BA

International Politics

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Key Facts

Code L241
  • Typical A-level offer

    BBB with B in any subject

  • Course Length

    3 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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International Politics is about how we tackle global challenges. World politics stands at a fascinating but difficult historical juncture, one that as political beings, we all need to understand, explain and, in part shape. With the relative decline of the ‘West’, the emergence of new powers and actors, and the increasingly complex and intertwined nature of local, national, regional, international and global problems, ‘international politics’ is entering a new era. The degree in International Politics offers students the opportunity to study the concepts, practices, policies, histories and regions that make up international politics as a discipline and to explore the ways in which, all these factors are undergoing radical transformation in the twenty-first century. 

Department of International Politics: 95% student satisfaction (NSS 2017)

95% of our graduates were in work or further study within 6 months, 1% more than Social Sciences graduates nationally. (DLHE 2017)

  • Overview
  • Modules
  • Employability
  • Teaching & Learning
  • Student Views

Overview

Why study International Politics at Aberystwyth?

  • Our department is ranked in the top 40 in the world for academic reputation. (QS, 2017).
  • Taught in the world’s first department of international politics, founded in 1919 after the end of World War I to help the world understand the world.
  • A UK top ten Department, and best in Wales, for student satisfaction (NSS 2016) and research excellence (REF 2014).
  • Taught by lecturers who are enthusiastic, committed in providing you with an outstanding and dynamic learning environment.
  • Participate in our renowned ‘Crisis Games’; a three day role playing exercise in political, economic and diplomatic manoeuvre, developing negotiation and communication, critical thinking, team work, and problem-solving skills.  
  • The Department operates a prestigious Parliamentary Placement Scheme, enabling you to gain valuable experience working alongside an MP (House of Commons, Westminster) or an AM (Welsh Assembly, Cardiff) for a period of 4-6 weeks during the summer. During this time you will write reports and speeches, undertake research projects, and respond to constituency issues. There may be further opportunities for you to get involved in elections and various international issues.
  • The Department also has an International Student Exchange Programme based on close links with carefully selected universities in Europe, Asia, North America and Australia, offering you an excellent opportunity to expand your academic and social horizons by spending a part of your university experience abroad.
  • The Department is also home to Interstate, the oldest student-run international politics journal in the United Kingdom, providing a unique opportunity for you to publish your work (particularly advantageous if you wish to progress to postgraduate study) or gain valuable experience working as part of the editorial team.Stimulating student societies foster a strong sense of community within the department, offering a programme of political debates, visiting speakers, conferences and workshops, alongside numerous social activities such as an annual ball.
  • Last, but not least, the Department also offers a number of degree schemes and modules taught entirely or partially through the medium of Welsh. Check out the module tab for further information. 
Our Staff

Lecturers in the Department of International Politics are all research active and qualified to PhD level, and most also have a PGCHE.

Modules

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

Employability

Employability is embedded within all courses provided by us. Our degrees provide a solid foundation for a vast array of careers across a range of sectors. In a rapidly shifting global economy, our graduates are adaptable and able to draw on a range of transferable skills, ensuring that they are always in demand.

The skill sets include:

  • Effective problem solving and creative thinking skills
  • Information technology skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Time-management, organisational skills
  • Communication skills both written and oral
  • Self-motivation and self-reliance

What opportunities are there for me after I complete my degree?

Here is an example of what some of our graduates are doing:

Roles in the development sector, local and national politics, the Civil Service, Government research, Social researcher, roles in the third sector such as with NGOs, work with international organisations, journalism.

What opportunities are there for me whilst studying at University? 

Employability is embedded across our teaching. We teach our students to aim for the career they want, not the job that they can get.

  • The Department operates a prestigious Parliamentary Placement scheme, enabling you to gain valuable experience working alongside an MP (House of Commons, Westminster) or an AM (Welsh Assembly, Cardiff) for a period of 4-6 weeks during the summer. During this time, you will write reports and speeches, undertake research projects, and respond to constituency issues. There may be further opportunities for you to get involved in elections and various international issues.
  • The Department is also home to Interstate, the oldest student-run international politics journal in the United Kingdom, providing a unique opportunity for you to publish your work (particularly advantageous if you wish to progress to postgraduate study) or gain valuable experience working as part of the editorial team. Stimulating student societies foster a strong sense of community within the department, offering a programme of political debates, visiting speakers, conferences and workshops, alongside numerous social activities such as an annual ball.

What work experience opportunities exist whilst studying? 

Click here to find out about the various opportunities that our Aberystwyth University Careers team offer.

Enhance your employability prospects with GO Wales and YES (Year in Employment Scheme) managed by our Careers department. 

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

The breakdown below will provide you with an illustration of what you may study during the three year degree scheme.

In your first year you will have the opportunity to explore:  

  • A range of perspectives and approaches to the study of international politics
  • The development and progress of international relations during the twentieth century
  • The different methodologies to analyse topical issues in international and domestic politics
  • Political theory & key political issues
  • Contemporary political problems and how they are portrayed
  • Key issues in the fields of War, Strategy and Intelligence

In your second and third years you will have the opportunity to study issues such as:

  • Theories, approaches and perspectives in international relations
  • A range of challenges facing the international system, such as globalisation, international security, the environment, inequality, global health, conflict and post conflict environments
  • A variety of regional and national politics including Latin American, Russia, Europe and the EU, the BRICS, the Middle East, the UK
  • International twentieth century history and Cold War
  • A compulsory dissertation to demonstrate your substantive knowledge in your chosen subject area

How will I be taught?

We deliver this degree through the medium of lectures and seminars.

We will assign you a personal tutor who will be with you throughout your degree, this person will help you any problems whether these are academic-related or personal issues.

We assess our students through essays, reports, examinations, book reviews, learning logs and presentations.

We encourage our students to take part in the Crisis Games, which is a yearly residential event away from Aberystwyth. Crisis games have been based on humanitarian crises, the Northern Ireland peace process, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the US presidential election, environmental disaster in the Arctic, war between Russia and Georgia. The Crisis Games will allow you to learn about aspects of international politics which cannot be taught in lectures and seminars, especially the constraints which political leaders face in responding to various crises. This is no doubt, the highlight of the year. 

Student Views

I love the International Politics course, because it's a subject that attracts a wide range of people from around the UK and internationally, meaning you encounter a wide range of people and opinions. The seminars allow for great discussion and learning, and the lectures themselves are interesting with just as interesting lecturers! Roxy Taylor

The Department of International Politics has provided me with a new-found understanding of the world through modules on issues surrounding concepts of globalisation and the lives of women in the Third World. With experts in so many fields it is great having such an approachable set of tutors. My three years here at Aberystwyth have been educational as well as enjoyable and I would recommend studying here to anyone. Hannah Mitchell

Great lecturers, great building, great people on the course! Matthew David Bold

Typical Entry Requirements

A Levels BBB with B in any subject

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh

BTEC National Diploma:
DMM-DDM

International Students

International Baccalaureate:
30 points overall

European Baccalaureate:
70-75% overall

Applicants are considered on their individual merits and offers can vary. For further information, please contact ug-admissions@aber.ac.uk

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