Joint-honours information for 2017 entry

(BA) American Studies and Politics (with a study abroad year)

Entry for 2017

FHEQ level

This course is set at Level 6 in the national Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.

Course Aims

The aims of the American Studies course are to:
1. Have gained knowledge of the region broadly defined, across a range of disciplines and historical periods
2. Have learned to appreciate and understand a range of theoretical approaches to the study of the Region, and will have gained specialised knowledge in one disciplinary approach.
3. Be able to analyse the production, consumption and reception of texts within their historical and cultural context.
4. Be able to appreciate a range of literary, historical and political traditions and their effects on cultural formations and identities.
5. Have benefited from the educational and cultural experience of a Year Abroad and contributed to the international mission of the University through this aspect of the course.
6. Have developed the intellectual and practical skills needed to learn independently.
7. Be able to communicate and explain what they have learned clearly in written and oral form.
8. Have developed skills that will prepare them for employment in a wide range of contexts or for further study.

The aims of the Politics course are:
1. Enable students to understand the importance of Politics in the contemporary world.
2. Ensure that students acquire knowledge and understanding in appropriate areas of theory and analysis.
3. Enable students to understand and use the concepts, approaches and methods of the discipline and develop an understanding of the contested nature and problematic character of inquiry in the discipline.
4. Provide students with the opportunity to combine the insights and methods of the discipline.
5. develop students' capacities to critically analyse events, ideas, institutions and practices.
6. Provide students with opportunities to develop their intellectual, personal and interpersonal skills so as to enable them to participate meaningfully in their societies.
7. Provide a curriculum supported by scholarship, staff development and a research culture that promotes breadth and depth of intellectual enquiry and debate.
8. Provide students with a supportive and receptive learning environment.ironment.

Course learning outcomes

Have demonstrated detailed knowledge of and critical engagement with the region broadly defined.

Have studied the region through interdisciplinary approaches to the subject area.

Have gained specialised knowledge in one disciplinary approach to the region.

Be able to recognise, represent, and critically reflect upon ideas and concepts from other cultures.

Have demonstrated awareness and understanding of relevant vocabulary of contributory methodologies and theories that are relevant to the Region, and will have the capacity to assess the merits of contrasting approaches.

Have demonstrated awareness of, and ability to use and evaluate a diverse range of relevant information and research resources, including major internet-based resources

Have gained knowledge of a range of literary and/or historical and/or political texts from different periods, including before 1800.

Have gained an understanding of the social, cultural, and historical context in which texts are produced and read.

Have acquired a range of core and personal attributes, cognitive, research, practical, and transferable skills (HAHP Core Transferable Skills).

Identify and describe and illustrate key approaches to the study of politics and understand the contested nature of knowledge and understanding

Identify and understand the key normative ideas and concepts which serve as the foundations of politics

Describe and illustrate the structure and operation of different political systems

Describe and illustrate the key explanatory concepts and theories used in the study of politics

Develop a familiarity with major methods of data collection in politics, and their appropriate uses

Develop a knowledge of British politics and the key concepts and approaches used to explain British politics

Critically evaluate the nature of political change in a political system or with regard to a political issue

Ability to understand and critique political philosophical arguments made by political theorists

An ability to compare different political systems in order to develop a general understanding of the functioning of politics

Plan and carry out a research project relating to a political topic which sustains a line or argument and draws on a body of academic literature

