A Level Requirements
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see all requirements
Full time 4 Year(s)
Lancaster’s joint Spanish Studies and Politics degree is taught by the Department of Languages and Cultures in conjunction with the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion. The Complete University Guide 2017 ranked Spanish Studies 5th and Politics 9th in the UK.
Your Spanish Studies programme gives you the opportunity to acquire high-level language skills while gaining a thorough understanding of the country’s historical, cultural, social and political background in a global context. In Politics, you will explore the themes, concepts and events that have shaped the contemporary world.
Your first year comprises an exploration of the Spanish language and its cultural context as well as the core module ‘Politics and International Relations in the Contemporary World’, which introduces you to key themes such as the theory and practice of liberal democracy, globalisation and threats to international security. In addition, you will study a minor subject of your choice.
Building on your language skills in Year 2, you will study the culture, politics and history of the Spanish-speaking world in more depth, as well as selecting modules which are international in scope and promote a comparative understanding of Europe and beyond. You will combine these with modules such as ‘Modern Political Thought’, or ‘Comparative Politics of the Asia Pacific and the Middle East’.
Spending your third year abroad in a Spanish-speaking country makes a major contribution to your command of the language, while deepening your intercultural sensitivity. You can study at a partner institution or conduct a work placement.
In your final year, you consolidate your Spanish language skills, and study specialist culture and comparative modules, such as ‘Autocrats, Caudillos and Big Men: Understanding Dictatorship and its Cultural Representation in the 20th Century’. You will also select from Politics modules such as, ‘Islamic Politics’, or ‘Corporations, Global Political Economy and the Law’.
A Level AAB-ABB
Required Subjects A level Spanish, or if this is to be studied from beginners’ level, AS grade B or A level grade B in another foreign language, or GCSE grade A in a foreign language. Native Spanish speakers will not be accepted onto this scheme.
IELTS 6.5 overall with at least 5.5 in each component. For other English language qualifications we accept, please see our English language requirements webpages.
International Baccalaureate 35-32 points overall with 16 points from the best 3 Higher Level subjects including appropriate evidence of language ability
BTEC Distinction, Distinction, Distinction to Distinction, Distinction, Merit accepted alongside appropriate evidence of language ability
Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject with 30 Level 3 credits at Distinction and 15 Level 3 credits at Merit, to 24 Level 3 credits at Distinction and 21 Level 3 credits at Merit, alongside appropriate evidence of language ability
We welcome applications from students with a range of alternative UK and international qualifications, including combinations of qualification. Further guidance on admission to the University, including other qualifications that we accept, frequently asked questions and information on applying, can be found on our general admissions webpages.
Contact Admissions Team + 44 (0) 1524 592028 or via firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of Lancaster's degree programmes are flexible, offering students the opportunity to cover a wide selection of subject areas to complement their main specialism. You will be able to study a range of modules, some examples of which are listed below.
This module is designed for students who have already completed an A-level in Spanish or whose Spanish is of a broadly similar standard. The language element aims to enable students both to consolidate and improve their skills in spoken and written Spanish. A further aim is to provide students with an introduction to the historical and cultural development of Spain in the twentieth century, and also to contemporary institutions and society.
There are three language classes per week, of which at least one is normally conducted by a Spanish native speaker. Tutorials are based on a textbook, and emphasis is placed on the acquisition of vocabulary and a firm grasp of Spanish grammatical structures. Listening and speaking skills are developed under the guidance of Spanish native speakers using audio and video materials.
The culture programme consists of a combination of lectures and seminars over 20 weeks. The module looks at how key moments in Spanish history have shaped contemporary Spanish culture (films, plays, novels etc.).
This module is designed for students having little or no knowledge of the Spanish language. Consequently, a substantial part of the module is devoted to intensive language teaching aimed at making the student proficient in both written and spoken Spanish. At the same time, students will be introduced to aspects of Spanish history, culture and society in the twentieth century.
There are four language classes per week, of which at least one is normally conducted by a Spanish native speaker. Tutorials are based on a textbook, and emphasis is placed on the acquisition of vocabulary and a firm grasp of Spanish grammatical structures. Listening and speaking skills are developed under the guidance of Spanish native speakers using audio and video materials.
This module introduces students to some of the key areas of Politics and International Relations. It will provide a basic introduction and a foundation for future study, as well as expand and develop knowledge into new areas.
The module tells a story about the 20th century that enables students to make sense of the 21st century world. Beginning with the consequences of the First World War, the module introduces students to the events and ideas that have transformed societies in complex ways: the evolution of the welfare state; the problems of democracy; increasingly global formations of governance; the transformation from Cold War geopolitics to the 21st century’s War on Terror; and the emergence of new issues such as global warming, amongst a wide range of other issues.
Students are introduced to the research concerns of members of the department, as well as setting the scene for modules offered at advanced stages in the degree structure.
This core module is divided into three topic areas comprising of the following: (1) Power and Resistance in Spanish America from the Colony to the 21st Century; (2) War, Dictatorship and Transition in Spain in the 20th and 21st Century; (3) Culture and Resistance in Catalunya in the 20th and 21st Century. The students will study texts which both encourage an engaged reading of Spanish and open up alternative avenues towards traditional fields of study in Hispanism (empire and colonialism, nineteenth-century nation-building, revolution, dictatorship, Francoism, regionalism, neo-liberalism and globalisation.) These disparate fields of study are conceptually unified and made more accessible for the students in two ways. Firstly, we refer students to the theme of power and resistance which concerns them all in various ways. Secondly, we divide the module by geographical region which, given the array of varying cultures and histories in the Spanish-speaking world, represents the least mystifying and most logical method of study. We will employ a text-based approach in which the texts chosen allow us to operate within certain very specific historical and geographical parameters whilst never losing sight of the main theme. Throughout, students will be encouraged to interrogate the meanings of terms such as colony, revolution, rebellion, republic, empire, dictatorship and democracy with close readings of cultural texts which themselves question the assumptions which underpin these terms.
