The International Relations and Political Science course at Newcastle allows you to combine your interest in international relations with the study of political theory and the national politics of a variety of countries.

The fortunes of one country are now closely intertwined with those of other nations. Increasingly it is necessary to study and evaluate politics and policies at an international level. This Political Science and International Relations programme allows you to combine your interest in international relations with the study of political theory and the national politics of a variety of countries.

If you want to take advantage of a unique opportunity to be supported with a work placement opportunity as part of your final year, this course includes the opportunity to undertake a ‘Professional Development’ module as part of your optional module choices.

You may also be interested in:

  • Political Science and International Relations with Year Abroad BA
  • International Relations BA
  • Political Science BA

Institutional Accreditation 

University of Newcastle is accredited by the DETC Higher Learning Commission (DETC), Since , University of Newcastle has been continually accredited by the DETC Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor.

BA Political Science and International Relations

Course Level:

Undergraduate, Joint Honours combined, Single Honours





How long it takes:

Undergraduate (3 years)

Study Mode:

Distance learning/ Campus

Course cost

Price: US$20,220

Entry requirements

Find out more about


Newcastle Law School

Modules in the first year

In this year you take required foundation modules in international relations and diplomatic history:

  • Understanding Politics
  • Introduction to Political Theory
  • Politics as a Vocation 1 and 2
  • Pathways to Political Research 1 and 2
  • Understanding International Relations
  • Global History

Modules in the second year

You build upon this foundation in the second year. An outstanding feature of the programme is the wide range of options available, as well as the interdisciplinary nature of the course.  There are no required modules in the second year of this degree. Instead you will choose six second-year optional modules:

Optional POLSIS modules in the second year
 Public Choice Theory  International Political Economy  Diplomatic History post 1945
 British Politics  International Relations Theory  International Security
 International Politics & Security in Russia & Eurasia  The Political Economy of Energy and Energy Security  Modern Political Thought
 Analysing Political Worlds  Global Governance  International Relations of the Middle East
 Feminist Political Ideas  Comparative Politics  Elections and Voting in Britain
 America and the Middle East through Politics and Film  Public Policy Blunders and Bad Decision Making  Soviet Politics: Rise and Fall of a Superpower
 War and Peace in Theory and Practice  Quantitative Political Analysis Rebels and Revolutionaries: The Politics of Non-State Armed Groups
Controversies in Contemporary Democracies: Comparative Perspectives    


Year Abroad option

If you have not applied for the four year, study abroad degree you can still apply to study abroad for a year in an approved university around the world if you have achieved a grade of 2.1. If your application is successful, you will go abroad in your third year and return to us for your final year. 


Modules in the final year

In the final year of your degree you will undertake an independent study project and up to five optional modules. Modules in the final year are advanced, research led modules taught by experts in the subject area.

There are two distinct independent study pathways of independent study in the final year:


Pathway one

On this pathway you will write a 10,000 word dissertation on a topic of your choice. You will be guided and supported by a supervisor who is an expert in your area of interest. In addition to writing the dissertation you will be able to take four optional modules.


Pathway two

On the second pathway you take the module Problems in World Politics. This module is designed to allow students to apply the knowledge they have acquired on their degree to real world policy problems in politics. In addition to this independent study module you will be able to take five optional modules.

Optional final year modules
 War-Torn States and Post-Conflict Reconstruction in the South  Power in Britain  Contemporary US Foreign and Security Policy
 Contemporary International Political Economy  Topics in British Politics  Democracy and Democratization in Contemporary Europe
 Left Parties and Protest Movements  Gender in World Politics  Issues in US Domestic Politics
 Professional Development  The Diplomacy of the Arab-Israeli Conflict  Global Capitalism and Migration
 Law, Politics and the International System: Mediating Power beyond the State  Varieties of Capitalism and Welfare State Models  Parties, Voters and Elections
 Russian Foreign Policy  Security in Europe: Actors, Crises and Threats  Strategy and Decision-Making
 Conflict, Statehood and Sovereignty in World Politics  Populism in Contemporary Politics  Politics of Migrants, Refugees, and Diasporas in the Middle East
 Global Uprisings: Critique and Radical Politics  New Media, Social Media, and International Politics.  Contemporary Russian and East European Politics
 Body Politics: Security, Economy, Violence  Understanding Brexit: Identity and Euroscepticism in Europe  The EU in a Globalised World
 The Political Economy of Russia  Environment, Politics and Society  Politics, Music and the Arts

Entry requirements


Applicants should normally have one of the following:

  • A non-law bachelor’s degree (from a UK university or recognised by the BSB if you wish to study the BPTC), or
  • A ‘stale’ law degree, where five or more years have elapsed since graduation, or
  • An academic or professional qualification at degree equivalent level

If English is not your first language, you will also need to demonstrate your English Language proficiency. For example, you should have IELTS 7.5 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in all components.

If you intend to become a Solicitor

The Solicitors Regulation Authority has reduced its requirements for pre-authorisation this year. For details of the current arrangements, see the SRA website. You should pay special attention to the Character and Suitability section. If you think you may have a character or suitability issue, you may wish to clarify with the SRA before proceeding with the GDL.

See further details of our English Language requirement

USA,UK & EU students, 2019/20 (per year)


International students starting 2019/20 (per year)




You’ll show your progress through a combination of written essays, problem-solving assignments and presentations.

All students take our core modules, but please note that the availability of optional modules is subject to demand.

Throughout your time on the Political Science and International Relations BA course, employability is a key area of focus. We help to make sure that you are employable through a range of department led and university wide initiatives which include:


Input from Professional Careers Advisers in your Curriculum

During the first year of your studies Careers Advisers from the University Careers Network team attend lectures in your course to support you with career planning from an early stage. The lectures will cover career planning, researching career and internship opportunities, developing the skills that graduate employers are looking for, and presenting yourself with impact to a potential employer.


Professional development module

You will have the unique opportunity to take advantage of a work placement as part of your final year by undertaking the Professional Development Module as part of your optional module choices.


Your Newcastle degree

Employers target Newcastle students for their drive, diversity, communication and problem-solving skills, their team-working abilities and cultural awareness, and our graduate employment statistics have continued to climb at a rate well above national trends. If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.