Undergraduate

Politics

Hull Politics student, Jacqueline Gomes-Neves, stands on a winding staircase in Westminster looking up to the camera.
Three of our politics students walking and chatting outside the Houses of Parliament.
Hull Politics student, Lucy Dunwell, stands smiling outside the Palace of Westminster while a crowd of people walk by.
Politics student, Annemarie Wattley, stands smiling by the River Thames with the Palace of Westminster in the distance.
Our year-long Westminster placement scheme has been running for over 35 years, and is one of the most extensive of its kind in the UK.
Debate the big issues: possession and exercise of power; wealth and inequality; individual and collective identity; using violence for political ends.
Our graduates are well known throughout the major UK political parties. So many of them work in Westminster they’ve become known as ‘the Hull Mafia’.
As well as political careers, our graduates go on to work in the media, PR, the Civil Service, HM Armed Forces, intelligence services, and charities.
Many of our graduates go on to work in Westminster but our courses also open doors to careers in journalism, business and finance, and more.
Hull Politics student, Jacqueline Gomes-Neves, stands on a winding staircase in Westminster looking up to the camera.
Three of our politics students walking and chatting outside the Houses of Parliament.
Hull Politics student, Lucy Dunwell, stands smiling outside the Palace of Westminster while a crowd of people walk by.
Politics student, Annemarie Wattley, stands smiling by the River Thames with the Palace of Westminster in the distance.
Politics - Politics

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Duration

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For one trimester or 12 months, you could intern for an MP in Westminster. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to study the machinery of British politics, while you watch its cogs actually turning.

Back on campus, we’ll take you to the heart of contemporary political debate. And encourage you to question conventional wisdom and your own preconceived ideas.

So you’ll graduate with a head start in your political career. Either as a political analyst, theorist, historian, or an actual politician or political activist.

  • Top 10 in the UK

    for Teaching Satisfaction and Value Added 1

  • 5th in the UK

    for Student Experience 2

  • Spend a full year

    on a Westminster placement

  • Work with an MP or peer

  • Leading experts

    teach on this course

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Course overview
Module options

About this course

You’ll focus on the most important debates in past and contemporary politics. Possession and exercise of power. Wealth and inequality. Individual and collective identity. The use of violence for political ends. These types of issues drive today’s world. And by examining them, you’ll gain critical insights into the domestic and global significance of politics.

All our 3-year courses give you the option to study abroad for a trimester, whether in Europe, the USA or Hong Kong. And through our unique internship opportunities, you’ll get access to Parliament or an alternative politics-related placement. These include the Hansard Society, the Humber Local Economic Partnership, and the Royal Armouries Museum.

Our Westminster placement scheme has been running for over 35 years, and is one of the most extensive of its kind in the UK. You get the chance to work alongside an MP or peer for a whole year. Our links with a large pool of MPs mean we can likely match you with a politician whose role reflects your area of political interest. While on placement, you'll enjoy access to our exclusive seminar series presented by senior Parliamentary officials including Black Rod and the Speaker.

Scheduled study hours and how you’re assessed

Throughout your degree, you’re expected to study for 1,200 hours per year. That’s based on 200 hours per 20 credit module. And it includes scheduled hours, time spent on placement and independent study. How this time’s divided among each of these varies each year and depends on the course and modules you study.

How you'll be assessed depends on the course you study, and the modules you choose. You may be assessed through a mix of examinations, coursework, presentations and group projects.

Choose your modules

Each year, you’ll study modules worth a certain number of credits, and you need 120 credits per year. Most modules are 20 credits – so you’ll study six modules each year. Some longer modules, such as a dissertation, are worth more. In these cases, you’ll study fewer modules - but the number of credits will always add up to 120. Some modules are compulsory, some are optional, so you can build a course that’s right for you.

Preparing for Learning in Higher Education

This module is designed to give you the best possible start to your university studies, making sure you have all the essential skills you need to succeed. Through lectures and workshops we will teach you how to write in an academic style, how to find quality sources, how to reference work, culminating in writing up a mini-research project.

Core20 credits

Introduction to Social Science

This module is designed to provide you with an understanding of the key concepts underpinning research in the social sciences, including the value of appropriately used sources and data.

Core20 credits

Research in the Humanities, Social Sciences and Education

This module will equip you with the necessary skills to conduct and analyse research in a specific interest, supported by academics within your subject. You'll navigate through the research process, from identifying an area of interest to presenting their findings to your peers.