DELC200 is a non-credit bearing module. All major students going abroad in their second or third year are enrolled on it during the year prior to their departure, and timetabled to attend the events. These include: introduction to the Year Abroad and choice of activities; British Council English Language Assistantships and how to apply; introduction to partner universities and how they function; working in companies abroad; finance during the Year Abroad; research skills and questionnaire design; teaching abroad; curriculum writing and employability skills; welfare and wellbeing; Year Abroad Preparation Week in the Summer Term. Materials are uploaded on the DELC200 Moodle pages.
This module comprises of both oral and aural skills, to be taken alongside the Written Skills module. It builds upon skills gained in the first year.
This module aims to enhance students’ linguistic proficiency in spoken Spanish in a range of formal and informal settings (both spontaneous and prepared). Specific attention will be given to developing good, accurate pronunciation and intonations well as fluency, accuracy of grammar, and vocabulary when speaking the language.
By the end of this module, students should have enhanced their comprehension of the spoken language, as used in both formal speech, and in everyday life situations including those that they may encounter in Spanish-speaking countries.
This module comprises of both oral and aural skills, to be taken alongside the corresponding Written Language module. It builds upon skills gained in the first year. Students who have taken the Intensive language course in their first year, normally follow this course throughout the second year.
The module aims to enhance students’ linguistic proficiency in spoken Spanish in a range of formal and informal settings (both spontaneous and prepared). Specific attention will be given to developing good, accurate pronunciation and intonations well as fluency, accuracy of grammar, and vocabulary when speaking the language.
This module also aims at broadening students’ knowledge about different aspects of modern Spanish-speaking societies, politics and culture, and contemporary issues and institutions in order to prepare them for residence abroad in their 3rd year.
This module comprises of reading and writing skills to be taken alongside the Oral Skills module.
This module aims to consolidate skills gained by students in the first year of study, and enable them to build a level of competence and confidence required to familiarise themselves with the culture and society of countries where their studied language is spoken.
The module aims to enhance students’ proficiency in the writing of Spanish (notes, reports, summaries, essays, projects, etc.) including translation from and into Spanish; and the systematic study of Spanish lexis, grammar and syntax.
The module aims to enhance students' linguistic proficiency, with particular emphasis on reading a variety of sources and on writing fluently and accurately in the language, in a variety of registers.
The module aims to enhance students’ proficiency in understanding spoken Spanish, as well as in the writing of Spanish (notes, reports, summaries, essays, projects, etc.) including translation from and into Spanish; and the systematic study of Spanish lexis, grammar and syntax.
The aim of this module is to offer students from a wide range of backgrounds the opportunity to engage with the most important debates and issues in the study of the politics of the Middle East and Asia, and to locate and contextualise them within wider debates and scholarship of global politics. The module aims to develop enhance critical understanding of a series of key issues in the politics of the contemporary Middle East and Asia, as well as familiarising students with a wide range of case studies.
The module will typically include the following topics:
What is world literature? How have writers engaged with the concept? How have they explored their role as a writer in the 20th century?
This module explores a range of texts written in a range of languages and genres, examining the engagement of writers with their role in different social, political and historical contexts. Lectures will provide an introduction to the genre being studied and address the question of the role of the writer in the context of world literatures. Workshops will focus on a range of set and optional texts of global importance, which will be considered as examples of the literary genre and in relation to material covered in the lecture.
The module is divided into five sections, each focusing on a specific genre. Each section will comprise three texts, two of which are optional. All texts explore the role of the writer in different social, political and historical contexts of the 20th century, and the ways their writing engages with these contexts.
This module explores how post-war economic change has affected European societies, and how socio-political factors in turn have influenced the patterns and outcomes of economic development, over the second half of the twentieth and the beginning of the twenty first century.
The module is structured on the basis of three country-specific modules (France, Germany and Spain), examining how these countries have confronted key moments of economic change, and what the longer-term consequences of that change have been. While the module emphasis is on broad national developments, discussion also covers examples relating to particular industries and major companies.
In lectures, workshops and seminars we will explore the context of reconstruction after World War II and the pattern of subsequent economic development; the relationship between social and economic policies; the development of the three country's economies; the changes of the 1980s and their impact on subsequent years; and the consequences of specific momentous events, such as the re-unification of Germany and how the financial crisis of 2008 affected, and still affects, France, Germany and Spain.
This module aims to provide students with an understanding of some historical and contemporary approaches to the subject of ethics. It addresses central issues by engaging with classical texts in the history of the subject, such as Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, David Hume’s Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals, Immanuel Kant’s Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals and John Stuart Mill’s Utilitarianism.
The module will also explore selected topics in moral philosophy, such as the nature, strength and weakness of consequentialism, deontology, and virtue theory. In addition to this, students will study topics in meta-ethics, such as the ‘moral problem’, non-cognitivist realism, and quasi-realism.
Other topics covered include topics in applied and practical ethics, such as issues of life and death in biomedical practice, the ethics of war, and the ethics of personal life; as well as the nature of moral motivation and moral psychology.
This module aims to introduce and familiarise students to the interplay between politics, society and religion in the world's largest democracy, India. At a time when India is emerging as a global power and economic powerhouse despite persistent poverty and various socio-political fissures, a critical balance must be struck in the understanding between its potential and its problems. India offers powerful lessons on the challenges and achievements of democracy in a deeply pluralistic and unequal society.
An examination of these issues opens up conceptual preconceptions about democracy, religion, secularism, discrimination, globalisation and political mobilisation, which tend to be structured by knowledge of Western polities. The particular issues concerning large populations of many different religions and huge social differences offer pathways of understanding to many pressing global issues.
