International Relations

Programme - first cycle - 180 credits

Syllabus for students admitted autumn 2013

Programme Code:
SGINE revision 8.1
Date of establishment:
30 November 2006
Date of ratification:
07 November 2012
Decision-making body:
Faculty of Culture and Society
Enforcement date:
02 September 2013
Replaces Syllabus ratified:
15 December 2011

Entry requirements

General entry requirement (with the exemption of Swedish language) and specific entry requirement of English B from Swedish upper secondary school (A6/6), or equivalent.


International Relations as an academic subject contains a number of theoretical perspectives seeking to illuminate and explain relations between different types of actors and structures within global politics.

The overarching aim of the bachelor program of international relations is to provide students with the ability to gain skills, knowledge and insight in relation to the following main areas: the basic features of international relations; the changeable nature of international relations; the relationship between global politics the state and the individual; the nature and modes of operation of the international system; and the emergence of international norms and institutions. Furthermore, the program seeks to provide knowledge and insight into salient theoretical endeavors, methodological issues and current research debates within the field of study.

The program also aims to equip students with the necessary analytical skills in order to be able to work with subject related issues in national and international environments, for example within voluntary organizations, national public authorities and international organizations. In addition, the program provides necessary skills and knowledge for continued studies on master or graduate studies levels.

The bachelor program consists of six terms of study and leads to a bachelor’s degree in International Relations.

The program is organized in the following way:

  • Term 1: International relations 1. This term is based on the theoretically pluralist character of the discipline, i.e. it engages different perspectives on IR, providing the foundation for further study. This course also gives students an introduction to current issues and trends in global politics, and their historical background and development. In addition, an introduction to scientific methods and academic writing is given.

  • Term 2: International Relations 2. This course builds on the theoretical and empirical knowledge gained in the first semester, but focuses on specific processes and structures central to the development and operation of the contemporary international system, as well as on questions relating methodology and the research of international relations. The latter includes the writing of a research paper.

  • Term 3: Elective. This semester makes it possible for students to enroll in elective courses, but it is recommended that students chose subjects either related to IR or courses of relevance for future professional careers.

  • Term 4: Elective. This semester also makes it possible for students to enroll in elective courses but it is recommended that students either conduct studies at a university abroad, or do an internship which the program coordinator deems relevant to the study program.

  • Term 5: In–Depth Studies in Global Politics. This course aims to provide students with deepened understanding of theory within the discipline and to broaden their knowledge of the empirical scope of Global Politics. Specific attention is given to global governance and foreign policy strategies.

  • Term 6: International Relations 3. In the final semester, we focus on analysis of contemporary challenges in Global Politics in relation to more advanced studies of methodology and philosophy of science. Specific attention is given to the research process and the design and completion of a research project. The course ends with a Bachelor Thesis (15 credits).


Course list:

Learning outcomes

After completion of the program, students will be able to

  • Identify and describe, compare and analyze, as well as critically assess and evaluate the theoretical perspectives, research problems, and areas of study germane to the discipline of International Relations
  • Through the application of scientific methods independently identify, seek, collect, and critically compile and interpret material and information relevant to the subject.
  • Orally and in writing participate in a dialogue with different respondents within the academy and in society at large, concerning subject related problems, arguments and solutions.
  • Within allotted time-frames formulate and conduct independent analysis of research problems within international relations, individually as well as in groups.
  • Evaluate relevant scientific, societal, and ethical aspects of their own and others’ independent research products.
  • Independently design, conduct, and present a research project.


Bachelor's degree.

Bachelor of Arts with a major in International Relations.