International Relations BA (Hons) | 2019/20
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International Relations BA (Hons) 2019/20 entry

Course code:

L250

Study options:

Flexible part-time

 

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2019

 

Fees:

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £9,250

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

+44 (0) 24 7765 2222


Overview

Benefiting from outstanding levels of overall student satisfaction – 100% in the 2016 National Student Survey and ranked 9th in the 2018 Guardian League Tables (with Politics) – this exciting course examines the events and issues shaping contemporary world politics, providing a deeper understanding of the rationale and value of peaceful and cooperative relationships between nations, as well as the challenges of foreign policies.

As citizens of a global society, we’re becoming increasingly connected by communication technology and rapid transportation, international relations between different countries and states now play a vital role in our personal and professional life – affecting all aspects of work undertaken by governments, charities, educational establishments, multinational companies, the police and so on.

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

Employability

Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Teaching Excellence

Taught by lecturers who are experts in their field

Course essentials

A degree which offers you more, at no extra cost

What our students say...

I chose this course because I am really keen to pursue a diplomatic career and better understand global politics. Coventry University seemed to be one of the best choices, taking into account the teaching quality, student satisfaction and the living expenses."

Mihaela-Veronica Ariton

Course information

Drawing on case studies of intervention in the Congo, Somalia, the Balkans and Iraq, for example, we will examine sometimes controversial decisions around peacekeeping and peace enforcement in the wake of conflict, state collapse political or natural crises and large-scale human rights abuse.

We will cover the evolution and interaction of different states and societies around the globe, exploring the history of world politics since World War II. We consider how foreign policy decision-makers and international organisations respond in the face of war, social movements, terrorism, political struggles, democratic advances and setbacks.

100%

of students satisfied with the quality of the course

NSS, 2016

Course Specification
Download PDF (242Kb)

Modules

Overview

In your first year, we will cover the foundations of international relations theory and be introduced to the ways in which other people interpret the world and what goes on within it – liberals, realists, socialists and so on.

We will examine major themes of post-war international politics, such as the dominant relationship between the superpowers, the consequences of decolonisation, the emergence of the 'Third World', the spread of revolutionary wars, the development of European integration and the spread and final collapse of communism and its effect on world politics in the end of the Cold War.

Modules

  • History of Globalisation

  • Politics in Action: Applied Politics

  • Introduction to International Relations Theories

  • Themes and Concepts in International Relations

  • World Politics since 1945

Add+vantage

The focus on preparing students for successful futures sets Coventry apart as a university.

The Add+vantage modules teach a range of work experience and extra-curricular activities that are taken each year, and broaden students knowledge and skills within a work focused environment. There is a very wide range of Add+vantage free-choice subject areas, and they are arranged in themes.

Overview

In the second year, we will switch the focus to contemporary events and issues, including global security, humanitarian aid, and foreign policy, examining a range of real-life case studies to illustrate the challenges of various government responses, the responses themselves and subsequent reactions.

Modules

  • Humanitarian Intervention and Peacekeeping

  • Power and Political Violence in the Age of Globalisation

  • Foreign Policy Analysis

  • Contemporary Global Security

  • A Graduate Career

  • Optional modules (1 of the following)

    • Global Inequality and Development
    • A History of International Crime
    • International Political Economy

Add+vantage

The focus on preparing students for successful futures sets Coventry apart as a university.

The Add+vantage modules teach a range of work experience and extra-curricular activities that are taken each year, and broaden students knowledge and skills within a work focused environment. There is a very wide range of Add+vantage free-choice subject areas, and they are arranged in themes.

Overview

After your second year, you have an opportunity to take a sandwich year, studying abroad or on professional placement. Past students have studied in Australia, the United States, South Korea, France, Sweden and the Netherlands.