Some of the main themes covered include democracy, religion and social change, as well as an exploration of the religious minorities and caste politics and Dalits in India.
The principal objective of this module is to provide a relatively comprehensive and integrated foundation to the study of international relations by introducing students to its basic conceptual vocabulary and theoretical concerns and by applying this conceptual knowledge to an understanding of changes and developments in the international system.
The module covers the historical development of the discipline in the 20th century into the 21st century, moving from the orthodoxy that has come to dominate mainstream Anglo-American international relations (Realism and Liberalism) through to the various challenges that have emerged from critical schools of thought. The module examines how different theories of international relations illuminate and interrogate some of the central ethico-political problems of the 'international' in modern history.
This module provides amongst a range of other issues: a study of war, its causes and consequences; violence at personal and structural levels within society (especially racism); positive definitions of peace; and misperceptions and enemy images through the media.
The module investigates and examines theoretical and practical issues surrounding peace and violence within modern society. It also examines the conditions of peace and war, assessing the scope for conflict resolution, non-violence and reconciliation. The first term introduces the main approaches within Peace Studies, exploring the development of ideas in the field as they bear on the roots of violence and understandings of peace and peace-making. The second term applies this thinking to contemporary conflicts, focusing on policies of conflict prevention and conflict resolution.
The module is taught in a non-dogmatic and interdisciplinary manner, encouraging students to develop their own perspectives and conclusions following discussions and debates throughout the year.
This module will introduce second-year students to the role that the language used by institutions plays in shaping individual perceptions of identity. It will provide them with a basic theoretical framework that allows them to understand the relationship between language and power as reflected in current language policies at regional, national, and supranational levels. It will enable them to recognise forms of prestige and stigma associated with varieties of the three main languages under study. It will therefore raise critical awareness of the portrayal and representation of linguistic variations in the media and in the sphere of literature.
The main topics covered in the course include Language and Power; European language policies; German as a pluricentric language and ‘Gastarbeiter’ language and policies; regional variations of France: Linguistic Diversity: A threat to French National Identity?; The languages and language attitudes of Spain (Castilian Spanish, Catalan, Basque, Galician).
This module is taught in English.
The aim of this module is to provide a broad grounding in some important aspects of the discipline of politics that are conceived of as both an attempt to understand the nature of politics and to assess the worth of various political arrangements. It involves consideration of notions such as politics, citizenship, democracy, government, state, welfare, individualism, utilitarianism, conservatism, socialism and, social democracy, together with an examination of the various ways in which political studies have been understood as a disciplined investigation of things political. The module covers four broad topics: freedom, markets and the state; citizenship, nationalism and democracy; equality and welfare; and politics and political science.
The module is divided into two sections over two terms. In the first term students will read, examine and discuss thinkers who make a contribution to the understanding of the notions of liberty and the individual (Hobbes, Locke, J S Mill, and Hayek). In the second term students will explore the thought of thinkers who are associated with the ideas of equality and community (Rousseau, Marx, the Fabians, and Rawls).
This module considers some of the difficulties involved in gaining knowledge about human societies. It focuses especially on economics and politics, disciplines which raise some of the largest questions about society – for example: Who gets what? Who rules whom? Can individual choices generate social change?
In this module students will not address such questions empirically, but instead step back to ask what sort of methods have been used to answer them, what sorts of modes of explanation or understanding are appropriate, and what assumptions are built into the ways economists and political scientists frame their enquiries. The aim of the module, then, is to critically examine methods and assumptions in both disciplines, in order to appreciate the scope and limits of their claims to knowledge.
This module seeks to support students to apply their linguistic and cultural understanding in a specific professional context. Students will develop, reflect on and articulate both the range of competences, and the linguistic and cross cultural skills that enhance employability by working in language-related professional contexts and reflecting on key issues in relation to their placement organisation. Students will typically spend between 25-30 hours over a period of 10 weeks engaging with a placement organisation in Lent. Alternatively students may undertake a 'block' placement over a two to three week period during the Easter vacation (this will allow placements abroad). We have developed a number of local work placements and students can also source placements (subject to departmental approval). There will be some preparation for the module before Lent. This will consist of short interviews and the sourcing and confirmation of placements. For students undertaking schools placements, there will also be some training. Workshops in Lent will provide preparation for placements and guidance on reflective academic work. Students will share their experiences and learning with each other by means of end-of-module presentations.
How do films deal with topics like terrorism, immigration, resistance and city life? Do they entertain viewers, instruct them, or both?
This module explores European and Latin American films in their social and historical contexts. The main aim is to make connections between the films and such contexts not only on the level of narrative, characterisation and dialogue, but also on that of form and technique.
To these ends, there will be introductory lectures on cinema and society and on film aesthetics and content in the first week of the module. The connections mentioned will be the focus of seminars and presentations within the four core topic areas: terrorism, migration, the city and resistance.
The module consists of four two-week strands on cinema and society: Terrorism, Migration and Hybrid identities, The City and Collaboration/Resistance.
Each strand will be introduced with a lecture and followed by seminars on the set films. Students will give a presentation on a short sequence within their allocated film.
This module introduces students to the main approaches to development. It provides students with an overview of the main theoretical approaches, especially modernisation theory, world systems analysis, feminist theories, and post-colonialism. It relates these theories to issues and case studies including the debt question, the impact of globalisation, global governance, corporate social responsibility, poverty and inequality, social movements and the activities of NGOs.
The module comprises two interrelated parts. The first term deals with the main theoretical approaches to development. Topics here include global integration, disengagement, democracy-autocracy, aid-trade, the case of drugs, Islam, southern organisations, and theories of modernisation and dependency.
