Module Identifier IP10120  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Dr Alistair J K Shepherd  
Semester Semester 2  
Other staff Dr Alistair J K Shepherd  
Mutually Exclusive GW11120  
Course delivery Lecture   18 Hours (18 x 1 hour)  
  Seminars / Tutorials   8 Hours (8 x 1 hour)  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours  70%
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,000 word essay  30%
Supplementary Exam Students may, subject to Faculty approval, have the opportunity to resit this module, normally during the supplementary examination period. For further clarification please contact the Teaching Programme Administrator in the Department of International Politics. 

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
- Possess a rounded knowledge of the basic history, institutions and political issues facing the United Kingdom & the European Union.
- Be able to demonstrate a critical awareness of the major theoretical and conceptual issues at the different levels of governance and the interaction between these levels.
- Effectively deploy skills of: identification and location of appropriate sources; independent study; writing (essays and examinations); IT skills plus time-management.

10 credydau ECTS

Brief description

The module provides a general introduction to students of the history, key institutions, conceptual issues and the contemporary practice of politics Britain and the European Union.


The main aim of the module is to provide a general introduction of the history, institutions and practice of politics both in the United Kingdom and the European Union. In doing so, it aims to provide students with an introduction to the major conceptual and theoretical issues at stake, and to challenge students to think critically about the major political issues and questions at the heart of the UK state system and the European Union.


The module will be divided into two parts. The first part will focus on the European union. After an introduction to the historical development, the institutional structure and the policy activities of the European Union, the module will move on to discuss the major theoretical and conceptual issues at stake in the study of the European Union, challenging students to think critically about the major political issues raise by the existence of the European Union. The second part of the module will go on to evaluate the historical development, the institutional structure and the policy making activities of the UK system of government, including the challenges posed by devolution and constitutional change to the British system. Finally, the module will evaluate the relationship between politics in the UK and the politics of the European Union, discussing the implications of this relationship for the future of politics within the UK, and at the European level.

Transferable skills

Students will have the opportunity to develop, practice and test a wide range of transferable skills, which will help them to understand, conceptualize and evaluate examples and ideas. Throughout the course, students should practice and enhance their reading, comprehension and thinking skills, as well as self-management skills. In lectures students will develop listening and note taking skills, as well as analytical skills. In seminars students will enhance their analytical skills and will practice listening, explaining and debating skills, as well as team work and problem solving. Essay writing will encourage students to practice their independent research, writing and IT skills, and the examination will test these skills under time constraint conditions.

Reading Lists

** Essential Reading
Bomberg & Stubbs (2003) The European Union : How Does It Work? Oxford, OUP
Patrick Dunleavy et al (2003) Developments in British Politics 7 Palgrave


This module is at CQFW Level 4