Undergraduate

War and Politics

A chinook helicopter flying.
Jacqueline Gomes-Neves, politics student, in westminster on placement
Six F16s flying through a cloudy sky.
An old sepia photo of soldiers and tanks at war.
You learn from leading experts who have extensive experience of working with the military and policy-makers, both in the UK and overseas.
Our Westminster placement scheme has been running for over 35 years, and is one of the most extensive of its kind in the UK.
As well as political careers, our graduates work in HM Armed Forces, the media, PR, the Civil Service, intelligence services, and charities.
We focus on the most important events and debates in politics and security. From British political history after World War II to cyberwarfare.
A chinook helicopter flying.
Jacqueline Gomes-Neves, politics student, in westminster on placement
Six F16s flying through a cloudy sky.
An old sepia photo of soldiers and tanks at war.

Code

Duration

Mode

War. Described by some as “the continuation of politics by other means”. Said by others to be the single most important social activity that humanity has ever undertaken.

It’s fuelled the development of civilisations. Raised and crushed entire societies. And driven humanity’s technological and social development. Here’s where you learn how and why.

Hull has an established reputation in the study of war and security. Our course focuses on the relationship between the theory of warfare and its practical application in the real world.

  • Top 10 in the UK

    for Teaching Satisfaction and Value Added 1

  • 5th in the UK

    for Student Experience 2

  • Spend three months

    on a Westminster placement

  • Study abroad

    in Europe, the USA or Hong Kong

  • Top 15 in the UK

    for Teaching Quality 3

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Course overview
Module options

About this course

We focus on the most important events and debates in politics and security. British political history after World War II. The causes of conflict in modern times. Land, air and sea power. Culture wars. Terrorism and cyberwarfare. Brexit, American politics, and foreign policy. And by examining them, you’ll gain critical insights into the domestic and global significance of war, politics and security.

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 another 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 with an MP or peer. Our links with a large pool of MPs mean we can likely match you with a politician whose role reflects your area of 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 is divided across the year varies and depends on the module you are studying.

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.

Personal Career Development

This module helps you to hone your employability skills and enhance your prospects. We'll introduce you to the kind of knowledge, skills and attitudes that employers expect. And we'll encourage you to reflect on personal strengths and weaknesses in relation to career skills.

Core20 credits

Digital Technology and Numeracy Skills

Develop the appropriate IT knowledge, skills and numerical abilities to support both progression on your degree programme and your employability development. The module is structured to guide and support you in seminar and workshop sessions as well as in considering online practice and guidance materials.

Core20 credits

Managing Your Own Learning

This module will develop your skills for linking assignments to current affairs topics. You'll gain new abilities, focusing on how to acquire information, evaluate it and translate it into an academic argument, critical discussion or report.

Core20 credits

Intercultural Communications

This module helps you to become an intercultural communicator by developing your communication skills in an international environment. It will examine people as cultural beings; cross-cultural pragmatics, politeness and face; language and identity in a cultural context; and personal cultural identities in multilingual settings.

Core20 credits

Politics, War and Ethics

You'll be introduced to key concepts relating to politics, war and ethics. Examples and practical cases are used to enhance your understanding of those concepts.

Core20 credits

The Power of Ideas

You will critically analyse central ideas at the intersection of philosophy and politics, exploring how those ideas have shaped contemporary ideologies.

Core20 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 War and Politics

Study the causes and conduct of war in modern times. Learn why the Allies won World War Two, why the US lost in Vietnam and how nuclear weapons affect international security.

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

Land Power

Land Power provides a comprehensive education in the key conceptual and historical developments in land warfare in the modern period. This module will help you understand how politics, technology, doctrine, society and ethics impact the exercise of military power in the Land domain. You will explore these important issues by studying the defining conflicts and campaigns of the modern age. These include Napoleon, the two world wars of the 20th Century, Vietnam, Afghanistan, etc. Finally, you will study how robotics, AI and cyber technologies will change the character of land warfare.

Compulsory20 credits

Sea Power

There is no subject more important to students of politics, international relations, and war than seapower. This is because the seapowers created the world you see around you in the global distribution of power, wealth,and cultural dominance of the west, and it is the seapowers that retain the means to sustain their power and status and influence in global politics. You will learn how seapower enables this through the global reach that seapower provides in diplomatic and military capability. How seapower dominates global trade and wealth distribution and how seapowers were able to use their maritime power to dominate others in war.

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

Air Power

Air Power provides a comprehensive education in the key conceptual and historical developments in air warfare from its genesis to the contemporary period. This module helps students understand how politics, technology, doctrine, society and ethics impact the exercise of military power in, and from, the air. They explore these important issues by studying the defining conflicts and campaigns of the modern age, including the 1914-1918 war, the Second World War, Vietnam, Gulf War I, NATO operations in Bosnia, among others etc. Finally, they study how modern technologies impact upon the exercise of power in the air domain and what this means for the application of force and political power more generally.

Compulsory20 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 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
9 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

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

War in the 21st Century: Robots, Cyberwar and Nuclear Weapons

Explore the strategic, political and ethical implications of autonomous weapons systems, warfare in cyberspace, and the significance of modern nuclear forces.

Optional20 credits

Intelligence and National Security

The intelligence agencies work in the background to provide security for their respective nations states. But how exactly does intelligence work? In this module you'll find out. 

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

Small Wars from Malaya through Ireland to Iraq

Insurgency and how to beat it is among the biggest problems of our time. Examine the issue in case studies from the end of empire to the latest Iraqi and Afghan insurgencies. 

Optional20 credits

UK Politics in an Age of Decline and Renewal

Explore topics that have been implemented by the Cameron-Clegg coalition, May and Johnson Governments since the May 2010 General Election. You'll investigate the politics of austerity, reform of public services and the NHS, the welfare state, Brexit and the response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Optional20 credits

Culture Wars

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

Optional20 credits

Maritime Security in the 21st Century

Learn about the role of modern navies, piracy, terrorism, maritime law, economy, expeditionary warfare and the frightening fragility of the world you take for granted.

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

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

12 Modules

Playlist

Dr David Lonsdale

Course Overview 2 mins

Teaching facilities

University Life 1 min

Life on campus

University Life 2 mins

Accommodation at Hull

University Life 2 mins

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 computers 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 computers 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 hosts external speakers and special guests.

Reading Room

You’ll find the Reading Room on the first floor of the 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
Three Hull Politics students smiling and walking at the Palace of Westminster while on placement.

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, and intelligence services, as well as 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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