Course specification and structure
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UDIRLSPA - BA International Relations with Spanish

Course Specification

Validation status Validated
Highest award Bachelor of Arts Level Honours
Possible interim awards Bachelor of Arts, Diploma of Higher Education, Certificate of Higher Education, Bachelor of Arts
Total credits for course 360
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School School of Social Sciences
Subject Area Politics and International Relations
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 3 YEARS  
Part-time Day 4 YEARS  
Course leader  

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning

The degree has a growing use of pedagogical innovation as well as utilising traditional teaching methods. The latter includes a mixture of lectures, seminars, and workshops. Within this a combination of whole group, small group, and student-led and tutor-led teaching occurs. This will include face to face teaching and discussion, but there is also an increasing emphasis on the use of blended learning opportunities. Many modules already are paper free, with considerable learning materials and resources being placed on relevant module weblearn/BlackBoard sites, e.g. lecture notes, module handbooks, video links, recorded lectures, podcasts, first hand documents, and blogs. Teaching staff provide electronic feedback, after the electronic submission of formative assessments, and through on-line office hours. A growing number of materials are also available on-line through the University library, including access to journals and e-books.

This is all designed to open up the learning space for students to enable them to access the degree 24/7, improving the student learning experience, whilst increasing cost-effectiveness and efficiency.

An additional and important part of the teaching and learning strategy is the academic research which is carried by PIR staff. This is used to support teaching through the transferring of staff research skills and knowledge to enhance the student learning experience, i.e. the research is effectively feedback to students through teaching.

Staff research specialisms are an essential component of the International Relations curriculum, with students benefitting from being taught by specialists.

Course aims

The BA in International Relations with Spanish is offered as part of our suite of Politics and International Relations programmes in the School of Social Sciences. The degree aims to provide students with a broad perspective on the political, economic and historical aspects of international relations and to enhance their ability to understand the complex forces shaping modern global politics. It also aims to provide language development for those whose interests lie in the Spanish speaking world, and whose interests would be enhanced by improving their abilities in the Spanish language. In particular, the course aims to:

  • place questions of international order and decision-making at the centre of analysis;
  • ensure that students acquire knowledge and understanding in areas of International Relations theory and analysis;
  • enable students to understand and use the concepts, approaches and key research methods and methodologies of the discipline and develop an understanding of its contested nature and the problematic character of International Relations inquiry;
  • develop in students the capacity to think critically about events, ideas and institutions;
  • encourage students to relate the academic study of International Relations to questions of public concern;
  • assist students to develop a range of cognitive, social and language skills relevant to their intellectual, vocational and personal development, with a particular emphasis on employability, e..g students can apply the knowledge gained from the course in a work experience situation through the Honours level work placement project;
  • provide a curriculum supported by scholarship, staff development and a research culture that promotes breadth and depth of academic inquiry and debate

Accordingly, the syllabus seeks to assist students’ understanding of the key issues of global politics whether matters of security and peacekeeping, conflict and competition between states, the key concerns of the foreign policy of major powers, the strength and success of international organisations, the international political economy and issues like trade and relations between the developed world and the 'Global South' or 'Third World', terrorism, regional problems like the conflicts in the Middle East, or the salience of ethical issues such as environmentalism, democratisation and human rights.

Course learning outcomes

The following learning outcomes incorporate and depend on systematic understanding of the key aspects of the knowledge base of [the subject], including a coherent and detailed knowledge of some specialist areas in depth.

On successful completion of this course students will be able to:

  • deploy accurately established techniques of analysis and enquiry within International Relations with Spanish;
  • devise and sustain arguments, and/or to solve problems, using ideas and techniques, some of which are at the forefront of International Relations with Spanish;
  • describe and comment upon particular aspects of current research, or equivalent advanced scholarship, in International Relations with Spanish, recognising the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits of knowledge;
  • manage their own learning, and to make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources (for example, refereed research articles and/or original materials appropriate to International Relations with Spanish;
  • apply the methods and techniques that they have learned to review, consolidate, extend and apply their knowledge and understanding, and to initiate and carry out projects;
  • critically evaluate arguments, assumptions, abstract concepts and data (that may be incomplete), to make judgements, and to frame appropriate questions to achieve a solution - or identify a range of solutions - to a problem;
  • communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences;
  • exercise initiative and personal responsibility, including decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts;
  • undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature

Principle QAA benchmark statements

Languages, Cultures and Societies
Politics and International Relations

Assessment strategy

The course combines both formative and summative assessment opportunities, embracing a variety of methods including: essays, exams, seminar performance, seminar presentations (both individual and group), portfolios, blogs, policy documents, and book reviews. The majority will be tutor assessed, but a number will be peer-reviewed in seminars.