The second term pursues links between the conceptual issues raised in term one and connects them to global- and national-focused perspectives on the politics of development. The instability of third world states will be examined in terms of competing legacies from the pre-colonial and colonial periods and high social expectations of development. Perspectives and examples will be drawn from Africa and Latin America.
This module examines the origins, workings and policies of the European Union. It begins by considering the treaties that led to the contemporary union and focuses on the key strains of thought that have given rise to contemporary debates about the form the European Union ought to take.
At a time of unprecedented financial crisis and the prospect of a British exit from the EU itself, the module offers a comprehensive focus on all key issues from European politics, government, and economics, to public policy. It includes an analysis of the process and dynamics of European integration, especially since the collapse of the Soviet Union; an account of the various European institutions which have developed (including the work of the Commission in Brussels), a discussion of key public policy areas (with an emphasis on the European Social Model) and finally a focus on European party politics, covering influential European ideologies such as Social Democracy, Christian Democracy and also Euro-scepticism.
This module aims to deepen students' understanding of the major ideas, arrangements, policies and controversies which have characterised post-war British politics.
The module examines the evolution of the politics of the United Kingdom from an era broadly characterised by consensus and stability (1945-70) to one which has proved much more turbulent in a variety of ways (1970 onwards). This examination is set within the context of rival political traditions and of competing theories of representative government. Topics covered in the first term include changes in electoral behaviour and developments in the political parties, as well as consideration of the problems of governing the component parts of the United Kingdom (Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland). In the second term the focus is on the key institutions of central government (parliament and the executive) and on the UK's changing relationship with Europe. The last part of the course examines the development of public policy in the areas of welfare and the economy.
This module aims to give students a background to and insight into the diversity of twentieth and twenty-first century thought and contemporary definitions of culture.
Some key questions explored on the module include: What is 'culture' and how does it work? How do 'art' and 'culture' relate to each other? What do we mean when we talk about the production and consumption of culture? Why does popular culture arouse conflicting responses? What role does the body play in our understanding of culture? How does culture define who we are? Can a work of culture be an act of resistance?
With these questions in mind, this module focuses on texts which raise questions about class, race, gender, and subcultures.
The Year Abroad is compulsory for Single and Joint Honours Language students, who must spend at least eight months abroad in their third year.
The module also aims to enhance and develop students' language skills, with all assessments being written in the target language.
Students who started a language as a beginner in Part I must spend a minimum of four months in a country where that language is spoken.
Joint Honours students studying two languages may choose to spend the year in either of the two countries concerned or, if appropriate arrangements can be made, can spend a semester in each country.
This module is a half unit and is integrated with the Spanish Language: Written Skills module.
This module together with the written skills module consists of three hours tuition per week. Both the oral and the written language modules focus on particular topics of cultural and contemporary interest. The general aim of these half unit modules is to develop the abilities the students gained during their second year and the year abroad.
By the end of this module, students should have developed an informed interest in the society and culture of the Spanish-speaking world. They should also have acquired almost native-speaker abilities in both spoken and written language.
This module is a half unit and is integrated with the Spanish Language: Oral Skills module.
This module together with the oral skills module consists of three hours tuition per week.
This module has two main aims. The first one is to enhance students’ linguistic proficiency with emphasis on understanding of spoken and written Spanish, the speaking of Spanish (prepared and spontaneous) in both formal and informal settings, the writing of Spanish, and the systematic study of Spanish lexis, grammar and syntax. The second aim is to increase students’ awareness, knowledge and understanding of contemporary Spain.
By the end of this module, students should have developed an informed interest in the society and culture of the Spanish -speaking world. They should also have acquired almost native-speaker abilities in both spoken and written language.
African states are among the poorest, most artificial in the world. This means their relations with the global system have a critical impact on African politics from the global to the local level.
This module aims to:
This module provides a historical and thematic introduction to the issues facing Africa in the international system today. The module is divided into four sections. The first focuses on the impact of colonialism on shaping the economy, the state and perceptions of race. The second section examines the first four decades of independence. The third and fourth look at key contemporary issues such as HIV/AIDS and actors such as China and South Africa.
This module will consider different ways in which the concept of ‘dictatorship’ has been understood and critiqued throughout the twentieth century. Considering examples from Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Germany, Guinea, Italy, Kenya, Uganda and Zimbabwe, students will explore the differences between the Latin American caudillo, European dictators, and the ‘Big Men’ of Africa. Selected critical and theoretical sources will be drawn upon to develop a more critical understanding of dictatorship, including the work of Hannah Arendt, Roberto González Echevarría and Achille Mbembe.
The module will also examine relationships between dictatorship and cultural production. How have dictators represented themselves in their writing, speeches and literature? To what extent have they controlled cultural production and to what end? How, in turn, have they been represented in cultural production? What role do writers, artists and intellectuals play in evaluating and critiquing dictatorship? In turn, can the writer, artist or intellectual be considered to be a dictator in the particular world view he/she projects and/or the rhetoric he/she adopts?
This module presents a detailed analysis of the major developments in British foreign policy since 1945. It explains these developments within a global context, offering rival interpretations of Britain's changing role and status. The major themes include: the consequences of Britain's participation in the Second World War; the retreat from Empire after 1945; the 'special relationship' with the United States; and the prolonged attempt to redefine Britain's global role in the context of perceived economic and geopolitical decline. Understand the major developments in Britain's role in the world since the Second World War.
The syllabus will include the following topics:
This module introduces students to major themes that shape the experience of contemporary city dwellers: gender, social inequality, and practices of citizenship. These interlinking themes will be introduced through novels, poetry and films on the following European, North American (with the emphasis on immigrant communities within its cities) and Latin American cities: New York, Mexico City, Santiago de Chile, Barcelona, Berlin, and Los Angeles.
