Postgraduate Course: Advanced Issues in International Relations (PGSP11593)
|School||School of Social and Political Science
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||Advanced Issues in International Relations enables students to undertake advanced analysis of contemporary issues in International Relations.
This year, the course will engage with questions of terrorism and counterterrorism. What is terrorism? What causes groups to engage in terrorist activities? And how can terrorism best be fought? This course draws on a range of case studies to address these and related questions. Case studies include international terrorist groups such as Al-Qaeda and ISIS, as well as domestic organisations such as the IRA, Boko Haram and the Red Army Faction.
The course examines issues related to terrorism and counterterrorism, which have (re)emerged as prominent issues in international relations. It aims to develop students' ability to critically understand and assess a variety of challenges associated with terrorism and their implications for counterterrorism measures. The course addresses debates surrounding the definition of terrorism, the history of the concept and possible causes. Other topics include issues such as gendered terrorism and state terrorism. Different counterterrorist strategies, such as war models, criminal justice models, prevention, and de-radicalisation efforts, are analysed to evaluate ways of addressing terrorist threats. The course will make extensive use of case studies that represent a diversity of issues and questions. The course will not only explore global terrorism and responses to it, but will also engage with domestic and regional actors (e.g. IRA and Boko Haram) that require different responses.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
||Other requirements|| None
Information for Visiting Students
|High Demand Course?
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2021/22, Available to all students (SV1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||Policy brief (1500 words) 40%
Essay (2500 words) 50%
Seminar participation 10%
||The policy brief is the first assessment of the course and provides an alternative to traditional academic essays. It allows students to engage with the course's main issues in a different manner by asking them to apply largely academic/theoretical debates to concrete examples.
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate an advanced critical understanding of the principal International Relations theories and concepts related to the chosen topic
- Conduct advanced analysis of the chosen topic through the application of theories and methods within International Relations
- Develop original and creative responses to problems and issues associated with the chosen topic
- Communicate through empirically grounded and theoretically informed written work and discussions, their understanding of the chosen topic.
|Blakeley, Ruth (2009) State Terrorism and Neoliberalism, Routledge|
Jackson, Richard, Marie Breen Smyth and Jeroen Gunning (eds.) (2009) Critical Terrorism Studies - A New Research Agenda. Routledge
Nacos, Brigitte L. (2016) Terrorism and Counterterrorism, Routledge
Silke, Andrew (ed.) (2018) Routledge Handbook of Terrorism and Counterterrorism, Routledge
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
||By the end of the course students should have strengthened their skills in:
- Critical analysis and evaluation of evidence.
- Ability to effectively formulate and articulate a line of argument.
- Ability to identify and critically engage with arguments in scholarship and public discourse.
- Effective written communication skills.
|Course organiser||Dr Andrea Birdsall
Tel: (0131 6)50 6974
|Course secretary||Mrs Casey Behringer
Tel: (0131 6)50 2456