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4IR502 Contemporary Issues in International Politics (1)

Module Title
Contemporary Issues in International Politics
Date of Approval
April 2017
Module Code
Module Level
Credit value
Total Number
of Learning Hours
Key Words
International Politics, democracy, non-Intervention, humanitarian aid,
Sovereignty, political change, refugee
Module Delivery
Blended / Face to Face
Module Description
This module examines the contemporary issues facing the international community in the 21st century.
Using relevant theories and empirical examples, it introduces students to the question of as to why
the political world is prone to crisis. The foundation of political relations between nation states is
examined in relation to the idea of promotion and protection of democracy. The module covers key
debates such as political sovereignty, principle of non-intervention, just and unjust war, transnational
democracy, etc. Using case studies, the module explores the contemporary world of politics and its
crises. The growing tension between politics, economics, people and resources as witnessed in
North Africa and the Middle East in what is now known as the ‘Arab Spring’ is examined with
reference to the general disenfranchisement of the general populace from political systems.
Module Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:
1. Develop an understanding of the contemporary world of politics and its attendant crises
2. Discuss current debate on intervention, political sovereignty of a nation and the challenges
facing countries in dealing with mass protest, unrest and uprising by their citizens.
Indicative Module Content
Concept of political sovereignty, juridical equality, peaceful co-existence, and the principle of nonintervention.
Introduction to key political theories relating to intra-national and international armed conflicts.
Approaches to political relations and creation of a just and peaceful world
Lessons from Cold war and its effect on international politics
Promotion of protection of democracy under the United Nations system
Globalisation of politics and universalisation of democratic values and global democratic
institution ; the concept of democratic global civil society
Cultural conflicts in the face of universalisation of democracy
Humanitarian intervention and state sovereignty
Just and unjust war: perspective of international politics and the law
Justice and migration, refugees and international relations
Module Learning and Teaching Methods
The module will be presented in the form of lectures and tutorials and directed independent study.
The lectures will be designed to facilitate student participation through interactive learning. Tutorials
FINAL: 26/04/2017
will take the form of a problem case study requiring the students to prepare a resolution to the
problem and articulate their findings.
Learning & Teaching Methods
Campus delivery
Independent Study
24 hours
164 hours
200 hours
Scheduled learning and teaching activities:
Guided independent study:
Module Assessment
Coursework 100%
Type of Assessment
Coursework 1
50% (Learning outcome 1)
Students will write a 1,500 words essay
Coursework 2
Class test
FINAL: 26/04/2017
50% (Learning outcome 2)