Modules

  • Study abroad or professional placement

Overview

In the second and third year, you have the opportunity to choose from a wide range of optional modules, enhancing your intercultural and political awareness. For example, if you choose ‘Comparative Foreign Policies’, you’ll examine the foreign policies of different countries, like Great Britain and the United States, considering their original goals, subsequent impact and ongoing challenges. While ‘Global Organised Crime’ considers transnational criminal activities, such as drug trafficking and human trade, among traditional criminal organisations like the Sicilian mafia, American Cosa Nostra, Japanese Yakuza and Chinese Triads, as well as the new wave of groups in the Balkans, Eastern Europe, Africa and the South American Cartels

Modules

  • Ethics and International Relations

  • Dissertation

  • Optional modules (3 of the following)

    • An Inconvenient History: The Green Movement
    • Politics of the Contemporary Middle East
    • Field Trip
    • Global Organised Crime
    • Chinese Politics, Foreign Relations and Security
    • Britain in the World: Foreign policy since 1945
    • United States' Foreign Policy since 1945

Add+vantage

The focus on preparing students for successful futures sets Coventry apart as a university.

The Add+vantage modules teach a range of work experience and extra-curricular activities that are taken each year, and broaden students knowledge and skills within a work focused environment. There is a very wide range of Add+vantage free-choice subject areas, and they are arranged in themes.

We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.

9th

Our Politics courses are ranked 9th in the UK by Guardian University Guide 2019

In more detail...

  • 80% of students on this course were in work or continuing their studies after six months (DLHE 2014/15).
  • Optional modules allow you to specialise in different areas of the world, such as the Middle East, Africa or China.
  • Teaching staff include a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.
  • 100% overall student satisfaction in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2016 with 98% satisfaction for the quality of teaching.
  • Coventry has received the prestigious ‘Gold award’ in the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) and is ranked 9th in the UK for ‘Politics’ in the Guardian University Guide 2019.
  • Spend a year studying abroad – we have links with universities globally, for example in the European Union, the United States, Australia, South Korea, and beyond (additional costs may appy).
  • Extensive employer links with Houses of Parliament, House of Commons, National Crime Agency (NCA), local council, local and national non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and charities.
  • Placement opportunities have previously included First Utility, GE Alstrom, University Hospital Coventry Warwickshire (NHS), Citizens Advice Bureau, Cardinal Newman School, MIND, Coventry City Council, Refuges and Migrant Centres, working for MPs and MEPs, as well as local heritage sites such as Coventry Cathedral.
  • Join our active student-led History, International Relations, Politics and Sociology Society (HIPSOC), which has organised fieldtrips to the Houses of Parliament here in the UK, as well as Germany and the United States to learn about the Cold War, genocide, and parliamentary democracy, Italy to experience the fight against organised crime, and Costa Rica to discuss questions of development aid (additional costs may apply).

Opportunities to apply for an international experience, which in the past have included trips to Germany, Costa Rica and the United States.

Your main study themes are:

  • International relations: You will have the opportunity to learn to see and understand the world from perspectives and positions you may not agree with to raise your socio-political and cultural awareness, as well as your empathy for difference. We examine three major themes that underpin the development of international relations in the 21st century: globalisation, power and order. We consider globalisation and its impact, especially the issue of whether the state is declining as the central entity in world politics, given the rise and significance of non-state actors. We will also look at the nature of power and how it is exercised in a changing world, for example, how military power is responding to the fact terrorism now represents as much, if not more, of a threat than conventional war. We will also examine how international legal rules and organisations, such as the United Nations, are trying to limit conflict. We will have the opportunity to debate some of the ethical problems that are emerging, including the uneven distribution of gains and losses, the conflicting loyalties we might have to co-nationals and foreigners, the ethics of conflict and the problem of cross-border and trans-generational harm.

