Teaching and learning in 2020/21

In order to prioritise the safety of students and staff, we are planning to teach through a flexible combination of online and onsite learning. For more details on changes to this course, see our undergraduate course changes page or postgraduate course changes page.

Course Overview

UK/EU Fees £9,250 *
International Fees £14,000 *
Duration 3 or 4 years

* Price per academic year

Course summary

Our Politics BA equips you with an understanding of the relationship between government and society in regions all over the world, from Europe, the Middle East and Asia to North and South America.

Studying for a politics degree will help you to understand and think critically about political events, the interplay of domestic and international politics, how resources and power are distributed in society; how decisions are made; and why political systems develop in the ways that they do.

You'll study political concepts, ideas, values and institutions, and explore the relationship between political theory and practice. 

Our graduates go on to work in a range of sectors, including the Civil Service, government, NGOs, international organisations, think tanks, teaching and research.

We are in the centre of one of the world’s greatest cities and we use this vibrant, multicultural setting to ensure that our students discover innovative solutions to the problems facing our world. In 2018, the University of Westminster was named the most diverse university in the UK, New Zealand and the USA, representing 170 nationalities (Hotcourses Diversity Index).

We take full advantage of our location in the heart of London, which allows us to take you out of the classroom to visit places such as the Houses of Parliament, government departments, international organisations, NGOs, exhibitions and museums. We regularly invite high-profile speakers to our central London location for our well-established series of seminars, public lectures and conferences to which you, as a student of politics, will be invited.

As a student on this course, you have the opportunity to spend one optional year abroad. You may complete a work or volunteering placement, both of which provide valuable opportunities to boost your employability. You may also undertake a study placement at one of our partner universities.

Graduates with international experience are particularly valued by employers, and a one-year period of residence abroad enhances your language skills and gives you experiences, contacts and intercultural awareness that will be valuable in your career.

As a School, we also host the world-renowned Centre for the Study of Democracy. The centre undertakes research across a range of critical challenges to the theory and practice of politics, international relations, sociology and criminology. We have an innovative initiative called the Democratic Education Network, which facilitates dialogue and the sharing of knowledge between our students, international universities and diasporic communities in London.

Top reasons to study with us

  • An enhanced learning experience – Our central London location allows us to take you out of the classroom to visit places such as the Houses of Parliament, government departments, international organisations, NGOs, exhibitions and museums
  • Our truly international outlook – We have been named the most diverse university in the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand (source: Hotcourses Diversity Index 2018), with students representing 170 nationalities
  • A supportive community – We provide a supportive, inclusive and dynamic environment with high student satisfaction. There are plenty of opportunities for community engagement, not least through the student-led Democratic Education Network - a runner-up ‘Student Experience’ initiative in the Guardian University Awards 2019

Course structure

Teaching and learning methods include lectures, small group work, review sessions, workshops, symposia, debates, Q&A sessions, document analysis sessions, and structured role-plays.

A wide range of assessments includes essays, exams, policy reports, project work, simulations, individual and group presentations, blogs, posters, and debates.

The teaching is offered within the School of Social Sciences, which brings together Criminology, Politics and International Relations, Psychology and Sociology. What binds us together is our shared commitment to making education a transformative experience for our students, to conducting research that makes a difference to the social world, and to enhancing the diversity of ideas and identities within and beyond the University.

Students on this course have the opportunity to spend one optional year abroad. 

The following modules are indicative of what you will study on this course.

Our teaching programme is structured to support students' transition to higher education and progression through each academic year. The first-year programme provides an introduction to key concepts and structures of government and how these impact on political behaviour and decision-making. It also embeds the study of politics in a wider context by providing a grounding in international relations and development studies.

Subjects of study include:

  • British Politics
  • Critical Perspectives on Global Politics
  • Democracy in Crisis
  • Dilemmas of International Development
  • Global Governance and Development
  • Introduction to International Relations
  • Political Ideas in Action
  • The Politics of Migration

Credit Level 4

In the second year you will deepen your understanding of theoretical approaches, and your critical awareness of conflicting narratives of the state and of governance, particularly since the Cold War, in relation to society and to the international community.

Subjects of study include:

  • Geopolitics
  • Global Security
  • Governance in Europe
  • International Political Economy
  • Learning in an International Environment
  • Middle East Politics
  • Nationalism and the State in the Global South
  • Political Research and Practice
  • Politics and International Relations Internship
  • Power and the State
  • Rethinking Development
  • The Politics of Killing
  • Theorising Politics and International Relations

Credit Level 5

Students on this course have the opportunity to spend one optional year abroad. You may complete a work or volunteering placement, both of which provide valuable opportunities to boost your employability and ground your studies in an experiential setting. You may also undertake a study placement at one of our university partners. You can also undertake a combination of both study and work.

