BA (Hons) International Relations and War Studies

BA (Hons) International Relations and War Studies

International Relations is the study of the relationships between states in a complex and evolving international system. War Studies explores what we mean by war, how wars start and end, the morality of war and the concept of a ‘just’ war. It approaches war from many different theoretical approaches, drawing upon history, politics, and philosophy. By combining these subjects you will gain a deep understanding of the development, resolution and consequences of armed conflict on the global stage.

Topics you will study include:

  • International security
  • The causes and consequences of international conflict
  • The nature of warfare
  • Peacekeeping and the responsibility to protect
  • Gender and conflict
  • Military history
  • War and the media

We give you lots of opportunities to take your learning beyond the classroom - You can get involved with local and international field trips, undertake work experience within the city or choose to study abroad as part of your degree. We make use of York’s rich heritage by interacting with local experts and sources from:

  • Yorkshire Air Museum
  • York Cold War Bunker
  • The Kohima Museum at Imphal Barracks
  • York Army Museum
  • Yorkshire Film Archive
  • War veterans living in the local area

This course is available with a foundation year. This option is ideal if you do not yet meet the minimum requirements for entry straight onto a degree course, or feel you are not quite ready for the transition to Higher Education. A foundation year prepares you for degree level study, giving you the confidence and skills needed to make the most of your course. Passing it guarantees you a place on this degree course the following academic year.

Entry Requirements


  • 104 UCAS Tariff points
  • 3 GCSEs at grade C/4 (or equivalent) including English Language.

International Students

If you are an international student you will need to show that your qualifications match our entry requirements.

Information about international qualifications and entry requirements can be found on our International pages.

If English is not your first language you will need to show that you have English Language competence at IELTS level 6.0 (with no skill below 5.5) or equivalent.

Mature Learners Entry Scheme

If you have been out of education for 3 years or more and have a grade C GCSE in English Language or equivalent, you are eligible for our entry scheme for mature learners. It's a scheme that recognises non-traditional entry qualifications and experience for entry onto this course. Information on how to apply can be found on our dedicated page.

Career Prospects

On this course you will build skills which can be applied to many different careers. You will leave with skills in problem solving, developing arguments, analysing and evaluating information, collaboration, independent working, communication and more.

This degree could be the first step toward your career in:

  • The armed forces
  • The Civil Service (the offer a fast stream graduate scheme)
  • Charities and non-governmental organisations (NGOs)
  • Security and intelligence
  • Policy making
  • International aid

Course Details

Year 1

Understanding World Politics
Introduction to War Studies
Why Wars Begin
War and the Media
International Security
Finding a Role - The UK in the World

Year 2

International Relations: Theory and Practice
Contemporary Security Challenges
Area Studies
Political Analysis: Theory and Method
Practical Politics
The Republic in Danger: France in the World 1914-62
Mao’s China: From Empire to Communism
The Face of Battle
War in the West
Peace Organisations
The Nation Divided: The Civil War Era in American Life

Year 3

Dissertation in War Studies OR Dissertation in International Relations
Global Governance
Intervention, Peacekeeping and The Responsibility to Protect
Gender, Security and Conflict
Technology and Visual International Politics
International Ethics and Global Citizenship
Special Subject in War Studies
The American Way of War

*The information’s are correct at the time of publishing, however it may change if university makes any changes after we have published the information. While we try our best to provide correct information, It is advisable to call us or visit university website for up to date information.

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