Skip to main content


POL3125 : Politics of Citizenship

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Terri Teo
  • Owning School: Geography, Politics & Sociology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


The module aims to examine how citizenship affects structures, lived experiences and identity-formation among citizens and non-citizens. This module aims to enable students to:
•       Establish a context- and theory-driven understanding of citizenship, and how it is gendered, raced and classed;
•       Discuss the effect of citizenship, or the lack of citizenship, on citizens, multiple citizenship-holders, migrants and the stateless;
•       Examine contemporary politics and empirical case studies through lenses of citizenship and noncitizenship;
•       Identify relationships between citizenship and migration, security studies and protest politics;
•       Evaluate citizenship regimes and their effects on individual, national and international levels.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module offers a synthesis of historical and contemporary debates about citizenship. As borders grow more porous and populations increasingly mobile, citizenship is no longer understood merely as a legal status. Changing theories and practices of citizenship impact how membership, recognition and rights are understood, which in turn impact state-society relationships, and understandings of loyalty and home. This course examines the meanings of citizenship in the past and present, unpacks policies and mechanisms of citizenship, and evaluates its relationship with identities, migration and globalisation. The course engages with contemporary and historical case studies across Asia, Europe and the Americas.

Topics studied may include (but are not limited to):

•       Introduction: What is citizenship?
•       Inequality: Class
•       Identities: Race, culture and religion
•       Feminism: Sex, gender and sexualities
•       Regimes: Multiple citizenships, tests and policies
•       Noncitizenship: Refugees, the stateless and migrants
•       In(security): Borderlands and denationalisation
•       Does citizenship matter?

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture101:0010:00PiP lectures
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials101:0010:00Pre-recorded lecture materials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching101:0010:00PiP seminars
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities113:0033:00Guided questions and exercises based on reading and lecture content
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery13:003:00Present in Person Student Consultation and Feedback
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1134:00134:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Student feedback demonstrate that these approaches are beneficial to their learning and appreciate the high quality of content delivered in both lectures and seminars.

Lectures and lecture materials such as PowerPoint slides provide students with an overview of key themes, issues, structures and concepts relevant to the study of citizenship as a theoretical framework, while grounding them in case studies. These will situate key themes, issues and concepts relating to citizenship within broader contexts and conversations within scholarship and contemporary politics.

Small discussion seminars provide an avenue for students to discuss and unpack topics covered during the lectures through classroom debates. They will also learn to structure their arguments and address questions by drawing on scholarship and case studies.

The Drop In gives students the chance to drop in and ask questions of the ML, who may also use the time to expand on recorded lectures and clarify key themes.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M652500 word essay. See rationale for further information
Written exercise2M201000 word essay plan with annotated bibliography. See rationale for further information
Prof skill assessmnt2M15Answering engagement questions in seminars
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The module will be assessed by i) an essay plan, making up 20% of the final grade, ii) an essay of 2500 words, making up 65% of the final grade, and iii) seminar engagement, making up 15% of the final grade.

Essay plan – 1000 words (20%) – the essay plan provides students with the opportunity to learn how to structure essays by familiarising themselves with the overall subject of citizenship, how to structure an essay and referencing.

Essay – 2500 words (65%) – the essay allows for the critical application of topics and theories covered throughout the course, and tests students’ critical and analytical writing skills.
•       Students will be provided a list of questions from which to choose, drawing from concepts and issues raised in the lecturers and seminars. Essays provide an opportunity to assess and evaluate students’ skills in critical analyses, ability to critically engage with theory and achieve the intended knowledge outcomes of the course.
•       As the essay provides the most comprehensive opportunity for the students to demonstrate their engagement with the module and their analytical and written presentation skills it is the most highly weighted component.

Engagement (15%) - Students will be asked questions during seminars to encourage engagement with the module throughout the semester.

Reading Lists