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Course Description

Canadian parliament building with cauldron burning

This course explores the core institutions of Canadian government, including parliamentary government, federalism, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and electoral systems. How these institutions shape and are shaped by political parties and social forces, as well as current issues like Quebec nationalism, identity politics and Aboriginal governance, are covered.

Note: This course can be taken individually or as part of a certificate program.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the learner should be able to:

  1. Describe the core institutions of Canadian government and understand the interconnections between them.
  2. Describe a variety of dimensions of the of the social context of Canadian politics
  3. Describe the how the societal context influences and is influenced by the institutions of government,
  4. Assess and interpret Canadian politics by relating societal and institutional concepts to real world political issues in Canada.
  5. By relating societal and institutional concepts to real world political issues, have improved academic research writing skills in political science including effectively use library resources including library databases, organizing ideas, synthesizing of research materials, justifying positions and appropriately referencing resources.

Course Topics

  • Unit 1: 45T What is Canadian Politics, and Why Does it Matter?
  • Unit 2: Canadian Political Culture; Quebec Nationalism
  • Unit 3: Economic Identities, Regional Communities and Interests
  • Unit 4: Indigenous Peoples
  • Unit 5: Race, Ethnicity and Gender 
  • Unit 6: Advocacy Groups, Social Movements and Political Parties
  • Unit 7: Elections and Electoral Systems
  • Unit 8: The Constitution
  • Unit 9: Federalism
  • Unit 10: The Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Judicial Interpretation
  • Unit 11: The Executive
  • Unit 12: The Legislature


Assessment Item Weight Learning Outcomes
Quizzes (3 x 5% each) 15% 1-4
Discussion Participation (5 x 5% each) 25% 1-4
Issue Analysis 30% 4 and 5
Online Final Exam 30% 1-4
Total 100%  


Additional Technical Requirements

This course will use the following:


  • Respondus tool to invigilate one or more exams. 


Please view the Technical Considerations.

Applies Towards the Following Certificates

Technical Requirements

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*Course details are subject to change.


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