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Durham University

Courses

L250 International Relations BA Undergraduate  2020

Essentials

UCAS code L250
Degree BA
Mode of study Full Time
Duration 3 years
Location Durham City
Typical Offers A Level
AAA
BTEC
DDD
International Baccalaureate
37
Please also check Requirements and Admissions.
Alternative qualifications
Contextual Offers You may be eligible for an offer which is one or two grades lower than our standard entry requirements. Find out more.
More information Still have questions?
Department(s) Website www.durham.ac.uk/sgia

Course Summary

Description

Taught by expert staff, undergraduate education in Politics at Durham is structured around three main streams: Political Thought, Political Institutions, and International Relations. You will move from generalist study in these areas in your early years to more specialised options in International Relations, exploring the diverse and dynamic politics and international relations of the contemporary world. Modules in the second and third years reflect the research expertise of the School’s members of staff.

Year 1

Compulsory modules:

  • Introduction to International Relations 
  • International Security, Interdependence and Organisation 
  • Global Regions in International Relations
  • Researching Politics and International Relations.

Plus one of the following:

  • Democratic Political Systems 
  • Political Theory
  • Comparative Politics
  • One module offered by another department OR one module offered by the Centre for Foreign Language Study.

Year 2

Compulsory modules:

  • Research Project
  • International Theory OR International Organisations.

Plus four of the following which can include the one above not chosen previously:

  • Sovereignty, State and Empire 
  • The Politics of Pacific Asia 
  • Global Political Economy
  • Introduction to Politics and International Relations of the Middle East
  • European Politics
  • Foreign Policy Analysis
  • Analytical Politics
  • Foundations of Western Political Thought
  • Class, Nation and British Politics 
  • One module offered by another department OR one module offered by the Centre for Foreign Language Study.

Year 3

Compulsory module:

  • Dissertation (Double).

Optional modules vary but have typically included:

  • The Ethics of Violence in International Relations 
  • Nations and Nationalism 
  • China: State and Society since 1949 
  • The New Germany 
  • The Politics of the Middle East’s Oil Monarchies
  • One module offered by another department.

We review course structures and core content (in light of e.g. external and student feedback) every year, and will publish finalised core requirements for 2020 entry from September 2019.

Study Abroad

Students can apply for a one-year study placement in one of the following institutions: the University of California and Boston College in the USA, British Columbia in Canada, the University of Hong Kong, and the National University of Singapore. In some cases courses are offered in English, while in others teaching is in the local language. We have an ERASMUS/Year Abroad Co-ordinator who will help you prepare for your year abroad, and who will maintain contact with you while you are away.

Placement Year

You may be able to take a work placement. Find out more.

Course Learning and Teaching

Students on this degree learn through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, research-based group simulations, informal but scheduled one-to-one support, and self-directed learning, such as research, reading, and writing.

All of these are supported by a virtual learning environment, Durham University Online (DUO). Seminars and tutorials are much smaller groups than lectures, small enough to allow one-on-one interaction with tutors.

Simulation exercises afford research-led experience of how knowledge of international relations applies to the real world, as well as group-working and communication skills.

This emphasis on small-group and practical teaching reflects a conscious choice to enhance the quality of the learning experience rather than the number of formal sessions. In fact, the degree is designed to feature fewer formal sessions and more independent research as you move from your first to your final year.

Small-group teaching and one-to-one attention from the personal academic advisor (provided for all students when they enter the degree) are part of the learning experience throughout, but by the final year classroom time gives way, to some extent, to independent research, including a capstone dissertation – supported by one-on-one supervision – that makes up a third of final year credits.

In this way, the degree systematically transforms you from a consumer of knowledge in the classroom to a generator of knowledge, ready for professional or postgraduate life. These formal teaching arrangements are supported by “drop-in” surgeries with teaching staff and induction sessions that begin in the week before the start of the course and continue at key times throughout each year of the degree.

Students can also attend an extensive programme of research-focused seminars where staff and visiting scholars present their cutting-edge research.

Admissions Process

Subject requirements, level and grade

A level offer – AAA including a social science or humanities subject. Grade A in a Social Science or Humanities Subject at GCSE, is preferred but not required.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma/OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma – DDD and A levels as above.

IB Diploma score – 37 with 666 in higher level subjects, including a social sciences or humanities subject.

