1. UCAS code:
    3yrs Full-time
  2. Typical offer:
  3. 93% Graduate Employment

Course Overview

At Swansea University, we believe above all, that the study of International Relations should always open your mind and extend your skills. The BA International Relations provides students with a detailed understanding of the international system, key issues and an appreciation of the global dynamics at work. The twenty-first Century has often been called the Asia-Pacific Century, and with good reason when you consider it is home to the rising power of China and host to trouble spots ranging from nuclear weapons in Northeast Asia to Islamic terrorism in Southeast Asia.

Teaching and Assessment

In order to structure an academically coherent and intellectually rigorous programme, the degree is built around compulsory and optional modules. (Have a look at our module booklet for full information on modules).

The programme is delivered through lectures, tutorials and seminars. You will usually receive nine hours minimum scheduled contact time with your teachers every week. Every degree involves choices, options will be available and if first choices are not secured then the alternative will be as good. Full attendance at lectures, seminars and personal tutorials (personal tutorials are obligatory). All Arts and Humanities programmes include independent learning which requires initiative and hard work. 

We will challenge you with demanding teaching and assessment. Assessment includes essay, coursework and examination, presentations and a dissertation.    

Key Features

  • A UNIQUE STUDY EXPERIENCE IN THE UK! New students who are admitted to our BA programmes will be offered Centenary Graduate Scholarships. The Excellence and Merit scholarships will be available to EU, UK and International students who have completed a full-time three or four year BA programme, achieved a 2:1 or above, and gained a place on a one-year full-time Taught Masters programme in the College.
  • BA students who graduate with a 1st class degree will automatically receive a full tuition fee Excellence scholarship for the MA year.
  • BA students who graduate with a 2:1 degree will automatically receive a Merit scholarship and pay £1,000 fees for the MA year.
  • Students can study Politics modules.
  • Students can have a semester abroad in Europe, Hong Kong or the USA.
  • The ‘National Assembly for Wales Internship’ (PO3000) is a Level 3 module open to International Relations students, available during semester one and it can accommodate up to twenty students. The students work for an AM at the National Assembly in Cardiff for one day per week for a semester.  
  • ‘Internship Module’ is a Level 3 module, open to International Relations students. The internships are for 100 hours and are offered across a diverse range of sectors: local government, the media, the third sector e.g. National Botanic Garden of Wales, Swansea Evening Post, South West Wales Media, Computeraid Wales, Environment Centre Swansea, The Wave and Swansea Sound Radio, Geraint Davies MP Constituency, Sian James MP Constituency Labour South Wales West, Swansea University Sustainability,  Swansea Council and Swansea Youth Offending Service.
  • Students have a personal tutor for pastoral support and guidance on issues that may affect their well-being.


Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 1 (Level 4)

HE Level 4 Degree / HECert

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PO-118Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20War and Peace in the Nuclear Age
PO-119Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Politics and the People
PO-125Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20What is Politics and International Relations?
Optional Modules

Year 2 (Level 5)

HE Level 5 Degree / HEDip

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PO-203Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Anarchy and Order: Theories in International Relations
PO-222Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Globalisation
PO-232Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The Empire Strikes Back: American Security Policy in the Post-Cold War Era
Optional Modules

Year 3 (Level 6)

HE Level 6 Degree / Honours

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PO-396Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Researching Politics 1
PO-397Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Researching Politics 2 (PO-327)
Optional Modules

Choose Exactly 20 credits from the following Modules:

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PO-3000Semester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)20The National Assembly for Wales
PO-395Semester 1 and 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)20Dissertation (PO-325)
Optional Modules 

Choose Exactly 60 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select three modules from the list below

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
AM-300Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Power and Protest in American Political Culture
AM-330Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20America and the Bomb
AM-331Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The American Presidency: Leadership and Power
HIH3215Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Media and Society in the 1930s
HIH396Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20From Machiavelli to Mussolini: Government and society in Western political thought
HUA300Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The Rise of Brazil
HUA301Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Gunfighter Nation: the West in History, Mythology and Fiction
HUA305Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The Spanish Civil War - Its Origins, Course and Legacy
HUA306Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20The Aftermaths of War
HUA308Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Real War, Imagined War: War in Literature, Art and Cinema
HUA309Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20The Russian Civil War
HUP301Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Religion, Science, and Superstition
HUP304Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Philosophy and the Social Sciences
MS-302Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Media, Gender and Sexuality
MS-306Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Digital Futures
MS-309Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Online Journalism
PO-3110Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Visions of Democracy
PO-3117Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Politics and International Development
PO-3121Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Parliamentary Studies
PO-345Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Contemporary Political Economy: Competing Perspectives on Global Capitalism
PO-392Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Contemporary Security
POA301Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Dissertation in Parliamentary Studies


We teach Single Honours degrees in International Relations and an extensive range of Joint degrees so that you can combine your study with other Humanities subjects, with Social Sciences, or with a Language. Our degrees provide you with the essential skills to help you make sense of the complex, fast moving world in which we live; to think on your feet and consider issues and events from a wide variety of perspectives.

In the first year, our modules provide an exciting and comprehensive introduction to the key concepts and issues that will help you make sense of International Relations . In the following two years, you can choose from a wide range of specialist modules and have the option of writing a specialised, supervised Dissertation on a topic of your choice. You also get the chance to take our unique and popular teamwork module Researching Politics, and to do an internship at the National Assembly for Wales or a work-placement module.

Entry Requirements

All applicants receive individual consideration. Our preferred offers for UK applicants are BBB-BBC at A-level. However, flexible offers are made on review of the application form, after taking into consideration the subjects studied, predicted or achieved grades, reference and personal statement.

For candidates offering the International Baccalaureate, a typical offer would be 32-30 points. We ask for Welsh Baccalaureate plus BC at A-level. Access candidates should have 15 Distinctions and 18 Merits. Candidates studying for American qualifications should have a minimum of 550 in each part of the SAT reasoning and subject tests (or 1650 overall). We require a minimum IELT score of 6.0.

Have a look at our Country pages for International qualifications.

How To Apply

EU/UK candidates apply here.

International students apply here.

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2016/17 are as follows:

UK/EU International
BA (Hons) Full-time £9,000 £13,650

Tuition fees for years of study after your first year are subject to inflationary increases for International students and at the capped fee rate as set by the UK Government for UK/EU students.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page.

Current students: You can find further information of your fee costs on our tuition fees page.

Additional Costs

The tuition fees do not cover the costs of purchasing books or stationery, printing, thesis binding or photocopying costs.

There are no mandatory additional costs specified for this course.

Student Quotes

"My degree is fantastic. I have learnt so much about international relations and developed valuable essay writing skills. The IR Professors are very helpful especially when I need help as English is not my native language. I would say that so far my experience as a student in IR is self-fulfilling and very interesting and Swansea University is the right place to study this course. After graduating, I intend to study an MA in international affairs. My dream would be to work for the UN."

Salma El Hankouri


The Research Institute for Arts and Humanities (RIAH) brings together academics, postgraduates and visiting national and international scholars to create a rich and vibrant research environment geared to international excellence and impact.

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