module specification

GI6065 - Latin American Politics (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module title Latin American Politics
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Social Sciences and Professions
Total study hours 150
36 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
84 hours Guided independent study
30 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Essay (3000 words)
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Tuesday Afternoon

Module summary

On this module, you will have the opportunity to explore in depth and detail the politics and international relations in Latin America. We will question the assumptions about contemporary Latin America as a region and its place in the world. In particular, the module aims to examine: the underlying political ideas and trends instrumental in shaping Latin American politics today, including the role of the USA; the internal politics of modern Latin American states and the role of these states within the region; the impact due to globalisation and the rise of political and economic importance of other developing regions; reflect on the complexities of problem-solving in this context.

Prior learning requirements

None. Available for Study Abroad.

Module aims




The roots of the Latin American state; its characteristics (LO1); violence, populism, authoritarianism (LO2); transitions from dictatorship to democracy; the ‘pink wave’; social developments and environmental issues (LO1); the promotion and violation of human rights; the role of the US in the region; regional politics and the politics of the Global South (LO3). Case studies will include the ‘war on drugs’, indigenous rights and other contemporary issues.

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Teaching consists of lectures, workshops and seminar discussions. Lectures will combine formal lectures with videos, the use of written documents and internet materials. Teaching will be supported by materials posted on the Weblearn site, including links to useful online sources of information.

Class discussions and assessment will encourage reflective learning to develop transferable skills whilst encouraging personal development strategies and independent learning.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, you will be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of recent economic, social and political developments in Latin America.
2. Assess critically the various models and approaches in explaining these developments.
3. Understand the interplay of domestic, regional, transnational and international actors and processes in the region.
4. Independently research developments in Latin American politics, including the ability to synthesise and analyse complex arguments and exercise critical judgement.

Students who wish to graduate with BA International Relations with the Global South must take this module

Assessment strategy

The module is assessed by a 3000-word essay. The assessment criteria for the essay will be discussed in detail in class. Students are expected to present a critical approach for understanding theories, concepts, and debates on Latin American politics. They need to provide evidence of their ability to apply the concepts explored in class to case studies and convey arguments cogently, using their own thoughts, analysis and wording; support all claims and assertions with evidence, drawing from readings and case studies examined in the module; engage in use of appropriate academic sources and reference as assigned; and write with due regard to syntax, grammar, and expected academic standards.