Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Keys to International Politics
Academic Year
Semester 2
Completion of Semester 1 modules of IFC or an IELTS score of at least 6.0 with no more than 1 score below 6.0 and no score below 5.5
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Presentation  Seminar Presentation  15%
Semester Assessment Essay  Essay (2500 words)  45%
Semester Assessment Exam  Exam (2 hours)  40%
Supplementary Assessment Essay  Essay (2500 words)  45%
Supplementary Assessment Exam  Exam (2 hours  40%
Supplementary Assessment Presentation  Seminar Presentation  15%

Learning Outcomes

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

Demonstrate, through oral discussion and in written work, an understanding of key concepts and debates in International Politics

Critically evaluate theoretical debates in International Relations

Utilise historical case studies to relate IR theories to the 'real world' of international politics

Demonstrate critical engagement with, and understanding of, key contemporary challenges in international politics.

Demonstrate an ability to meet the required academic standards in relation to the preparation and presentation of assessed work.

Brief description

The module introduces students to key ideas and concepts in the study of International Politics, as well as some of the fundamental debates in this field. In this respect, the module aims to familiarise students with different approaches to, and understandings of, world politics. The module considers these through an analysis of key developments in the nature of international society during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The module concludes by considering some of the key contemporary challenges in international politics.


1. To develop student understandings of key concepts and debates in International Politics
2. To introduce students to key theoretical debates in International Relations
3. To enable students, through historical case studies, to relate IR theories to the 'real world' of international politics
4. To develop student engagement with, and understanding of key contemporary challenges in international politics.
5. To develop independent study skills in research, academic writing, group work and effective note-taking.


Part I - Core Concepts and Ideas
Week 1. What is International Politics?
Week 2. Introducing IR Theory I
Week 3. Introducing IR Theory II
Week 4. Introducing International Society through World History I: Ancient Civilisations
Week 5. Introducing International Society through World History II: The Foundations of the International State System
Week 6. Combining History and Theory I: 1900-1945 and Liberal Internationalism
Week 7. Combining History and Theory II: The Cold War and Realism
Week 8. Introducing Contemporary International Politics: A Globalised 21st Century?
Week 9. Essay Planning and Writing

Part II - Issues in International Politics
Week 10. The USA and the World
Week 11. The Global North and South
Week 12. The Environment in World Politics
Week 13. Humanitarian Intervention
Week 14. Assessment
Week 15. Assessment feedback and resit option

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number
Communication Students will learn how to present their ideas both verbally and in writing, and present their arguments most effectively. They will learn 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. This module will particularly test aural and oral communication skills as it involves assessed seminar performance. Students will also be required to submit their essays in word-processed format and the presentation of work should reflect effective expression of ideas and good use of language skills in order to ensure clarity, coherence and effective communication.
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 convenor and fellow students alike. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own research and exercising their own initiative, including searching for sources and deciding (under guidance) the direction of their coursework and presentation topics. The need to prepare for assessed seminar participation and to meet coursework deadlines will focus students’ attention on the need to manage their time.
Information Technology Students 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.
Personal Development and Career planning This module is designed to hone and test skills of use to students in their working lives, particularly in speaking to small groups, listening, thinking and responding to the statement of others. Moreover, the written work includes writing clearly and concisely, which is a common task in the workplace. Students will be encouraged throughout to reflect on their performance and to consider lessons for future application.
Problem solving Independent work to solve problems will be one central goal of the module; the submission of an essay and preparation for seminar discussions will require that students develop independent research skills as well as problem solving 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 for all elements of the assessed work. This will involve utilizing media and web sources, as well as more conventional academic texts. Students will in part be assessed on their ability to gather appropriate and interesting resources materials.
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 - Evaluate competing perspectives - Demonstrate subject specific research techniques - Apply a range of methodologies to complex historical and contemporary political problems
Team work Students will undertake group exercises in the seminars. For many of the topics of this module, seminars will consist of small-group discussions where students will be asked to discuss as a group the core issues related to the seminar topic. These class discussions and debates form a significant part of the module, and will allow students to approach and examine a given topic through team work.


This module is at CQFW Level 3