• Class Number 2401
  • Term Code 3330
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Jessie Moritz
    • Jessie Moritz
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 20/02/2023
  • Class End Date 26/05/2023
  • Census Date 31/03/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 27/02/2023
SELT Survey Results

The Gulf is contested political terrain. Even its very nomenclature – ‘Persian’ or ‘Arab’/’Arabian’ – is subject to controversy.  The security of regional countries is influenced by a complicated web of strategic, political and cultural variables. It is also a key focus for the national security strategy of the United States. Notwithstanding the diversity of the region, the countries within it face a unique set of social, political, and economic challenges, particularly in comparison to other developing regions. The central focus of the course will be the forces for continuity and change in the Gulf, and the interaction of domestic and external actors and factors shaping the Gulf security environment. It will review internal political and economic trends, the dealings of Gulf states with each other, and their relations with other regional and extra-regional powers. It will, finally, consider broader concerns such as over food security, water scarcity, and dependence on migrant workers.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. identify domestic and external actors and factors shaping the security environment of the Gulf;
  2. demonstrate an understanding of the global strategic importance of Gulf energy reserves;
  3. demonstrate an understanding of the security perceptions of the United States and regional countries, and the challenges they face;
  4. debate critically the ideas and theories that have been advanced to understand Gulf politics, political economy and international relations, and to deal with core unresolved regional issues; and
  5. analyse alternative futures for the region, their strategic implications and prospects for developing regional security architecture.

Research-Led Teaching

This is a research-led course, in which the curriculum draws from the course convenor’s own research interests, and students are asked to participate in research and critical thinking activities throughout the semester. During both lectures and tutorials, students are expected to consider diverse perspectives and collaboratively explore their understanding of topical issues in the Gulf strategic environment. One major essay topic is left open so that students may, in consultation with the course convenor, create an original research topic.

Additional Course Costs

None expected

Examination Material or equipment

There is no examination in this course

Required Resources

No required resources

The course assumes students have only basic background knowledge of the Middle East; roughly that which would be gained from having done an undergraduate course on the region’s politics or modern history. The early few weeks of this course are devoted to some background material and discussions, although these still assume a basic knowledge of the region. Therefore, students who have never studied the Middle East previously are advised to consult a relevant introductory book or textbook before the course commenced. Some suggestions on books to look at include:

·      On Middle Eastern politics in general: Beverley Milton-Edwards, Contemporary Politics in the Middle East (Wiley, 2018, 4th edition).

·      On modern Middle Eastern history broadly: Peter Mansfield, A History of the Middle East (London: Penguin, various edns);

·      On Middle Eastern international relations more particularly (including good theoretical discussion): Fred Halliday, The Middle East in International Relations: Power, Politics and Ideology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005); also good is Louise Fawcett (ed.), International Relations in the Middle East (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013, 3rd Edn); and

·      For a modern history of the Gulf sub-region: David Commins, The Gulf States: A Modern History (London: I. B. Taurus, 2012).

Students are strongly encouraged to keep up to date with relevant journals on the Middle East and the Gulf, including the Middle East Journal, International Journal of Middle East Studies, Journal of Arabian Studies, International Journal of Contemporary Iraqi Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, Middle East Policy, Arab Studies Quarterly, and Middle East Report. The Journal of Arabian Studies, Arabian Humanities and International Journal of Contemporary Iraqi Studies specialize in the Gulf; the other journals noted routinely have articles on contemporary Gulf issues that are of use for weekly seminar preparation and essay research. Broader political science and international relations journals are also useful, especially Survival, International Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Third World Quarterly, The Washington Quarterly, and International Organization, among others. More specialised thematic journals such as Small Wars & Insurgencies, Civil Wars, World Development, and Journal of Strategic Studies may be useful for particular or specialized topics.

The ANU library has specially purchased access to Gulf States News, a political risk consultancy focused on the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq and Iran. It includes up-to-date analysis on the most recent events in the region, as well as overview of royal family politics, business families, and other key political actors. Access GSN here: http://www.gsn-online.com/

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Other Information

Please refer to Wattle for weekly reading lists, further assessment details, and course announcements.

This course may be completed via live attendance at dual delivery seminars where necessary due to the ongoing pandemic; however in-person attendance is encouraged when possible.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to the course and background on the Gulf
2 The GCC and introduction to regional security architecture Presentations start and continue throughout semester
3 Oil, gas and energy security in the Gulf
4 Foreign actors in the Arab states of the Gulf
5 Saudi Arabia: current security issues and dynamics
6 Iraq: conflict, protest, and insecurity
7 Iran and the Arab states of the Gulf Major Essay due 4pm 20 April
8 United Arab Emirates: ‘little Sparta’?
9 Bahrain: internal security and Gulf stability
10 Qatar and the Gulf Crisis
11 Small states security and regional mediation: Kuwait and Oman
12 New and emerging security issues Strategic environment analysis questions released 25 May; paper due 4pm 30 May

Tutorial Registration

There are no tutorials in this class; attendance at weekly seminars is compulsory

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Learning Outcomes
Major Reseach Essay 50 % 20/04/2023 1,2,3,4
Strategic Environment Analysis 35 % 30/05/2023 1,2,3,4,5
Oral Presentation 15 % * 4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines , which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Integrity Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Skills website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Attendance at seminars, which will be held in a two-hour block per week, is compulsory. Lecture slides or notes will be posted on Wattle, but students who do not attend seminars may be disadvantaged, and no special consideration will be given to students who have disadvantaged themselves by not attending seminars.


