Study Abroad and Exchanges



POL3105 : The New Scramble for Africa (Inactive)

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


- - To introduce and provide historical context for recent changes in the political economy of Africa
- To provide students with tools for understanding the role of natural resources in modern Africa
- To explore new engagement with Africa in terms of foreign policy, aid, trade and investment
- To enable students to advance their level of understanding of and critical engagement with
contemporary scholarship on Africa

Outline Of Syllabus

This module examines the new emphasis the U.S., China, Europe, India and others have placed on their political and economic relationships with countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The past five years have witnessed a sea-change in the way the world sees Africa. As Africa moves from a forgotten continent to a rising one in the eyes of foreign policy analysts and the global business community, there is a need to re-theorize Africa's role in international relations and international security. Through the lens of the "new scramble for Africa", we will examine contemporary issues such as land, oil and minerals before focusing specifically on five case studies of Africa's changing relations with the world.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture121:0012:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching102:0020:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1164:00164:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures are designed to introduce the topic and readings for the week and place them in the context of the modern scramble for Africa. Students will be introduced to the key arguments and theories necessary for understanding these arguments. Lectures will also give students a deeper understanding of the topic based on the supplementary readings. Students will be required to do required readings before the relevant lecture.

Seminars provide students the opportunity to develop critical skills such as analysis of arguments and presentation of their own reasoned perspectives. Through small group activities, students will engage with the readings and with the subject material. They will also have the opportunity to clarify and discuss material and learn from each other.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2M201,500 words - critical review of provided readings
Research proposal2M10500 words
Essay2M602,500 words - student devised question
Practical/lab report2M10Half for seminar attendance, half for seminar participation
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Critical review (20%) – This written exercise requires students to develop critical thinking skills in order to summarize and respond to a report written by an international organization. They will have to use at least two other required readings in order to deepen the analytical critique of the report they choose to discuss.

Research proposal (10%) – This proposal encourages students to think about the issue they are going to research for the essay and allows the instructor to provide initial feedback before they complete the essay.

Essay (60%) – The essay will require students to apply the course material and research a particular African country or region. The essay will assess critical thinking skills as well as written communication. Students will be required to demonstrate wider knowledge of the subjects discussed during the course by applying it to a particular case. Weighting toward the final essay ensures students will have received feedback on their written work.

Participation (10%) – 'The participation mark is intended to encourage both attendance and involvement in the seminars. Half of this grade will be awarded on the basis of attendance in seminars. The other half will be on the quality of seminar participation throughout the term. Weekly notes on student participation will be kept and participation will consist of comments made in class, participation in small group activities, and assigned oral presentations. Given the importance of student participation for the success of the seminars (which in this module are 2 hours per week, the participation mark is designed to reward students who attend and participate regularly.

Reading Lists