Full-time course composition

YearTermStatusModuleCreditsFHEQ level
1Autumn SemesterCoreBritish Political History (L2010)154
  CoreExplanatory Concepts in Political Science (M1038)154
  CoreIntroduction to American Studies (T7044)154
  OptionAmerican Identities (Q3176)154
  American Literature to 1890: Part I (Q3169)154
  Roots of America: From Colonial Settlement to the Civil War and Reconstruction (T7045)154
 Spring SemesterCoreFoundations of Politics (M1036)154
  CoreModern America (T7046)154
  CoreResearch Skills and Methods in Political Science (M1045)154
  OptionAmerican Humour (Q3170)154
  American Literature to 1890: Part II (Q3168)154
  The Look of America (T7002)154
YearTermStatusModuleCreditsFHEQ level
2Autumn SemesterCoreEuropean Politics (L2051)155
  CoreModern Political Thought (L2031)155
  CoreTheoretical Concepts for American Studies (T7055)155
  OptionAmerican Cinema B (P3075)155
  American Literature Since 1890: Part I (Q3171)155
  English in the United States (Q1087)155
  The African American Experience (V3029)155
  Women in America (T7009)155
 Spring SemesterOptionAmerican Cities: New Orleans (T7047)155
  American Cities: New York (T7048)155
  American Drama (T7056)155
  American Literature Since 1890: Part II (Q3172)155
  American Popular Music (W3075)155
  Communicating Politics (L2155)155
  Politics of Governance: East Asia (L2094)155
  Politics of Governance: Eastern Europe (L2037)155
  Politics of Governance: France (L2049)155
  Politics of Governance: Germany (L2039)155
  Politics of Governance: India (L2093)155
  Politics of Governance: International Institutions and Issues (L2134)155
  Politics of Governance: The European Union (L2038)155
  Pulp Culture (T7060)155
  The Nineteenth-Century American Short Story (Q3271)155
  Time and Place: 1831: Slave Revolts (V1377)155
  Time and Place: 1861: The Coming of the American Civil War (V1425)155
  Time and Place: 1981: The Iran Hostage Crisis (V1464)155
  Transatlantic Rhetoric: Public Speech and Anglo-American Writing 1750-1900 (Q3187)155
YearTermStatusModuleCreditsFHEQ level
3Undergraduate Academic YearCoreAmerican Mandatory Year Abroad - American Studies (YRABROAD4)1206
YearTermStatusModuleCreditsFHEQ level
4Autumn SemesterOptionDeath of Socialism? (L2137)306
  Immigrant America (Q3175)306
  Political Change: Eastern Europe in Transition (L2017)306
  Political Change: Global Crisis and European Political Economy (L1998)306
  Political Change: New Technologies and Corruption (L1999)306
  Political Change: Political Parties and Party Systems (L2034)306
  Political Change: Politics and International Business (L2001)306
  Political Change: The European Union as a Global Actor (M1541)306
  Political Change: the Evolution of Post War European Integration (M1049)306
 Spring SemesterOptionDemocracy and Inequality (L2099)306
  Feminism and Women's Political Activism in Britain (L2156)306
  Governing Technology (L2077)306
  Immigration and the Liberal State (L2097)306
  Independent Study/Internship Option (L2021)306
  Parties and Voters in the UK (M1007)306
  Political Corruption (L2046)306
  Populism and Politics (M1535)306
  The United States in the World (L2064S)306

Course convenors

Photo of Paul Taggart

Paul Taggart
Professor of Politics
T: +44 (0)1273 678292 or +44 (0)1273 678578

Photo of Tom F. Wright

Tom F. Wright
Senior Lecturer in English
T: +44 (0)1273 872649

About your joint honours course

Sussex has always promoted interdisciplinary study by encouraging students to combine different subjects and different approaches to learning. Joint-honours courses are an ideal option if you want to study more than one subject in depth. A key idea behind joint-honours is to experience the range of ways that different academic disciplines use to teach, learn and research. Those differences are stimulating and challenging, but they can also be confusing, so you will find some useful information below to help you get the most out of your course.

  • To find information about the individual modules that make up your course, go to the school that teaches the module. Each module is assessed by the school that teaches it, so on their website you will find (under “student information”) information about the assessment criteria being used, the referencing style you need to use for your work, contact times for your tutors, information about the student reps scheme and lots of other useful information.
  • To find general information about joint honours, use the Frequently Asked Questions list
  • For information about the rules and regulations that govern all Sussex students, start with the general student handbook
  • For help in improving your study skills, using the library and with careers, try the Skills Hub.

And if you have any other questions, contact the convenors for your course; they are here to help you.

Useful links

Please note that the University will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver courses and modules in accordance with the descriptions set out here. However, the University keeps its courses and modules under review with the aim of enhancing quality. Some changes may therefore be made to the form or content of courses or modules shown as part of the normal process of curriculum management.

The University reserves the right to make changes to the contents or methods of delivery of, or to discontinue, merge or combine modules, if such action is reasonably considered necessary by the University. If there are not sufficient student numbers to make a module viable, the University reserves the right to cancel such a module. If the University withdraws or discontinues a module, it will use its reasonable endeavours to provide a suitable alternative module.