International Relations with Sociology BA (Hons)
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This fascinating interdisciplinary degree will help you to become an active agent of change in the international system. You'll deconstruct the impact of globalisation on policy, society and people, and examine the big issues: equity, ethics, social justice and global responsibility.
Our interactive seminars and workshop encourage exciting, free and open debate.
We offer the opportunity for all undergraduate Home/EU students to undertake a work placement, internship or work experience while studying a full-time course starting in September 2018.
Why International Relations with Sociology at LSBU?
- Wide ranging research interests: global political economy, international human rights, sexualities and society, global sport, human trafficking, sustainability and climate change.
- Our interactive seminars and workshops encourage free and open debate - for you to share ideas and learn from each other.
- Global alumni network: Become part of an 80,000-strong alumni network.
- No.1 London Modern university for Learning Resources (National Student Survey 2016).
- Enhance your employability by taking part in our volunteering programme - and take advantage of optional 'work placement' module.
- Be part of an academic community dedicated to social justice and global responsibility - with inspiring schedule of guest speakers, events, volunteering opportunities and exchange of ideas.
Modules cover an array of enticing topics. You’ll cover contemporary sociology in the context of globalisation and internalisation. Other topics include crimes against humanity, political activism and social movements, as well as the application of IR and political concepts to forge a more just and sustainable future.
- Introduction to international relations
This module introduces key issues in International Relations. We'll focus on major contemporary global events and processes and explore perspectives and concepts that inform international analysis. The content will respond to real-world controversies and events for the year, such as climate change, humanitarian intervention, the Syrian conflict and the Olympic Games. Assessment: group presentation (30%), blog (30%) and foreign policy briefing paper (40%).
- Revolutions, wars and the making of the modern world
This module introduces some of the major themes and events in modern world history. It begins with an examination of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution. It moves on to look at the Industrial Revolution, national unification movements in Italy and Germany in the nineteenth century, Empire, the First World War and the ideologies of Fascism, Nazism and Soviet Communism. It looks at the impact of key historical figures such as Lenin, Stalin, Mussolini and Hitler and their impact on the shape of the modern world. Taught through: weekly lectures, seminars and group debates. Assessment: group work and presentation (40%) and 1,500-word essay (60%).
- Issues in contemporary sociology
Issues in Contemporary Society covers key concepts in sociology and addresses issues such as migration, race, gender and class. The focus throughout the module is how inequalities are reinforced through the changing nature of citizenship, sexualities, religion and mass media.
- Introduction to international relations theory
This module introduces key perspectives in international relations theory, both classical and modern. We'll explore classical thinkers, including Hobbes, Kant and Marx, but our emphasis is on twentieth century International Relations’ thinking. The Realist tradition will be a central concern, but critiques and alternatives will also be analysed. Throughout the module, we'll apply IR theory to real-world developments such as: war and peace, global justice, human rights, foreign policy and diplomacy, nationalism, and revolution. Assessment: logbook (20%), 1,500-word essay (50%) and 1-hr exam (30%).
- War and social change in the 20th century
This module introduces the major themes and events in twentieth century world history from the Second World War onward. It examines contemporary historical events that have impacted society, including the Cold War, decolonisation, Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist revolution, the effect of New Right ideologies in the 1980's, the fall of the Soviet Union and its consequences, globalisation, as well as moves towards European integration and the development of the European Union. You'll analyse the impact of these key events on the shaping of the modern and contemporary world. Taught through: weekly lectures and seminars. Assessment 2,000-word essay (100%).
- The sociological imagination
You'll be introduced to some of the main questions raised about human societies. The Module invites you to explore significant aspects of the origins and development of sociological inquiry within a historical context. You'll be encouraged to read specifically selected pieces about key concepts and approaches to the study of social action in our societies.
