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Dissertation in Politics or International Relations

Module code: POPP 3000

Module description

The dissertation provides the student with an opportunity to concentrate on a specific topic of their own choosing, and to pursue it with the maximum degree of depth which they are capable of as undergraduate students. The dissertation will provide an opportunity to further develop the analytical and research skills introduced in other parts of the programme. It will comprise a piece of research where students are encouraged to define and analyse a question or problem, or test a hypothesis. Topics may develop from one of the taught modules or may be linked to issues touched on only peripherally or not at all in the taught modules. In all cases the dissertation will be encompassed within the broad rationale of the named award in Politics, and must be within the supervisory capacity of the subject team.

For some students, the dissertation provides an opportunity to look beyond the textbooks and other secondary sources generally used in degree work and get to grips with primary evidence - official documents, voting statistics, memoirs, diaries, newspapers - perhaps involving work in local or national archives. For others, the dissertation will not involve primary sources but will instead incorporate a critical review of the existing literature on a particular topic.

Contact hours per student per year

  • Tutorials: 3 hours individual supervision with an allocated tutor
  • Workshops: 22 hours


  • Poster (A1): 20%
  • Dissertation (8000 words): 80%

Additional costs: Students are required to meet the cost of printing off an A1 copy of their poster. This can be done from £5 on campus, although costs will vary if students opt to go off campus to do this