  • Globalisation: We introduce you to the ways in which the emergence of the Atlantic World, and later globalisation, altered the cultural, social, and economic realities of all involved. We consider historical change from the 15th century to the present, with emphasis on the history of the Atlantic World (Europe, Africa, and the Americas). We will examine the exchange of cultures, goods and peoples through a range of historic documents, such as American court cases and government acts with regards to the recent travel ban, moving on to consider modern challenges like global security. You will explore a broad range of specific issues on the contemporary security agenda, including terrorism, migration, and modern warfare.

  • Politics: We study political institutions and behaviour post World War II, examining the theories associated with political systems and institutions that form the framework for political life. The major focus will be on the ways individuals and groups react to and behave within the political framework of the Nation State, including political participation, political communication and the expression of interests. We will draw on case studies highlighting contemporary from a range of countries to reflect the variety of political systems, including the changes brought about after the collapse of the USSR. We will consider the foreign policy ‘problem’, assessing the ways in which national political systems experience and cope with challenges arising from their involvement in international affairs.

The course normally lasts three years when studied full-time and four to six years part-time. You can start in September or January. 

Your course will be based on a series of lectures, with associated seminars, tutorials, workshops, online discussions and web-based activities. In addition, your personal tutor will review and discuss your progress with you and will be available for advice.

The teaching and learning environment is shaped by staff who have recognised authority in their fields and will bring you up-to-date with their research and the latest political thought. For example, in some modules foreign policy simulation exercises are being used to explore theoretical models of foreign policy decision making. These exercises are informed by staff experience of working with the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Iraq.

You’ll have the opportunity to go on exciting international fieldtrips for example, to Germany and Italy, as well as local trips to places like the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Birmingham Philharmonic, the slavery museum in Liverpool, or the Houses Of Parliament in London (additional costs may apply). Our excellent professional links with international organisations and institutions like Chatham House enable us to host an exciting programme of with diplomats, officials from criminal justice and law enforcement, academics, and journalists as guest speakers, covering topics with relevance to our degree, including global terrorism and organised crime, American government under President Trump, or China’s new Silk Road project.

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will could vary depending upon the module. Assessment methods include formal examinations and coursework.

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards the achieving the intended learning outcomes. Assessments may include exams, individual assignments or group work elements.

On successful completion, you should have knowledge of:

  • The origins and character of the contemporary international system.
  • The key issues, institutions and processes that determine international relations.
  • The methods and approaches employed in the study of international relations.

 

On successful completion, you should be able to:

  • Identify accurately the issue(s) which need researching and retrieve up-to-date disciplined based information using paper and electronic sources.
  • Locate a range of information sources, to gather and marshal relevant evidence successfully.
  • Review critically, synthesise and debate evidence collected by research.
  • Construct fair, coherent and convincing arguments utilising the relevant key concepts and approaches in the discipline.
  • Analyse problems, take decisions, be creative and show initiative.
  • Work independently with increasing self-confidence and to reflect upon the process of learning.
  • Work within a group, to negotiate, to learn from others and to lead an activity.
  • Manage time effectively, to set objectives and to evaluate the performance of oneself and others.
  • Develop and debate ideas and to sustain arguments effectively both orally and in written form.

In a typical teaching week, you will have up to 14 ‘contact’ hours of teaching. This generally breaks down as:

  • Personal tutorial/small group teaching: 1 hour tutorial each week.
  • Medium group teaching: 5 hours of practical classes, workshops or seminars each week.
  • Large group teaching: 8 hours of lectures each week.

In addition, you will be expected to undertake a further 23 hours of self-directed studying each week, including guided study using handouts, online activities in your own time.

This course has an inherently international perspective, however, to further enhance your opportunity to gain an international experience, we will provide support for you to spend a year studying abroad or on placement and organise an annual overseas study trip (additional costs and availability may apply). For example, previous students spent a week in Sicily examining how the anti-mafia organisation Libera has been working to combat organised crime.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2016/17, we were able to provide a total of 3,482 experiences abroad that lasted at least five days. 

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

international experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni (HESA 2016/17)


3,482

Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2016/17



21,000

and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally so far


12

global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses

What our students say...

