International Relations and Modern Languages

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Course overview
(BA) Bachelor of Arts
International Relations and Modern Languages
Current
University of Essex
University of Essex
Language and Linguistics
Colchester Campus
Honours Degree
Full-time
Languages, Cultures and Societies
Politics and International Relations
BA LRF9
13/08/2019

Professional accreditation

None

Admission criteria

A-levels: BBB
If Portuguese is taken as the major language, A Level pass (or equivalent) in Italian, Spanish or Portuguese or first language level fluency in Italian, Romanian or Spanish is required.

IB: 30 points. We are also happy to consider a combination of separate IB Diploma Programmes at both Higher and Standard Level. Exact offer levels will vary depending on the range of subjects being taken at higher and standard level, and the course applied for. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.
To study Portuguese as your major language, you need a pass in Higher Level Italian, Spanish or Portuguese or fluency in Italian, Romanian or Spanish.

Entry requirements for students studying BTEC qualifications are dependent on units studied. Advice can be provided on an individual basis. The standard required is generally at Distinction level.

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) code

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall. (Different requirements apply for second year entry.)

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

If you are an international student requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.

Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels required. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications.

Additional Notes

If you’re an international student, but do not meet the English language or academic requirements for direct admission to this degree, you could prepare and gain entry through a pathway course. Find out more about opportunities available to you at the University of Essex International College here.

Course qualifiers

None

Rules of assessment

Rules of assessment are the rules, principles and frameworks which the University uses to calculate your course progression and final results.

Additional notes

By the end of the final year, students must have attained a Mastery level 6 (C2) in the major language and at least Intermediate level 3 (B1) in any other language studied. In consequence, any student taking the major language via the intensive route in the first year must attend an approved language course abroad during the summer of the first year and the year abroad must be spent in a country where the major language is spoken. If another language is studied to Mastery level (C2) in the final year, there is a requirement that 16 weeks should be spent in a country where it is spoken.

External examiners

Dr Maria Da Conceicao Pereira

Lecturer

Newcastle University

External Examiners provide an independent overview of our courses, offering their expertise and help towards our continual improvement of course content, teaching, learning, and assessment. External Examiners are normally academics from other higher education institutions, but may be from the industry, business or the profession as appropriate for the course. They comment on how well courses align with national standards, and on how well the teaching, learning and assessment methods allow students to develop and demonstrate the relevant knowledge and skills needed to achieve their awards. External Examiners who are responsible for awards are key members of Boards of Examiners. These boards make decisions about student progression within their course and about whether students can receive their final award.

Key

Core You must take this module.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options You can choose which module to study.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory You must take this module.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Compulsory with Options You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Optional You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.

Year 1 - 2019/20

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits
01  GV100-4-FY  Introduction to Politics  Compulsory  30 
02  GV103-4-AU  Introduction to International Relations  Core  15 
03  GV113-4-SP  Co-Operation and Conflict  Core  15 
04    Language (Advanced) or Part 1 Intensive option(s) from list  Optional  30 
05    Language (Initial to Advanced) or Part 2 Intensive option(s) from list  Compulsory with Options  30 
06  LA099-4-FY  Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics  Compulsory 

Year 2 - 2020/21

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits
01  GV214-5-AU  International Relations: Theories and Approaches  Compulsory  15 
02  GV217-5-SP  Conflict Analysis  Compulsory  15 
03    Language (Advanced or above) option(s) from list  Optional  30 
04    Second Language (Lower Intermediate or above) or option(s) from list  Optional  30 
05    Government option(s) from list  Optional  30 
06  LA099-5-FY  Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics  Compulsory 

Year Abroad/Placement - 2021/22

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits
01      Compulsory with Options  90 

Year 3 - 2022/23

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits
01  GV831-6-FY  Project: Politics  Compulsory  30 
02    Politics option(s) from list  Optional  30 
03    Language (Mastery level) option(s) from list  Optional  30 
04    Language (Higher Intermediate or above) option(s) from list  Optional  30 
05  LA099-6-FY  Careers and Employability Skills for Languages and Linguistics  Compulsory 

Exit awards

A module is given one of the following statuses: 'core' – meaning it must be taken and passed; 'compulsory' – meaning it must be taken; or 'optional' – meaning that students can choose the module from a designated list. The rules of assessment may allow for limited condonement of fails in 'compulsory' or 'optional' modules, but 'core' modules cannot be failed. The status of the module may be different in any exit awards which are available for the course. Exam Boards will consider students' eligibility for an exit award if they fail the main award or do not complete their studies.