There is no formal examination in this course.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 50 %
Due Date: 20/04/2023
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Major Reseach Essay

Details of task:

·          The major essay is due no later than 4pm Thursday April 20.

·          It must be on a topic selected from the list supplied at the end of Week 1 on Wattle.

·          It should be 4,000 words in length (with 10% leeway).

·          It will count for 50% of the total course assessment and final mark.

·          The essay will be assessed against one or more of Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5, and will be assessed on (in descending order of importance):

—    Whether and how well the question is answered;

—    Whether and how well an argument is presented;

—    The factual accuracy of the essay;

—    The depth and sophistication of research demonstrated in the essay;

—    Whether academic conventions have been followed; and

—    The technical quality of the essay.

·          The essay should be submitted via the Turnitin link provided on Wattle.

Word limit: 4000 (with 10% leeway).

Value: 50% of final grade

Presentation requirements:

·     Word document or pdf format

·     12pt Times New Roman or similar font

·     Pages numbered

·     Alphabetised bibliography

Estimated return date: Two weeks following essay submission

Assessment Task 2

Value: 35 %
Due Date: 30/05/2023
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Strategic Environment Analysis

The Strategic Environment Analysis:

·         Is due no later than 4pm on 30 May.

·          Must be on a topic selected from the list supplied via Wattle at 4pm on 25 May.

·          Should be 1500 words in length (with 10% leeway either side).

·          Must follow academic conventions for a regular essay and be fully referenced, including an alphabetised bibliography or reference list at the end of the paper.

The Analysis will be assessed against several of Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, and will be assessed on (in descending order of importance):

—  Whether and how well the questions posed are answered;

—  Whether and how well facts and arguments, as applicable, are presented in the answers;

—  The depth and sophistication of knowledge and understanding demonstrated in the paper;

—  Whether academic conventions have been followed; and

—  The technical quality of the paper.

·          It will count for 35% of the total course assessment and final mark.

Word limit: 1500 words (with 10% leeway)

Value: 35%

Presentation requirements: It must follow academic conventions for a regular essay and be fully referenced, including an alphabetised bibliography or reference list at the end of the paper.

Estimated return date: 29 June 2023 (Semester 1 2023 results released). Note that only the mark, not detailed written comments, will be provided.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 4

Oral Presentation

·          Students will each make a short oral presentation of roughly 15 minutes (plus 5-10 minutes of student-led discussion), introducing an aspect of the week’s topic or looking in detail at one or more readings for it. The aim of the presentation is to encourage active involvement in seminar discussions and as practice in collating and synthesising sets of arguments from the reading.

·          The presentation will test students on at least one of the five ‘Specific Learning Outcomes’, particularly Learning Outcome 4.

·          It will be assessed against one or more of Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5, and will be assessed on (in descending order of importance):

—  Whether and how well the agreed topic is handled or question is answered;

—  Whether and how well an argument is made and sustained;

—  The factual accuracy of the presentation;

—  The amount and sophistication of thought demonstrated; and

—  The technical quality of the presentation.

·          It will count for 15% of the total course assessment and final mark.

·          Further advice will be provided, and sign-up for the presentations done, in the Week 1 seminar.

Word limit: N/A

Value: 15%

Presentation requirements: In-person, 15-minute presentation plus 5-10 minutes student-led class discussion

Estimated return date: Student may view marks and collect oral feedback from lecturer in the seminar one week after their presentation

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Returning Assignments

Feedback on written work as specified in the assessment overviews above will be available via Turnitin. Students may request oral feedback on their presentation one week following their presentation date.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

There is no scope for resubmission of assignments in this course

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Jessie Moritz

Research Interests

Political economy of the Middle East; Energy Security; Gulf studies, especially politics, state-society relations, political economy, and international relations in the Gulf; international relations in the Middle East; political mobilisation, opposition formation, and conflict in the Middle East; political economy of oil; country interests in particular in the Gulf states, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Jordan.

Jessie Moritz

Wednesday 15:00 16:00
Wednesday 15:00 16:00
Jessie Moritz

Research Interests

Jessie Moritz

Wednesday 15:00 16:00
Wednesday 15:00 16:00

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