Each topic will be covered though an introductory lecture and a core text, followed by a range of additional texts for students to analyse. During workshops students will share their findings and opinions, emphasizing on identifying links between the topics studied, aiming to encourage discussion.
The format of the module encourages cross-referencing between the themes of the module (for example, gender and sexuality are relevant to an analysis of social inequality, and vice versa).
This module introduces students to human rights as a political and legal concept. It provides a critical overview of contemporary debates in the field, without losing sight of key theoretical questions. What are human rights? What is their source? In what sense are they universal and inalienable? Following a discussion of philosophical and historical foundations the module will examine the post-World War II international legal regime for the protection of human rights. It will explore the political implications of enshrining human rights at the international level, and engage with questions of culture and diversity, development and globalization, poverty and health.
Students will have the opportunity to research and discuss such issues as gender-based violence, torture in the ‘war on terror’, treatment of refugees and asylum seekers and HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. These empirical case studies of recent human rights struggles and controversies will shed light on the complexity of global human rights politics in the early 21st century.
This module introduces students to key issues in Middle East politics today. It explores the people, society and politics of the region and the role that religion, ethnicity, gender and class have played in shaping contemporary issues. It examines the major internal and external actors in the region; conflict and peace; the geo-strategic importance of the region; issues of political economy; political change and reform; the issue of identities in the Middle East and ideologies around this; the emergence of political Islam; rising anti-Americanism; 9/11 and the fall-out in the region from the 'war on terror', the 'Arab Spring' and the unfolding revolutions.
Through class discussions, completion of coursework and the exam, students should be able to understand the complexities of society in the Middle East, and show an in-depth understanding of key themes and issues in the contemporary Middle East.
This module aims to introduce the work of some key figures in 19th and 20th century continental philosophy, such as Hegel, Marx, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Foucault, Hannah Arendt and Habermas. The approach taken is predominantly philosophical rather than historical, and will involve critically examining claims and arguments about such matters as the existence and nature of human freedom, the relationships between knowledge, truth, power and morality, alienation and human labour, and the possibility of mutual recognition and community. It is expected that students will engage with the original texts, formulate the central arguments to be found in them and assess their cogency.
The module begins by looking at Nietzsche’s Toward a Genealogy of Morality, before turning to Foucault, who adapts Nietzsche’s method of historical analysis in order to challenge assumptions about progress toward freedom and welfare in modern societies. Finally students will study Arendt and her political thought on totalitarian politics using a parallel method of historical analysis.
This module explores the analysis of the corporation in the global political economy. It will help students develop their knowledge of the character and practices of corporations and place that analysis within the wider context of analyses of International Political Economy.
At the end of the module students will better understand the variance and multi-faceted character of the corporate (global) sector, be able to account for a range of (political) positions about corporations and have some experience of the interaction between political economic and legal analyses. The module overall is intended to demystify the corporation as a political economic actor and support students in developing a nuanced appreciation of their own analyses of the role and practices of (global) corporations.
This module provides an opportunity for students to choose a topic related to some aspect of Politics and International Relations, Philosophy and Religious Studies which particularly interests them, and to pursue it in depth. The topic may be related to work that is being done on a formally taught course, or it may be less directly linked to course work. The intention is that students will develop their research skills and their ability to work at length under their own direction.
Students are expected to start thinking seriously about the 9,000-10,000 word dissertation towards the end of the Lent term of their second year, and to submit a provisional topic by the end of that term. Work should be well advanced by Christmas in the third year. The completed dissertation must be submitted by the end of the Lent term in the third year.
This module aims to allow students to pursue independent in-depth studies of a topic of their choice, within the scope of their scheme of study. The topic may be related to work that is being done on a formally taught course, or it may be less directly linked to course work.
Students will develop their employability and research skills, and their ability to work independently at length under their own direction with input from an academic supervisor.
The external collaboration will enhance students’ ability to reflect on the impact of academic work. One option is to incorporate work done through the Richardson Institute Internship Programme, but students may also discuss other forms of collaboration with their supervisor.
This module aims to allow students to pursue independent in-depth studies of a topic of their choice, within the scope of their scheme of study. The topic may be related to work that is being done on a formally taught course, or it may be less directly linked to course work. Students will develop their employability and research skills, and their ability to work independently at length under their own direction with input from an academic supervisor.
The field work element will enhance students’ ability to reflect on the impact of academic work. One option is to incorporate a study trip organised by the University, such as the LUSU Involve Overseas Programme, but students may also discuss other forms of field studies with their supervisor.
This module focuses on the most fundamental component of democratic political systems – elections. In particular, it analyses key political behaviour issues related to models of voting, electoral system design, and party organisation. It adopts a broadly comparative approach, with an emphasis on advanced industrial democracies in the west – especially the UK, but also other parts of the EU and the US.
The module will examine the merits of different voting behaviour models; the politics of electoral system design and choice; the rise of anti-party / anti-politics sentiment; as well as the modern methods parties utilise as they attempt to market themselves to voters. There will also be classes on developments in party organisation; contemporary party ideologies; the nature of party system change and continuity; and finally the relevance of public opinion to modern government and public policy.
The module aims to help students to gain an in-depth understanding of the main historical events, processes and actors that have shaped and continue to shape political dynamics in the Persian Gulf.
Specific focus will be upon the key challenges to peace and security within the region, but the module will also cover a range of other topics including:
Students on this module will form an academically informed, independent and critical knowledge of the Persian Gulf and the relations that states within the region have with ‘the West’.
This module is assessed entirely through coursework. Students are given a chance of pursuing a topic of their own interest, which is not covered in taught options. A dissertation consists of approximately 10,000 words written in English. The topic of dissertation must relate to French/German/Spanish language, or a comparison between two or more, or a general European issue. The other two restrictions on topic choice are: it must be capable of and approached from a serious academic angle and it falls within the range of expertise of a member of the Department’s staff.