- Global governance, regionalism and the nation state
This module explores the contemporary multi-layered international system. We'll focus on the complex, dialectical (non-linear) economic, social and political relations between nation-states, regionalisation and globalisation. Regionalisation has emerged across the world, but is most developed in Europe. We'll also explore the role of international organisations in the global system, with particular emphasis on the United Nations system, including international financial institutions. In problematising one-sided arguments about the decline of the state, we'll critically reflect on state power and global inter-dependence in the 21st century. Assessment: international news diary (50%) and 2-hr exam (50%).
- Social research skills 1
In the first half of this module we'll introduce basic issues in research design and methodology. Topics covered include: experimental design and random assignment, formulating research questions sampling and measurement. In the second half of the module you'll learn the basics of statistical analysis and how to use SPSS.
- The environment, sustainability and climate change
This module provides a grounding in the study of the politics of environmental sustainability. The module focuses firstly on the debate on environmental sustainability which includes the challenge by environmentalists that it is a contradiction. Alternative approaches will also be examined including: green theory, the free market and Marxist approaches. The second part of the module looks at increasing global competition for water, food, energy and oil. The politics of climate change and deforestation; transport and tourism; global security and justice will also be covered. The third part of the course focuses on case studies of organisations and movements involved in environmental sustainability. We'll look into the IPCC; Copenhagen Climate Council; the Fair Trade Movement; Ethical Consumerism and the Environmental Movement.
- Globalisation and development
This module introduces key concepts, issues and theoretical debates in development studies. The module focuses on the developing societies of Africa, Asia, and Latin America and seeks to develop a comparative analysis of the divergent developmental experiences of Africa and the BRIC economies. The module locates the debates and issues that it explores within both an historical and global context and encourages students to explore the inter-dependence of the developed and developing world.
Plus one module from:
- Social theory and modern society
What is modernity and how has it shaped society and sociology? Across all the social sciences there is a powerful awareness that western society changed around the 1750s – in a word it began to become ‘modern’. This has been seen as a largely positive change by most people, politicians and sociologists. But what is involved in the change, how did it shape the West, what did this mean for non-Western societies, and has it all been positive? We will engage with all these questions, around issues of class, bureaucracy, rationality, order and the Holocaust.
- Social research skills 2
This module introduces students to the basics of qualitative research methodologies. You learn about central philosophical questions in the philosophy of the social sciences and how they relate to the qualitative/quantitative distinction. You'll develop a range of qualitative data collection techniques ranging from interviews to archival research. They are also introduced to different qualitative analytic techniques. Finally we'll investigate the ethical issues that are specific to qualitative research. We teach this module through lectures and workshops where you apply the principles you've learned to specific research questions.
- Contemporary dynamics of the world system
This module explores the structures, dynamics and transformations of world orders and provides students with an understanding of international relations since the demise of the nineteenth-century Pax Britannica. We'll explore successive world orders, analysing the period of rivalry between the major powers (1875-1945), and the era of Cold War bi-polarity and Pax Americana (1945-1990). We'll focus on post-Cold War developments, including the rise of China, the debate on US empire and hegemony, and processes of globalization and transnationalisation. We'll also explore contemporary patterns of international disorder, including the developing multi-polarity and the rise of transnational Islamic activism. Assessment: seminar presentation (20%), 1,000-word book review (30%) and 2-hr exam (50%).
- Crimes of the powerful: states, corporations and human rights
This module explores the phenomena of state crime, corporate crime and the involvement of powerful social forces in human rights abuses. We'll examine the problems involved in conceptualising state crimes and human rights and looks at contemporary crimes against humanity, including in the area of environmental rights. We'll also explore the problems involved in regulating and controlling state crime and human rights atrocities in which states and state officials play a key role. The critical engagement with globalization provides a you with a framework to explore significant contemporary debates and developments. Assessment: 500-word annotated bibliography (20%) and 2,500-word case study (80%).
