• Class Number 7335
  • Term Code 3360
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Ernest Akuamoah
    • Dr Ben Goldsmith
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 24/07/2023
  • Class End Date 27/10/2023
  • Census Date 31/08/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 31/07/2023
SELT Survey Results

This course provides a broad introduction to the study of international relations. As a field of study, international relations focuses on the political, military, economic, and cultural interaction of state and non-state actors at the global level. The field therefore encompasses a diverse array of topics, from the causes of war to the politics of development, from international institutions to the environment. In this course, we begin by exploring the key concepts, foundational events, issues, and processes of international relations in order to provide the general knowledge and analytic tools necessary to understand, evaluate, and respond to a complex array of problems in the contemporary world.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. have a broad understanding of some of the most important ideas, issues and events in international relations particularly in the period since World War 1;
  2. have an enhanced appreciation of the contemporary international relations agenda;
  3. be able to better comprehend and articulate their thoughts on issues of major current significance;
  4. have developed stronger research, writing and analytical skills; and
  5. be well prepared for the comprehensive education in international relations offered by the School of Politics and International Relations.

Research-Led Teaching

This class incorporates cutting-edge theoretical developments and empirical findings from both convenors’ research as well as the academic fields in which they work. Prof. Goldsmith's research focuses on international conflict and cooperation, international public opinion, international relations theory, and mass atrocities and genocide. Mr. Akuamoah's research focuses on Intrastate conflict (e.g., civil war), Elections and political violence, Leader characteristics and conflict.


Research-led teaching is not simply about the research expertise that convenors bring to a course. It also includes the ways in which courses’ skills acquisition and assessment are designed to enable students to acquire sound knowledge-acquisition skills. To this end, the course’s activities have been designed around reading comprehension as a skill central to political analysis. Therefore, students will have three unannounced reading-comprehension quizzes during the semester. Evidence gathering is also a core research skill. To this end, students are alerted to many potential sources for information and evidence that can be useful for students’ simulation participation and response essay. Thoughtful analysis and presentation of research findings is a crucial core research skill, and therefore the course contains two essay assessments to provide students with an opportunity to practice those skills.  

Required Resources

Frieden, Jeffry A., David A. Lake, & Kenneth A. Schultz. 2022. World Politics: Interests, Interactions, and Institutions. International Student Fifthth edition. New York & London: W.W. Norton & Company.

We may use a variety of online platforms to enhance your study program. These could include videos for lectures and other instruction, two-way video conferencing for interactive learning, email and other messaging tools for communication, interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities, print and/or photo/scan for handwritten work and drawings, and home-based assessment.

ANU outlines recommended student system requirements to ensure you are able to participate fully in your learning. Other information is also available about the various Learning Platforms you may use.

Staff Feedback

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

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

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.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to the IR discipline No tutorials, sign up for them this week
2 Core concepts in IR & Political Science writing Tutorials start, assign roles for Ukraine simulation
3 Why is there conflict?
4 Domestic politics and conflict
5 International institutions and conflict
6 Non-state actors and conflict Midterm exam (week 6, 7 or 8)
7 International Political Economy Position paper due
8 Politics of economic development
9 International law and norms
10 The global environment
11 Human rights
12 Contemporary international order Response paper due, No tutorials

Tutorial Registration

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Learning Outcomes
Tutorial Participation 10 % * Tutorial Participation
Reading quizzes 10 % * Reading quizzes
Midterm exam 20 % * Midterm exam
Response paper 30 % 27/10/2023 Response paper
Final exam 30 % * Final exam

* 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.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: Tutorial Participation

Tutorial Participation

Tutorial participation marks are based on your in-class contributions. Due to the larger-than-usual tutorial sizes, there are fewer opportunities per student to speak. As such, tutors will prioritize contributions from students who have not yet spoken that week. Since we cannot expect high-volume contributions from every student, grades will necessarily be weighted more toward quality than quantity. But we do expect everyone to make at least one contribution per tutorial, and your tutor will assess whether it's a mundane comment or one that shows real intellectual effort and insight and advances the discussion. Well-prepared students thus might want to, on occasion, “save your bullets” for a topic where you have something really good to say. Furthermore, to expand opportunities for participation, we will also count toward your grade good questions brought up in the live Q&A sessions and your contributions to small group discussions in tutorials.


In weeks 4-6 students will present their role profiles for the Ukraine simulation in tutorials. These are short researched presentations profiling the role of your assigned actor (see below), that help you prepare for the position paper.


In addition, 1% of the tutorial mark will be based on your timely submission (via upload to your Wattle forum) of a position paper (by 11:59pm on 22 Sept 2023). Students who submit the position paper will obtain full credit; those who do not will receive a 0. A description of the position paper assignment will be posted on Wattle. It outlines the negotiating position for your Role in the Ukraine simulation.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: Reading quizzes

Reading quizzes

There will be three unannounced reading quizzes given during the tutorials. These will test basic knowledge of that week’s reading(s). If you miss the tutorial for a legitimate reason (e.g., illness) you are permitted to submit a summary of the week’s reading(s) of about one-half page. The reading quizzes will be short, require only short answers, and have about 3 questions. Students will have 10 minutes to complete the quiz at the start of the tutorial. Students who are late will not be able to take the quiz, but may be permitted to do a summary instead.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: Midterm exam

Midterm exam

The midterm exam will evaluate students’ knowledge of the readings and course material and their ability to write a clear, coherent, and concisely argued essay about course material. Students will have 15 minutes reading time and 90 minutes to complete the exam. More information about the midterm will be available on Wattle and discussed during lecture and tutorial.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 30 %
Due Date: 27/10/2023
Learning Outcomes: Response paper

Response paper

The response paper’s main goal is to have you apply the theoretical frameworks and core concepts learnt in this course to a contemporary international challenge: the war in Ukraine. This paper will be largely based on your experience in the Ukraine simulation exercise described at the end of this course guide, below. Details of the assignment, including a rubric, can be found on Wattle.

Assessment Task 5

Value: 30 %
Learning Outcomes: Final exam

Final exam

The final exam structure will be discussed during lectures and in tutorial. Students will have a 15-minute reading period and a two-hour writing time. As per CASS policy, all exams are blind marked and they are not returned to the students, nor are comments provided. You may contact the conveners within 30 working days of the release of results to learn your specific exam mark, or to request an appeal.

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 not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
  • 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 more than 10 working days after the due date, unless otherwise specified. 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.

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.

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).

Ernest Akuamoah

Research Interests

Ernest Akuamoah

Dr Ben Goldsmith

Research Interests

International conflict and cooperation, Public opinion and foreign policy, Theories of international relations

Dr Ben Goldsmith

By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions