Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POL3120: War and Public Opinion

This module descriptor refers to the 2017/8 academic year.

Module Aims

You will able to demonstrate knowledge of the complex and dynamic relationship between public opinion and foreign policy. You will learn the important role that public opinion plays in guiding the foreign policy choices of democratic states. You will be exposed to multiple competing theoretical approaches will be able to articulate similarities and differences to these competing approaches. Particular emphasis will be placed how to read and evaluate quantitative data analysis. This is a quantitatively oriented course. There are no quantitative prerequisites (the instructors will give all relevant training to perform well in the course, but you should be prepared to engage with quantitative work). Taken together, this class will help your skills in applying theory to data, and subsequently using data to inform theory.  

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here – you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. use substantive and methodological knowledge to critically analyse public opinion data about international affairs, foreign policy, and war;
2. demonstrate knowledge in basic and advanced methodologies and tools of analysis used by public opinion researchers;
Discipline-Specific Skills3. analyze a broad spectrum of research designs applicable to the study of politics and international relations;
4. synthesize competing theories in order to apply them to novel social science problems;
Personal and Key Skills5. demonstrate critical thinking skills, particularly as they relate to evaluating empirical (quantitative) evidence;
6. demonstrate writing skills to facilitate more powerful communication; and
7. work independently, within a limited time frame, and without access to external sources, to complete a specified task.