- Politics and protest: new social and political movements
This module examines forms of social and political conflict located within contemporary western societies. The main focus is on understanding social movements and forms of political contention in the changing social structure of these societies. Although it has a contemporary western focus, we'll situate discussion in the context of historical and comparative material on social movements. Our emphasis throughout will be on examining the ability of social and political theory to understand the nature of political identity and its expression in social movements both in the past and in the present.
- Research project (double module)
This Level 6 double module covers two semesters and consists of the research for and completion of an academic project with a 10,000 word limit. You'll choose an IR subject relevant to the study of International Relations in which they wish to specialise, and then undertake and complete the project. During the whole process, from choice of subject to final submission, you'll have the support and guidance of an academic supervisor. Assessment: project proposal (15%) and 10,000-word project (80%).
Plus one module from:
- Sociology for the 21st century
The world is changing. Huge advances in areas such as information technology, computing, communications, mobile devices, transport, and building techniques are changing the way we interact, do business, build cities, and go about our daily lives. How do the theories that have dominated sociological thinking relate to and comprehend these changes? Do we need new theories? This module will look at the latest sociological theories that are trying to understand what these changes are, how they affect society, and how sociology itself might have to change.
- Race, culture and identity
This module addresses the centrality of race and ethnicity to social relations. We'll analyse race and ethnicity within a changing scholarship and within their historical, cultural, political and theoretical contexts. Theoretical understandings of the intersectionality of race, gender and sexuality will also be explored, highlighting their impact on all aspects of people’s lives. The complexities of analysing race, gender and sexuality are applied to representations in cultural forms, such as media and film. We'll also demonstrates how the concepts covered have been influential in shaping public policy.
Graduates are in demand for their skill-mix, including analysis, critical thinking, research, and strong communication skills.
As a graduate you’ll be able to appreciate that problems are often multi-faceted and require thoughtful, creative and logical approaches. Such graduates are highly valuable (in both commercial and Not-for- Profit sectors) because of their ability to contribute to strategic decision making.
Typical careers are:
- voluntary sector project management
- work in NGOs, local and central government
- general commercial businesses
- national delegations at the United Nations
We are University of the Year for Graduate Employment - The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018.
At LSBU, we want to set you up for a successful career. During your studies – and for two years after you graduate – you’ll have access to our Employability Service, which includes:
- An online board where you can see a wide range of placements: part-time, full-time or voluntary. You can also drop in to see our Job Shop advisers, who are always available to help you take the next step in your search.
- Our Careers Gym offering group workshops on CVs, interview techniques and finding work experience, as well as regular presentations from employers across a range of sectors.
Our Student Enterprise team can also help you start your own business and develop valuable entrepreneurial skills.
Prof. Craig Barker is the Dean of the School of Law and Social Sciences and a Professor of International Law. Appointed in 2015, Prof. Barker has taught extensively in the areas of domestic and international law, as well as international politics. He is a leading international expert on issues relating to diplomatic law.
Dr Caitríona Beaumont is Associate Professor in Social History specialising in the history of female activism, women’s movements and feminism in twentieth century Britain and Ireland.
Dr Matthew Bond is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Social Sciences and Course Director of the Sociology undergraduate programme.
Dr Budd specialises in International Relations, with interests in international theory, imperialism, and globalisation. His last book analysed neo-Gramscian international relations theory.
Clara is a Lecturer in International Relations at LSBU. She has published in Critical Studies on Terrorism, Critical Studies on Security and contributed to chapters in edited volumes on counter-terrorism and the temporality of emotions.
Dr Morton is interested in philosophy of science and the theory of agency.
Dr Pine currently teaches modules on 'Revolutions, Wars and the Making of the Modern World', 'War and Social Change in the Twentieth Century' and 'Genocide and Crimes against Humanity'.
Dr Shaminder Takhar is Associate Professor in Sociology specialising in race, gender, sexuality and social justice. She is the research ethics co-ordinator for the School of Law and Social Sciences.
