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Proliferation & International Security (Module)

Module description

*Please note that module information is indicative and is subject to change for future academic years.


The aims of the module are:

  • to provide students with a specialised knowledge of the causes, processes and effects of weapons proliferation as well as the evolution and effectiveness of the non-proliferation regime;
  • to provide an understanding of international relations theory and the strategic concepts necessary to understand weapons proliferation as part of the security strategy of states and how this relates to other international security issues;
  • to acquire a critical understanding of the significance of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons in the global order, including their historical role, contemporary trends and future direction;
  • to utilise conceptual and theoretical frameworks to analyse and critically examine case studies of proliferation;
  • to compare and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of historical and contemporary non-proliferation policies.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module, students will have demonstrated:

  • comprehensive knowledge of the empirical history of proliferation and non-proliferation;
  • a sophisticated understanding of the link between proliferation and broader international security issues, including the causes of peace and war, military doctrine and strategy;
  • an ability to engage critically with the concepts and theories of international relations and security studies and to use those tools to critically evaluate the causes, processes, consequences and policy responses to weapons proliferation;
  • the development of critical analysis, independent judgment, and oral and written presentation to a level commensurate with taught post-graduate study.

Staff information

Dr Susan Martin*

Dr Hassan Elbahtimy*

Teaching pattern

For a Full Year 30-credit module, teaching is typically 2 hours per week over two 10 week terms, so 40 hours of teaching, as well as 260 hours of self-study. Teaching can be split into lectures and seminars, with online flexible delivery options available.

Module assessment - more information

Coursework only*

Key information

Module code 7SSWM111

Credit level 7

Assessment coursework

Credit value 30

Semester Full-year

Study abroad module No