via: https://ilearn.mq.edu.au/
  • Students are required to have regular access to a computer and the internet. Mobile devices alone are not sufficient.
  • Information about IT used at Macquarie University is available at  http://students.mq.edu.au/it_services/ 

SUBMITTING ASSESSMENT TASKS

  • All text-based assessment tasks are to be submitted, marked and returned electronically.  This will only happen through the unit iLearn site. 
  • Assessment tasks must be submitted as a MS word document by the due date.
  • Most assessment tasks will be subject to a 'TurnitIn' review as an automatic part of the submission process.
  • The granting of extensions is subject to the university’s Disruptions Policy. Extensions will not in normal circumstances be granted by unit conveners or tutors, but must be lodged through Disruption to Study: http://www.students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/manage_your_study_program/disruption_to_studies/. 

LATE SUBMISSION OF ASSESSMENT TASKS

  • If an assignment is submitted late, 5% of the available mark will be deducted for each day (including weekends) the paper is late.
  • For example, if a paper is worth 20 marks, 1 mark will be deducted from the grade given for each day that it is late (i.e. a student given 15/20 who submitted 4 days late will lose 4 marks = 11/20).
  • The same principle applies if an extension is granted and the assignment is submitted later than the amended date. 

WORD LIMITS FOR ASSESSMENT TASKS

  • Stated word limits include footnotes and footnoted references, but not bibliography, or title page.
  • Word limits can generally deviate by 10% either over or under the stated figure.
  • If the number of words exceeds the limit by more than 10%, then penalties will apply. These penalties are 5% of the awarded mark for every 100 words over the word limit. If a paper is 300 words over, for instance, it will lose 3 x 5% = 15% of the total mark awarded for the assignment. This percentage is taken off the total mark, i.e. if a paper was graded at a credit (65%) and was 300 words over, it would be reduced by 15 marks to a pass (50%).
  • The application of this penalty is at the discretion of the course convener.

REASSESSMENT OF ASSIGNMENTS DURING THE SEMESTER

  • Macquarie University operates a Grade Appeal Policy in cases where students feel their work was graded inappropriately: http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html
  • In accordance with the Grade Appeal Policy, individual works are not subject to regrading. 

STAFF AVAILABILITY

  • Department staff will endeavour to answer student enquiries in a timely manner. However, emails or iLearn messages will not usually be answered over the weekend or public holiday period.
  • Students are encouraged to read the Unit Guide and look at instructions posted on the iLearn site before sending email requests to staff.

 

Unit Schedule

Week 1                 Political violence

 

Week 2                 Who has the legitimate use of force: The state or non-state actors?

 

Week 3                 Contentious politics

                            People Power Revolution-Philippines; Iranian Revolution

 

Week 4                 State sponsored and communal violence

                            Maluku sectarian violence-Indonesia; Syria Civil War

 

Week 5                 Political subversion and propaganda

                            The Korean Peninsula; Russia

 

Week 6                 Intelligence and categorizing

                            British India; Nazi Germany

 

Week 7                 Coercion

                            Saudi Arabia; Venezuela

 

Week 8                 Co-optation and undercutting

                            Border Guard Forces-Burma; CCP policies-China

 

Week 9                 Extrajudicial killing

                            ‘Men in white vans’-Sri Lanka; Death squads-Colombia

 

Week 10               Torture and kidnapping

                            Cartels and the State-Mexico; Boko Haram-Nigeria

 

Week 11               Sexual violence

                           Bosnian War; Democratic Republic of Congo

               

Week 12               Genocide

                            Armenian Genocide-Turkey; Tutsi Genocide-Rwanda

 

Week 13               Australia's role in providing humanitarian assistance

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html The Disruption to Studies Policy is effective from March 3 2014 and replaces the Special Consideration Policy.

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.
  • Engage consistently with the unit through proactive communication with peers and the convener, and demonstrate professional conduct in all class activities and in the submission of assessments.

Assessment tasks

  • Engagement
  • Research Essay Proposal
  • Research Essay

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate critical communication skills, including the ability to present sustained, persuasive and original verbal and written arguments cogently and coherently, and mediate in-class debate and discussion.
  • Engage consistently with the unit through proactive communication with peers and the convener, and demonstrate professional conduct in all class activities and in the submission of assessments.

Assessment tasks

  • Engagement
  • Research Essay Proposal

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Demonstrate critical communication skills, including the ability to present sustained, persuasive and original verbal and written arguments cogently and coherently, and mediate in-class debate and discussion.

Assessment task

  • Engagement

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.
  • Engage consistently with the unit through proactive communication with peers and the convener, and demonstrate professional conduct in all class activities and in the submission of assessments.

Assessment tasks

  • Engagement
  • Research Essay Proposal
  • Research Essay

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.
  • Engage consistently with the unit through proactive communication with peers and the convener, and demonstrate professional conduct in all class activities and in the submission of assessments.

Assessment tasks

  • Engagement
  • Research Essay Proposal
  • Research Essay

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment task

  • Engagement

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Demonstrate critical communication skills, including the ability to present sustained, persuasive and original verbal and written arguments cogently and coherently, and mediate in-class debate and discussion.

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Evaluate the contributing theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the strategies of political violence, including the relationship to their history and context.
  • Explain key concepts and debates that are an integral part of the legitimacy and the monopolies of the political use of force by state and non-state actors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply theory and concepts to case studies, as well as independently collect one’s own empirical evidence and data.
  • Model academic research skills, particularly the ability to select sources appropriately, to integrate knowledge from diverse sources, to critically evaluate significance and relevance, synthesise materials, and present findings logically, rationally and lucidly.

Assessment tasks

  • Engagement
  • Research Essay Proposal
  • Research Essay

Changes since First Published

Date Description
02/08/2017 Change of due date for research project proposal from Week 6 to Week 7.
14/06/2017 changes to wording for engagement to remove "participation" for "active participation"