Programme aims

This course aims to:

1. Enable students to become proficient in one or more modern languages, developing an appropriate level of fluency and accuracy in using the chosen language(s) as a medium of understanding, expression and communication (both oral and written), with awareness of stylistic and sociolinguistic variation, and (where relevant higher-level courses are taken) developing a corresponding level of proficiency in translation, interpreting, and creative writing.

2. Develop students' understanding of aspects of the culture and society of one or more countries which use the chosen modern language(s) as a medium of communication, enabling them to draw comparisons with their own culture and observe contrasts, and (through the year abroad) to experience, engage with and integrate into another culture.

3. Develop students' knowledge and understanding of the major theoretical, conceptual and methodological issues associated with the study of government and politics; both at the national and the international levels and of quantitative methods for studying politics.

4. Provide the opportunity for students to learn about existing political science and international relations research.

5. Develop and promote students general analytical skills and capacities to undertake subsequent academic study and for employment, personal development and social participation.

6. Maintain an intellectual environment that is exciting and challenging, fostering students' capacities for study and dialogue and maintaining high standards of teaching and learning.

7. Develop students' critical thinking and their understanding of civic consciousness, social participation and the responsibilities of citizenship in an increasingly global society.

8. Equip students with a range of transferable cognitive, practical and key skills, and a foundation for further study, employment and lifelong learning.

The outcomes listed below represent the minimum expected of a graduate on this course; it is anticipated that the vast majority of graduates will achieve significantly more.

Learning outcomes and learning, teaching and assessment methods

On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:

A: Knowledge and understanding

A1: Phonology, morphology, syntax, lexis, usage, and socio-stylistic variation in the chosen modern language(s), and (on relevant higher-level courses) techniques of translation, interpreting, and creative writing

A2: Aspects of the culture and society of one or more countries which use the chosen modern language(s) as a medium of communication, drawing comparisons with their own culture and observing contrasts.

A3: Linguistic concepts and metalanguage used to describe and analyse the chosen modern language(s), and analytic methods and techniques used to analyse texts and other authentic modern language materials from a variety of perspectives

A4: Knowledge of the main theoretical and empirical concepts in politics and international relations about e.g. democracy, the European political system, the international system, methodological issues and theories of international relations.

A5: Knowledge of the processes of interaction between domestic and international politics (in e.g. Britain, Europe and other areas and the international system)

A6: Knowledge of developments, issues and debates in the specialist regions or subjects they choose to study.

Learning methods

Modern language proficiency A1 is developed through classwork, homework, use of dedicated software and Web materials, and the year abroad.

Cultural awareness A2 is developed through class and web materials, and the year abroad (during which students experience, engage with and integrate into another culture, either by a period of study at a partner institution offering the opportunity to operate in a different academic, linguistic and cultural environment, or by working as a language assistant and thereby acquiring valuable vocational experience of working abroad).

Skills of linguistic analysis A3 are developed through study of authentic (textual, or video, or film, or aural) materials in class.

A1-A3 are reinforced by feedback from staff in class, in office hours, or by email.

A4-A6 are developed on Politics courses, through lectures, participation in seminars and classes and written comments on essays.

A5 and A6 are additionally addressed in optional choices in years 2 and 3 and/or in projects.

Assessment methods

A1-A3 are assessed on Modern Languages modules by a range of methods which typically include: role-play activities; class presentations; oral exams; written coursework, e.g.
Essays, book reports, translations, project work; unseen written exams; class tests; web-based assignments involving a web search or producing web materials.

A4-A6 are assessed on International Relations modules.

The assessment of most full-year modules is normally based equally on course work and on a written examination, each counting for 50 per cent of the final mark.

An average course work load consists of three essays per module or equivalent.

Class tests are used to assess A4.

The Project counts as a separate module and is assessed on its own merits.

