Postgraduate taught 

International Relations MRes

International Security and Strategic Studies POLITIC5009

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

This course will provide students with an introduction to security and strategic studies through an examination of key themes, concepts, theories, and issues in contemporary international politics. It explores both the orthodox approach to international security and strategy, and the recent turn towards a broader security agenda (heralded in academic Security Studies by the emergence of 'critical security studies').


One hour lecture, one hour seminar once a week

Requirements of Entry



The summative component comprises two elements - a group task (20%) and two essays (80%). The group task requires students to collectively produce a 1000 word review of the core reading and substantive seminar discussion topics for presentation to the class during the lecture. The two essays will each be 2000 words (±10%), the better of the two essays will form the 80% essay component.

Course Aims

To study the key theories, themes and concepts of international security and strategic studies and encourage students to critically assess how security is framed in contemporary international politics. To enable this, this course will provide students with a broad overview of the field of security and strategic studies and an opportunity to examine many of the major issues facing the world today.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

■ Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the changing nature of security and strategy;

■ Critically analyse different conceptions of security and strategy;

■ Identify and critically assess the implications of security and strategy for global political practice;

■ Advance reasoned and factually supported arguments both orally and in writing.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Successful completion of assessed components