Module Information

Module Identifier
IP12420
Module Title
Exploring the International 1
Academic Year
2017/2018
Co-ordinator
Semester
Semester 1
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 20 x 1 Hour Lectures
Seminar 10 x 1 Hour Seminars
 

Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1 x 500 word Concept exposition  15%
Semester Assessment 1 x 1,000 words Article Review  35%
Semester Assessment 1 x 1,500 word essay  50%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 500 word Concept exposition  15%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 1,000 word Article Review  35%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 1,500 word essay  50%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Demonstrate a critical knowledge of major concepts, themes and questions relevant to the study of international politics.
2. Demonstrate an ability to use key concepts in particular circumstances and refine and/or critique them according to context.
3. Outline a broad sense of the discipline of international relations and its futures.
4. Demonstrate an ability to present a coherent argument in written form.
5. Demonstrate an ability to write an appropriately presented and referenced piece of coursework.

Brief description

This module will provide a thorough and wide-ranging introduction to central concepts and themes in the study of international politics. It will outline a series of key theoretical positions and will encourage students to analyse and evaluate them with reference to a mixture of historical and contemporary examples.

Aims

The module aims to introduce students to the political space of ‘the international’ and familiarise them with basic ideas about how it is organised, and its similarities to and differences from domestic political space. The module will then explore the European/Western origins of the modern international system and how for the first time this system has bound the whole world together. The aim is to provide students with an understanding of the historical character of basic logics of modern international life and of the deep roots of persisting power divisions in the international order. Finally, the module aims to introduce students to different types of actors or agents that populate the international realm and that they will encounter repeatedly in their studies. The module will help students to understand why these are considered to be important, what their principal characteristics are and how the international domain looks when we focus on one of these sets of actors.

Content

The module will be delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars. Key topics covered during the module will include:

- The state
- The nation
- Territory
- War, peace and security
- International organisations
- Globalisation

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number N/A
Communication Students will learn how to present their ideas both verbally and in writing and how to present their arguments most effectively. They will understand the importance of information and clear communication and how to exploit these. They will know how to use the many sources of information available and how to use the most appropriate form of communication to best advantage. They will learn to be clear in their writing and speaking and to be direct about aims and objectives. They will learn to consider only that which is relevant to the topic, focus and objectives of their argument or discussion. Seminars will be run in groups where oral discussion and presentations will form the main medium of teaching and the emphasis throughout the module will be on student participation and communication. This is facilitated by group-role play based on teams operating within and beyond the seminar environment.
Improving own Learning and Performance The module aims to promote self-management but within a context in which support and assistance is available from both the convener and fellow students alike. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own research and to exercise their own initiative, including searching for sources, compiling reading lists, and deciding (under guidance) the direction of their report and essay topics. Group work is integral to the seminars and provides opportunities for students to reflect individually and collectively on their performance. The need to contribute to the group discussions in seminars and to meet an assessment deadlines will focus students’ attention on the need to manage their time and opportunity resources well.
Information Technology SStudents will be expected to submit their work in word-processed format. Also, students will be encouraged to search for sources of information on the web, as well as seeking sources through electronic information sources (such as Lexus-Nexus, Primo, Google Scholar etc). Students will also be expected to make use of the resources that will be available on the AberLearn Blackboard.
Personal Development and Career planning The discussions in particular will help to develop students’ verbal and presentation and team-working skills. Learning about the process of planning an essay and a report, framing the parameters of the projects, honing and developing the projects and seeing through to completion will contribute towards students' portfolio of transferable skills. In particular, report writing is an essential transferable skill contributing to their employability profile.
Problem solving Independent project work and problem solving will be one central goal of the module; the submission of an essay will require that students develop independent research skills as well as problem solving skills. The need to research and prepare seminar presentations will also enable students to develop independent project skills. The ability of students to solve problems will be developed and assessed by asking them to: adopt differing points of view; organize data and estimate an answer to the problem; consider extreme cases; reason logically; construct theoretical models; consider similar cases; look for patterns; divide issues into smaller problems.
Research skills Students will be required to undertake independent research in order to complete the assessed work. This will involve utilizing a range of information sources, including core academic texts, journal articles etc.
Subject Specific Skills Students have the opportunity to develop, practice and test a wide range of subject specific skills that help them to understand, conceptualise and evaluate examples and ideas on the module. These subject specific skills include: • Collect and understand a wide range of data relating to the module • Ability to evaluate competing perspectives • Demonstrate subject specific research techniques Apply a range of methodologies to complex historical and political problems.
Team work Seminars will consist in part of small group work and role-playing activities where students will be obliged to prepare, present and discuss as a group the core issues related to seminar topics. Such class room debates and discussions are a vital component of the module learning experience.

Notes

This module is at CQFW Level 4