This degree provides the analytical skills, and theoretical and methodological tools that will help you address the key questions that are central to understanding politics today.
You will learn to look beyond borders to develop an international understanding of politics in today’s increasingly interconnected world, understanding the central issues and trends that characterise twenty-first century politics.
Why are some countries becoming democratic while democracy is failing in others? How is political power distributed in different societies around the world? How has globalisation reshaped state and market institutions in different countries?
- Develop strong analytical skills, learning how to compare political phenomena taking place in different countries to improve your knowledge of contemporary politics
- Broaden your regional and country-level expertise with a range of modules on the politics of emerging powers
- Secure a micro-placement and work on a research project of your interest at a politics related field such as an NGO, a think tank, the house of commons, a political risk consultancy, the civil service or public affairs lobbying
- Benefit from our location within a department with a strong international focus, and our exciting opportunities for work placement and studying abroad.
Your degree consists of three parts, corresponding to the three years of the full-time degree programme.
Develop your knowledge of the main issues, concepts, and theoretical perspectives in the study of politics and related sub-disciplines, such as comparative politics and political theory.
Introduction to Politics (15 credits)
This module provides you with a broad overview of how politics is contemporarily studied as an academic discipline. Topics covered include collective action, political institutions, the nature of the state, nations and nationalism, democracy, party systems, globalization, security, and regional integration.
Puzzles of Comparative Politics (15 credits)
This module introduces you to the logic of comparative politics: what is it? What does it mean to think comparatively? This module will focus primarily on democratic and partially democratic countries in the developed and developing worlds.
Introduction to Political Theory (15 credits)
This module covers central ideas in the study of political theory. You will gain a broad understanding of the field and an appreciation of how to study political theory and the breadth and diversity of the field.
Emerging Powers in a Changing World (15 credits)
This module will provide you with an introduction to the dynamic and changing character of global power, with a special focus on rising powers, such as China, India, and Brazil. The module will consider global change in the context of several different theories.
Introduction to Political and Economic Data Analysis (15 credits)
This module helps you develop a critical approach to statistical claims and the analysis of quantitative data. You will focus on the analysis of different sets of data that relate to common subjects within politics, international politics and international political economy.
Studying Politics (15 credits)
This module introduces you to some of the big ideas and fundamental questions that are central to the study of politics, international politics and international political economy, which help us to make sense of the world around us.
Politics of Britain (15 credits)
This module provides you with an overview of politics in the British modern state, focusing on the key institutions of British politics but also on political culture and political ideas and ideologies.
International Relations Theories (15 credits)
This module provides you with a focused introduction to a range of theories underpinning the study of global politics. You will be introduced to the debate between positivists and post-positivist theories, and the political and ethical issues underpinning this division.
Introduction to Political Economy (15 credits)
This module provides an introduction to the great tradition of political economy. It begins with classical thinkers such as Smith, Ricardo, and Marx, and then focuses on the revolutions in economic thought that culminated in the rise of neoclassical economics and American institutionalism.
Politics and Power in World History (15 credits)
This module aims to introduce you to the dynamics of global politics and power, with a focus on developments in world history. It will consider transformations in the major actors of international politics including states, international governmental and non-governmental organizations.
The Making of the Modern World Economy (15 credits)
This module provides an overview of how the modern world economy emerged. From the development of international trading systems, to the imperialist economies of the 18th and 19th centuries, the rise of the US, and finally the developing nations in the post-war period.
Principles of Economics I (15 credits)
This module introduces you to the fundamental concepts in economics by focusing on different types of markets and factors influencing the price-setting mechanism. The module centres on major concepts in economics, such as resource allocation; market mechanism, prices and equilibrium.
Principles of Economics II (15 credits)
This module introduces the major concepts and debates on aggregative economic systems, including national economies and international economic relations. It centres on concepts in macroeconomics of aggregate demand and supply management, economic growth, economic fluctuations and cycles, and the role for government intervention.
History and Theory of Psychology (15 credits)
This module introduces you to some major historical and theoretical issues in psychology, and places modern psychology in its historical context.
Media History and Politics (15 credits)
This module provides you with an introduction to the main themes and issues in media history, as well as providing a firm foundation for more specialist media modules in the second year, such as News and Society and New Media Challenges.
Contemporary Issues in Media Studies (15 credits)
This module provides you with an introduction to the main themes and issues at the heart of media studies as well as providing a firm foundation for more specialist media modules, such as News & Society and New Media Challenges.
