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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

International Studies Program

[deleted] (1 Course, 3 credits)

International Relations I: States and

Fall 2018

Course Syllabus

Professor: [deleted]

Course time: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11:00 – 11:50

Classroom: Administration Building A041

Office: West Hall 315
Phone: [deleted]

Office Hours: Office Hours: 12:00 – 3:00 Mondays and Wednesdays. Alternatively, you may
wish to make an appointment.

Note: Students must activate and regularly check their email account.

Communication with the professor will primarily take place through this account.

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of the course, students will be able to:

1. Describe and discuss the main theories used to explain modern international relations

2. Explain the historical interaction between theoretical schools and posit points
of interconnection and divergence

3. Generalize about foreign policy and impact of governmental decision-making on

interstate behaviour

4. Appraise the strengths and weaknesses of current approaches to thinking about the role
of the military in human security in the post-Cold War era


This course is designed to give students a broad introduction to the study of International
Relations. Broadly understood, International Relations (IR) is the study of the interaction
between states in an international system. There is much controversy over how we define states,
what we properly consider to be an international system, and whether these two levels of
analysis are the most appropriate way to approach our topic. But all scholars agree that the
actions taken by national governments shape the world we live in far beyond the borders of any
one state. The news is full of stories of the ways that state security imperatives, economic
interests, and policy choices create ripples far beyond the domestic arena.

This is the first of two courses that will introduce you to key concepts in the study of IR.
This term we will become acquainted with the most important theoretical perspectives used
by scholars to study IR. We will then discuss the history of the state system, and delve into
the quandary of how to think about the individual in the system of states. The course is quite
reading-intensive, and students will become acquainted with a number of important works of
history and philosophy throughout the course of the term.

A key objective of the course is to help you become a more effective thinker and writer.
Students are expected to read a newspaper on a daily basis during this course. The course is
structured in the following way.

Required Texts:

Jon C. Pevehouse and Joshua S. Goldstein. ​International Relations, 11th Edition​. Pearson, 2016.

Daniel Drezner. ​Theories of International Politics and Zombies​. Princeton University Press,
2011. (available through Amazon as an ebook or paperback)

Omar El Akkad. ​American War: A Novel.​ Emblem, 2018. (available through Amazon as
an ebook or paperback)

Choose an electronic subscription from one of the following newspapers or newsmagazines:

Globe and Mail​,​ National Post,​ ​ New York Times,​ ​ The Guardian​,​ The Economist.​

Course Assignments and Evaluation:

Small class sizes lend themselves well to a seminar format. To that end, I will leave a significant
portion of the period open for the collective analysis of course material. You will be expected to
participate as active discussants, coming to class fully prepared to debate, discuss and actively
engage with the course material. Students are not graded on attendance; rather they are graded
upon participation. Participation includes having readings completed, taking the time to note
questions and comments you have in order to raise them in class, turning in assignments on
time, and presenting an oral version of your response papers and research essay to the class.
Nobody gains from seminar course in which the participants are not prepared, and so the amount
of preparation you put into the course will directly impact the value you gain from it.

Reader Response Paper:

You will write a response to El Akkad’s novel, ​American War​, in which you discuss the
following questions. How realistic is El Akkad’s portrayal of the future North America, do you
think? How does this ‘future history’ capture the concerns of IR students today? How
important is this novel for understanding some of the key dynamics of international relations?
Response papers are approximately 1500 words in length and do not require a formal

Book Review:

You will write a book review of Drezner's ​Theories of International Politics and Zombies​.
Book reviews should be approximately 1500 words (5-6 pages). In it you will summarize the
theories discussed (in the context of a fictional 'zombie apocalypse') and decide which theory
you think best describes the 'real world' of international politics. You will also be required to
provide a short bibliography of further reading (both scholarly and popular) that goes beyond
what we discuss in class.

Research Essay Questions:

Your research essay is worth 30% of your final grade. It should answer one of the
following questions (3750 words, approximately 12-15 pages).

1. Choose one of the perspectives that is used to analyze International Relations in

Drezner's ​Theories of International Politics and Zombies ​and discuss its historical
development.​ ​Who are the major proponents of this perspective? What does it add to our
understanding of IR? Why is this perspective superior to other perspectives?

2. Discuss the importance of the Treaty of Westphalia for the study of International
Relations. Compare the historical origins of the state to the state system today. Do we
still live in a Westphalian system? You may wish to discuss changing ideas about
sovereignty, failed states and other factors that buttress or undermine the traditional
view of IR as the interaction among autonomous state-actors

3. What is the international system? Choose a theoretical perspective and use it to show
how the concept of system can be useful to the study of International Relations. (be sure
to discuss the levels-of-analysis problem in your paper!)

4. Describe the changing role of individuals in the realm of International Relations. Your
paper should discuss the concept of the state and the different roles played by
individuals in a system that is predominantly state-centric.

