PAIS580 Dragon in Chains? Contemporary Chinese Politics

Updated: 15 March 2019
Credit Points 6
Responsible Campus Teaching Period Mode of Study
Armidale Trimester 2 Online
Armidale Trimester 2 On Campus
Intensive School(s) None
Supervised Exam There is no supervised examination.
Pre-requisites candidature in a postgraduate award
Co-requisites None
Restrictions PAIS380 or PAIS480 or POLS280 or POLS380 or POLS480
Notes None
Combined Units PAIS380 - Dragon in Chains? Contemporary Chinese Politics
Coordinator(s) Xiang Gao (
Unit Description

This unit examines government and politics in the People's Republic of China. The focus is on political reform and change since the early 1980s, including reform of institutions, the changing role of the Chinese Communist Party, political effects of economic and social change, state-society relations, 'democratisation' and 'legitimacy'.

Prescribed Material


Note: Students are expected to purchase prescribed material. Please note that textbook requirements may vary from one teaching period to the next.

Governance and Politics of China

ISBN: 9781137445278
Saich, T., Palgrave McMillan 4th ed. 2015

Text refers to: Trimester 2, On Campus and Online

Disclaimer Unit information may be subject to change prior to commencement of the teaching period.
Title Exam Length Weight Mode No. Words
Compulsory Assessment 1 50% 2500
Assessment Notes


Relates to Learning Outcomes (LO)

LO: 1,3,4

Compulsory Assessment 2 50% 2500
Assessment Notes


Relates to Learning Outcomes (LO)

LO: 1-4

Learning Outcomes (LO) Upon completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. demonstrate an advanced and integrated knowledge of: the principal Chinese political institutions and processes; the extent and significance of recent political reforms in China; the significance and implications of recent political trends in China; and current dilemmas and tensions of Chinese politics;
  2. appropriately and correctly use the core concept of 'democratisation' to reflect critically upon, and analyse at an advanced level, political trends in contemporary China;
  3. autonomously develop, through synthesising and carefully evaluating evidence from a wide range of sources, complex and theoretically-informed arguments about contemporary political developments in China and communicate these in a clear and coherent fashion; and
  4. display expert research, analytical and written communication skills through the independent planning and execution of assigned work in which they critically examine in depth particular aspects of contemporary Chinese politics.