Undergraduate

Undergraduate Programmes

The Political Science and International Relations streams can form part of a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Social Science or a Bachelor of Public Administration degree. We suggest two structured programmes that include both streams, as follows:

 

Bachelor of Social Science (with majors in Political Science & International Relations)

  • Political Science 1, 11 & 111
  • International Relations 1, 11 & 111
  • History 1 & 11
  • Communication 1
  • Life, Knowledge Action

Bachelor of Social Science (with majors in Political Science and History)

  • Political Science 1, 11 & 111
  • History 1, 11 & 111
  • Development Studies 1 & 11
  • Communication 1
  • Life, Knowledge Action

Entrance requirements: 

Undergraduate qualifications: Senior Certificate with Matric Exemption; minimum 25 points (Swedish rating system)

Courses offered in 2015

POLITICAL SCIENCE STREAM

POL111: Nature and Scope of Political Science

Purpose: Learners are assisted in developing a greater understanding of the comprehensive nature of Political Science as a field of academic study, including an appreciation of the fundamental concepts, ideologies and theoretical approaches in the discipline, including the development of the modern state and contemporary political participation.

Contents: The development of Political Science as an academic discipline; analysis and application of basic concepts; investigation into the principal values of the main political ideologies; presentation of main theoretical approaches.

POL124: Selected Issues in Contemporary Politics

Purpose: To contextually present and analyse contemporary political issues within global society. These include changes in conceptualisations of democracy, human rights, conflict escalation and fundamentalism, multiculturalism, civil disobedience and environmental politics.

Contents: As outlined above; to be determined according to contemporary issues

 

POL211: Introduction to Political Philosophy and Ideologies

Purpose: Learners acquire an understanding of the various philosophical perspectives that have guided political thinking, from historical to contemporary times.

Contents: Classical and modern western philosophy, African philosophy, “orientalism” and contemporary approaches. Selected ideologies and their influence in shaping modern states.

POL222: South African Government and Politics

Purpose: Learners will gain greater understanding of the context, institutions, systems and values of pre- and post-Apartheid South Africa.

Contents: Background to the South African political system; historical resistance to apartheid; the transition period and post-apartheid politics.

POL 311: Theory and Methodology in Political Science

Purpose: Learners to gain an in-depth knowledge of a diverse range of theoretical propositions as well as analytical models in Political Science. Learners will also be equipped with skills to understand, explain and predict political phenomena using theory and methodology.  

Contents: Neoliberalism; feminism; critical theory; rational choice; positivism; postcolonial theory; quantitative and qualitative methods; data collection and analysis in Political Science.  

POL 322:  World Politics

Purpose: Learners will be assisted to gain greater understanding of the nature of inter-state relations and how different actors pursue their objectives in an increasingly globalised world.

Contents:  Actors in international relations; the struggle for power; Foreign policy and diplomacy, Irredentism; sovereignty and humanitarian intervention; uni-polar and multi-polar worlds.

 

INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS STREAM

 

POL 112:          Introduction to International Relations

Purpose: Learners to be assisted to develop a basic grasp of international relations, its development as an academic discipline, content and nature. The objective is to enable learners to identify different actors in the global and international arena and assess the way they interact with each other.

Contents: The emergence of International Relations as a separate discipline after the First World War; the nature and scope of international relations; the strengths and weaknesses of some of the discipline’s major theories and approaches; methods in studying the subject; introduction to the subfields of international relations.

POL 123:          Introduction to Global Institutions

Purpose:  Learners to be assisted to develop a basic grasp of international relations, its development as an academic discipline, content and nature. The objective is to enable learners to identify different actors in the global and international arena and assess the way they interact with each other.

Contents: The emergence of a global order; Intergovernmental organizations and international non-governmental organizations; The United Nations, its organs and specialised agencies; Commonwealth of Nations; la Francophonie; Interpol.

POL 212: The Emergence of Modern African States

Purpose: Learners will be introduced to the different anti-colonial movements, structures and processes that paved the way to the decolonization of Africa. The different types of regimes that were experimented by the newly independent African states will also be examined.

Contents: The scramble for and partition of Africa; Colonial policies in Africa; The rise of African nationalism; Anti-colonial struggles; decolonization and independence; Regime types in post-colonial Africa; the post colonial inheritance.      

 

POL 223:   Contemporary African Politics

Purpose: Learners will be introduced to the nature and scope of African inter-state relations in the contemporary world. The course will also explore attempts by African states to achieve political stability, drive sustainable economic growth and enhance regional integration.

Contents: Intra-state and inter-state conflicts, Peacekeeping missions, Elections in Africa; Democracy and dominant party rule; Ethnicity and the rise of religious fundamentalism; Regional blocs and regional integration in Africa; Foreign direct investment and economic growth.   

POL 312: North Africa and the Middle East Politics

Purpose: To introduce learners to political history of the Middle East, leading to the emergence of the ‘Orient’ as distinct from the ‘West’ in political studies. Learners will also gain knowledge on the transition from aristocracy to democracy as a result of the emergence of the oil industry as the dominant factor in the 20th century.

Content: The emergence of the ‘Orient’ as distinct from the ‘West’; the transition from aristocracy to democracy; the competition between nationalist and religious ideologies; the political impact of the demographic boom of oil wealth and of Islam; limited political liberalization and the prospects of democratization; the Arab-Israeli crisis.

POL 323: International Conflict and Cooperation

Purpose: To expose learners to a variety of theoretical and practical approaches to non-violent and violent forms of conflict, as well as the challenges faced by a variety of actors in ensuring global peace and security.  

Contents: Approaches to peace and conflict; case studies of conflict hot spots; religious fundamentalism and the war on terror; arms proliferation and the security dilemma; arms control regimes; From disarmament to reintegration; conflict prevention, management and resolution.