Students studying for the MA/PG Dip in International Relations (Distance Learning) are required to complete the following three modules during Semester 1 (20 credits each):
International Relations in Theory and Practice provides an advanced investigation into theoretical approaches in the discipline of International Relations and their relationship to substantive issues in international relations.
Global Political Economy examines the emerging global political economy through the vantage point of competing theoretical perspectives and the evolution of these perspectives, resulting from theoretical debates and the progressive encounter with empirical developments.
Advanced Research in International Relations examines the main approaches to the study of International Relations. It considers a variety of relevant research methods so that students can understand how evidence is produced and critically appraise the research they use.
In Semester 2 you take a further three modules (20 credits each)*:
International Development examines both the theory and practice of the international politics of development. The first half looks at key theoretical debates and how these have related to practice. Various contemporary issues are then explored to illustrate the theoretical debates.
Global Civil Society investigates what kind of a role civil society can play in global politics. Furthermore, as many changes have brought into question the nature of citizenship, the possibility of the emergence of post-national forms of citizenship is raised.
Critical Approaches to Terrorism will critically consider debates about how terrorism has assumed the significance it seems to possess, how we define and understand terrorism, as well as thinking about the nature of the threat that terrorism poses.
Dissertation (60 credits) - MA students are required to complete a 12,000-word dissertation on a topic related to any aspect of international relations. The dissertation also involves a presentation at an online dissertation seminar, where students must present their dissertation topic and proposal to their peers and members of staff.
Students taking the Postgraduate Certificate are required to complete 'International Relations in Theory and Practice', 'Global Political Economy' and one additional module from the list above (excluding ‘Advanced Research in International Relations’).
* As courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the module lists you choose from may vary from the ones shown here.
Teaching and learning
Research is fundamental to the International Relations programme and you will be taught by a team of research-active scholars who are all specialists and publish in their areas of expertise. We include aspects of our research in all our courses, teach specialist modules in our areas of expertise and supervise dissertations in our specialist subjects.
A range of online teaching methods will be employed throughout the programme in order to aid the quality of learning opportunities for students' knowledge and understanding of International Relations. Module leaders on the programme use a combination of narrated powerpoints, videos, and documents to introduce the specific topics covered in each module. A range of online activities are provided to encourage direct engagement with these materials. Online discussion forums then allow students to deepen their engagement with the topic by discussing a range of key questions related to the essential reading for that topic. At a number of points during the modules asynchronous online seminars are used to consolidate the learning activities covered during the preceding weeks. Space is also provided through the online seminars and/or 1-1 essay clinics to provide formative feedback on work being prepared for assessment later in the modules.
Approach to assessment
Assessment is conducted through a variety of assignments linked to the expected learning outcomes. Assignments will include essays, presentations, projects, reports and the dissertation. These will be spread over the year to provide constant feedback and assessment.
Moodle (our Virtual Learning Environment) is the online platform we use to deliver all the modules on this programme. Regular engagement via a range of online activities is required during the taught modules. Most modules also include 8-10 hours of online seminars, which provide students with the opportunity to interact in a live environment with staff and other students. Dissertation supervision during the summer period is arranged in consultation with your supervisor.
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published
on the website. For more information, please visit our
Changes to programmes