Fall 2019 - POL 221 D100

Introduction to Canadian Government (3)

Class Number: 7407

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    RCB 8100, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 9, 2019
    12:00 PM – 3:00 PM
    AQ 3154, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    POL 100 or 101W or 151 or permission of department.



An introduction to the institutional order and political structure of the Canadian state. The course will include topics such as the constitution, parliament, cabinet, judiciary, public service and federal-provincial relations.


This course is designed to introduce the student to the central institutions of Canada’s government.  We will pay particular attention to the way in which institutions act as “rules of the game,” and in so doing incentivize some behaviors and disincentivize others.  Such an approach allows us to see how the institutional structure of Canadian government helps explain actor behavior and policy outputs.

There will be one 2-hour lecture and one 1-hour tutorial each week.  Tutorials start Week Two.


  • Participation and reading of all assigned texts 10%
  • Midterm exam 15%
  • Comparative Book Review 20%
  • Final paper 25%
  • Final exam 30%



Malcolmson, Patrick, Richard Myers, Gerald Baier, and Thomas M.J. Bateman (2016). The Canadian Regime: An Introduction to Parliamentary Government in Canada, 6th edition. University of Toronto Press.

Aucoin, Peter, Mark Jarvis, and Lori Turnbull (2011). Democratizing the Constitution: Reforming Responsible Government. Emond Montgomery Publications.

Russell, Peter (2008). Two Cheers for Minority Government: The Evolution of Canadian Parliamentary Democracy. Emond Montgomery Publications.

All other readings will be made available online or on reserve in the SFU Library.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

The Department of Political Science strictly enforces a policy on plagiarism.
For details, see http://www.sfu.ca/politics/undergraduate/program/related_links.html and click on “Plagiarism and Intellectual Dishonesty” .

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html