Criminology (15 credits)
This module provides an introduction to key issues, perspectives, and debates in criminology, and focuses on ‘structural’ approaches to understanding crime and criminal justice.
Criminal Justice (15 credits)
This module provides an introduction to key perspectives, policies and practices in criminal justice. You will examine different theories and models of criminal justice and explore how these theories shape the state’s reaction to criminal offending and victimisation.
Researching Society: Qualitative Methods (15 credits)
This module introduces you to qualitative research methods in the social sciences and is a core module designed to prepare you with the basic research skills to conduct research in sociology, criminology and media studies.
Analyse politics comparatively in a variety of countries, from key industrialised and rising powers, to developing and underdeveloped states. Systematically acquire the skills required to engage with the discipline as a researcher.
Transnational Social Movements (15 credits)
This module will provide you with a comprehensive introduction to the theory and practice of transnational social movements, and enable you to assess their nature and impact in respect of a wide range of contemporary global political issues.
Advanced Theories of Global Politics (15 credits)
This module will provide you with an understanding of advanced approaches to the study of global politics. You will cover the latest debates within the rationalist sphere including game theoretical modelling, network theories, and diffusion theory.
States and Markets in the Era of Globalization (15 credits)
This module discusses the forces that are currently shaping the world economy, with specific emphasis on the diverging political and social responses to globalisation.
Security Studies: Conceptual Approaches (15 credits)
This module will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the main conceptual approaches to international security, and the contribution of these approaches to the analysis of a number of contemporary international security threats, challenges and conflicts in the world stage.
Security Studies: Contemporary and Emerging Issues (15 credits)
This module provides you with the opportunity to critically engage with some of the more pressing international security issues in today’s world.
Foreign Policy Analysis: Theories and Issues (15 credits)
This module will provide you with a comprehensive review of a variety of issues and problems in the study of foreign policy by engagement with the theoretical and practical dimensions of Foreign Policy Analysis, a salient strand of International Relations theory.
Foreign Policy Analysis: Instruments and Practice (15 credits)
This module will provide you with a comprehensive review of the dynamics, processes and implications of foreign policy implementation. You will have the opportunity to critically assess how foreign policy tools are employed and their impact.
Religion and Politics in the Age of Global Change (15 credits)
This module, far from being a course on comparative religion or on the sociology of religion, will address the interplay between religion and politics throughout history with a focus on the 20th and 21st centuries.
Comparative Political Economy (15 credits)
This module will provide you with a thorough understanding of the key political economy concepts, issues, and theories that shape democratic and non-democratic systems.
Advanced Topics in Comparative Politics (15 credits)
In this module, you will engage with several contemporary debates in the field of comparative politics. Topics covered may include democracy, authoritarianism, and democratisation; party systems, political institutions, public opinion, political behaviour, and European integration.
Politics of the USA (15 credits)
This module provides you with a comprehensive overview of the American political system, focusing on the intersection between the main actors and ideas that shape political outcomes.
Comparative Asian Politics (15 credits)
The module will comparatively examine the historical origins and outcomes of systems of government, strategies of economic development as well as the sources and impact of corruption across Asian states.
Analysing Political and Economic Data in the Real World (15 credits)
This module aims to further your political and economic data analytic skills. Specifically, you will focus on learning to identify, organize, analyse, and present economic and political data useful for answering key questions in both the academic and professional political economy world.
Advanced Principles of Economics: Financial Markets and Corporate Systems (15 credits)
This module continues to analyse key concepts and approaches to economic theory. You will focus on two major areas of international politics economy: the firm/corporation and the financial market.
Political Risk Analysis (15 credits)
The module explores the ways in which political risk is analysed and managed by different political organizations and decision-makers. You will gain both a solid theoretical foundation and analytical tools to evaluate risk, drawing on the study of key case studies.
Violent Politics: Riots, Civil wars & State repression (15 credits)
The module will raise and address a number of key questions related to the role of political violence in contemporary politics. You explore the repertoire of political violence (e.g. riots, anti-regime protest, terrorism, insurgency violence/civil wars, ethnic cleansing & genocide).
Political Psychology: Reason & Emotion in Politics (15 credits)
This module will introduce you to the growing field of political psychology. It will explore how insights from psychology can help us understand important political phenomena, such as decision-making, political ideology, voting behaviour, communication strategies of political elites, and intergroup conflict.