Core20 credits

Group Challenge (Humanities)

Formulate and execute a group led enquiry into texts, cultural artifacts, film, music or dance. You'll explore their topics in groups at supervised workshops and develop questions on the cultural object relates to the living world of human experience, as well as developing your own methods to answer these questions.

Compulsory20 credits

Foundation in Data Analysis

Develop a strong foundation in data collection and analysis. This module will introduce you to qualitative and quantitative data and how to analyse it; the collection of primary and secondary data; the production of high quality graphics; and report writing.

Compulsory20 credits

Academic Writing Skills

Developing confidence in expression, oral as well as written, is a key feature of this module, which also aims to familiarise you with submission and assessment procedures in the context of Higher Education. This is a clear building block onto your degree programme and places you at a distinct advantage when you move into the following year.

Compulsory20 credits
6 Modules

British Political History since 1945

The UK's political history after World War Two: from Eden to the EEC and from Wilson to the 'Winter of Discontent', encounter the people, ideas and policies that have shaped modern Britain.

Compulsory20 credits

Introduction to International Politics

Examine the theories that help us understand how the world around us works, and the themes and issues that are central to international discourse and practice. You'll explore arguments and ways of thinking that are designed to expand their sense of who you are and of where and how you fit in the world around you.

Compulsory20 credits

Introduction to Political Ideologies

Political action is collective action among people who share beliefs. This module explores the most important formulations of these collective views. It explores political ideologies that defend the status quo, those who wish to reform it, and those that seek a radically different political reality.

Compulsory20 credits

Introduction to Policy-Making

This module provides an introduction and explanation of the plural theories and models of policy making before applying these theories and models to the practice of policy-making, via a series of case studies of policy-making in practice.

Compulsory20 credits

Introduction to Comparative Politics

This module introduces Comparative Politics, one of the major building blocks for the study of Politics. It introduces “the study of the state” and some of the main concepts used by politics scholars, like political culture, political parties, executives, legislatures and constitutions.

Compulsory20 credits

Introduction to Global Political Economy

You'll gain the tools to understand and explain developments in the global political economy and be introduced to international political economy, one of the main sub-disciplines of politics and international relations. You will trace the evolution of ideas, institutions and policies related to global financial markets, transnational production, global division of labour, gender and climate change.

Compulsory20 credits
6 Modules

British Government

In the age of Brexit who governs Britain? Discover the workings of the British state and where power lies. From the uncodified constitution, the Office of Prime Minister and Cabinet government to Whitehall, English local government, Scottish and Welsh devolution to the great parties of state: the Conservative Party and the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats. Encounter the traditions, institutions and political parties which govern Britain.

Compulsory20 credits

Rethinking Political Economy

Rethinking Political Economy enables students to explore plural perspectives drawn from the history of ideas in political economy from its early development in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries to the contemporary rethinking of political economy. Particular focus is placed upon the confrontation both of historical power imbalances, notably the relocation of the previously marginalized perspectives of female political economists to the very centre and cutting edge of the discipline, and urgent issues of human development, notably inequalities in income and wealth, and mitigation of and adaptation to human-induced climate change

Compulsory20 credits

Political Research

In this module you will begin the journey of becoming an independent and autonomous political researcher. You will learn more about how Political Research – especially that conducted within the School of Politics and International Studies – is produced, and be equipped with the understanding and skills necessary to design your own political research project. This module will prepare you for the Final Year Project and for putting into practice your own programme of research.

Compulsory20 credits

History of Political Thought

The history of political thought provides us with experiences of a wealth of perspectives on issues that still occupy central places in human life: the role of power in our collective relationships; the duties of the citizen and the obligations of the state; what it means to be free or equal or oppressed. This module explores some of the most influential and challenging positions from ancient Greek times to the late-nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The module explores the feminist thinkers and others who were and are viewed as radicals, as well as more moderate figures, whose influences remain today.

Compulsory20 credits

Electoral and Voting Systems

You will study in depth the basic principles and the workings of a variety of electoral and voting systems used in the UK and around the world. You will explore the implications of electoral and voting systems for democracy and political representation. Your assessment in the form of a policy brief will prepare you for future interactions with policy-makers.

Optional20 credits

International Relations Theory

This module examines the current state of international relations theory. You'll examine contending notions of security by exploring the concept of state sovereignty and the impact of the state upon individual and other forms of security. 

Optional20 credits

The Global South and Development

Explore the challenges of development for the Global South from a cross-regional comparative political economy perspective. You'll gain an understanding of the theoretical and practical debates around development, and their implications for international relations. You'll also examine the role of states, markets, international organisations, non-governmental organisations and civil society in fostering (or inhibiting) development. 

