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L290 - Politics and International Relations

Politics and International Relations

BA Honours

  • UCAS code: L290
  • Full time
  • 3 years
  • Next start date: September 2020

Combine the best of our Politics and International Relations degrees to launch your career with an impressive blend of skills and expertise.

Fees (per year)

  • UK/EU: £9250
  • International: £18000

Entry requirements

  • A Level: AAA-ABB
  • IB: 32-34 points

UCAS Institution name and code:

  • NEWC / N21
Work placement opportunity Study abroad opportunity

Course overview

This flexible degree will train you to understand the political ecosystem within and between individual countries – preparing you to succeed in any career that requires the skilled analysis of complex material and the ability to draw clear-minded, evidence-based conclusions.

You will join a close-knit community of students and staff that creates an environment in which you can flourish. Our academic staff will bring political issues alive for you. Our expertise covers all aspects of politics as a discipline, so you can study a range of topics taught by acknowledged experts in their field.

Starting with a solid grounding in systems of government, political theory and world politics, you can tailor your degree through specialist modules on topics such as inequality and justice, environmental politics, and international security.

Quality and ranking

We have a long tradition of excellence in teaching, recognised in many external surveys and assessments, but also by our own students.

Our commitment to teaching quality and an excellent student experience is reflected through our results in national and international student satisfaction surveys.

Modules and learning

Modules

The information below is intended to provide an example of what you will study.

Most degrees are divided into stages. Each stage lasts for one academic year, and you'll complete modules totalling 120 credits by the end of each stage. 

Our teaching is informed by research, and course content changes periodically to reflect developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, student feedback, or insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module.

Full details of the modules on offer will be published through the Programme Regulations and Specifications ahead of each academic year. This usually happens in May.

To find out more please see our terms and conditions.

You will gradually develop the critical thinking, research, and communication skills required to study international relations and become an informed and engaged global citizen. You’ll gain an understanding of what it means to compare political systems as well as a solid grounding in the dynamics of the international system and in political thought. You will start to relate your studies to historical, global, national, and ideological contexts.

By the end of Stage 1, you will be able to identify the factors that shape contemporary events in the world of politics and international relations, with a growing understanding of the interrelationships between the national and the global.

Modules

Compulsory Modules Credits
Introduction to International Politics 20
Politics: Essential Research Study Skills 20
Order and Disorder: The Shaping of the 21st Century 20
Foundations of Modern Political Thought 20
Optional Modules Credits
Interconnected World 20
The History of the Americas 20
Governing Under Pressure: The Politics of the UK & EU 20
Power, Participation and Democracy: Comparative Perspectives 20
Comparing Cultures 20

You will build on the skills developed in Stage 1 as you look in greater depth at key issues, organisations, and actors in politics and international relations. You’ll develop critical insight into the relationship between theory and practice and how research methods, including comparative methods, used in the social sciences shape our understanding of both fields.

You will be able to start to tailor your degree to your interests by choosing from a range of optional modules, covering key issues such as security, development and justice.

By the end of Stage 2, you will have the knowledge and skills needed to analyse how problems in politics and international relations are created, defined, and potentially solved.

Modules

Compulsory Modules Credits
Critical International Politics 20
Research Methods in Politics 20
Optional Modules Credits
Political Geography 20
Development & Globalisation 20
Career Development for second year students 20
Developing Enterprise, Entrepreneurship and Employability 20
Politics of the Middle East 20
Government and Politics of the USA 20
The Politics and Policy of the European Union 20
British Politics: State and Society 20
Student Exchange: Semester 2 60
Political Violence and the Modern State 20
Contemporary Russian Politics 20
The Politics of Africa: Africa's place in Global Politics 20
Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion: Social Issues in Contemporary Political Philosophy 20
Politics Work Placement 20
Security Studies 20
Sex, Gender and Power 20

In Stage 3, you can begin to specialise in the areas of politics and or international relations that are of interest to you. As a part of this you will undertake a significant piece of independent research that harnesses your subject knowledge and the research skills you’ve developed throughout your degree.

You’ll complete your study with optional modules covering topics across international relations, comparative politics, and political theory. By the end of Stage 3, you will be a keen analyst of international relations who is able to identify, assess, analyse, and evaluate global issues with critical insight and methodological sophistication.

In addition, you’ll complete your study with optional modules covering topics across international relations, comparative politics, and political theory.

Modules

Optional Modules Credits
Geopolitics 20
Career Development for final year students 20
Advanced Career Development module 20
Dissertation in Politics 40
Project in Politics: Semester 1 20
Project in Politics: Semester 2 20
Democracy and the Constitution 20
Student Exchange : Semester 1 60
Student Exchange (Dissertation students) 40
The Government and Politics of Italy 20
Political Parties and Elections in the UK 20
Community-based Research in Politics 40
The Fall and Rise of China 20
Democracy in Deeply Divided Societies 20
The Politics of the Far Right in Europe 20
Gender, Campaigns and Media 20
International Organisation and Diplomacy 20
UK Parliamentary Studies 20
Animal and Environmental Ethics 20
The Ethics of War 20
Politics of Immigration 20

Teaching and assessment

Teaching methods

You will benefit from our strong focus on teaching quality. This translates into engaging modules, delivered through a stimulating variety of lectures, seminars, teamwork exercises, research projects and simulation exercises. You'll be engaged through innovative teaching methods such as our use of technology to run anonymous polls and comprehension tests during lectures.