A Note on Sources:

Scholarly sources are academic journals and academic books (we also include governmental and
intergovernmental web sources in this definition such as websites hosted by the Government of
Canada, or the United Nations for example). Most journals are available online as well as in
print. You can access thousands of scholarly journals from the library website. There are
comparatively fewer books about international relations in the library right now. But our
university is part of the very large library system called NEOS. You can use the NEOS system
to find books that interest you and have them sent to the library where you can pick them up.
This takes just a few days.

Popular sources include websites that provide news and analysis of current events, magazines,
films, television programs, etc. Popular sources are meant to be consumed by a popular
audience, so they contain less specialized information than do scholarly sources. Compare for
example a CNN special on Afghanistan and a journal article written by a security expert that
analyzes the strategies used by military commanders in Afghanistan. The CNN program is
probably very interesting and full of useful information, but it contains less in-depth analysis of
the security situation than does the journal article. This is why scholars rely on books and journal
articles when they do research. You should make extensive use of scholarly sources in your
research as well. Popular sources should be used only for color commentary.

Course Evaluation will consist of the following:

Midterm Examination 20%

Reader Response Paper 5%

Book Review 10%
Research Essay 35%
Final Examination 30%

Grading System:

Percentage Letter Grade

95+ A+
85-94 A
80-84 A-
77-79 B+
74-76 B
70-73 B-
67-69 C+
64-66 C
60-63 C-
56-59 D+

50-55 D
<50 F

Grading Policy:

Students are expected to take exams in the time allotted, and to hand in their essays on time. If
you have a documented reason that you cannot meet these requirements, please see me in my
office hours, or arrange an appointment to meet with me. Examples include psychiatric
illness, learning disabilities, or physician documented illness that impacts your ability to finish
assignments on time.

In the absence of documentation, a late penalty of 3% per day (including weekends) will apply
for all assignments.

Academic Honesty Policy:

Plagiarizing scholarly work degrades the value of every bachelors degree awarded by the
University. Plagiarized assignments will automatically receive a grade of F, with no possibility
of resubmission. A copy of University’s Academic Honesty policy is included at the end of this

Course Outline ​– The course will cover the first seven chapters of Pevehouse and Goldstein’s
International Relations​. These chapters contain the key ideas and concepts that we need in order
to examine the relations between states in the international system. What follows is a
day-by-day breakdown of lecture and discussion topics and assignment due dates.
Introduction to International Relations I

Week 1

Sept 5 – 7: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 1

Note: Remember to read ​American War​ throughout September! Your reader response paper
is due at the end of the month.

Introduction to International Relations II

Week 2

Sept 10 – 14: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 1

Drezner Chapter 1

IR Theory I: Realism

Week 3

Sept 17 – 21: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 2

Drezner Chapters 2-4

IR Theory II: Realism

Week 4
Sept 24 – 28: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 2
Drezner Chapter 5 'The ​Realpolitik​ of the Living Dead'
Your response to ​American War​ is due

IR Theory III: Liberalism

Week 5

Oct 1 – 5: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 3

Drezner Chapter 6 'Regulating the Undead in a Liberal World Order'

IR Theory IV: Constructivism and other social theories

Week 6

Oct 8 – 12: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 3

Drezner Chapter 8: The Social Construction of Zombies

Note: No class on Monday October 8 – Thanksgiving break

Policy I: Foreign Policy

Week 7

Oct 15 – 19: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 4

Friday: Midterm Exam

Policy II: Foreign Policy

Week 8

Oct 22 – 26: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 4

Drezner Chapter 7: Neoconservatism and the Axis of Evil Dead

Policy III: International Conflict

Week 9

Oct 29 – Nov 2: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 5

Note: Your book review of ​International Politics and Zombies​ is due on Wednesday, October 31

Policy IV: International Conflict

Week 10

Nov 5 – 9: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 5

Policy V: Military Force and Terrorism

Week 11

Nov 12 – 16: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 6

Note: Monday November 12 is a reading day, no class

Note: Research essay is due Friday November 16 at midnight

Policy VI: Military Force and Terrorism

Week 12

Nov 19 – 23: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 6

International Organization I: Organization, Law, Rights

Week 13

Nov 26 – 30: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 7

International Organization II: Organization, Law, Rights

Week 14

Dec 3: Pevehouse and Goldstein Chapter 7

Final Exam – Wednesday, December 12, 1:30 – 4:30

How to write a research essay in [deleted] 207/208

Research Question: Your paper will answer a question about the course material. This may be a question
supplied for you, or one that you devise on your own

Thesis statement: In a single sentence state the argument that your paper will make. A good thesis will answer the
research question.
Once you've found your research question and decided upon an intelligent answer (your thesis), it is time to write
up your findings.

Section 1: Introduction: Your introduction gives the reader an overview of your topic, contextualizes your
research question and states your thesis. The reader should have a good idea why you have asked your
research question and how you expect to answer it.