I chose this course because I am really keen to pursue a diplomatic career and better understand global politics. Coventry University seemed to be one of the best choices, taking into account the teaching quality, student satisfaction and the living expenses

Mihaela-Veronica Ariton, BA International Relations, current student studying abroad in 2016/17

Entry Requirements

University Course Code: BESU206
A Level BTEC IB Diploma GCSE requirement
BBC DMM
29 points
5 GCSEs at grade A*-C including English Mathematics, or specified equivalents

A-Levels

A-Level applicants are required to have three
 A2 Levels. Coventry University may include AS grades within an offer for certain courses, but we are not able to accept two AS Levels in place of one A2 Level. In some courses it may be necessary for entrants to have passed specific A2 Levels in nominated subjects. Please see the course pages for more information.

Access Diplomas

The Access to HE Diploma to include 30 Level 3 credits at Merit, plus GCSE English Language at grade A*-C.

Coventry University welcomes applicants who have completed, or who are studying, the Access to HE Diploma developed by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA). Successful completion of the course will require you to gain 60 credits with at least 45 to be achieved at Level 3 (with the remainder at Level 2). In some cases we will require you to have gained Merit or Distinction grades in a number of units or in nominated subjects. For more information on the entry requirements for your chosen course please see the relevant course pages.

BTEC Level 3 Diplomas

The University will accept the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma for entry to most courses. In some cases we will require applicants to have studied either certain named modules or a specific named Diploma. The appropriate course page will have full information on the entry requirements. The University also accepts the BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma and BTEC Level 3 Diploma for entry to degree programmes, provided that they are studied in combination with other qualifications that provide a total volume of study that is equivalent to three A2 Levels. For example, you could be studying a BTEC Level 3 Diploma plus an A2 Level, or a BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma plus two A2 Levels. Where a specific A2 or BTEC subject is required for entry then you must be offering this as part of your combination of qualifications.

Please visit our page on European entry requirements for more information about specific country information.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Select your region to find detailed information about entry requirements:

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Unconditional offers

We want to recruit the best students to Coventry and having assessed applicants' past, current and predicted performance and commitment to the course we feel that it is appropriate to reward consistently high-achieving students with an unconditional offer from a top university. It is a commitment from us with regard to an applicants’ potential as an excellent undergraduate and we hope that this will encourage such applicants to join the Coventry community.

Personal statements and references will also be taken into account and, for some degree courses, an interview will form part of the assessment. The criteria for unconditional offers will vary across the University as entry requirements for specific courses differ and not all degree courses will be taking part in the Scheme. The unconditional offer will be confirmed once a selected applicant has made Coventry their firm choice.

Coventry University has assessed that you are capable of achieving excellent grades and we have demonstrated this belief by making you an unconditional offer. This is our commitment to you so then we ask that you reciprocate this commitment by selecting us as your ‘firm’ choice and activating your unconditional offer.

We will consider other qualifications for a pre-result unconditional offer providing that you have an appropriate proven performance at GCSE (or equivalent) level and predicted grades in line with grades that we expect to see at A-level. Other qualifications that we may consider for a pre-result unconditional offer include: the International Baccalaureate Diploma, BTEC Level 3 qualifications, Cambridge Pre-U and combinations of qualifications (e.g. BTECS plus A-levels).

An unconditional offer is what it says it is. So if you don’t meet your predictions then your place at Coventry is still guaranteed. However we would hope and expect that you continue to work hard to make the most of your potential and be best prepared to study at university level.

We can’t but our experience over the years has shown us that students like you with a track record of high grades and excellent predictions are very likely to achieve those grades. Our assessment takes into account all elements of your application to allow us to take a holistic view of your potential. There is still the opportunity to gain one of the Coventry University Scholarships if you achieve the required grades so there is a financial incentive to aim high. Unconditional offers are only made to individuals who have demonstrated their commitment so we believe their focus and determination is unlikely to waver in the final stages of their qualifications.