Each student gets assigned a supervisor - one of the lecturers from the Department, who will provide regular supervision, and feedback on the first draft of the completed dissertation. The topic is agreed and discussed with the supervisor in the Summer Term of the second year, and preparatory research should begin during the Year Abroad.
This module is based on the comparison of masterpieces of Spanish poetry from the 13th-20th century with the events of the current TV show Game of Thrones.
The purpose of this comparison is to consider how patterns and stereotypes related to the past, some of which are achieving success in both the TV show and the contemporary novels by Martin, have also been responsible for the success of a number of works that today are considered as classics of Spanish poetry. Students do not have to be familiar with the TV show or the novels in order to be successful in this module. Fragments of this show will be introduced in class, before drawing comparisons with the assigned readings in order to enhance general understanding.
Students on this module will engage in the study of the socio-historical events and features of Spanish society, as well as the literary mechanisms of each one of the texts. It is essential to understand the dynamic of these events in order to better understand the texts read.
This module aims at exploring the nature of the relationship between the individual and society, notions of progress and economic justice, as these are still widely debated topics in contemporary Europe in light of the current economic and political crisis.
This module will use the concepts of utopia, dystopia and ideology as a forum for discussion on the relationship between individual imagination and social discourse in the nineteenth century, as well as the relationship between fiction and political discourse. Students will look at the major intellectual debates which influenced the contemporary European thought after the French Revolution.
Students will explore the development of major ideologies and cultural movements such as Romanticism, Marxism, Socialism and Positivism, spanning from the period immediately following the French Revolution to the middle of the nineteenth century.
Globalization remains a buzzword in academic and policy discourses. It is often related to the acceleration of global communication as well as internationalization of the economic, political and social processes. This module addresses some of these changes especially those related to trade, production and investment in the international political economy. There are many approaches in understanding these changes, this module introduces students to both liberal and critical ones (e.g., neo-Gramscianism). Drawing from their insights, it investigates and analyzes the roles of state and non-state actors (e.g., transnational corporations and NGOs) in rebuilding the governance of global production and finance. Finally, it examines the rise of transnational justice movements in offering alternatives to globalization and its uneven development, before and after the financial crisis of 2007.
The aim of this module is to introduce students to the inner dynamics of political Islam and the attendant challenges that comes with it, particularly in contemporary international society.
The module will cover the working of Islam in the governing process; its position in contemporary international order; practical contemporary topics such as governance, violence, terrorism and such; and will deliver an understanding of key concepts and intellectual debates.
The module is designed as much for students with little or no background in Islamic Politics, as it is for students who already have some grounding. It is built around an examination of the principal debates, features, and manifestations of Islamic politics in the twentieth and twenty first centuries.
This module aims to provide students with a grasp of both the historical contexts for violence and masculinities as they are depicted in Spanish and Latin American film as well as an understanding of theoretical approaches, enabling rich analyses of such violence and evolving masculinities.
The module seeks to pluralise violence so that it is understood by students in its many forms. It will also ensure students have the terminology to discuss relevant contexts and approaches in relation to specific films in a coherent and intellectually appropriate framework.
Students will be required to view films set in historical contexts highlighting key themes. They will be encouraged to observe and analyse structural violence in various forms in these films and to understand its relationship with such categories as hegemonic, protest and patriarchal masculinities. The module will then question the 'invisible' nature of domestic violence, violence as a means (or not) of providing 'cheap shocks' and different aesthetic approaches towards the depiction of state violence.
The module will examine the cultural and political relationships and intersections between media, religion and politics in national and global contexts. Both old and new media will be considered, and consideration will be given to the transformative potential of the latter for participation and activism in religion and politics. The research methods used for analysing media content and discourse will be introduced and applied.
Topics may include:
The module consists of a combination of weekly lectures and seminars. The lectures will introduce students to the broad lines of the history of self-reflexive phenomena in Western culture from Renaissance paintings through Baroque literature and the 18th-century novel to the boom of metafiction and related phenomena in Modernism and contemporary popular culture. At the same time, it will provide theoretical bases by introducing key concepts such as self-reflexivity, the fourth wall, frame, metafiction and metanarration, narrative levels, metalepsis, and the way these can manifest in different forms of art. The seminar discussions will serve to put these concepts into practice in the analyses of the texts, films, and mixed media and interactive products. Typical topics in any given year might include classics of metafiction in literature (Cervantes, Sterne, Fielding, Diderot, Unamuno, Borges, Calvino, Pirandello, Queneau, Barth..), film (Charlie Kaufman, Almodóvar, Woody Allen…), comics and visual art.
This skills-based, CV-enhancing module enables Politics/IR students to develop skills and knowledge that are highly valued in a range of professions, including, but not limited to, those associated with teaching and the public and charity sectors. The core activities, which all take place on campus, are grounded in, and contribute to, the Politics/IR Outreach and Widening Participation programme which engages with A Level pupils in Sixth Forms (see wp.lancs.ac.uk/politics-outreach). Using communication, analytical, mentoring, feedback and writing skills, students will:
1) Work with Careers staff to identify and articulate the transferrable skills and knowledge acquired during the course of undergraduate studies and to communicate those skills to potential employers.
2) Work with successful PPR alumni in positions in Politics, the Civil Service, the Media and NGOs on practical scenarios/case studies which require the application of skills acquired in the sessions in order to identify and enhance capabilities of importance to potential employers in CVs and personal statements.
3) (Assessment 1) Develop a four minute individual presentation filmed in the LUTV studios explaining Politics in lay terms to Sixth Form pupils. This will take place in week 5 and constitute 20% of the overall mark. Selected presentations will, with student consent, appear in Outreach, Widening Participation and Recruitment materials and can be cited by students in CVs.
