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The War on Terror - Anglo-American Foreign and Security Policy since 9.11 (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.


  • To study the ‘War on Terror’, broadly encompassing the period from the attacks of 11 September 2001 to the death of Osama bin Laden in May 2011.
  • To examine the foreign and security policies adopted by the United States and, to a lesser extent, the United Kingdom (and their allies) during these ten years, and to evaluate their successes and failures.
  • To better understand those responses by placing them in context and tracing the evolution of ideas and foreign policy traditions in this unique period.
  • To provide a dispassionate analysis of the policy-making process, moving away from polemical and/or self-justificatory accounts of the period, and offering an overview of events based on critical examination of evidence.

Learning Outcomes

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

  • In depth knowledge of the pre-history of 9/11 and of the foreign policy traditions existing in London and Washington DC before that critical turning point.
  • An understanding of the period known as ‘the War on Terror.
  • The ability to place issues of on-going political controversy in context and perspective.
  • Critical insight into the balancing of ideas and circumstances in the policy-making process.
  • A critical knowledge of the various policy debates and the decisions that were taken during this period.
  • A substantive appreciation of the complexities and key issues which defined the period of the ‘War on Terror.’

Staff information

Dr Barbara Zanchetta*

Teaching pattern

Typically, 1 credit equates to 10 hours of work. For a one term 20-credit module, this will equate to 20 hours of teaching (2 hours per week) with 180 hours of self study.

Module assessment - more information

Coursework & Exam*

Key information

Module code 7SSWM066

Credit level 7

Assessment coursework written examination/s

Credit value 20

Semester Semester 2 (spring)

Study abroad module No