Politics 1B: Introduction to International Relations POLITIC1002

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the theory and practice of International Relations (IR). The course will help students develop a critical understanding of the main actors and issues at the global stage, the nature of current military and non-military global challenges, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of competing theoretical attempts to conceptualise global politics.


Lectures: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday (3 lectures a week for 10 weeks)

Tutorials:  Weekly tutorials for 9 weeks (starting on week 2)

Requirements of Entry

Only open to level 1 students

Excluded Courses





Knowledge and skills exercises (15%)

1st essay 1200 words (35%)

2nd essay 2000 words (50%)

Course Aims

To examine critically different approaches to understanding international relations; identify the most important actors in international politics; identify the most important international institutions framing international politics; explore the most pressing problems confronting international politics today.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

■ acquire a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the main International Relations theories and concepts;

■ identify and evaluate the role of the main actors, institutions and processes of global politic

■ assess the range, nature, causes and responses to contemporary global challenges;

■ demonstrate the ability to think about global politics in a critical and theoretically informed manner.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Completion of all summative assessment. Achievement of a minimum of Grade D3.