DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
Philosophy, Aims and Objectives of the Degree Programme
The philosophy underlying the B.Sc. International Relations Degree programme is to produce a flow of competent and confident graduate students whose minds are well developed and who are intellectually sound in the field of International Relations, and who can make meaningful contributions to the political and socio-economic development of Nigeria, Africa and indeed the entire world.
Aims and Objectives
The aims and objectives of the International Relations Degree Programme are:
- Stimulate in students an appreciation of International Relations theories and other tools of analysis, and application in different contexts at the national and international levels.
- Provide students with a broad and balanced knowledge and practical skills in International Relations;
- Develop in students the ability to apply their International Relations theories, analytical tools, knowledge and skills to the solution of international problems;
- Develop in students a range of skills that are relevant to both governmental and non-governmental agencies at home and abroad;
- Produce student who have the competences in fieldwork, data collection as well as ability to analyse and present these in coherent form;
- Provide students with relevant knowledge and skills for further studies in International Relations as a multi-disciplinary field of study;
- Generate in students an appreciation of the importance of International Relations in a national- political, economic, and social development on the one hand and in the maintenance of global peace and security on the other.
Candidates who wish to study International Relations must have obtained a credit pass SSCE in Mathematics and English Language plus credit pass in either Government or History and other two subjects at the SSCE, NECO, GCE or their equivalent not more than two sitting. Also required is on acceptable UTME score.
Candidates for Direct Entry admission shall possess five credit passes in the SSCE, NECO, GCE or equivalents of which at least two shall be at advanced level , or four units passes of which at least three shall be at advanced level provided that such passes are not counted at both levels of the examinations.
For emphasis credit passes in English Language, Mathematics and any of Government or History is compulsory.
a) Regime of Subject Knowledge
Each institution providing bachelors honours degree programmes in International Relations is free to decide on the content, nature and organization of its courses. International Relations programmes will therefore have their own peculiar characteristics. It is acknowledged that the depth in which individual aspects are treated may vary with the nature of specific International Relations programmes, it however is expected that all programmes will be inter-disciplinary and ensure that students become conversant with the following main aspects of International Relations.
- Basic theories and concepts of international relations;
- International Politics
- The international Political System;
- The Politics and Problems of Developing Countries;
- Major changes in the International System;
- International Economic Relations;
- Contemporary Strategic Studies;
- Conflict Management and Resolution;
- International Institutions /Organisations;
- Nigerian Politics and Foreign Policy;
- At least one modern European Language in addition to English;
- Foreign Policy Analysis;
- Foreign Policies of the Great Powers.
b) Competencies and Skills
The products of the B.Sc. (Hons.) International Relations programme are expected to develop a wide-range of abilities and skills.
- Cognitive abilities and skills relating to intellectual tasks including problem solving at national and international levels.
- Ability to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of essential facts, concepts, principles and theories relating to development, underdevelopment, war and peace at the national and global levels.
- Ability to apply such knowledge and understanding to the analysis of issues and events in the international system;
- Skills in the evaluation and interpretation of information and data on International Relations;
- Skills in presenting data and arguments clearly and correctly, in writing and orally, to a range of audiences;
- Reasonable level of competence in statistical and quantitative methods;
- Ability to compare situations in one country with similar situations in other countries.
- Subject specific and transferable skills which allow for the pursuit of a wide range of careers after graduation;
- Information sources, including information retrieval through on-line computer searches;
- Information Technology skills, such as word-processing and spread sheet use, data-logging and storage, Internet communication, etc.;
- Time management or organizational skills, as evidenced by the ability to plan and implement efficient and effective modes of working; and
- Study skills needed for continuing professional development.
c) Behavioural Attributes
The products of the B.Sc. Honours International Relations degree programme should:
- Understand the socio-cultural environment in which they find themselves and how such environment conditions behaviour;
- Understand the relationship between culture and behaviour;
- Relate the knowledge of human behaviour to the ethics of diplomacy;
- Possess a commitment to discipline, hard work, excellence and self-reliance;
- Possess a wholesome attitude to society, respect for institutions and the rule of law;
- Be considerate and respectful of the rights of others; and
- Possess a high sense of patriotism.
Although all students graduating at bachelor’s honours degree level in International Relations are expected to demonstrate that they have acquired knowledge, abilities and skills in the areas identified in the foregoing sections, it is accepted that there will be significant differences in their attainment. The following criteria are suggested as indicators of different levels of attainment in these performance areas. These attainment levels are not meant to reflect the traditional degree classifications.
(a) Attainment level A (highest):
- Knowledge base is extensive and extends well beyond the work covered in the programme. Conceptual understanding is outstanding;
- Problems of a familiar and unfamiliar nature are solved with efficiency and accuracy;
- Performance in transferable skills is generally very good.
(b) Attainment level B
- Knowledge base covers all essential aspects of subject matter covered in the programme and shows some evidence of enquiry beyond this. Conceptual understanding is good;
- Problems are solved in a logical manner;
- Performance in transferable skills is sound and shows no significant deficiencies.
(c) Attainment level C
- Knowledge base is sound, but is largely confined to the content of the programme. Level of conceptual understanding is generally sound;
- Problem solving ability is sound in relation to problems of a familiar type or those that can be tackled through the straightforward application of standard procedures;
- Performance in transferable skills is largely sound.
(d) Attainment level D
- Knowledge and understanding of the content covered in the course are basic;
- Problems of a routine nature are generally adequately solved;
- Transferable skills are at a basic level. Students who are awarded a bachelors honours degree in International Relations are expected to demonstrate knowledge, abilities and skills corresponding to no less overall grade of D.
- Regular and periodic review of the curriculum with emphasis on relevance to ever changing needs of society and industry;
- Effective feedback mechanism should be established with graduates and their employers to monitor their work performance in terms of knowledge, skills and adaptability;
- Constant research to monitor the relevance of courses and contents to the rapidly changing national and international socio-economic, technical, strategic and political environments;
- Promotion of joint teaching programmes with other institutions within and outside Nigeria;
- Regular exposure of academic staff to the practice of diplomacy through (a) participation in the work of international organisations like the OAU, ECOWAS and the United Nations as part of national delegations to the meetings, conferences and seminars of these institutions;
e) Short-term attachment to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or Nigerian Missions abroad.
- More creative use of the instrument of external examiners;
- Constant study of students’ evaluation reports of the programme, views of retired academics; foreign policy practitioners and other stakeholders;
- Regular academic staff exchange with other universities;
- Introduction of IT-based teaching methodology incorporating Internet use.