Singapore University of Social Sciences

Comparative Politics in Southeast Asia

Comparative Politics in Southeast Asia (POL351)

Applications Open: 01 October 2023

Applications Close: 15 November 2023

Next Available Intake: January 2024

Course Types: Modular Undergraduate Course

Language: English

Duration: 6 months

Fees: $1391.78 View More Details on Fees

Area of Interest: Humanities and Social Sciences

Schemes: Alumni Continuing Education (ACE)

Funding: To be confirmed

School/Department: School of Humanities & Behavioural Sciences


The course locates students within the geographical and political context of Southeast Asia. It covers the government and politics of the major countries in the region like Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore. After this course, students will be able to do a comparison of the structures of government and identify where the processes of governance differ from country to country. This will give them a better appreciation of the complexities within the region and would greatly benefit those who travel regionally for work.

Level: 3
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: Every January
E-Learning: BLENDED - Learning is done ENTIRELY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. There are no face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus.


  • Revisiting the foundations of comparative politics: The Comparative Method
  • Methodological considerations for political scientists
  • Political Systems of Southeast Asia (1): Indonesia & Malaysia
  • Political Systems of Southeast Asia (2): Thailand & Philippines
  • Political Systems of Southeast Asia (3): Countries in ASEAN
  • The Political Economy of Southeast Asia
  • Democratic Regimes in Southeast Asia
  • Non-democratic Regimes in Southeast Asia
  • Ethnic and National Identity in Southeast Asia
  • Religion and Fundamentalism in Southeast Asia
  • Globalisation and Change in Southeast Asia

Learning Outcome

  • Show knowledge of the key tenets of sub-field of comparative politics.
  • Examine the theoretical foundations of comparative politics within the region studied.
  • Appraise the methodological limitations present in the study of comparative politics in the region.
  • Compare and contrast the major political institutions and regimes present within the region utilizing the methods taught.
  • Apply the various approaches of comparative politics to the countries being studied.
  • Discuss comparative politics of this region as reflections of historical epochs, demography, culture and social forces.
  • Develop an informed view of regional politics and be able to discuss their developments.
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