Theories of International Political Economy (15 credits)
This module will introduce you to the main theories and concepts of international political economy (IPE). It provides in-depth knowledge of the rich intellectual history of IPE as it has developed over time.
Practical Politics (15 credits)
This module aims to place employability into the context of Politics by helping you develop the career readiness and practical skills necessary for careers political graduates commonly go on to.
Fifty Shades of Red – Russia in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
This module introduces you to political, social, and cultural developments in modern Russian history, and encourages you to consider how the Soviet experiment influenced the history of Russia and the world, and how we should relate to it today.
Ordering the World: International Thought in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
This module explores the history of ideas of World Order in western internationalist thought during the twentieth century.
The American Century: The United States in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
This module will help you understand and assess the evolving role of the United States as a world power.
Cultures of Benevolence: Philanthropy and Civil Society from 1601 to the Present (15 credits)
The module will examine the many political, economic and social functions of philanthropy and voluntary action from the early modern period to the present day.
The Making of Modern Japan (15 credits)
This module considers how the politics, economics, society, and culture of Japan developed from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, with a particular emphasis on modernisation, diplomacy, conflict, and culture.
India in the Eighteenth Century (15 credits)
This module will examine the period of the great Mughal Empire, and its collapse, reflecting on the nature of the English Company and why it successfully adapted to territorial rule.
New Media Challenges (15 credits)
This module will provide an introduction to the social consequences of the Internet and the convergence of the previously separate technologies of broadcasting, computing and communications to support what has been variously described as the Information Age, the Network Society or Cyber-culture.
Understanding Social Change (15 credits)
This module introduces you to a range of debates about the ways in which social change is affecting us today, including the emergence of modernity and how this brought about new forms of social inequality, new identities and new patterns of social conflict.
Contemporary Social Theory (15 credits)
This module focuses on the development of social theory in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries.
Sociology of Race and Racism (15 credits)
This module will allow you to develop an understanding of sociological theories about race and racism and their application to the analysis of specific social phenomena.
Reporting Conflict (15 credits)
The module will explore how politics and technology shape and influence the reporting of conflicts. It will analyse in particular the coverage of conflicts, which followed global events such as the collapse of the USSR and the attacks of September 11th, 2001.
Humanitarian Reporting (15 credits)
In this module you will examine how we understand faraway disasters. You will look at the background to foreign reporting, the way that the western media covers the developing world and then assess how the nature of this has changed.
Data Journalism (15 credits)
This module aims to provide you with the skills to spot stories and trends in publicly available data. You will learn how to use data tools to find and select stories and how it can be presented to different audiences.
Engage with specific topics in depth. Complete a sustained piece of independent research and choose elective modules in the areas that interest you the most.
Final Year Dissertation Project (45 credits)
The first part of the module aims to guide you through the process of choosing a thesis project and developing a thesis proposal. The second part of the module aims to guide you through the process of finishing a thesis project.
The Global Politics of Forced Migration (15 credits)
The module addresses key themes in international politics (governance, globalisation, security, international (non)cooperation, regionalism and the global political economy).
Advanced Topics in International Political Economy (15 credits)
The module aims to cover a variety of issues and problems in international political economy. Potential topics may include: the offshore world and globalization, theories of money, economic historiography and climate change.
Global Governance (15 credits)
This module examines the mechanisms by which collective problems and global issues are managed at the global level in the absence of global government.
International Politics of the Middle East (15 credits)
Provides a critical understanding of the key dynamics shaping the International Politics of the region since 1918, focusing on processes of state and ideology formation, the foreign policy of key states, conflict, external powers, and the impact of globalization.
American Foreign Policy (15 credits)
This module will introduce you to American power in the world and its foreign policy through a combination of theory, institutions, and case studies.
The Global Political Economy of Development (15 credits)
This module bridges international politics and political economy to demonstrate the role of international organizations in promoting domestic political institutions and social welfare policies needed for promoting development.
Political Change in Europe (15 credits)
The module examines a broad range of social and political developments and changes taking place in contemporary Europe, with a focus on the process of European integration and a range of political actors and institutions involved.
Governance of the Global Economy (15 credits)
You will be introduced to key concepts and analytical perspectives to the study of global economic governance, and critically apply these concepts and theories to the analysis of the governance of key areas of the world economy.
Global Money and Finance (15 credits)
You will address many topics, such as the problems of money and the financial system in the global economy, the origins and different meanings of ‘money’ and the approaches to financial instability and regulation.
