STV4158B – Democratic Citizenship

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The idea of democratic citizenship has a long and multifaceted history. While there is a general consensus that citizenship as a status and as a mode of behavior is desirable and should be fostered as an integral component of democracy, the concept itself remains a complex and often elusive one. This is due among other things to the fact that ideas of democratic citizenship often rest on different theoretical and empirical perspectives. What is democratic citizenship and what characterizes “the good democratic citizen?” These are questions that are central to the course.

Learning outcome

The course is designed to give students insight into some of the major perspectives that have been predominant in debates about democratic citizenship in recent years – in particular the liberal-communitarian debate and the discussion of social capital. The course also examines empirical research results relating to issues of democratic citizenship and “citizen virtues” as these may be defined by different normative perspectives. The course is intended to give participants an opportunity to reflect over the meaning of democratic citizenship, why it is important and what it implies.


Students admitted to other Master programs may also be qualified to apply for the course. Please contact the Department of Political Science.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Bachelor's degree in Political Science or equivalent.

Recommended previous knowledge

Bachelor's degree in Political Science or equivalent.


This course will be taught at the University of Oslo, Blindern campus. Other locations in Oslo may be used. Fronter will normally be used.

Lectures will be given in a period of 5 weeks. The course is part of the regular course offerings at the Faculty of Social Science. Teaching is mainly held during the daytime. Detailed course-information is found on the Webpage for the current semester.


One or more written essay (10-15 pages in length), and a 3-hour written exam.

The number of essays to be handed in varies from semester to semester. The course convenor will inform the class of this in the beginning of the semester.

In order to receive a passing grade on the essay, your topic will have to reflect the course readings and curriculum. All chosen topics should be approved by the course instructor before the deadline. An essay topic not reflecting the curriculum, will receive a failing grade (F).

The final exam counts 60% of the grade, and in order to pass the course, your essay and your written exam must be passed in the same semester as the course is taught. You will receive one overall grade for the course.

The Faculty of Social Science is responsible for the exam(s), and exam(s) are/is normally held at the University of Oslo, Blindern campus. Other locations in Oslo may be used.

Examination support material

Students may use dictionaries at this exam. Dictionaries must be handed in before the examination. Please read regulations for dictionaries permitted at the examination.

Language of examination

You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English. If you would prefer to have the exam text in English, you may apply to the course administrators.

Grading scale

Course grades are awarded on a descending scale using alphabetic grades from A to E for passes and F for fail.

Examination results are available in StudentWeb within three weeks after the examination-date, if no other information is given on the Webpage for the current semester.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


This course is evaluated half way through every semester and every four year the course undergoes a thorough evaluation.

An external auditor regularly evaluates the academic quality of the course and he/she makes a written report every year.

Facts about this course






Spring 2012


Spring 2012

Teaching language