In addition to satisfying the University’s general entry requirements, please note:

  • We welcome applications from those with other qualifications equivalent to our standard entry requirements and from mature students with non-standard qualifications or who may have had a break in their study. Please contact our Admissions Selectors for more information.
  • If you do not satisfy our general entry requirements, the Foundation Programme offers multidisciplinary degrees to prepare you for a range of specified degree courses. 
  • If you are an international student who does not meet the requirements for direct entry to this degree, you may be eligible to take an International Foundation Year pathway programme at the Durham University International Study Centre.
  • We are pleased to consider applications for deferred entry.

Science A levels

Applicants taking Science A levels that include a practical component will be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This applies only to applicants sitting A levels with an English examination board.

English Language requirements

Please check requirements for your subject and level of study.

How to apply

www.durham.ac.uk/undergraduate/apply

Information relevant to your country

www.durham.ac.uk/international/country.information/

Fees and Funding

Full Time Fees

EU Student £9,250.00 per year
Home Student £9,250.00 per year
Island Student £9,250.00 per year
International non-EU Student £20,500.00 per year

The tuition fees shown for home and EU students are for one complete academic year of full time study and are set according to the academic year of entry. Fees for subsequent years of your course may rise in line with an inflationary uplift as determined by the government.

The tuition fees shown for overseas students are for one complete academic year of full time study, are set according to the academic year of entry, and remain the same throughout the duration of the programme for that cohort (unless otherwise stated).

Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.

Scholarships and funding

www.durham.ac.uk/undergraduate/finance 

Career Opportunities

School of Government and International Affairs


We offer exceptional opportunities that will help you become critically and socially engaged graduates of the highest calibre.



Our graduates have an enviable record of employment and enter a wide range of career areas including business and finance, local and national government, armed forces, marketing and PR, media - newspaper and TV journalism, publishing, law, manufacturing industry, recruitment and teaching.

Our graduates have gone on to have great success in the political arena - with alumni job titles including Chief Operating Officer for the GB Equality and Human Rights Commission, Head of Defence Inquests and Disclosure in the Ministry of Defence and Political Officer in the British Embassy Mogadishu, while others hold senior academic and government positions around the world.

Other recruiters include leading employers such as the House of Commons, Accenture, British Airways, Ernst and Young, British Telecom, Goldman Sachs, PwC, Royal Navy, House of Fraser, Aldi, Channel 4, HSBC, Teach First, Durham University, Black Rock, Parliament and the Audit Commission.


References

When applying for roles many employers will ask you to supply academic references from one of your tutors. We always advise that you should approach tutors who know you and your work well, such as a special subject or dissertation tutor.

To help guide you with this process we arrange for advisors from the Careers, Employability and Enterprise Centre provide short presentations to each year group as part of joined up sessions with an Academic Careers Contact and the Head of Undergraduate Studies:

  • Year 1 covers an introduction to developing employability skills.
  • Year 2 focuses on internships / work experience.
  • Year 3 focuses on graduate schemes / recruitment cycle / effective on-line applications

Open days and visits

Pre-application open day

Pre-application open days are the best way to discover all you need to know about Durham University. With representatives from all relevant academic and support service departments, and opportunities to explore college options, the open days provide our prospective undergraduates with the full experience of Durham University.

Please see the following page for further details and information on how to book a place: www.durham.ac.uk/opendays

Discover Durham Tours

Discover Durham tours offer a brief introduction to the University. The tour begins at one of our undergraduate colleges, where you will receive an introductory talk from a member of college staff, followed by a tour of the college by current students.

www.durham.ac.uk/undergraduate/live/visit/discoverdurham

Overseas Visit Schedule

www.durham.ac.uk/international/office/meetus

Department Information

School of Government and International Affairs

Overview

From soapboxes to statecraft, you will learn how and why nations are run the way they are.
Our expert staff will help you to develop a thorough knowledge of the structure and functions of the modern state, the history of ideas about the nature and purpose of politics, and the development of particular regions and their political systems.

Teaching is at the centre of the activities of the School of Government and International Affairs (SGIA), where undergraduates enjoy a vibrant and challenging intellectual environment. The School places great importance on research-led education, which integrates new and cuttingedge research into the curriculum and introduces students to a variety of research-oriented skills and research-based projects.

Rankings

  • 6th in The Complete University Guide 2018.

Staff

For a current list of staff, please see the School of Government and International Affairs web pages.

Facilities

The School of Government and International Affairs is a concentration of research expertise in political processes and institutions, political thought, and international and area studies. Teaching takes place both in the Department’s own rooms and in conveniently located lecture rooms.

The University Library has an excellent collection in politics as well as specialised research collections such as the European Documentation Centre. Colleges provide additional library resources as well as computing facilities.

Website
www.durham.ac.uk/sgia