Global Ethics: Power and Principle in World Politics (15 credits)
This module seeks to introduce you to the traditions of ethical thought in international politics by looking at pressing issues faced in today’s world, such as state and non-state violence that exceeds territorial boundaries.
The Theory and Practice of Conflict and Peace (15 credits)
This module provides an introduction to how national decision-makers and diplomats have pursued war and peace since the early twentieth century with the aim of applying theory to illuminate key historical cases.
Technology, Money, Power (15 credits)
This module introduces the key concepts, approaches, and debates in this field, and to provide an opportunity for in-depth study of the cultural logics at work in one or more aspect of contemporary capitalism.
Political Economy of Global Inequality (15 credits)
This module explores wealth and income inequality from a historical and global perspective. In particular, the module examines inequality within countries, between countries and among citizens of the world.
Ethnicity and nationalism: Global comparisons (15 credits)
This course provides an introduction to the major theoretical approaches and problems in the study of ethnicity and nationalism.
Geopolitical Macroeconomy (15 credits)
By taking this module you will expand your research skill-set, and learn how to analyse and compare existing policy tools of macroeconomic strategy and planning, fiscal and monetary interventions.
Advanced Political and Economic Data Analysis (15 credits)
This module further develops your understanding of the fundamentals of statistical data analysis.
The Multinational Corporation: Governance, Politics and Ethics (15 credits)
This course will apply your knowledge of economics and politics to the multinational corporation, helping you to understand the real world of the corporation and its social, political, ecological and economic influence.
Sexuality and Gender in World Politics (15 credits)
This module provides tools to analyse how the power dynamics of world politics are closely intertwined with and draw on the dynamics that shape the gendered and sexual hierarchies.
Practical Politics (15 credits)
This module aims to place employability into the context of Politics by helping you develop the career readiness and practical skills necessary for careers political graduates commonly go onto.
Radicals and Reformers: Left-Wing Politics and Activism in Britain and the World since 1945 (15 credits)
This module will introduce you to left-wing politics, political parties and protest movements in Britain since 1945.
Revolution: Rebels and Riots in Modern History (15 credits)
Provides an overview of the history of the major revolutionary moments that occurred between the Atlantic Revolutions and WWI, and examines the history of revolutionary movements.
Comparative Empires in the Modern Era (15 credits)
This module explores the history of modern imperialism, focusing on the development of the European, Japanese, and American empires in the 19th and 20th century.
The Holocaust in History and Memory (15 credits)
This module examines the origins, implementation, and aftermath of the Holocaust as it unfolded across the European continent, paying particular attention to the divergent perspectives of perpetrators and victims.
Disruptive Divas. Riot Grrrls and Bad Sistas: A History of Women in Popular Music (15 credits)
The module will introduce you to concepts of gender history and politics as well as to the historical study of popular culture.
Poverty: What Counts? (15 credits)
Introduces: the conceptualisation of UK poverty, how to understand and critically evaluate the different approaches to the quantitative measurement of UK poverty, the practical measurement of approaches using SPSS, and, social surveys.
Global Migration Processes (15 credits)
This module introduces students to a key sociological and global phenomenon. This module allows students to develop a global and in depth understanding of this issue, and some of the economic, political and social factors that shape it.
International News (15 credits)
This module explores the contemporary international news system, the political and financial forces that shape news content, and examines globalization and the digital revolution, and how these are changing traditional news practices.
Reporting Business (15 credits)
This module provides you with an opportunity to explore the role and practices of finance and business specialist journalists.
You can undertake an optional placement between years 2 and 3 of your degree. If you complete this option, the degree title you will be awarded will become ‘BSc Politics with Integrated Professional Training’.
Download course specification:
Teaching and assessment
You will learn through a combination of lectures, interactive sessions, practical workshops, small group classes, and use of online learning tools. Lecturing and teaching is supported by a personal tutorial, mentoring and supervision system. We also arrange an inspiring research seminar series with outside speakers, both professional and academic.
The BSc (Hons) Politics will include an average of 10 contact hours per week (8 face-to-face teaching hours and two office hours with module leaders and tutors) – around 200 contact hours during the academic year.
In addition, you will undertake extensive reading and independent study. This will enable you to broaden and deepen your knowledge and understanding of the topics covered in lectures.
You will also have time to prepare for the interactive sessions and practical workshops, where you will be invited to ask questions and participate in in-depth discussions with other students and teaching staff.