4) (Assessment 2) Participate in a mentoring programme with Sixth Form pupils from Widening Participation backgrounds completing Extended Project Qualifications (EPQs) in a local school. Students will receive mentoring training from Lancaster University’s UK Student Recruitment and Outreach (UKSRO) service, work one-on-one with pupils in two mentoring sessions and then produce one 1,000 word feedback report to be submitted in week 8, constituting 40% of the overall mark, on outline plans for their respective pupil’s project.
5) (Assessment 3) Develop a 2,500 word coursework role play/simulation outline to be submitted in week 10, constituting 40% of the overall mark. Role plays are practical means of students adopting and pursuing in an educational setting the roles, characteristics, motivations, aims and objectives of actors in political conflicts or processes. The role play outlines are intended for use by Sixth Form students as part of the Politics/IR outreach programme. Selected students will have their outlines added to an online bank of role play outlines for use by schools and will be offered the opportunity to run their role play in schools, interest from schools and logistical considerations permitting.
This module will introduce students to a series of understandings of culture. Culture is first outlined with regard to its shape, scope and purpose, before being examined in relation to debates regarding homogeneity, change and conflict. This problematizes popular understandings of culture as fixed and unchanging, enabling students to grapple with two contrasting accounts of the source of conflict: Samuel Huntington’s The Clash between Civilizations and Dieter Senghaas’ The Clash within Civilizations.
The module then examines normative approaches to culture, beginning with the debate between relativism and universalism, which leads into an approach – value pluralism – which appears, at first sight, to offer a middle ground between the positions. This involves introducing and examining the validity of a range of conceptions of wellbeing. The module then examines toleration and recognition as approaches to diversity, comparing and contrasting them and identifying internal contradictions through engagement with real world cases. The political implications of the module are then consolidated and drawn out in full.
What makes the world dangerous? Is global politics the extension of war by other means? Do security policies inscribe peace with the logic of war? How has the RMA, and the digital and molecular revolutions changed the ways in which we think about security and war? In what ways have these revolutions made the world more rather than less dangerous? What happens to security and war when these take the life of the human species rather than sovereign territoriality as their referent object? How and why does securing life pose a wholly different security problem from that of securing states? Why does securing life appear to increase rather than decrease global danger? In the process of exploring these and related questions this course will introduce students to the ways in which biopolitical dismodules of security and war differ from geostrategic dismodules of security and war. The world is said to be dangerous in many changing and conflicting ways. Dismodules of security and war teach us what to fear and prioritise danger differently. They challenge how we think. Part One introduces students to ways of thinking about the problematisation of security and war, including new approaches to understanding power. Part Two applies these new perspectives to interrogate changes in the practices of security and war; especially those introduced by the informationalisation of weapons and the weaponisation of information.
This module is designed to allow students to gain experience of educational environments, to develop transferable skills, and to reflect on the role and communication of their own discipline. The module is organised and delivered collaboratively between Lancaster University Students’ Union LUSU Involve, the school/college where the placement is based, and the department.
The module will give students experience of classroom observation and experience, teacher assistance, as well as teaching small groups (under supervision). In particular, the module will not only give students the opportunity to observe and experience teaching and learners for themselves, it will also require them to reflect on how their own subject area (Religion, Politics and International Relations, or Philosophy) is experienced by learners, delivered in other parts of the educational sector, and applied in a classroom setting. Students will also be asked to reflect on how teaching and learning at this earlier level combines with what is taught and promoted at the level of Higher education (as experienced in the University).
This module is taught intensively at our partner institution in Bangalore, India for four weeks during August. The programme includes daily lectures, seminars, excursions, and cultural activities.
On their return to Lancaster, students will write a supervised dissertation on an aspect of contemporary Indian life. Topics covered could include Bhakti traditions in India, the philosophy and spirituality of Yoga, Vedanta today, Islam in India, the Sikh way of life, Buddhism in India, the inculturation process in Christianity, inter-religious dialogue and pluralism in India today, the role of women in Indian religious traditions and religious festivals in India, debates about secularism and religion in the political sphere.
The module is also open to Politics and Philosophy students, who can write about political or philosophical issues in contemporary India.
This module focuses on key contexts and developments in the inter-relationship between religion and politics across the world.
The major themes will be:
The aim of this module is to develop the skills and virtues of a final-year undergraduate level philosopher and scholar of philosophy, by guided practice in close reading and reasoned discussion of selected works in contemporary moral philosophy. No attempt at broad survey will be made. The module will instead be run as a reading group on a small number of high-quality texts. Seminars will consist of moderated discussion of reading introduced by the tutor or by a student presentation. Assessment will be by 5,000 word essay on a topic chosen by the individual student and developed in consultation with the tutor.
‘Moral philosophy’ will be understood fairly broadly, as including metaethics, the philosophies of action, selfhood, and agency, and the more normative and/or theoretical parts of political philosophy. Possible topics, works, debates, and/or figures in contemporary moral philosophy include: wellbeing; value and valuing; personhood/selfhood; practical reason; moral psychology; metaethics; freedom and responsibility; utilitarianism and its critics; virtue ethics and its critics; deontology and its critics; the work of major recent and contemporary figures in moral philosophy, for example Bernard Williams, Martha Nussbaum, Peter Railton, Christine Korsgaard, Philippa Foot, Allan Gibbard, Charles Taylor, Simon Blackburn, Peter Singer, or Derek Parfit.
This module covers Mexican political history and committed writing since 1968. Students will be presented with several important and politically defining events in Mexican contemporary history: the student movement of 1968, the guerrilla movements and the guerra sucia of the 1970s, the emergence of civil society after the earthquake of 1985, the Zapatista Uprising in 1994, and the Oaxaca Uprising in 2006.
