On the BA International Relations and Global Development degree in the Department of International Politics at Aberystwyth University, you will have the opportunity to explore what international relations look like when viewed from beyond the developed world.
This course challenges the Western-centric narratives of international politics by studying the interconnectedness of the developed and developing powers, engaging with marginalised issues and voices, and exploring the emerging global powers in Latin America, South Asia and the Middle East. You will explore key issues such as colonialism, inequality, development, gender, identity, political economy, culture, race, religion, resistance and social movements.
Why study International Relations and Global Development at Aberystwyth University?
Studying this degree will allow you to broaden and deepen your understanding on key questions, such as:
- the ways that power and inequality operate at the local, regional, national and international level and shape global development
- the roles of governance, colonialism, poverty, conflict, health and capitalism , as well as the significance of race, gender, religion, ideology and nationalism for emerging powers and states in the Global South
You will become a student in the world’s first department of international politics, founded in 1919 after the end of World War I to help people understand the world.
You will be guided and mentored by lecturers who are enthusiastic, committed in providing you with an outstanding and dynamic learning environment.
All students will have the opportunity to 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.
We operate 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.
We run 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.
We are 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, we offer a number of degree schemes and modules taught entirely or partially through the medium of Welsh. Check out the module tab for further information about this course and go to 'Studying through the medium of Welsh' for more general information.
Lecturers in the Department of International Politics are all research active and qualified to PhD level, and most also have a PGCHE.
Modules September start - 2024
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.
|Exploring the International 1: Central Concepts and Core Skills *
|Globalization and Global Development
|Behind the Headlines
|Politics in the 21st Century
|The Making of the Modern World: War Peace and Revolution since 1789
|War, Strategy and Intelligence
|International Politics and Global Development
* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh
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
- the 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.
- We operate 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.
- We are 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, including alternative ways of ‘making sense’ of politics and 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 ideas
- contemporary political problems and how they are portrayed
- key issues facing the Social World.
In your second and third year you will opportunity to study:
- key concepts and issues in International Politics and Global Development
- issues surrounding global inequalities, globalisation, and international political economy
- regional politics such as in Latin America, the Middle East and the so called BRICs
- key issues such as gender, sexuality, poverty, race and religion in global and regional politics
- and undertake a compulsory dissertation in the final year 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 twice-yearly residential course away from Aberystwyth. Crisis games have been based on humanitarian crises, the Northern Ireland peace process, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the US presidential election, an artic environmental disaster, 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.
Typical Entry Requirements
UCAS Tariff 120 - 96
A Levels BBB-CCC
GCSE requirements (minimum grade C/4):
English or Welsh
BTEC National Diploma:
English Language Requirements:
See our Undergraduate English Language Requirements for this course. Pre-sessional English Programmes are also available for students who do not meet our English Language Requirements.
Country Specific Entry Requirements:
International students whose qualification is not listed on this page, can check our Country Specific Entry Requirements for further information.
The University welcomes undergraduate applications from students studying the Access to Higher Education Diploma or T-level qualifications, provided that relevant subject content and learning outcomes are met. We are not able to accept Access to Higher Education Diplomas or T-levels as a general qualification for every undergraduate degree course.
Our inclusive admissions policy values breadth as well as depth of study. Applicants are selected on their own individual merits and offers can vary. If you would like to check the eligibility of your qualifications before submitting an application, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for advice and guidance.