The strategy is designed to maximise the development of subject specific skills and employability skills appropriate to each level of the degree.

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

There is a core placement module at level 6. Employability and work experience are central to the course.

A study-abroad programme can be undertaken as part of the degree programme. The Course Leader (or a delegated representative) must approve the programme of study proposed at the overseas host institution. The Governance and International Relations section has Socrates exchange links with a number of European Universities – Bologna, Bordeaux, Istanbul, Madrid and Stockholm. It is also possible to study in the United States. The University has exchange links with a number of universities, such as the State University of New York, City University New York, East Carolina, Roosevelt University (Chicago) and a number of colleges in the University of California state system. These exchanges are arranged through the University’s International Office.

Modules required for interim awards

See Course Structure

Arrangements on the course for careers education, information and guidance

Careers guidance and education will form part of the course through module content and promotion of CELTS. Practitioners will also be invited to speak on a variety of modules with regard to careers guidance.

Other external links providing expertise and experience

A number of practitioners will be invited in from governmental organisations, international governmental organisations and non-governmental organisations to speak on a variety of modules, concentrating on subject specific skills and employability. Visits will also be arranged outside of the university.

Career opportunities

Successful graduates have been employed in the diplomatic services, governmental organisations such as the European Union and the United Nations, and non-governmental organisations specialising in international development, overseas aid, human rights and environmental fields. Students have also gained employment in research and teaching, international business, the media, and political campaigns.

Many of our students also go on to be successful in postgraduate study at a number of universities, including the London School of Economics, King’s College London and SOAS.

Entry requirements

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • a minimum of grades BBC in A levels (or a minimum of 112 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg Advanced Diploma)
  • English Language GCSE at grade C (grade 4 from 2017) or above (or equivalent)

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2016/17 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 09 Aug 2016 Last validation date 09 Aug 2016  
JACS codes L250 (International Relations): 75% , R410 (Spanish Language): 25%
Route code IRLSPA

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 04 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
GI4004 Introduction to International Development Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR TUE AM
GI4005 Introduction to International Relations Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON PM
GI4007 Peace, Conflict and Diplomacy since 1945 Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON AM
OSLXX1 Spanish Language Core 15 NORTH AUT    
          NORTH SPR    
OSLXX2 Spanish Language Core 15 NORTH AUT    
          NORTH SPR    

Stage 1 Level 04 January start Not currently offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
GI4004 Introduction to International Development Core 30        
GI4005 Introduction to International Relations Core 30        
GI4007 Peace, Conflict and Diplomacy since 1945 Core 30        
OSLXX1 Spanish Language Core 15        
OSLXX2 Spanish Language Core 15        

Stage 2 Level 05 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
GI5005 Approaches to International Relations and Forei... Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR TUE PM
OSLXX1 Spanish Language Core 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT    
OSLXX2 Spanish Language Core 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT    
GI5003 Shifting Global Power Option 30 NORTH AUT+SPR    
GI5006 Diplomacy Old and New Option 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON PM
GI5008 Peace and Conflict in Theory and Practice Option 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON AM
GI5060 American Foreign Policy Option 15 NORTH SPR MON AM
GI5061 American Government Option 15        
GI5063 Politics of the Middle East Option 15 NORTH SPR TUE AM
GI5064 The Politics of the European Union Option 15 NORTH SPR THU AM
XK0000 Extension of Knowledge Module Option 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT    

Stage 3 Level 06 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
GI6005 International Security in an Era of Globalisation Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR TUE AM
GI6P51 Project 1 Semester Core 15 NORTH SPR WED PM
          NORTH AUT WED PM
GI6W51 Placement 1 Semester Core 15 NORTH SPR WED PM
          NORTH AUT WED PM
OSLXX1 Spanish Language Core 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT    
OSLXX2 Spanish Language Core 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT    
GI6002 Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding Option 30 NORTH AUT+SPR THU PM
GI6007 Public Diplomacy and Global Communication Option 30 NORTH AUT+SPR WED PM
GI6010 International Aid and Development Option 30        
GI6064 African Politics Option 15 NORTH SPR TUE PM
GI6065 Latin American Politics Option 15 NORTH AUT MON PM
XK0000 Extension of Knowledge Module Option 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT