Political Science and European Studies (CZ)

This study programme is taught in the Czech language only.

 

This multidisciplinary Bachelor’s programme focuses on the field of political science, European studies and international relations. Students receive comprehensive education in the field of political science and prepare for a more specialized Master’s programme and professional practice.

The core of the Bachelor’s programme is formed by courses concerned with political theories, comparative politics, analysis and development of political systems in Europe and outside of Europe, the development and present state of affairs of Czech politics, the European integration process, EU institutions and international relations. The joint degree programme facilitates choice of specialization.

The programme places special emphasis on the studentsindividual work, develops their analytical skills and builds upon their language competency, mainly upon their knowledge of English. Besides lectures, a large part of the curriculum is devoted to tutorials conducted in small groups of students and based on reading and critical discussion, in a similar way to the British university model. In this regard, KPES is the only political science institution in the Czech Republic that follows this educational model. Students gain practical analytical skills, knowledge of quantitative and qualitative methods of analysis of political phenomena and learn how to apply them.

Thanks to its multidisciplinary character, the graduates of the Bachelor’s programme are not only prepared to continue their studies in a Master’s programme in Political Science, European Studies and International Relations, but also in related fields. At the same time, the Bachelor’s programme is conceived so that its graduates can start their professional careers straight away. It trains specialists who subsequently work at all levels of state administration (diplomacy and European structures included), in private organizations, advertising and research agencies, mass media or private companies engaging in international business or international companies operating in the Czech Republic.

 

Core programme constituents

The Bachelor’s Programme in Political Science and European Studies has three essential knowledge constituents and two essential skills constituents. The aim of the knowledge-focused elements is to provide the graduates with a good theoretical basis for a subsequent Master’s course and professional career. The aim of the skills-focused elements is to increase the graduates’ ability to apply theoretical knowledge in their future studies, research and analytical work and thus increase their competitiveness in the job market. The core constituents are the following:

1) Political Science

2) European Union

3) Czech Politics

4) Methodological and Analytical Competency

5) Language Competency

 

Ref. 1) An essential knowledge constituent is the field of modern empirical-analytical political science focused on the analysis of political systems, mainly by means of comparative research. Students gain basic knowledge in theoretical concepts and studies of political systems of principally European countries. This knowledge focus is embodied in three compulsory (type A) courses: The Theory and Analysis of Politics, Comparison of Political Systems 1 and Comparison of Political Systems 2. The department also offers a related preparatory 2-semester-long course Introduction to Political Science and other optional courses. This programme constituent forms one of the final examination subjects Analysis of Political Systems and is administered by Doc. PhDr. Tomáš Lebeda, Ph.D.

Ref. 2) The second knowledge constituent of the Bachelor’s programme is based on the issues of European Union and concentrates on EU history, institutions and relations of the Czech Republic and the EU. It gives students a basic insight into the research in EU studies. Students gain basic knowledge of the history of EU integration, EU institutions and actors. Special attention is paid to the integration process that the Czech Republic went through. This key programme constituent is covered by the following compulsory (type A) courses: History of the European Union, Czech Republic and European Union. A necessary prerequisite for these are the courses Introduction to the Issues of EU 1 and Introduction to the Issues of EU 2. This constituent represents the final examination subject called European Union and is administered by Doc. Daniel Marek, Ph.D. M.A.

Ref. 3) The third core knowledge constituent is Czech Politics. Students gain important knowledge of the development of the Czechoslovak and Czech political systems and a deep insight into its present way of functioning. Czech politics is most probably a sphere that the graduates of this programme will be concerned with in their future careers. It is also the most natural field of political research in the Czech Republic; that is why a thorough grounding in the subject is an important prerequisite for further study at the KPES. This programme constituent is covered by these compulsory (type A) courses: Development of the Czechoslovak Political System and the two-semester-long Political System CR 1 and 2. It represents the third final examination subject Czech Politics and is administered by Doc. Mgr. Pavel Šaradín, Ph.D.

Ref. 4) The theoretical grounding acquired in the previous three programme constituents represents sufficient preparation neither for a professional career nor for the further studies of the graduates. An essential skill without which both a graduate starting his or her career and a student of the Master’s programme interested in research cannot manage is methodological and analytical competency. This skill-based programme constituent teaches students to work analytically and use the basic methods of political research. Students gain methodological grounding and the basic ability to use quantitative statistic and qualitative research methods. This part of the programme is covered by two compulsory (type A) courses: Methodology and Qualitative Methods and Quantitative Methods.

Ref. 5) Strong language competency is a necessary prerequisite for both a successful career and further studies in any academic field. It is an inherent part of the overall competency that students acquire at university. At the Bachelor’s level, students’ language skills are developed in the following three ways:

a) Language courses and a compulsory examination in a world language. During their three-year-long studies, students have to pass an examination in a second language that is preceded by a minimum two-semester-long systematic preparation in the form of language courses. KPES offers specialized courses of Political Science English lead by a graduate political scientist who is a native speaker with many years of experience in English teaching. Besides English and German language courses custom-tailored for political scientists, students can choose from those offered by the Department of Applied Linguistics (Italian, Spanish, French) or by other language departments.

b) For the Bachelor’s programme Political Science and European Studies itself, a very good knowledge of English is fundamental. Its courses require the reading of English academic literature and some special courses are taught in English. The result of this is the ability to use English in a competent way within the field of study that promotes the graduates’ potential in the job market.

c) Thanks to a very wide network of partner universities, all KPES students get the chance to study abroad, mainly through the Erasmus programme. Partner universities also feature prestigious academic institutions.