Whether you would like to work in government, a global corporation, academia or a nongovernmental organization, a degree in International Relations can open many doors. Our curriculum enables you to analyze the legal, historical, socioeconomic, humanitarian and political factors that influence global affairs. You will learn how to perform rigorous and structured research, to understand and explain a comprehensive range of international relations issues and to develop scholarly analysis, as well as how to apply it. Tailor your degree by choosing enrichment courses in fields such as European integration, Asian security studies, energy politics, terrorism or international law. Our international classrooms, with students and faculty from around the world, enhance political and cultural discussions leading to a better understanding in the field of international relations.
Students who complete this program will be able to:
- Demonstrate knowledge of key subfields and theories of international relations as a discipline including their relevance and application.
- Identify major actors and institutions of international relations and know their functions.
- Distinguish systemic from actor-specific causes determining political, economic and military conflicts.
The program will also teach students to:
- Analyze international issues from perspectives other than their own, and display familiarity with foreign cultures and languages.
- Analyze the potential and constraints of international organizations, such as the United Nations, the European Union or ASEAN, on a regional and global level, as well as in relation to their member states.
- Demonstrate knowledge of region-specific developments to understand the role of international actors such as the United States, the European Union, China or Russia.
- Assess the political, economic, legal, historic and societal implications of systemic changes on national, regional and global levels.
- Apply analytical tools to explain past and current developments and crises in international relations.
- Produce original research and present it in scientific papers.
BA in International Relations
WVPU’s BA in International Relations program comprehensively examines a range of international relations issues enabling students to understand the complexities and underlying processes involved in world politics and international affairs. Students undergo a rigorous program of scholarly training that prepares them to carry out requisite levels of research and proceed into more advanced studies. Through exposure to and participation in faculty research, as well as interaction with an array of experts and prominent external lecturers, students gain valuable insight into history and contemporary world affairs. They learn to work independently and to collaborate with others on analyzing political events and crises, understand and assess political risk, and formulate, as well as advocate policies that benefit the public good in line with WVPU’s profile and objectives.
Graduates of WVPU’s BA in International Relations program possess an in-depth theoretical and practical knowledge of international relations and can therefore perform tasks at a very high professional level. They are critical, independent thinkers capable of collaboration and leadership, able to deal with comprehensive challenges in changing contexts, able to take on and manage projects, and take responsibility for decision making.
The program’s strong focus on research, methods and analysis combined with frequent exposure to real-world cases ensures that graduates can develop innovative approaches to solve known and unforeseen problems. They are thus fully qualified for the degree they earned, professionally ready to begin their careers and make a difference, and they possess the scholarly foundation necessary to pursue an advanced degree. As a result, many of the program’s graduates enter into service among the international diplomatic and professional communities leading to successful careers in the public and private sectors while others go on to successfully complete advanced degrees.
The Bachelor of Arts in International Relations curriculum is organized into five modules and a thesis, including:
- The Common Core Module (12 courses/72 ECTS);
- Two Discipline Core Modules ( 14 courses/84 ECTS)
- A Discipline Enrichment Module (2 courses/12 ECTS),
- An Electives Module (64 ECTS), and
- Thesis (8 ECTS)
Full-time students working toward the Bachelor of Arts in International Relations will usually carry a course load of five courses per semester (30 ECTS); the regular duration of the program is 4 years (8 semesters). For most courses in the program, students attend 36 hours of courses over a 12-week calendar period concurrent with 114 hours of self-learning.
Core Module 1: Foundation
- INTL 1050 Introduction to International Relations (6 ECTS)
- INTL 1500 World Systems since 1500 (6 ECTS)
- INTL 2030 International Law (6 ECTS)
- INTL 2680 International Relations Theory (6 ECTS)
- INTL 3100 International Political Economy (6 ECTS)
- INTL 3700 International Organizations (6 ECTS)
- POLT 1070 Introduction to Political Theory (6 ECTS)
- POLT 3310 Conduct of Foreign Policy (6 ECTS)
- ECON 2030 Introduction to Macroeconomics (6 ECTS)
Core Module 2: Methods
- ANSO 2720 Introduction to Measurement and Statistics
- INTL 2700 Methods of Political Inquiry
Core Module 3: Clusters
Politics cluster (6 ECTS) — students must select at least one of the following courses:
- POLT 1080 Introduction to Comparative Politics (6 ECTS)
- POLT 2250 Politics in the Industrialized World (6 ECTS)
- POLT 2550 The Politics of the Developing World (6 ECTS)
International Cluster (6 ECTS) — students must select at least one of the following courses:
- INTL 3500 Environmental and Energy Security (6 ECTS)
- INTL 3800 International Security (6 ECTS)
History Cluster (6 ECTS) — students must select at least one of the following courses:
- HIST 3130 History of Human Rights (6 ECTS)
- HIST 3150 International Affairs (6 ECTS)
Students must select at least 12 ECTS from any course with the corresponding prefixes: INTL, POLT, HIST.
Any of the above not used to satisfy core/cluster course requirements, or any other HIST/INTL/POLT courses, such as:
- POLT 1550 Introduction to Political Argumentation and Debate (3 credit hours)
- POLT 3650 Internship (3 credit hours)
- INTL 2100 Model U.N. (3 credit hours)
- HIST 2020 Topics in Modern European History (3 credit hours)
- HIST 2230 The Age of Total War: Europe 1890-1945 (3 credit hours)
- HIST 2240 Contemporary Europe: 1945-Present (3 credit hours)
Students may choose up to 64 ECTS among any of WVPU’s course offerings. Any excess ECTS from the Discipline Enrichment Module or Core Module 3 will be automatically considered as satisfying this category.
All major requirements and a minimum of 116 credit hours must be completed prior to registering for the thesis.
- INTL 4700 Bachelor Thesis (8 ECTS)
Please see WVPU’s Thesis Guidelines for more information on the Thesis requirements, as well as the Media Communications Department undergraduate guidelines (PDF opens in new tab) on Connections (for current students).
International Relations Minor
A minor in International Relations requires 36 ECTS (6 courses) compiled from INTL, POLT or applicable HIST* course offerings. Of those, a minimum of 24 ECTS (4 courses) must be earned from INTL or POLT courses.
Faculty — International Relations
Aner Barzilay, Ph.D.
Topics in Modern European History
Dr. Elina Brutschin
Methods of Political Inquiry
Advanced Research Methods
Dr. J. Werner Druml
Univ.-Ass. Mag. Dr. Marcel Fink
Dr. Eric Frey
International Political Economy
Mag. Gerlad Garber
Introduction to Political Argumentation and Debate
Dr. Sandra Goldstein
Middle East Area Studies
MMag. Dr. iur. Ralph Janik, LL.M.
Dr. Monika Mokre
Politics of Development
Refugee and Migration Movements
Prof. Iver B. Neumann, PhD
War and Diplomacy
Mag. Dr Dieter Reinisch MRes
The Age of Total War: Europe 1890-1945
Contemporary Europe: 1945-Present
Dr. Astrid Reisinger Coracini
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