B: Intellectual and cognitive skills

B1: Abstract and synthesise information from authentic written and spoken language materials

B2: Interact in the chosen languages, expressing one's own ideas (and responding to those put forward by others) coherently and articulately

B3: Analyse authentic modern language materials from a variety of perspectives

B4: Question received thinking, and think independently

B5: Develop their own thinking

B6: Reason critically

Learning methods

B1-B3 are acquired on Modern Languages modules by a range of methods which typically include: group discussion of topical themes and analysis of authentic (textual, or video, or film, or aural) materials in class; laboratory work involving use of dedicated software and Web materials; and staff advice, feedback and interaction with students in office hours and via email.

Skills B4-B8 are developed on International Relations modules through:

(a) Seminars and classes

(b) class presentations

(c) written comments on essays.

(d) Year abroad activities

(e) project Individual guidance is available for the writing of essays and the construction of presentations.

Opportunities exist to consult a Study Skills Officer.

Assessment methods

B1-B3 are assessed on Modern Languages modules by a range of methods which typically include: role-play activities; class presentations; oral exams; written coursework, e.g.
Essays, book reports, translations, project work; unseen written exams; class tests; web-based assignments involving a web search or producing web materials.

Skills B4-B8 are assessed on International Relations modules through essays, written examinations and dissertation.

C: Practical skills

C1: Organise and present (orally and in writing) ideas and materials in the chosen modern language(s)

C2: Gathering and processing information from different sources, e.g. doing a bibliographic search in the library, accessing material from online databases and locating and downloading appropriate foreign language materials from the Web

C3: Organise and structure an extended argument, advancing clear critical positions

C4: Compile and present bibliographies

C5: Provide references according to accepted conventions

Learning methods

In Modern Languages C1 and C2 are acquired and developed by a range of methods which typically include: group discussion of topical themes and analysis of authentic (textual, or video, or film, or aural) materials in class; laboratory work involving use of dedicated software and Web materials; and staff advice, feedback and interaction with students in office hours and via email.

C3-C5 are developed in International Relations modules.

They are taught in seminars and developed through tutors' comments on essays, and in supervision of written work

Assessment methods

In Modern Languages C1 and C2 are assessed through a variety of methods which typically include: role-play activities; class presentations; oral exams; written coursework, e.g.
Essays, book reports, translations, project work; unseen written exams; class tests; web-based assignments involving a web search or producing web materials.

Skills C3-C5 are assessed on International Relations modules, mainly through essays and projects, though written examinations are also used to assess skill C3

D: Key skills

D1: Achieve clear, focussed, relevant and effective expression and communication in English and the specialist modern language(s)

D2: Use electronic information sources, and acquire IT skills which typically include word processing, Powerpoint, e-mail, bibliographic searches, locating and downloading internet materials, and utilising software packages

D3: Manage projects and timetables; find, understand and organise information; work with ideas; analyse relevant materials, identifying problems and creatively proposing solutions

D4: (On Modern Languages courses only) Collaborate with others, working creatively and flexibly as part of a team

D5: Work autonomously showing organisation, self-discipline and time management; be receptive to feedback; learn new material and improve ways of learning

Learning methods

Methods employed to develop key skills on Modern Languages courses typically include: group discussion of topical themes and analysis of authentic (textual, or video, or film, or aural) materials in class; laboratory work involving use of dedicated software and Web materials; and staff advice, feedback and interaction with students in office hours and via email.

On Politics courses, the relevant key skills are implicit throughout the degree.

D1, D2 and D4 are employed in essays.

D1 and D5 are employed in seminars, classes and one-on-one discussions with class teachers.

Assessment methods

Methods employed to assess key skills on Modern Languages courses typically include: role-play activities; class presentations which may involve the use of Powerpoint; oral exams; written coursework, e.g.
Essays, book reports, translations, project work; unseen written exams; class tests; web-based assignments involving a web search or producing web materials.

On Politics courses, essays and projects are assessed for qualities that implicitly incorporate skills D1, D2, D4 and D6.


Note

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

Should you have any questions about programme specifications, please contact Course Records, Quality and Academic Development; email: crt@essex.ac.uk.