Course code EDS374B

EDS374B International Relations Theory

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Showing course contents for the educational year 2022 - 2023 .

Course responsible: Katharina Charlotte Laura Glaab
Teachers: Paul David Hagen Beaumont, Stig Jarle Hansen
ECTS credits: 10
Faculty: Faculty of Landscape and Society
Teaching language: EN
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Limits of class size:
Teaching exam periods:
This course starts in Spring parallel. This course has teaching/evaluation in Spring parallel.
Course frequency: Annually
First time: Study year 2019-2020
Preferential right:
Course contents:
The course is the second part of a two-part graduate level introduction to International Relations (IR) theory, but can be taken independently. The course 1) surveys critical and reflectivist theoretical approaches in IR and within the broader social sciences, core texts and their objects of study, 2) situates these approaches within the development of International Relations as an academic discipline, and 3) explores and critically discusses their strengths and limitations for understanding world politics.
Learning outcome:
The course aims to provide students with knowledge of critical approaches in IR, and an understanding of the importance of theorizing: why theories and theorizing matter both inside and outside academia. In the process, students will develop independent and critical thinking skills and learn to analyse world politics. They will be trained to critically assess IR theories and discuss global politics from multiple conceptual perspective.
Learning activities:

The course includes lectures and seminars. In lecture sessions, the course convenor will provide an overview of this week’s topic, contending perspectives and situate it within the field of IR. The lectures help to guide you through the topics, but in order to be successful in this course, you are expected to do the readings and engage in critical discussions in the seminars. Every lecture will be followed by a seminar session, where participation is mandatory. A seminar will normally consist of a discussion of the required readings and the contents of the lecture.


For the discussion you are expected to prepare the ‘essential readings’ for the seminar. For a better understanding of the lectures, it also makes sense to do the reading before the lecture. The ‘further readings’ contextualize the topic. The list of readings is by no means exhaustive and serves to give you an overview of the academic debate and useful resources for your written work.

Prepare questions and points for further debate. In the seminar we will discuss the readings and the lecture in large and small groups.

Teaching support:
Office hours and procedures are established at the first class meeting. A course schedule is handed out at the same time
See reading list in Canvas.
General knowledge of international issues, preferably undergraduate courses in relevant social sciences. The intro course EDS203 and EDS374A.
Recommended prerequisites:
Mandatory activity:
Group work which develop key questions related to the mandatory readings. Questions have to be submitted a week before the seminar. The group work will be graded as pass or fail.

This course has continuous assessment ("mappevurdering") and there are two components that are assessed:

  • Exam part I: Project work on popular culture in IR (group work).
  • Exam part II: A theory-based research paper on a chosen topic of 5000 words (individual paper).

The continuous assessment results in one final grade. In this final grade, exam component I takes up 40% and exam component II takes up 60%. Grades are on an A-F scale.

Students can appeal against the final grade and this results in re-assessment of both exam components towards a new final grade.

Nominal workload:
250 hours
Entrance requirements:
Relevant Bachelor degree or equivalent.
Reduction of credits:
Both internal and external examiners will participate in the grading.
Examination details: Continuous assessment: Letter grades