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Politics BSc

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Study mode

3-year full-time; 4-year thick-sandwich

UCAS code

L200, L202 with Professional Development

Start date

September

Study location

Brunel University London campus

Entry criteria

BBB (A-level)

Politics BSc

Placement Offered This course has a Professional Development option

Overview

Politics is ranked 6th in London (The Complete University Guide, 2018)

We host online webinars to give you the chance to find out more about our courses and what studying at Brunel is like.  Our recent Politics and History webinar can now be watched here.

Brunel University London’s impact on the future wages of its graduates is among the best in the country compared to other universities, according to a new analysis of government data by The Economist (2017).

About the course

Politics is a broad-based degree which provides an excellent foundation in the various aspects of the study of politics. It offers a grounding in the different approaches and theories, as well as a range of options that focus on European, American and international politics, and political change.

Aims

Studying Politics enables students to address critical political questions, such as:

  • Who has political power?
  • Why do they have it?
  • To whom are they accountable?
  • In whose interest do they exercise it?
  • What is globalisation?
  • Is violent protest ever justified?

Enquiries

Contact our Enquiries team.
Course Enquiries: +44 (0)1895 265599 (before you submit an application)
Admissions Office: +44 (0)1895 265265 (after you submit an application)


Course content

The BSc consists of both compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.

Level 1

Compulsory

  • Research Design and Qualitative Methods in Politics
  • Modern Political Thought
  • Modern British Politics
  • Introduction to World Politics
  • Introduction to American Politics
  • Introduction to Comparative Politics

Level 2

Compulsory

  • Explaining Politics: Quantitative Political Science in Practice
  • Comparative Political Institutions

Optional

Choose 4 from the following:

  • US Foreign Policy from World War 2 to the end of the Cold War
  • Issues in American Politics
  • Theories of International Relations
  • The State and Revolution
  • Democracy and Democratisation
  • The Holocaust
  • Ancient Greek Political Thought: Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Politics
  • Unity and Cultural Diversity
  • National Security Intelligence
  • The History of Political Cinema

Level 3

Compulsory

  • European Union Politics: Problems and Prospects
  • Dissertation

Optional

Choose 3 from the following:

  • History of Political Thought
  • Empire, Imperialism and Hegemony
  • Media, Politics and Power in America
  • Marx and Marxism
  • Parties and Voters in the UK
  • Public Policy Analysis
  • Parliamentary Studies
  • Terrorism 1960-2016
  • Fascism
  • Crisis and Critique

Read more about the structure of undergraduate degrees at Brunel and what you will learn on the course.

Employability

Studying politics will equip you with a range of transferable skills that will enable you to follow the career you want after graduation.  85% of our graduates are in employment or further study six months after graduating (Unistats).  Regular career events for law students are offered by the University's award-wining 'Professional Development Centre' (PDC) and the Department avidly supports the professional development of our students. 

Careers and your future

Our students pursue a wide variety of jobs after graduating. Some go into Politics and the civil service and have worked for Members of the Parliament such as John McDonnell MP, or former Labour party general secretary Baroness McDonagh.  Other graduates have joined Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Home Office, GCHQ and military intelligence.

Others work in the public and private sectors, law and NGOs whilst some graduates become researchers, teachers and librarians. 

Work placements

You can take a one-year professional work placement as part of the four-year thick-sandwich course. By opting for a sandwich degree, you'll gain work experience to complement your academic studies in a way that is highly valued by employers. Past students have worked for the Home Office, the Treasury, the Houses of Parliament and for organisations such as Epolitix.com and Politics International.

The positive impact of a sandwich placement on graduate employment outcomes across Brunel is considerable. Those who have done placements are also much more likely to be in employment for which their degree was a formal requirement or where they believe their degree gave them a competitive advantage in recruitment.

At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.

» More about Employability

Entry criteria 2019/20

  • GCE A-level BBB (all subjects considered).

  • BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma DDM in Business, Enterprise and Entrepreneurship, Public Services or Health and Social Care.

  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma DD in Business, Enterprise and Entrepreneurship, Public Services or Health and Social Care AND an A-level at grade B.

  • BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma D in any subject, with A-levels grade BB.

  • International Baccalaureate Diploma 30 points.

  • Access to Higher Education Diploma Complete and pass a related subject Access course with 45 credits at Level 3, with Merits in all units.

