Purpose: 1. Enable students to think in a more theoretically rigorous and analytic manner about security issues. 2. Provide insight into the relation of security to the broader field of International Relations.
Content: This course is designed as an undergraduate survey of the foundations of international security and contemporary issues building on the first-year International Relations course. It introduces students to general theories, concepts and debates in the sub-field, and applies them to a set of more specific topics in present-day global security. Classes combine theoretical, conceptual and empirical themes, covering such historical topics as WWI, WWII, and the Cold War, and a range of contemporary challenges, including genocide, terrorism, US-China relations, and the Iranian nuclear program.
Methods of Instruction
The course will normally be divided into two, two-hour sessions each week. The classes are almost exclusively lectures. Workgroups combine review of the lecture material, close reading, help with written assignments, student debates and simulations.
Course materials include a textbook, book chapters, journal articles, and online materials, including films and newspapers.
The final grade comprises four elements: attendance and active participation in the workgroups count for 10 per cent; a 1,800 word briefing counts towards 30 per cent; a 200 word policy statement and participation in a Security Council simulation counts toward 15 per cent; and a final exam rounds out the remaining 45 per cent.
Attendance and Participation – 10 per cent
Students are expected to attend the scheduled workgroups having read the assigned material and participate actively and constructively. Students are permitted one unexcused absence; any additional missed workgroups require a valid excuse communicated to the instructor via email.
Special Representative of the United Nations to Syria Assignment – 30 per cent
Writing as a UN special envoy to Syria, prepare a 1,800 word (+/- 200) confidential briefing to the UN Secretary-General recommending specific actions around the crisis to end civilian suffering and bring about a viable political solution to the crisis. Base the briefing on original research and cite sources appropriately.
UN Security Council simulation – 15 per cent
Prepare a 200 word (+/- 50) statement outlining the position of your assigned state on a proposed Security Council resolution, and then participate in a simulated Security Council meeting. Research and reference the previous policies and statements of your assigned actor around the crisis and explain how your support/opposition to the proposed resolution furthers the interests and values at stake for your actor.
Final Exam – 45 per cent
First opportunity for an exam
Thursday 19 december 2013, 13.00-16.00 hrs in the USC
Second opportunity for an exam
Tuesday 21 January 2014, 13.00-16.00 hrs in the USC
The course grade will be based on an exam and work group assignments.
Monday 28 October until 9 December, 11.00-13.00 hrs in SA41
Tuesday 10 December, 11.00-13.00 hrs in SA41
Thursday 31 October until 12 December, 11.00-13.00 hrs in 1A20 (except 28 November in SA41)
Workgroup 1: Friday 1 November until 13 December, 9.00-11.00 hrs in SA31
Workgroup 2: Friday 1 November until 13 December, 9.00-11.00 hrs in SA37
Workgroup 3: Friday 1 November until 13 December, 11.00-13.00 hrs in 1A12 (except 6 & 13 December in 1A22)
Workgroup 4: Friday 1 November until 13 December, 11.00-13.00 hrs in 1A24 (except 1 November in 5A23)
Workgroup 5: Friday 1 November until 13 December, 15.00-17.00 hrs in 5B14
Workgroup 6: Friday 1 November until 13 December, 15.00-17.00 hrs in SA29