The European Union: Institutions and Policies

The details
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 5
Thursday 03 October 2024
Friday 13 December 2024
28 February 2023


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA L212 Global Politics,
BA L213 Global Politics (including Placement Year),
BA L214 Global Politics (including Year Abroad)

Module description

The module offers an introduction to the most important aspects of the European Union.

The first part of the module is introducing the institutional system of the EU and the relationship between the EU and its members. We will talk about the power and role of the main institutions and also look at the impact of states and their governments on European legislation and vice versa. This also includes a brief historical survey of the origins of European Integration and a discussion of the role that citizens play.

The second part of the module discusses policy-making in more detail. The sessions revolve around questions such as: In which areas is the EU involved? How are decisions made in these areas? This part of the module is also concerned with developments in particular policies.

In the class sessions, we will also discuss very specific issues. Examples may include the `democratic deficit` and specific aspects of European economic policy. However, it has to be stressed that not all relevant aspects of the European Union and the integration process can be dealt with in depth.

Module aims

The module aims to provide students with a thorough knowledge and understanding of the European Union.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of the roles and powers of institutions in the European Union
2. Understand policy-making in the European Union
3. Analyse policy areas where the European Union is particularly important
4. Assess the ongoing challenges the European Union is facing

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

This module will be delivered with (i) a weekly lecture and (ii) a weekly interactive class. The lecture will consist of one or more items of prepared content that students can access electronically and must study before the interactive class. In the 50-minute interactive class students can ask questions about, and discuss various aspects of, the prepared content with the module supervisor.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography for this year.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Essay    60% 
Coursework   Online Test    40% 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Daniele Saracino, email: daniele.saracino@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Daniele Saracino
Module Supervisor: Dr Daniele Saracino (daniele.saracino@essex.ac.uk) / Module Administrator: Jasini Hobbs - govquery@essex.ac.uk



External examiner

Dr Edward Morgan-Jones
University of Kent
Reader in Comparative Politics
Available via Moodle
Of 1803 hours, 40 (2.2%) hours available to students:
1763 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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