 A minimum of five GCSEs are required, including GCSE English Language grade C or grade 4. GCSE Mathematics grade C or grade 4 is also normally required.

Please check our Admissions pages for more information on other factors we use to assess applicants as well as our full GCSE requirements and accepted equivalencies in place of GCSEs.

Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.


International and EU entry requirements

If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions

This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.5 (min 5.5 in all areas)
  • Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 65% (min 55% in all areas)

You can find out more about the qualifications we accept on our English Language Requirements page.

If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you must prove knowledge of the English language so that we can issue you a Certificate of Acceptance for Study (CAS). To do this, you will need an IELTS for UKVI or Trinity SELT test pass gained from a test centre approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and on the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) list. This must have been taken and passed within two years from the date the CAS is made.

Should you wish to take a pre-sessional English course to improve your English prior to starting your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider for the same reason.

We offer our own BrunELT English Test and have pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet requirements or who wish to improve their English. You can find out more information on English courses and test options at the Brunel Language Centre.

Teaching and learning

The influence of scholarship and experience

Students will benefit directly from the expertise and experience of their teachers. All our courses incorporate the research of lecturers who write books, publish well-regarded scholarly articles, present papers at other universities and appear in the media, at home and abroad.

Research has led to major television and radio programmes and several staff members are, or have been, consultants to Government departments as well as to major national newspapers.

Student support

As well as offering students some of the best teaching in our subject areas, we are committed to helping you progress confidently through the levels of your degree programme. To achieve this, we devote as much care to your initiation into higher education, both by entry-level courses and study skills teaching, as to the completion of your learning at Level 3.

By your final year, therefore, you will benefit from the specialist research-led courses and will be prepared for the research and writing involved in your dissertation.

How will I be taught?

Modules are generally taught by a mixture of lectures and seminars. Depending on its credit-rating, you can expect to have one or two hours of lectures per week for each module and a one-hour seminar each week or fortnight.

Lectures – These provide a broad overview of key themes and ideas relating to your course and provide you with a framework from which to carry out more in-depth study.

Seminars – In these relatively small groups you will examine the lecture material in more detail, and theoretical concepts are analysed and applied in specific contexts. Seminars provide students with an opportunity for discussion, debate and the development of presentational skills.

One-to-one – You will get one-to-one supervision on your final year dissertation and at all levels you will have a personal tutor who is available to discuss personal and academic problems. If you go on placement, you will also be allocated a work placement tutor who will ensure your progress and provide further support if you need it.

Private study – The bulk of every student’s work will undoubtedly consist of private study. On average this should absorb approximately 25 to 30 hours of your life each week. During your initial months at Brunel, you are given help and advice designed to encourage you to become an ‘independent learner’, capable of managing your work effectively and organising your studies.

External visits – Wherever possible we aim to introduce students to the benefits of observing politics in action and from the personal experience of other political systems and ideas. You will visit important political sites in the UK (such as the Houses of Parliament) and depending on the options you select, may visit overseas.

Assessment and feedback

Level 1 does not count towards your final degree mark. Level 2 is worth a third, and Level 3 is worth two-thirds. The final year dissertation is worth a third of Level 3 marks.

Exact assessment patterns vary, but most are based on a combination of coursework and formal written exams. Typically, coursework marks constitute 25-50% of overall module grades.

 

Special features

  • You will have excellent access to some the best research facilities in the UK - Westminster and Whitehall are within easy reach.
  • You will have the opportunity to study abroad at one of several European universities and participate in an exchange programme in China.
  • We have good links with key political figures and institutions.
  • Our courses are designed and taught by experts in the fields of politics, international relations, social policy and contemporary history who have been nationally and internationally recognised for the excellence of their research. As well as 250 undergraduates, we have over 40 postgraduate and research students.
  • Politics is ranked 6th in London (The Complete University Guide, 2018)

Fees and funding

Fees for 2019/20 entry

UK/EU students: £9,250 full-time; £1,000 placement year

International students: £15,400 full-time

Some courses incur additional course related costs. You can also check our on-campus accommodation costs for more information on living expenses.

See our fees and funding page for full details of scholarships available to Brunel applicants

Fees quoted are per year and may be subject to an annual increase. Home/EU undergraduate student fees are regulated and are currently capped at £9,250 per year; any changes will be subject to changes in government policy. International fees will increase annually in line with RPI, or 5%, whichever is the lesser.

There is a range of financial support available to help you fund your studies. Find out about undergraduate student funding options.