In the third year, you will be able to engage with a range of both theory-based and policy-related topics, including equality, justice and citizenship, radical democracy, gender politics, digital politics, and political psychology.  You will also be able to tailor your degree to a more 'academic' pathway or a more 'professional' pathway, completing either a traditional academic dissertation or a professionally-oriented research report.

Subjects of study include:

  • American Power in a Multipolar World
  • Contested Sovereignty: Territory, Borders and Resistance
  • Digital Politics
  • Dissertation
  • Energy and Development in the Middle East and Central Asia
  • Equality, Justice, Citizenship
  • Ethics, Morality and World Order(s)
  • Foreign Policy and Diplomacy
  • Gender and Politics
  • Humanitarian Intervention and International Relations
  • Learning from NGOs in an International Context
  • Policy and Practice
  • Postcolonial Politics and International Relations
  • Radical Democracy
  • Security and the Surveillance State
  • Special Topic in Politics and International Relations
  • The Politics of Protest: Social and Political Movements Today

Credit Level 6

Programme Specification

For more details on course structure and modules, and how you will be taught and assessed, see the programme specification.

Careers

Big Ben in London
Fantastic London location

We take you out of the classroom to visit places such as the Houses of Parliament, government departments, international organisations, NGOs, and museums. 

Globe
Gain international experience

You have the option to spend a year abroad undertaking a work, study or volunteering placement.

3,000
Employers around the world

The University’s Careers and Employability Service has built up a network of over 3,000 employers around the world, helping all our students explore and connect with exciting opportunities and careers.

Industry links

We take full advantage of our location in the heart of London, using our links with the Houses of Parliament and other centres of power and policy-making.

We regularly invite high-profile speakers to our central London location for our well-established series of seminars, public lectures and conferences, to which you, as a student of politics, will be invited.

Work experience

Our central London location means you'll be perfectly placed to access placement and internship opportunities. 

In the past, our students have undertaken work experience at organisations including: 

  • Association for Citizenship Teaching
  • British Red Cross
  • Cancer Research UK
  • Conservative Party
  • European Commission 
  • European Parliament
  • Google
  • Greater London Assembly
  • Green Party
  • Houses of Parliament
  • Italian Embassy in London
  • Labour Party
  • Patchwork Foundation
  • Russo-British Chamber of Commerce
  • Save the Children
  • Women's Resource Centre

Job roles

This course will prepare you for a range of roles, including:

    • Campaigner
    • Civil servant
    • Diplomat
    • Journalist
    • Researcher

    Graduate employers

    Graduates from this course have found employment at organisations including:

      • Bradford Council
      • HM Government
      • Houses of Parliament
      • Metropolitan Police
      • Student Union
         

      International Opportunities

      Many of our courses offer international study and work experiences, and the University provides other global opportunities that all students can apply for - so whatever you're studying, you'll have the chance to go abroad.

      Opportunities could include:

      • Taking part in semester or year-long exchanges at institutions around the world
      • Attending an international summer school or field trip
      • Developing your CV through volunteering or work placements abroad

      International experience broadens horizons, boosts self-confidence, and improves global understanding, alongside being fantastic for your career.

      Find out more about our international opportunities, including funding options and where you can go.

      Students working and studying internationally

      Why study this course?

      Figure walking up stairs
      Get career-ready

      Studying politics will prepare you for a range of careers, including working as a civil servant, diplomat, campaigner, researcher or journalist.

      Lecture speaking new icon turquoise
      Learn from experts

      Our School of Social Sciences hosts the world-renowned Centre for the Study of Democracy, and the innovative Democratic Education Network

      Support caring icon
      Study in a supportive environment

      We provide an inclusive environment with high student satisfaction, and our teaching is structured to support your transition to higher education.

      Studying with us

      Online open days

      Join us at an online open day and get a feel for student life at the University of Westminster.

      You'll get a chance to: 

      • Speak to our academic staff
      • Take a virtual reality tour of our student halls
      • Ask us any questions you may have about student finance and accommodation

      Find an online open day

      Student taking notes while attending an online event

      Entry Requirements

      • A Levels – CCC to BBB
      • International Baccalaureate – 27 points. We also welcome applications from students taking the IB Career related Programme
      • BTEC Extended Diploma – MMM to DDM
      • BTEC Diploma – DD to D*D*
      • Access – 96 to 120 UCAS Tariff points from the Access course

      In addition to one of the above, you should have: 

      • GCSE English Language grade 4/C – IB grade 4 Higher Level, GCSE Maths grade 4/C – IB grade 4

      If your first language is not English, you will need an IELTS of 6.0 overall, with 5.5 in each component.

