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Past and Present of British Intelligence (Module)

Module description

*Please note that although all module information is correct for the 2017/18 academic year, it is subject to change for future academic years.


This course aims to provide:

  • A framework for understanding intelligence, what it is, and how it works.
  • A critical appreciation of the intelligence cycle, and of the role of the JIC in particular.
  • A systematic investigation into how intelligence producers interact with intelligence consumers.
  • An examination, through the use of historical and contemporary case studies, into intelligence successes and failures.
  • An introduction to the origins and composition of a JIC assessment, through the use of practical investigation.
  • The environment for developing critical analysis, independent judgment, oral and written presentation at a level commensurate with taught postgraduate study.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the course students will be able to demonstrate:

  • An appreciation of the way in which intelligence plays a role in governmental affairs.
  • A critical engagement with the methodological issues associated with the study of intelligence, within the wider context of governmental decision-making.
  • A clear understanding of the sources used to study intelligence.
  • An in-depth knowledge of the role played by British intelligence in policy making.
  • An ability to engage critically with the literature on the subject, and to undertake primary, independent research.
  • A range of transferable skills, including the use of oral presentations, multimedia presentations, written work, and group work.

Staff information

Dr Huw Dylan*

Teaching pattern

Typically, 1 credit equates to 10 hours of work. For a Full Year 40-credit module, this will equate to 40 hours of teaching time (2 hours per week) with 360 hours of self study.

Module assessment - more information

Coursework only*

Key information

Module code 7SSWM135

Credit level 7

Assessment coursework

Credit value 40

Semester Full-year

Study abroad module Yes