No, the unconditional offer is only available to those who will take up their place in 2019.

What our students say...

I chose this course because I am really keen to pursue a diplomatic career and better understand global politics. Coventry University seemed to be one of the best choices, taking into account the teaching quality, student satisfaction and the living expenses."

Mihaela-Veronica Ariton

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

For more information, please visit our Finance pages.

Starts

Fee


September 2019

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £9,250 (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship.

Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2019

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £9,250 (per year)


Scholarships

For the September 2018 intake we're investing in a range of EU Academic Excellence scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Starts

Fee


September 2019

2019/20 fees TBC
2018/19 fees - £12,600 (per year)


Scholarships

For the September 2018 intake we're investing in a wide range of Academic Excellence scholarships for high achieving and enterprising international students. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Course essentials at no extra cost

We're committed to communicating study costs clearly to make sure you're not faced with having to make any unexpected payments.

This is why our ‘Flying Start’ package provides you with a few course essentials. Your full-time fee for an undergraduate degree will cover the following:

UK field trips

Any mandatory site visits and trips within the United Kingdom.

Key material

This can include core textbooks, software and equipment.

Laser prints

1,000 A4 sides of black and white laser printing credits per year.

Optional year

Pay no tuition fees for optional work placements or study abroad trips.

What our students say...

I chose this course because I am really keen to pursue a diplomatic career and better understand global politics. Coventry University seemed to be one of the best choices, taking into account the teaching quality, student satisfaction and the living expenses."

Mihaela-Veronica Ariton

Career prospects

In a globalised world where companies increasingly do business across national boundaries, you should be able to benefit from an in-depth understanding of the international political, commercial, social and cultural landscape, gaining an insight appealing to many employers – from media outlets to multinationals, the civil service to the European Parliament, NGOs or thinktanks.

This course is informed by up-to-date research and allows you to be engaged in debates that are at the forefront of the international relations discipline. Greater understanding, the encouragement of critical analysis and the increasing ability to convey ideas, concepts and context will be nurtured throughout your studies. When you successfully graduate, you should have developed a range of transferrable skills, which are highly valued by employers, including excellent communications, critical thinking and analysis, strong presentation and listening skills.

Our Creative Futures employment team is on hand to offer tailored career and enterprise support if you wish to gain employment or take advantage of professional practice opportunities within course specific industries. You’ll have access to a designated employability officer who can advise you on career opportunities and give support to help you develop tailor-made job applications.

80%

of our graduates are in work or further study six months after the course

DLHE 2014/15

Where our graduates work

Recent graduates are now employed in the private sector, ranging from marketing, human resources, banking, and finance to media, and across the public sector in education, the civil service, police forces, local authorities, charities, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and international organisations.

They work for a range of organisations, including the Houses of Parliament, BUPA Healthcare, BMI Healthcare, Barclays, HSBC, Amazon, National Crime Agency, BBC, West Midlands Police/Transport Police, European Union, Atlas Copco, GlaxoSmithKline, Grant Thornton, IPSOS Mori, European Parliament, NHS, Commonwealth, Amnesty International and Greenpeace.

In addition, some of our students set up in business for themselves, which range from youth mentoring, learning and development workshop delivery, logistics and creative industries.

£19K

Our graduates earn an average salary of £19,000 six months after the course (DLHE 2014/15)

What our students say...

I chose this course because I am really keen to pursue a diplomatic career and better understand global politics. Coventry University seemed to be one of the best choices, taking into account the teaching quality, student satisfaction and the living expenses."

Mihaela-Veronica Ariton
Disclaimer

By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the University. A copy of the 19/20 Contract can be found here. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the University will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the University.

The University will charge the tuition fees that are stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study. The University will review tuition fees each year. For UK and EU students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, the University may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase for UK and EU Students is expected to be in line with inflation. For international students, the University may increase fees for each subsequent year of study but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation.