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International Relations (Module)

Module description

The module is designed as an introduction to the only academic discipline that is specifically concerned with the study of "the international". It starts with a close examination of the various approaches within international relations, its theories, and the specific aspects of the international they seek to understand. The module will cover a broad range of approaches, such as realist, liberal-institutionalist, and constructivist thinking and also take a close look at global governance and international political economy approaches. Equipped with a basic understanding of these different perspectives, you will then be challenged to apply them to major real world issues. Through discussions, presentations, and group work we will examine how the various perspectives can help us make sense of current international events and issues.

This module will consist of a minimum of 45 contact hours with teaching taking place between 9am and 5pm from Monday to Friday. An indicative timetable will be available shortly and a detailed timetable for this module will be available on KEATS from June 2020.

Learning outcomes and objectives

By the end of the module, you should have:

  • Distinguished between realist, liberal-institutionalist, constructivist, IPE and global governance approaches to international relations, including an understanding of the major debates and the diversity within and between these schools of thought.
  • Explained the fundamental principles and entities which structure the contemporary international system, and the debates around them.
  • Appreciated a number of key policy questions of international relations (e.g. the US-China relationship, energy security, the future of the United Nations, globalisation), and situated these issues within a theoretical framework of international relations scholarship.
  • Understood the fundamental ontological and epistemological questions and debates that have influenced all social sciences. 

Staff information

Dr Diana Bozhilova, Summer Programmes Teaching Fellow at King’s College London and Head of Faculty at New College of the Humanities. 

Dr Bozhilova is a political science expert whose published research focuses on democratisation and reform, as well as on energy security and development. She holds positions at King's College London and New College of the Humanities in the UK and served as an expert witness to the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Union.

Teaching pattern

  • Lectures
  • Seminars and tutorials
  • Private study

Module assessment - more information

  • One essay of 3,000 words (100%) (summative)
  • Group presentation of 15 minutes (formative)

Key information

Module code 4ZSS0057

Credit level 4

Assessment coursework presentation/s

Credit value Classes can often be taken for credit towards degrees at other institutions, and are examined to university standards. To receive credit for King's summer classes, contact your home institution to ask them to award external credit. This class is equivalent to an undergraduate degree module and usually awarded 3-4 US credits or 7.5 ECTS.

Semester summer session 2

Study abroad module No