Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POC1021: Key Concept in Politics and International Relations

This module descriptor refers to the 2017/8 academic year.

Please note that this module is only delivered on the Penryn Campus.


NQF Level 4
Credits 15 ECTS Value 7.5
Term(s) and duration

This module ran during term 1 (12 weeks)

Academic staff

Lei Xie (Convenor)

Available via distance learning


In the twenty-first century, state-building has become a widely accepted path to peace, security and order in international relations. By developing a world of states – with legitimate political processes, basic services, government institutions and functioning economic – it is assumed that many our greatest challenges, including inequality and conflict, can be reduced or eliminated. However, the terms of this development are fiercely debated. Are states equal, or are some states more equal than others? In this module you will explore some of the most important and foundational questions in politics, international relations and political economy: Is the state a force for good? How do states interact? How do we define development and what sort of values ought to be promoted? Why do we need states at all? You will engage with these questions through key conceptual and theoretical debates, and by engaging in cutting-edge policy debates. This is an introductory module, suitable for entry-level students. No prior knowledge is required.

Module created


Last revised