The assessment weighting for year one is 10%, year two is 30% and year three is 60%.
You will be assessed by:
- Coursework (assessed essays and assignments).
- Unseen exams.
- Oral presentations.
- Other types of assessment methods that are suitable to specific modules.
In addition, the Politics BSc (Hons) involves two research projects:
- A 5,000-word research paper at the end of the second year.
- A 10,000-word dissertation submitted at the end of your third year.
You will choose the topics for both research projects, in consultation with your module leaders and supervisors.
These two research exercises are designed to help you develop and advance your conceptual and analytical knowledge in the field of politics, as well as key transferable skills that will become an asset when entering the professional world or embarking in further studies
Percentage of the course assessed by coursework
The balance of assessment by examination, practical examination and assessment by coursework will to some extent depend on the optional modules you choose. The approximate percentage of the course assessment, based on 2017/18 entry is as follows
The course is delivered through a combination of lectures, interactive sessions and use of online learning tools and includes an average of 10 contact hours per week (eight teaching face-to-face hours and two office hours with module leaders and tutors).
This amounts to around 200 contact hours during the academic year. In addition, you will be expected to undertake extensive reading and independent study.
Approximate study time, based on 2017/18 entry is as follows:
Fees and funding
Fees for year 2021/22
The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2021/ 22 academic year only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase, which is normally 2%.
- Fee waivers are available for this course.
- Means tested support is available for 2021/22 entry.
Future finance loans
Future Finance offers students loans of between £2,500 and £40,000 to help cover tuition fees and living expenses. All students and courses are considered. All loans are subject to credit checks and approval for further details please visit our finance pages.
This degree will equip you with the tools you need to be competitive in a world where strategic thinking and analysis of political risks are highly valued.
You’ll graduate with the understanding, skills and experience for postgraduate study or careers in a range of governmental, non-governmental and international organisations, such as:
- the civil service
- journalism and communication
- the corporate sector
Our graduates have found proactive roles in a number of companies and organisations, including:
- Blackwood Group
- The London Borough of Islington
- The Conservative Party
- The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills
- ESA Market Research
- New Statesman.
You will be given the opportunity to secure a micro-placement and work on a research project of your interest at a politics related field such as an NGO, a think tank, the house of commons, a political risk consultancy, the civil service or public affairs lobbying.
You will gain practical skills to prepare you to compete for professional graduate roles through the experience of preparing a professional CV and learning about how to effectively communicate your relevant skills, experience and motivation in a cover letter and interview.
How to apply
Applications for degree courses must be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
You can apply through your school or college using the Apply system, which enables you to submit your application directly to the UCAS website.
You can apply to up to five universities or institutions on the form. The UCAS code for City, University of London is C60.
Please take care to enter the correct course code when applying, particularly for subjects with a Foundation year or with BEng (Hons) and MEng (Hons) or BSc (Hons) and MSci (Hons) options.
UCAS has implemented an 'invisibility of choices' policy so that, on the initial application and while you are receiving decisions, each institution can see only their entry and not those of other institutions you have chosen. This ensures that your application for a course at City is considered solely on your academic and personal qualities.
You should submit your completed application form to UCAS with a £23 application fee. If you want to apply to City, University of London only, you can make a single choice application at a reduced rate of £12.
For general enquiries about the admissions process at City, please contact our Admissions Office:
Telephone: +44 (0)20 7040 8716.
Telephone lines are currently open between 10am - 3pm.
If your enquiry is about admission to a particular course, please use the contact details provided on the course page.
When to apply
Your application for entry in September 2021 should arrive at UCAS between September 2020 and 29th January 2021. Applications that arrive after 29th January 2021 will be considered only at City's discretion.
Address: Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), Rosehill, New Barn Lane, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 3LZ
- from inside the UK 0871 468 0468
- from outside the UK +44 (0)871 468 0468
For callers with hearing difficulties:
- from inside the UK use the Text Relay service on 18001 0871 468 0468
- from outside the UK dial +44 151 494 1260 (text phone) and then ask the operator to dial 0871 468 0468.
Explore our politics facilities and find out more about how you can tailor the course to your own interests.
Dr Thomas Davies
Senior Lecturer in International Politics
Department of International Politics
Professor Anastasia Nesvetailova
Director, City Political Economy Research Centre (CITYPERC) and BSc IPE
Department of International Politics
Dr Amnon Aran
Senior Lecturer in International Politics
Department of International Politics