Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POL3225: Understanding Civil War

This module descriptor refers to the 2018/9 academic year.


NQF Level 6
Credits 30 ECTS Value 15
Term(s) and duration

This module ran during term 1 (11 weeks) and term 2 (11 weeks)

Academic staff

Dr Nils-Christian Bormann (Convenor)





Available via distance learning


This module introduces you to the causes, dynamics, consequences, and possible resolution methods of civil war, the most prevalent form of political violence since World War 2. Participants will actively engage with up-to-date quantitative and qualitative research on topics such as inequality and the motivations of rebellion, theories of insurgency and counter-insurgency, civilian targeting, and dilemmas in establishing peace in war-torn societies. While exposed to diverse theoretical approaches, students will also get to know important datasets of political violence, learn how to probe empirical studies for reliability and validity, and design their own research.

This module is suitable for non-specialist students. The module is recommended for students with a background in economics, sociology, or history.

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