      We also welcome applications from students who are taking a combination of qualifications listed above. For further information, please contact Course Enquiries.

      View more information about our entry requirements and the application process

      • International Baccalaureate – 27 points

      If your first language is not English, you will need an IELTS of 6.0 overall, with 5.5 in each component.

      More information

      International Foundation course

      We work in partnership with Kaplan International College London to provide Foundation Certificate courses for international students who don’t meet our Bachelor’s degree entry requirements.

      Find out how to apply for the Foundation Certificate course.

      Pre-sessional English programmes

      Need to improve your English before starting your course? We offer summer pre-sessional English programmes to help develop your English language skills.

      Find out more about our pre-sessional English programmes.

      Democratic Education Network

      The Democratic Education Network (DEN) is an academic, student-led organisation, part of the Department of Politics and International Relations.

      It promotes social action and student engagement through local and international projects that solidify and enhance your experiences. It also provides numerous opportunities to transform your ideas into reality and make a real difference.

      Participate every Thursday at our weekly meetings and check out our blog 'Inside Westminster'.

      Visit the DEN website

      Learn new skills

      Languages icon
      Learn a new language

      From Arabic to Spanish, you can learn a new language alongside your degree with our Polylang programme

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      Develop your entrepreneurial skills

      Our award-winning Creative Enterprise Centre offers industry networking events, workshops, one-to-one business advice and support for your startup projects. 

      Awards icon in turquoise
      Gain extra qualifications

      We provide access to free online courses in Adobe and Microsoft Office applications, as well as thousands of specialist courses on LinkedIn Learning.

      Fees and Funding

      UK and EU tuition fee: £9,250 (Price per academic year)

      When you have enrolled with us, your annual tuition fees will remain the same throughout your studies with us. We do not increase your tuition fees each year.

      Find out how we set our tuition fees.

      Funding

      As well as tuition fee loans, there is a range of funding available to help you fund your studies.

      Find out about undergraduate student funding options.

      Scholarships

      The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

      Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

      Additional costs

      See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

      International tuition fee: £14,000 (Price per academic year)

      When you have enrolled with us, your annual tuition fees will remain the same throughout your studies with us. We do not increase your tuition fees each year.

      Find out how we set our tuition fees.

      International student funding

      Find out about funding for international students.

      Scholarships

      The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

      Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

      Additional costs

      See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

      Teaching and assessment

      Below you'll find examples of how marks have been calculated and study time distributed in the past. Changes to assessment weights and division of study time may be made in response to feedback and in accordance with our terms and conditions.

      How you'll be taught

      Teaching methods across all our undergraduate courses focus on active student learning through seminars, workshops, problem-based and blended learning, as well as group work. Teaching will be informed by our research, giving you the benefit of the knowledge of current theories and, where appropriate, their practical application.

      Year
      1
      24%76%
      2
      23%75%2%
      3
      20%80%
      Scheduled hours Independent study Placement

      How you'll be assessed

      Assessment methods across our undergraduate courses may include essays, reports, presentations, case studies, videos, podcasts and posters, as well as time-constrained in-class tests and exams.

       

      Year
      1
      2%11%87%
      2
      3%97%
      3
      4%96%
      Written exams Practical Coursework

      Data from the academic year 2019/20

      Supporting you

      Our Student Hub is where you’ll find out about the services and support we offer, helping you get the best out of your time with us.

      • Study support — workshops, 1-2-1 support and online resources to help improve your academic and research skills
      • Personal tutors — support you in fulfilling your academic and personal potential
      • Student advice team — provide specialist advice on a range of issues including funding, benefits and visas
      • Extra-curricular activities — volunteering opportunities, sports and fitness activities, student events and more

      visit our student hub

      Illustration for the Student Hub

      Studying at Regent Campus

      Location

      Located on one of London’s most vibrant streets, our 309 Regent Street site houses our Humanities subjects and the Westminster Law School. Along with a city-centre location, the site boasts high-tech learning facilities, collaborative social spaces, gym facilities, and our Regent Street Cinema.

      Our Regent Campus is made up of three locations – 309 Regent Street, Little Titchfield Street and Wells Street, all of which are just a five-minute walk from Oxford Street.

      For more details, visit our locations page.

      More information

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      [email protected]

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