Teaching and learning
You can expect to be taught through a mix of innovative and traditional teaching methods:
- social media
- group work
- policy briefs
- essay writing
Our central London location means that our you can benefit from London’s rich resources:
- British Library
- Imperial War Museum
- Institute of Historical Research
- Wiener Library
- Women’s Library @LSE
- Black Cultural Archive
Personal Academic Tutoring
As an undergraduate Law and Social Science student, you will be allocated a named tutor during your first semester at LSBU. The role of your tutor is to be your primary contact for academic and professional development support.
Your tutor will support you to get the most of your time at LSBU, providing advice and signposting to other sources of support in the University. They should be the first person at the university that you speak to if you are having any difficulties that are affecting your work. These could be academic, financial, health-related or another type of problem.
You will have appointments with your personal academic tutor at least three times a year for 15 minutes throughout your course. You can contact your tutor for additional support by email or sign up for an appointment slots advertised outside your tutor's office.
- A Level BCC or:
- BTEC National Diploma MMM or:
- Access to HE qualifications with 9 Distinctions and 36 Merits or:
- Equivalent Level 3 qualifications worth 106 UCAS points
- Applicants must hold 5 GCSEs A-C including Maths and English, or equivalent (reformed GCSEs grade 4 or above).
Visit UCAS for guidance on the 2018 tariff.
How to apply
Apply now for a full-time course starting this September through Clearing.
Call 0800 923 8888 to speak to one of our dedicated Clearing advisors who’ll take you through your application.
You can also speak to us in person at one of our clearing application sessions.
If you’re applying for a health and social care course use our online application service.
For more information visit our Clearing page.
Please follow the instructions on the table below to apply for a part-time course.
International (non Home/EU) applicants should follow our international how to apply guide.
International (non Home/EU) applicants should follow our international how to apply guide.
|Mode||Duration||Start date||Application code||Application method|
For full-time courses, please send your applications through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) using our code L75. UCAS is the organisation responsible for managing applications to higher education courses in the UK.
For part-time courses, you can apply directly to the University.
For more details on how to apply (full-time and part-time) see our how to apply page.
Once we have made you an offer, you can apply for accommodation. You can rent from LSBU and you’ll deal directly with the university, not third party providers. That means we can guarantee you options to suit all budgets, with clear tenancy agreements and all-inclusive rents that include insurance for your personal belongings, internet access in each bedroom and on-site laundry facilities.
Or, if you’d rather rent privately, we can give you a list of landlords – just ask our Accommodation Service.
Read more about applying for accommodation at LSBU.
You don't need to wait for a confirmed place on a course to start applying for student finance. Read how to pay your fees as an undergraduate student.
Fees and funding
Fees are shown for new entrants to courses, for each individual year of a course, together with the total fee for all the years of a course. Continuing LSBU students should refer to the Finance section of our student portal, MyLSBU. Queries regarding fees should be directed to the Fees and Bursaries Team on: +44 (0)20 7815 6181.
|UK/EU fee: £9250||International fee: £13125|
|AOS/LSBU code: 4826||Session code: 1FS00|
|Total course fee:|
For more information, including how and when to pay, see our fees and funding section for undergraduate students.
Please check your fee status and whether you are considered a home, EU or international student for fee-paying purposes by reading the UKCISA regulations.
Possible fee changes
The University reserves the right to increase its fees in line with changes to legislation, regulation and any governmental guidance or decisions.
The fees for international students are reviewed annually, and additionally the University reserves the right to increase tuition fees in line with inflation up to 4%.
We offer several types of fee reduction through our scholarships and bursaries. Find the full list and other useful information on our scholarships page.
Select a case study and read about practical project work, students' placement experiences, research projects, alumni career achievements and what it’s really like to study here from the student perspective.
Prepare to start
After you’ve received your offer we’ll send you emails about events we run to help you prepare for your course.
Before you start your course we’ll send you information on what you’ll need to do before you arrive and during your first few days on campus. You can read about the process on our Welcome Week pages.
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