About us

The Department of Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS) is one of the largest and best departments of it's kind in the UK.

The Department inspires and enhances intellectual development and enthusiasm for learning in staff and students alike. It has enjoyed a consistently high place in the Guardian league tables, since these were first published in 2000. The  Department also plays host to Sociology, the Institute of German Studies (IGS) and the Centre for Russian, European and Eurasian Studies (CREES).

Undergraduate study

The Department of Political Science and International Studies offers a number of exciting and forward thinking undergraduate degree programmes across our departments. Choose to study political science, international relations or sociology and take the opportunity to examine some of the most important political issues that we as citizens face in the 21st century.

As well as focusing on your degree of choice, you will have the opportunity to take part in events and activities that will enhance your all-round knowledge and learning experience. For example, you can participate in round-table discussions, help organise visiting speakers, go on trips to Westminster and Whitehall and hear invited politicians and leading international academics speak.

On our four-year Year Abroad programmes, you will undertake a year abroad between your second and fourth years at a partner HE institution. This will give you the opportunity to experience a different academic environment and way of teaching (and even different approaches to the subject).

Postgraduate study

The Department of Political Science and International Studies offers the broadest range of Masters degree programmes of any department in the UK. Our Masters students are uniquely able to develop the course of study that best helps them achieve their academic and professional goals.

One of the real strengths of our masters programmes is the wide range of available modules, giving students the ability to tailor their course of study to their own academic interests.

Every year POLSIS MA students have the opportunity to take part in a week-long study trip to Brussels. This gives students the opportunity to visit some of the international organisations based in Brussels - both those that are part of the European Union and of NATO - to learn about and see at first hand how they operate.

Research

The  Department plays host to Sociology, the  Institute of German Studies (IGS) and the Centre for Russian, European and Eurasian Studies (CREES).

The Department has strong links to other universities across the world and a balance of expertise that covers all areas of the disciplines of Political Science and International Studies, as demonstrated by the activities of our research groups and thematic research clusters.

The Department has more than 50 PhD students working on a wide variety of research topics. Our students are at the core of our research culture, organising their own weekly research colloquium, setting research group agendas, participating vociferously in debate at the weekly Departmental Research Seminar, helping to organise conferences and workshops, and engaging in undergraduate teaching.

Facilities

The School of Government and Society is located in Muirhead Tower (R21) on the University’s main Edgbaston campus, offering state-of-the-art teaching and research study facilities, including free Wi-Fi throughout the building and dedicated study areas for postgraduate research students.

Centres in the department:

Head of the Department of Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS):
Professor David Dunn.