module specification

GI4004 - Introduction to International Development (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Introduction to International Development
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Sciences
Total study hours 300
219 hours Guided independent study
81 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Group Presentation 30%   Group presentation
Coursework 40%   Essay (1500 words)
Seen Examination 30%   Seen exam (2 hours)
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Tuesday Morning
Year (Spring and Summer) North Thursday Afternoon

Module summary

This module provides a broad introduction to International Development studies in tandem with International Relations and other Politics and IR courses. It presents the underlying theories and places these against contemporary globalisation processes and draws on the history of today’s political systems of developing and emerging states in Latin America, Africa, Asia, etc., including the impact of colonisation and the integration of the Third world into the global economy. Special consideration is given to the evolution of capitalism and the social transformations and struggles evident in the Global South, and from a comparative perspective. Issues include the roles of the international institutions, paths of developmental states, political cultures, religion, gender relations and the environment in today’s interconnected world.

Module aims

  • To introduce the main concepts and debates in international development;
  • To examine the impact of economic and social development on political systems today;
  • To promote awareness of the diversity of approaches to international development;
  • To provide the skills necessary for comparative analysis;
  • To enhance the ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing;
  • To develop competence in discussion and group presentation.


- International development: theories and debates
- Political systems  and development
- Civil Society and social change
- Political culture in the developing world
- International institutions, globalisation and impact.
- Methods of comparison and Case studies.

Learning and teaching

This module is taught over 30 weeks, made up of a two-hour lecture + workshop and an hour of seminar work. Students will be expected to engage with the Virtual Learning Environment; be able to retrieve ‘posts’ from the lectures and supplementary teaching materials, and handle information from Internet sources, journals and books (enhancing academic literacy). As students acquire knowledge of issues, theories and themes under discussion, seminar work enhances communication and problem-solving skills and ‘real world’ group-work (oral group presentation and written summary); An introduction to comparative study develops critical and conceptual skills as well as numeracy and analysis. Written and formative feedback aims to empower students, develop their written expression and study skills, and gain through self-reflection.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the main concepts and approaches to development;
  • Demonstrate awareness of contemporary trends in international development;
  • Use techniques of comparative analysis in a methodologically appropriate fashion;
  • Show confidence in discussing issues of development and the ethical implications involved;
  • Work productively in a team, and communicate outcomes of that teamwork in an effective way;
  • Present written analysis or discussion in written form.

Assessment strategy

This takes three inter-related forms: A group presentation and summary (30%); An essay (40%); A Seen examination (30%). Formative assessment continues throughout the module developing summary skills, presentation skills and written (essay/exam) skills.


Allen, T. & Thomas, A. (eds) (2004) Poverty and Development into the Twenty-First Century, OUP.
Burnell, P., Randall, V. & Rakner, L. (2008) Politics in the Developing World, OUP. 3rd ed.
Calvert, P. & Calvert S. (2001) Politics and Society in the Third World, 2nd ed, Longman.
Chang, H.J.(2011) 23 things they don’t tell you about capitalism, Bloomsbury Press
Chang, Ha-Joon (2008), Bad Samaritans: the guilty secrets of rich nations and the threat to global prosperity, Random House Business
Chant, S. (2007) Gender, Generation and Poverty, Edward Elgar Publishers.
Collier, P. (2008) The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It, OUP
Desai, V.& Potter, R.E. (2008) The Companion to Development Studies, Hodder Educ.
Easterly, W.(2006)The White Man’s Burden: Why the West’s efforts to Aid the Rest have done so much ill and so little good, Penguin E-book
Fanon, F.(2008) Black Skin, White Mask, Pluto E-book
Greig, A., Hulme, D. & Turner, M. (2007) Challenging Global Inequality. Development Theory and Practice in the 21st Century, Palgrave Macmillan
Haynes, J.(ed) (2005) Palgrave Advances in Development Studies, Palgrave.
Landman, T. (2009) Issues and Methods in Comparative Politics, T&F books UK.
Potter, R. & Desai, V.(eds)(2002) The Companion to Development, Arnold.
Rodney, W.(1981) How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, Howard University Press
Sachs, J. (2005) The End of Poverty: how we can make it happen in our lifetime, Penguin
Said, E. (2005) Orientalism, Penguin.
Schech, S.& Haggis, J.(2003) Culture and Development: A Critical Introduction, Blackwell.
Sen, A. (2001) Development as Freedom, Oxford Paperbacks, OUP.
Shaxson, N.(2012) Treasure Islands. Tax havens and the men who stole the world, Vintage
Stiglitz, J. (2002), Globalization and Its Discontents, Norton, New York
Sumner, A.& Tribe, M. (2008) International Development Studies: Theories and Methods in Research and Practice. Sage.
Willis, K. (2005) Theories and Practices of Development, Routledge.