Ch 13: Political Parties & Elections

About This Chapter

Use the short video lessons in this chapter to strengthen your knowledge of U.S. political parties and election processes. Learn about presidential and Congressional elections as well as the function of national parties in the United States.

Political Parties & Elections - Chapter Summary

This chapter's video lessons provide you with a comprehensive overview of political parties and elections in the United States. Our engaging instructors explain the roles of the American electoral and party systems. By viewing the lessons, you'll also learn about the structures and functions of U.S. political parties as well as the current state of the Democratic and Republican parties. In addition to these topics, you should be able to do the following after completing all of the video lessons in this chapter:

  • Describe the role of minor political parties in the U.S.
  • Explain the strengths and weaknesses of the presidential nomination process
  • Distinguish between primary elections and general elections
  • Understand the Electoral College process
  • Recognize the impact of reapportionment and redistricting of Congressional constituencies
  • Discuss the required steps to become a Congressional candidate
  • Identify factors that influence election outcomes
  • Compare and contrast presidential and Congressional campaigns
  • Understand campaign finance regulations

Our teaching style makes learning a straightforward, fun and efficient process. Professional instructors guide you through the chapter's political science concepts using several examples and images. Being able to view a video lesson in less than 10 minutes is the norm, and you can use our video timelines to rewatch excerpts.

After you feel confident about your understanding of the material, test your knowledge using our multiple-choice lesson quizzes.

14 Lessons in Chapter 13: Political Parties & Elections
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Political Party: Definition, Function, Organization & Mobilization

1. Political Party: Definition, Function, Organization & Mobilization

When a group of like-minded individuals come together to win an election, this is known as a political party. Understand the definition and function of a political party, and examine how a political party is organized and mobilized to work towards electing their chosen candidates.

The National Parties: Organization & Structure

2. The National Parties: Organization & Structure

The national party system in America is comprised of two major political parties; Democratic and Republican. Learn about the organization and structure of the major national parties in America.

Minor (Third) Parties: Definition, Role & Examples

3. Minor (Third) Parties: Definition, Role & Examples

A minor or third party offers a political option outside of the Democratic and Republican parties. Explore the definition of a third party, how they are formed, examples of past candidates, and the role of third parties in the political system.

Electoral and Party Systems: Definition & Role

4. Electoral and Party Systems: Definition & Role

An electoral system is a way a country facilitates appointing leaders from political parties. Discover the dominance of the two-party system in the US, the logic behind electoral systems and how they are set up, and the laws that benefit the two major parties and place obstacles in the way of minority parties.

The Current State of Contemporary United States Political Parties

5. The Current State of Contemporary United States Political Parties

When looking at the current state of contemporary United States political parties, it is helpful to understand how politics are influenced. In this lesson, dive into the different mechanisms for political change, realignment, dealignment, tipping, and more detail about the current state of U.S. political parties.

Nominating a Presidential Candidate: The Process & Its Strengths & Weaknesses

6. Nominating a Presidential Candidate: The Process & Its Strengths & Weaknesses

When nominating a presidential candidate in the United States, there are several different steps to the process. Learn more about what is involved when nominating a presidential candidate, including the three major steps and the strengths and the weaknesses of the nomination process.

Primary Election Versus General Election: Definition & Differences

7. Primary Election Versus General Election: Definition & Differences

In America, there are two different types of presidential elections: primary election and general election. Learn more about these two, including their differences and the four main types of primary elections.

The Electoral College: Definition & Process

8. The Electoral College: Definition & Process

The Electoral College is a system that uses votes to elect the United States president as a balance of election power between the federal and state governments. Explore the definition and process of the Electoral College and learn about electors, votes, and problems with this system.

Reapportionment & Redistricting for Congressional Constituencies: Definition & Process

9. Reapportionment & Redistricting for Congressional Constituencies: Definition & Process

Reapportionment refers to altering states' seats in the U.S. Congress according to changes in the census, and redistricting re-draws congressional district lines on the map. Learn the processes and reasoning behind these two adjustments.

Party Nomination to Congress: Process to Become a Candidate

10. Party Nomination to Congress: Process to Become a Candidate

There are requirements that people need to qualify for in order to run for Congress as a candidate. Learn the eligibility requirements for running for Congress and the process for becoming an official candidate.

National Forces that Influence Congressional Elections

11. National Forces that Influence Congressional Elections

National forces affect how people vote for congressional elections. Explore the national forces that influence congressional elections, including the candidates' decision to run, the state of the economy, the president's performance, and the public's moderate and conservative leanings.

Presidential vs. Congressional Campaigns: Similarities & Differences

12. Presidential vs. Congressional Campaigns: Similarities & Differences

Campaigns, the organizing and act of running for an office, have different processes for the presidency, and congress seats. Learn the differences in terms, expenses, expected voter turnout, and the responsibilities each takes on.

What Factors Influence the Outcome of an Election?

13. What Factors Influence the Outcome of an Election?

A Democratic Election that selects an incumbent from a list of candidates is influenced by a variety of factors. Explore the issue of the economy on voters, leaning towards a particular party identification, and outcomes of strategies involved in campaigning.

Campaign Finance: Sources, Regulations & Reform

14. Campaign Finance: Sources, Regulations & Reform

Campaign finance is the money that is used by a candidate or political party during an election. Learn about the three sources of campaign financing, regulations regarding who can donate how much to whom, and when, as well as attempts to better oversee and reform the campaign finance system.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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More Exams
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