Author(s): Hüseyin ÇAVUŞOĞLU

Referendum is on of the basic practices from ancient Greek civilization to these days and reveals public opinions on a law. The theoretical root of the referendum is based on the theory that J. J. Rousseau's "Society Convention" states that your sovereignty can not be transferred to anything other than humanity. The referendum is a democratic means of public participation in politics. But it can be said that the referendum is not as widespread as the elections when compared to them. The university students making up the sample of the study are the future of the society, they are the decision makers and practitioners in the economic and social life. Therefore, this and similar behavior of university students should be further investigated. The referendums, an important element of the democratic system, are an important element that allows individuals to participate directly in politics. The number of scientific studies on the perception of referendum among university students is quite low. The aim of this study is to examine the perception of the Bulent Ecevit University (BEU) students' referendum on April 16, 2017 and to reveal the relationship between this perception and the demographic variables. In this respect, firstly theoretical root and historical development of the referendum, then referendum forms and referendums held in Turkey were (1961, 1982, 1987, 1988, 2007, 2010, 2017 discussed. In the last part, a questionnaire was carried out in BEÜ with the participation of 386 students in order to reveal the perception of the university students' referendum on 16 April 2017. The average score of approval points for the basic items in the constitutional amendment of the students participating in the survey was determined as 3 out of 1,568. Those who define themselves as Islamist (39.7%) and nationalist-conservative (32.8%) in the political spectrum are most likely to say yes; those who define themselves as secular (33.8%) and nationalist (27.4%) have the most votes no. According to the results of the survey, the place where the family lives is the "Village"; Students of the Faculty of Theology; those who thinks the most important factor on voting is ideology; those who participates in politics at high level and those who define themselves as "Islamists" in the political spectrum had the highest approval scores for the basic items in the constitutional amendment. While another finding in the survey was that those who voted for yes had approval scores (2,371) for key items in the constitutional amendment; “no”voters have approval scores (0.958) for the main items in the constitutional amendment.


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