All modules are subject to availability and this list may change at any time.
The course consists of 120 credits per year. Most modules are 20 credits, meaning you’ll study six modules each year. Some longer modules, such as a dissertation, are worth more (e.g. 40 credits). In these cases, you’ll study fewer modules - but the number of credits will always add up to 120.
Core and compulsory modules are fundamental to achieving the learning outcomes for your course and must be studied.
Optional modules let you tailor the course to your interests. Please note, the availability of optional modules can vary each trimester. And some modules may require prior study (taking an earlier module, for example).
You will make an original contribution to research by designing, carrying out and writing up your own project on a topic you choose, supported by your dissertation supervisor.
International Law and the Use of Force
Gain a valuable insight into the legal regulation of the resort to armed force by states. You study the UN Charter framework, including the general prohibition on forcible action, self-defence and military action authorised by the UN Security Council.
UK Politics in an Age of Austerity
Explore the most important contemporary political debates about economic, social and political renewal. You'll cover topics such as: Brexit, austerity, reform of the National Health Service, the future of the welfare state, foreign policy, constitutional reform and the politics of the two major UK political parties.
BRICS: Emerging Powers in International Affairs
Develop your theoretical and empirical knowledge to understand and comparatively examine the challenges facing the five emerging powers (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) in the shifting power structures of international affairs.
The Contemporary House of Commons
Study the functions of the UK House of Commons and how they are shaped by the changes in the political environment. Having looked at what MPs do collectively, the module concludes by looking at what members do individually, primarily as constituency representatives.
Animal Ethics: Philosophy, Politics and Law
Examine and critique ethical perspectives on human use of, and interaction with, nonhuman animals. This module introduces you to a range of philosophical perspectives and the implications of these perspectives for applied animal ethics cases and for relevant political and legal contexts.
Philosophy of Law
You will learn how to critically explore themes on contemporary philosophy of law from different theoretical perspectives, including positivism, natural law, feminist jurisprudence, law and economics.
New Terrorism and Counterterrorism
Intelligence and National Security
The intelligence agencies (MI5, MI6, GCHQ, CIA, NSA) are constantly working in the background to provide security for their respective nation states. But how exactly does intelligence work? In this module you'll learn how intelligence is produced, how it is used, why intelligence failures sometimes occur (such as 9/11) and how democracies monitor and regulate these covert organisations.
Experience law in practice, advising real clients with real problems, researching legal issues and writing letters of advice under the supervision of professionally-qualified members of staff.
Sex(uality), Gender and the Law
Develop a critical overview of key aspects in the field of sex, sexuality, gender, religion and the law. You'll explore opportunities for the study and evaluation of the latest research, enhancing your understanding of inclusion, exclusion and the situatedness of knowledge.
Laws of War
Consider important and topical questions around the legal regulation of hostilities and the mitigation of their effects. You'll study topics such as the identification and classification of conflict, participation in hostilities, civilian targeting and protection and weaponry.
Critics of Capitalism
In this module, you study some of the most important critics of politics and the economy in capitalist societies. You'll explore issues such as capitalist oppression, the nature of work, the corruption of music and art by 'big business', vanity and alienation, exploitation, and capitalism's alleged continuing imperialist machinations, as well as exploring alternatives to capitalism.
Parliament in the UK: Approaches to Reform
Study the UK Parliament in the context of constitutional change, both actual and proposed. Examine the work of the House of Lords and the consequences of incremental change within Parliament. Explore electoral reform, pressure for a Bill of Rights, devolution, referendums and membership of the European Union.
Examine the role of legislatures and their functions, looking at how they fit within particular systems of government. You'll explore case studies such as the Westminster model, the US Congress, the Brazilian, German, South African and Chinese parliaments and the European Parliament.
Contemporary Political Philosophy
How should we reason about justice, equality, liberty and democracy? You will explore ways of thinking about these topics through critical readings of leading contemporary political philosophers.
The World We’re in: Globalisation and Democratic Governance in Practice
Explore the politics of globalisation, global governance and provision of global public goods for human development. You'll look at issues such as security, prosperity, financial stability and sustainability through case studies of the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, World Economic Forum and World Trade Organization.
International Human Rights Protection
Develop your understanding of the nature of UN human rights law. You'll gain the ability to evaluate aspects of human rights and understand the application of human rights law to actual cases.
You'll critically analyse the purpose of punishment and, through active discussions and debate, consider whether our penal system is currently fit for purpose. Topics include prisoners' rights, women offenders, sex offenders and the juvenile secure estate.