module specification

GI4004S - 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 15
School School of Social Sciences
Total study hours 150
45 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
105 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 60%   Essay (1500 words)
Coursework 40%   Take-home test
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Tuesday Morning

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 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 economy, gender relations, aid 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
- International institutions, globalisation and impact of economic interconnectedness
- 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;
• Show confidence in discussing issues of development and the ethical implications involved;
• Communicate outcomes of that teamwork in an effective way;
• Present written analysis or discussion in written form.

Assessment strategy

This takes two forms: Summative: An essay 1500 words (60%) and a ‘take-home’ test (40%). Formative: Essay-writing work.


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.
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
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
Greig, A., Hulme, D. & Turner, M. (2007) Challenging Global Inequality. Development Theory and Practice in the 21st Century, Palgrave Macmillan
Landman, T. (2009) Issues and Methods in Comparative Politics, T&F books UK.
Sachs, J. (2005) The End of Poverty: how we can make it happen in our lifetime, 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.