Optional20 credits

Understanding Terrorism

In this module you will examine the roots of contemporary terrorism and counterterrorism and be introduced to critical terrorism studies. You will assess the justifications terrorist, extremist and politically violent groups have offered for their actions, as well as the ethics of state and other responses. You will examine how terrorism relates to military action and war, and to violent and non-violent protest, and you will hear and read about terrorism across a range of international, political and cultural contexts. The module will seek to equip you to make informed and critically reflective analyses of terrorism as a contemporary issue.

Optional20 credits

The United Nations and Global Security

The UN is a much misunderstood institution. To understand the UN, its successes, and its failures, you need to understand power. Conversely, if you’re interested in understanding power, studying the UN is a pretty good way to do it. 

Optional20 credits

Understanding the European Union

The EU has a population of almost 450 million people and host the world’s the largest single market. The module identifies the main EU institutions and explains where power lies in EU decision-making. EU policies which will be assessed include environmental/climate policy, Economic Monetary Union (EMU) and the Single European Market (SEM). The module focuses also on the EU’s relations with the UK (pre- and post-Brexit), USA, China and Global South countries. The EU has emerged as an environmental leader on the international level and has frequently tried to use its ‘market power’ to transfer its goals, norms and values to the international level. The EU’s impact therefore goes well beyond the territory of its currently 27 Member States.

Optional20 credits

Understanding America

You'll be introduced to the political culture and institutions of the United States of America and the environment in which those institutions operate. Having considered these domestic issues, you'll examine the USA’s international role and behaviour. You'll examine the complex relationship between these domestic and international aspects of American politics.

Optional20 credits
11 Modules

Dissertation

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.

Compulsory40 credits

One-Trimester Internship

Apply knowledge learned on your degree in a real working environment on one of our unique internship opportunities - enhance your chance of getting a job at the same time.

Compulsory60 credits

One Trimester Abroad

An opportunity to study for a semester abroad at any of our partner institutions. Select a number of modules on offer from the host institution to count towards your degree.

Compulsory60 credits

UK Politics in an Age of Austerity and Brexit

Examine contemporary debates on economic, social and political renewal. You'll cover topics such as: Brexit, austerity, foreign policy and the future of the welfare state.

Optional20 credits

Dangerous Minds

Study the relationship between ideas, the people who promote them, and political practice. From Plato, to Machiavelli, explore just how influential and dangerous ideas can be.

Optional20 credits

Short Dissertation

This module enables you to undertake independent research on a question of your choice. Working with an academic across your final semester, you'll write a 6,000-word dissertation.

Optional20 credits

Politics of the Environment

Analyse attitudes towards the environment and the politics of the environmental movement, pressure groups, political parties, states, the EU and international organisations.

Optional20 credits

The Contemporary House of Commons

The Contemporary House of Commons module provides a distinctive opportunity not only to study the role of the House of Commons in the UK political system, but also to engage with practitioners, to develop skills of advocacy and to engage in research of primary sources, and to do so through small-group extended seminars, ensuring continuous engagement with fellow students and with the module leader, who is also parliamentarian.

Optional20 credits

Comparative Legislatures

Examine how legislatures fit within systems of government. You'll explore the Westminster model, US Congress, and the Brazilian, German, South African and Chinese parliaments.

Optional20 credits

Contemporary Political Philosophy

How should we think about justice, equality, liberty and democracy? Explore ways of addressing these topics through critical readings of leading political philosophers.

Optional20 credits

Culture Wars

What causes the culture wars? Explore the controversies. From identity politics to free speech and BLM to transgenderism.

Optional20 credits

Democracy and Legitimacy in the European Union

This module focuses on the theoretical and empirical context in which democracy and legitimacy have become existential challenges for the European Union.

Optional20 credits

Parliament in the UK: Approaches to Reform

Parliament in the UK: Approaches to Reform provides students with an opportunity to assess Parliament in the content of a constitution in flux, to debate the merits of constitutional reforms, and to engage with practitioners, to develop skills of advocacy- not least through an adversarial debating format – and to engage in research of primary sources, and to do so through small-group extended seminars, ensuring continuous engagement with fellow students and with the module leader, who is also parliamentarian.

Optional20 credits

Germany in the New Europe

This module assesses the reunified Germany and its role in the new Europe. You'll learn about Germany's political parties, its government and its main policies.

Optional20 credits

In your final year, you'll choose one compulsory module.

14 Modules

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Westminster Placement

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Course Overview 3 mins

Lucy Dunwell

Student story 2 mins

Life on campus

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Entry requirements

What do I need?