Assessment methods

You'll be assessed through a combination of:

  • Dissertation or research project

  • Essays

  • Examinations – practical or online

  • Group work

  • Interviews

  • Portfolio submission

  • Projects

Skills and experience

Practical skills

You will be trained to conduct interviews, evaluate surveys and statistics. You'll get training in SPSS software, a world-leading statistical software that helps you to understand data, analyse trends, and make informed recommendations.

Business skills

Your degree will have a practical real-world focus throughout.

You will be able to put your learning into practice further by conducting real-world political research for a local organisation in Stage 3.

Research skills

In Stage 3, you will have the chance to produce a dissertation or report based on a piece of your own independent research. You will be given hands-on training in advance on the design, methodology and implementation of your research, including both qualitative and quantitative analytical techniques.

Chat to a student

My degree importantly remains relevant to real-world contemporary issues, enabling me to develop a sophisticated understanding of current affairs. Also, the diversity of students the course attracts ensures I am always open to new perspectives and alternative ways of thinking.

Lucy, Politics student

Opportunities

Study abroad

Experience life in another country by choosing to study abroad as part of your degree. You’ll be encouraged to embrace fun and challenging experiences, make connections with new communities and graduate as a globally aware professional, ready for your future.

You can choose to spend up to a year studying at a partner institution overseas.

If you choose to study abroad, it will extend your degree by a year. 

Find out more about study abroad

Work placement

Get career ready with a work placement and leave as a confident professional in your field. You can apply to spend 9 to 12 months working in any organisation in the world, and receive University support from our dedicated team to secure your dream placement. Work placements take place between stages 2 and 3.

You'll gain first-hand experience of working in the sector, putting your learning into practice and developing your professional expertise.

If you choose to take a work placement, it will extend your degree by a year. A work placement is not available if you're spending a year studying abroad. Placements are subject to availability.

Find out more about work placements

Facilities and environment

Facilities

You'll be based in the School of Geography, Politics and Sociology's Henry Daysh Building, which has recently undergone a £60-million refurbishment.

Support

You will have one-to-one academic and pastoral support from a personal tutor and from a student.

A tutor in the department has twice won a student-nominated award for pastoral care in recent years. 

Your future

On graduation from our degree courses, you will have the proven ability to think critically, assess complex material and data, carry out research, construct a well-informed argument and articulate it on paper and in person.

Some of our graduates have used this powerful combination of skills to progress directly into careers in politics, economics and international relations – for employers such as the Houses of Parliament, HM Treasury, local government, the Civil Service, inter-governmental organisations and public affairs consultancies.

Others have applied their skills with equal success in the media, law, finance, management consultancy, education, human resources, marketing, business and academia.

Employability at Newcastle

96% of Newcastle University graduates progressed to employment or further study within six months of graduating, with 85.5% in graduate-level employment or further study.

Take a look at the most recent data available for our graduates. See what they have gone on to achieve and be inspired to follow in their footsteps.

Statistics are based on what graduates were doing on a specific date, approximately six months after graduation (Destinations of (undergraduate and postgraduate UK domiciled) Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2016/17).

Make a difference

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Careers support

You'll benefit from targeted careers support throughout your degree. In your induction week, you'll explore potential career paths.

In Stage 2, you can apply for a work placement with a local political party or charity, and in Stage 3 you can boost your prospects by conducting policy research on behalf of a local community organisation.

Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ inititiative.

Visit our Careers Service website

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2020 entry.

A Level

AAA-ABB

International Baccalaureate

32-34 points

Other UK qualifications (and PARTNERS)

Qualifications from outside the UK

English Language requirements

PARTNERS

The PARTNERS Programme is Newcastle University’s supported entry route for students from schools and colleges in England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. 

Visit the PARTNERS website

Entrance courses (INTO)

International Pathway Courses are specialist programmes designed for international students who want to study in the UK. We provide a range of study options for international students in partnership with INTO. 

Find out more about International Pathway Courses

Admissions policy

This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University, including Newcastle University London. It is intended to provide information about our admissions policies and procedures to applicants and potential applicants, to their advisors and family members, and to staff of the University.

Tuition fees and scholarships

Tuition fees for 2020 entry (per year)

UK Students

£9250

International Students

£18000

The maximum fee that we are permitted to charge for UK students is set by the UK government.

As a general principle, you should expect the tuition fee to increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation.

Read more about fees and funding

You will be charged tuition fees for each year of your degree programme (unless you are on a shorter exchange programme).

The tuition fee amount you will pay may increase slightly year on year as a result of inflation.

Read more about fees and funding

Year abroad and additional costs

For programmes where you can spend a year on a work placement or studying abroad, you will receive a significant fee reduction for that year. 

Some of our degrees involve additional costs which are not covered by your tuition fees.

Find out more about:

Scholarships

Find out more about:

Open days and events

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

To apply for undergraduate study at Newcastle University, you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). All UK schools and colleges, and a small number of EU and international establishments, are registered with UCAS. You will need:

  • the UCAS name and institution codes for Newcastle University (NEWC/N21)
  • the UCAS code for the course you want to apply for
  • the UCAS 'buzzword' for your school or college

If you are applying independently, or are applying from a school or college which is not registered to manage applications, you will still use the Apply system. You will not need a buzzword.

Apply through UCAS

Apply through an agent

International students often apply to us through an agent. Have a look at our recommended agents and get in touch with them.

Visit our International pages

Get in touch

By Phone

Contact us on +44 (0) 191 208 3333. We're open 9.00 to 17.00 every week day except Wednesday (10.00 to 17.00).

Online

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