Explore the complex way in which societies, states and cultures interact around the world. Our innovative lecturers provide expert insights into issues from human rights and feminism to war and security.
Develop your linguistic skills in either French, German, Italian or Spanish and spend your third year studying in your chosen country.
Reasons to study Politics and International Relations with a Language at Kent
You’ll study a wide range of modules developed by our innovative lecturers, who advise governments around the world. Build your degree around your interests. You join the supportive and welcoming community on our Canterbury campus, set among green and tranquil open spaces, with access to the world-class resources of our Templeman Library. You can shape your degree outside of the classroom through our Politics and IR Society and Kent Model UN. These student-led societies host regular events, talks and debates with high-profile speakers, such as Jess Phillips MP, on tackling domestic violence.
What you’ll learn
You learn to explore the challenges facing the world, utilising the different concepts and approaches of political theory. You benefit from the expertise of staff who have advised governments and conducted conflict mediation exercises, deepening your understanding and developing solutions to a range of issues, from terrorism to the impact of the pandemic on politics, and political polarisation. Through the year abroad you improve your fluency in your chosen language and gain insight into the politics and culture of your host country.
See the modules you'll study
Our main teaching methods are lectures, seminars, working groups, PC laboratory sessions and individual discussions with your personal tutor or module teachers. Assessment is through continuous feedback, written examinations, assessed essays and oral presentations.
Politics Open Forum
We hold a weekly extra-curricular Open Forum organised by our School research groups, where students and staff have the opportunity to discuss and debate key issues of the day that affect higher education and politics in the world today.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- key concepts, theories and methods used in the study of politics and international relations and their application to the analysis of political ideas, institutions, practices and issues in the global arena
- the structure, institutions and operation of different political systems.
- the social, economic, historical and cultural contexts of political institutions and behaviour
- the political dynamics of interaction between people, events, ideas and institutions.
- factors accounting for political change
- the contestable nature of many concepts and different approaches to the study of Politics and International Relations
- the normative and positive foundations of political ideas
- the reliance of politics on knowledge from cognate disciplines
- the nature and significance of politics as a global activity
- the origins and evolution of the international political system, including contemporary changes underway
- different interpretations of world political events and issues.
- target language
- cultures and societies linked to target language.
You will develop intellectual skills in how to:
- gather, organise and deploy evidence, data and information from a variety of secondary and some primary sources
- identify, investigate, analyse, formulate and advocate solutions to problems
- develop reasoned arguments, synthesise relevant information and exercise critical judgement
- reflect on, and manage, their own learning and seek to make use of constructive feedback from peers and staff to enhance their performance and personal skills
- manage their own learning self-critically
- employ their understanding of different educational curricula and pedagogic methods in their own work
- integrate into a different educational, cultural, social, linguistic and, in some cases, professional environment.
You gain the following subject-specific skills:
- understanding the nature and significance of politics as a human and global activity
- applying concepts, theories and methods used in the study of politics and international relations to the analysis of political ideas, institutions, practices and issues in the global arena
- evaluating different interpretations of world political events and issues
- describing, evaluating and applying different approaches to collecting, analysing and presenting political information
- building knowledge of competing approaches to theories and concepts of politics and international relations
- understanding the nature of political conflict between and within states
- reading, writing, listening and speaking in the target language
- ability to describe and analyse the main features of the language studied
- gaining knowledge and understanding of the cultures and societies where the language is used.
You develop transferable skills in how to:
- communicate effectively and fluently in speech and writing
- use communication and information technology to retrieve and present information, including, where appropriate, statistical or numerical information
- work independently, demonstrating initiative, self-organisation and time-management
- collaborate with others to achieve common goals
- communicate fluently and appropriately both orally and in writing in the target language.
This programme aims to:
- attract, and meet the needs of, those who wish to combine the study of Politics and International Relations in the United Kingdom with a year abroad (either studying at a university or gaining professional experience through a suitable internship in a field relevant to the study of Politics and International Relations)
- be compatible with widening participation in higher education by offering a wide variety of entry routes
- place questions of political and international order and decision-making at the centre of social-scientific analysis
- ensure that students of politics and international relations acquire knowledge and understanding of political and international relations theory and analysis in a supportive and responsive learning environment
- enable students to understand and use the concepts, approaches and methods of politics and international relations and develop an understanding of their contested nature and the problematic character of enquiry in the discipline
- develop students’ capacities to think critically about political events, ideas and institutions
- encourage students to relate the academic study of politics and international relations to questions of public concern
- provide a curriculum supported by scholarship, staff development and a research culture that promotes breadth and depth of intellectual enquiry and debate
- assist students in developing cognitive and transferable skills relevant to their vocational and personal development
- introduce students to different academic or professional cultures
- develop the ability to use the target language
- develop knowledge of the language
- develop knowledge of aspects of the cultures, communities and societies where the language is used
- develop intercultural awareness and understanding.