When it comes to applying to university, you'll need a certain number of UCAS points. Different qualifications and grades are worth a different amount of points. For this course, you'll need…

We consider experience and qualifications from the UK and worldwide which may not exactly match the combinations above.

But it's not just about the grades - we'll look at your whole application. We want to know what makes you tick, and about your previous experience, so make sure that you complete your personal statement.

Have questions? Our admissions team will be happy to help.

What do I need?

If you require a student visa to study or if your first language is not English you will be required to provide acceptable evidence of your English language proficiency level.

See other English language proficiency qualifications accepted by the University of Hull.

If your English currently does not reach the University’s required standard for this programme, you may be interested in one of our English language courses.

Visit your country page to find out more about our entry requirements.

Fees & funding

How much is it?

Additional costs you may have to pay

Your tuition fees will cover most costs associated with your programme. There are some extra costs that you might have to pay, or choose to pay, depending on your programme of study and the decisions you make:

  • Books (you can borrow books on your reading lists from the library, but you may buy your own)
  • Optional field trips
  • Study abroad (incl. travel costs, accommodation, visas, immunisation)
  • Placement costs (incl. travel costs and accommodation)
  • Student visas (international students)
  • Laptop (you’ll have access to laptops and PC’s on campus, but you may want your own)
  • Printing and photocopying
  • Professional-body membership
  • Graduation (gown hire and photography)

Remember, you’ll still need to take into account your living costs. This could include accommodation, travel, food and more.

How do I pay for it?

How much is it?

Additional costs you may have to pay

Your tuition fees will cover most costs associated with your programme. There are some extra costs that you might have to pay, or choose to pay, depending on your programme of study and the decisions you make:

  • Books (you can borrow books on your reading lists from the library, but you may buy your own)
  • Optional field trips
  • Study abroad (incl. travel costs, accommodation, visas, immunisation)
  • Placement costs (incl. travel costs and accommodation)
  • Student visas (international students)
  • Laptop (you’ll have access to laptops and PC’s on campus, but you may want your own)
  • Printing and photocopying
  • Professional-body membership
  • Graduation (gown hire and photography)

Remember, you’ll still need to take into account your living costs. This could include accommodation, travel, food and more.

How do I pay for it?

Take a look at our facilities

Brynmor Jones Library

Our 7-storey library is home to 1 million+ books, extensive digital resources drawn from libraries and archives across the world, and stunning panoramic views of the city from the 7th floor.

Allam Lecture Theatre

One of the largest lecture theatres on campus. Comfortable seating and modern equipment make this a fantastic environment for learning. It also often hosts external speakers and special guests.

Reading Room

You’ll find the Reading Room on the first floor of our library. It offers a comfortable space and a quiet environment to study – away from the hustle and bustle of the campus.

Study Rooms

You'll find over 1,000 work spaces in our library. From boardroom-style meeting venues with big-screen PCs, to informal group-study areas and interactive whiteboards.

See more in our virtual tour

Look around

Look around

Look around

Look around

Brynmor Jones Library Observation Deck
Allam Lecture Theatre
Brynmor Jones Library Reading Room
Brynmor Jones Library Group Study Room
Big Ben and the Palace of Westminster in London at sunset with leafy grounds and yellow flowers below.

Future prospects

Our graduates are well known throughout the major UK political parties. So many of them now work in Westminster that they’ve become known as ‘the Hull Mafia’. But it’s not only Parliament that can open its doors to you. Our Politics degrees afford many more opportunities after you graduate.

You’ll gain the skills to research and examine information. To critically analyse evidence and construct robust arguments. Exactly the kind of attributes that many employers are looking for. As well as political careers, many of our graduates go on to work in the media, the Civil Service, HM Armed Forces, intelligence services, public relations, charities, and international organisations.

University of Hull Open Day

Your next steps

Like what you’ve seen? Then it’s time to apply.

The standard way to apply for this course is through UCAS. This will give you the chance to showcase your skill, qualities and passion for the subject, as well as providing your academic qualifications.

Not ready to apply?

Visit our next Open Day, and see all that Hull has to offer for yourself. Talk to our lecturers about your subject, find out what university is really like from our current students, and take a tour of our beautiful campus and amazing facilities.

  1. (Teaching Satisfaction Joint 7th, Value Added Joint 8th) The Guardian University Rankings 2024.
  2. The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024.
  3. (Joint 13th) The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024.

 

All modules presented on this course page are subject to availability and this list may change at any time.

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