These movements and events are explored through lectures on the political context of each movement, and through a combination of fictional and non-fictional texts from a variety of genres, such as testimonial literature, the documentary novel, and communiqués. Students will be analysing texts written by the most important contemporary Mexican writers and public intellectuals such as Paco Ignacio Taibo II, Elena Poniatowska, Carlos Monsivais, Carlos Montemayor, and the Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos.
This module is taught in English and all texts are available in English.
Information for this module is currently unavailable.
What makes a good translation and how do translations do good? This module helps you understand the practice of translation as it has evolved historically from the 18th century to the present across European and American societies. The materials we study include historical textual sources (philosophical essays on the craft of translation from French, German and Hispanic authors of the 19th and 20th centuries), representative fictional texts reflecting on translation processes, and contemporary documents from the EU directorate on translation, PEN and the Translators' Association. We will also make considerable use of contemporary online resources as exemplified by Anglophone advocates of intercultural exchange such as Words Without Borders. Our aim is to look at translation as both a functional process for getting text in one language accurately into another and a culturally-inflected process that varies in its status and purpose from one context to another. We will pay particular attention to the practical role that literary translators play within the contemporary global publishing industry and consider the practicalities of following a career in literary translation in the Anglophone world.
This module will examine the politics of external intervention in violent political conflicts and the attempts made to manage, prevent and transform these wars into more peaceful situations.
The module aims to develop student understanding of how international organisations have attempted to intervene within conflict zones to prevent an escalation in conflict, to enforce UN resolutions or to assist externally mediated peace 'settlements'.
The module also aims to provide students with an in-depth knowledge of how violent conflict has changed since the end of the Cold War and how transnational organisations such as the EU, UN and NATO have attempted to deal with the new challenges and opportunities presented since the beginning of the 1990s until the present day.
Conceptually, the course will examine the principles of the liberal peace; state failure; international conflict prevention; peace keeping; and global governance. Empirically, the course will focus on post-Cold War conflicts such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and China.
This module will explore the relationship between witchcraft, heresy and inquisition in regard to the prosecution of the 'otherness', focusing specifically on their literary representation in medieval and Renaissance Europe. Students will engage in the study of the socio-historical events and features of European society from the 14th to the 17th centuries, as well as the literary mechanisms utilised by authors of each one of the texts under study. The course will cover texts and events occurred in Germany, France, Italy, Spain, and England. Specific authors, such as Dante Alighieri, François Villon and Miguel de Cervantes, and masterpieces such as 'The Divine Comedy', 'La Celestina', and 'Don Quijote de La Mancha', will be analysed together with genres such as 'Geisslerlieder', balade, and drama. In addition, we will have a special week studying our neighbours, the Lancashire witches, and how the successful trial from 1612 is still perceived all along our city.
This module consists of 20 hours over the course of 10 weeks, comprising of a mixture of informal lectures and workshops, and independent showings of films.
The module aims at reviewing a series of narratives by 21st century European-born authors: writers, cinematographers, anthropologists and documentary makers. It not only introduces students to the historical contexts within which each of the narratives is situated, but also explores contemporary theories of identity and writing.
Students are presented with autobiographical accounts, semi-fictional stories, films and documentaries in order to understand the experience of being caught between cultures as a result of travel or involuntary displacement resulting from war or social upheaval. They reflect upon the issues of identity, problems associated with cross-cultural analysis and the relationship between history and personal destiny, border-crossing, cultural fragmentation and continuity. The focus of the module lies on the historical relationship between countries within Europe, and between Europe and other parts of the world; mainly India, North Africa and America.
Lancaster University offers a range of programmes, some of which follow a structured study programme, and others which offer the chance for you to devise a more flexible programme. We divide academic study into two sections - Part 1 (Year 1) and Part 2 (Year 2, 3 and sometimes 4). For most programmes Part 1 requires you to study 120 credits spread over at least three modules which, depending upon your programme, will be drawn from one, two or three different academic subjects. A higher degree of specialisation then develops in subsequent years. For more information about our teaching methods at Lancaster visit our Teaching and Learning section.
Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, but changes may be necessary, for example as a result of student feedback, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' (PSRB) requirements, staff changes, and new research.
A degree in languages develops rich interpersonal, intercultural, cognitive and transferable skills that combine well with the broader knowledge of international issues and social systems you’ll acquire through studying Politics. Graduates have gone on to careers in the civil service, government, public affairs, accountancy, IT, business development, events management, finance, journalism, publishing, research and sales, as well as teaching and translation both in the UK and abroad.
For the last ten years, languages graduates from Lancaster have been in the top ten universities in the country in terms of their employment prospects. The Complete University Guide 2017 ranked Spanish Studies 1st and Politics joint 4th in the UK for graduate prospects.
Many graduates continue their studies at Lancaster, making the most of our excellent postgraduate research facilities. There are a diverse range of Masters programmes on offer in Politics, as well as options to study Translation or Languages and Cultures at postgraduate level.
Lancaster University is dedicated to ensuring you not only gain a highly reputable degree, but that you also graduate with relevant life and work based skills. We are unique in that every student is eligible to participate in The Lancaster Award which offers you the opportunity to complete key activities such as work experience, employability/career development, campus community and social development. Visit our Employability section for full details.
We set our fees on an annual basis and the 2018/19 entry fees have not yet been set.
As a guide, our fees in 2017 were:
Some science and medicine courses have higher fees for students from
the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. You can find more details here:
For full details of the University's financial support packages including eligibility criteria, please visit our fees and funding page
Students also need to consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, photocopying, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits. Following graduation it may be necessary to take out subscriptions to professional bodies and to buy business attire for job interviews.
Typical time in lectures, seminars and similar per week during term time
Average assessment by coursework