Section 2: The body of your paper will do three things:

A. Discuss your thesis in terms of the scholarly literature . How are your research question and thesis statement
reflected in the scholarly literature? Be sure to only discuss literature that is relevant. Relevant literature has
been published fairly recently, or was written by a well recognized figure from the past. ​You should only discuss
scholarly literature that deals directly with your research question.

B. Interpret the evidence: In scholarly journals, this takes place through a presentation of new empirical data or
through another approach to interpreting the established record. As an undergraduate student, you will likely
choose to argue in support of an interpretation of the evidence presented by a scholar in literature you reviewed,
or you may wish to provide a new interpretation of the literature based upon a different way of reading the
established record. ​In this section you go beyond the literature review to tell the reader what you think about the
key issues, and how you have decided to answer the research question. You will lay out your thesis in a rational
manner, and show the reader how you have come to your position.

C. Discuss the implications of your thesis: Now that you have given the reader an overview of the most important
scholarly literature and answered the research question, it is time to discuss the implications of your research. If
you have presented new evidence, how does it change the way we understand the research question? If you
have chosen to support the thesis of another scholar, how does your supporting argumentation make his/her
argument stronger? If you have chosen to interpret the evidence in a new way, how does your interpretation
change the way we understand this topic of study? ​In short, you ought to be able to tell the reader​ ​why your
thesis matters and why they ought to take your scholarly contribution seriously.

3. Conclusion: The concluding paragraphs of your paper should return to the research question. You
should restate your thesis and give a brief summary of the evidence you have presented in support of it. You
may also include any thoughts about the literature, your interpretation and your implications that you think the
reader ought to consider after they have finished reading your paper.

4. Bibliography: Present only the scholarly research that you cite in your paper. Remember that
scholarly research consists of books and journal articles. Never cite the textbook, encyclopaedias or general
web resources. Even university web sites should not be cited unless they are presenting original data. ​In short,
stick​ ​to citing ​published scholarship​.
Grading Rubric: [deleted]

Breakdown Rationale Weight

Introduction should clearly

articulate the topic of the paper 15 points
Introduction and Thesis and thesis should be clear,
direct and unambiguous
Essay should be well structured
with subheadings where
appropriate. Paper should be
fully edited with a minimum of 20 points
grammatical and spelling
Essay Structure and errors. The paper should look
and sound like a polished final
Grammar draft
The paper should do what the
writer says it will do in the
introduction. All points of 20 points
argumentation laid out in the
Argumentation introduction should be fully
explored in the paper.
The paper should make full use
of the scholarly sources listed
in the bibliography. It should 15 points
not rely extensively on a small
Use of Scholarly selection of sources. Quotations
should be reserved for analysis
Sources rather than description.
The conclusion should
reconsider the topic in the light
of the arguments made in the 15 points
body of the paper. It should
clearly articulate the
Conclusion relationship between thesis and
All scholarly support should be
fully cited, including
paraphrased ideas and direct 15 points
quotations. All citation should
Citation and be correctly formatted
according to the Chicago
Bibliography Manual of Style.

Total: 100 points

Academic Honesty

University expects integrity, including academic honesty, from all members of the University
community. Therefore, all forms of academic dishonesty are unacceptable. This includes the use of
technology in any form to perform an act of academic dishonesty in or out of the classroom.

Instructors reserve the right to forbid any type of electronic device (computers, calculators, cell
phones, MP3 players, iPods, PDAs, etc.) to be used in the classroom, especially during
examinations. Academic dishonesty includes plagiarism, cheating, and misrepresentation.

Plagiarism c​ an be either intentional or unintentional. Intentional plagiarism occurs when people

present the words, ideas, or data—including words, ideas, or data from electronic sources—of
someone else as their own. Unintentional plagiarism can occur when students present another
person’s words, ideas, or data—including words, ideas, or data from electronic sources—without
proper documentation. Examples of plagiarism include the following:

1. Submitting, for evaluation, an essay written by someone else as if it were one’s own work.
2. Submitting, for evaluation, an essay written in part by someone else as if the entire essay
were one’s own work.
3. Paraphrasing or summarizing words, ideas, or data without properly documenting the
source of the information.
4. Buying essays or assignments and submitting them as one’s own work.
5. Submitting, for evaluation, the same essay or assignment in more than one course
without the permission of both instructors.

Cheating o​ ccurs when people pretend to have a level of competence they do not possess.

Examples of cheating include the following:

1. Copying from another person’s work during an examination or while
completing an assignment.
2. Using a “cheat sheet” or any other memory or skill aid without permission
during an examination or while completing an assignment.
3. Collaborating on an examination or assignment without permission.

Misrepresentation ​occurs when people fabricate a source of information or distort information

from sources. Examples of misrepresentation include the following:

1. Documenting or referring to a source that does not exist.

2. Attributing incorrect or non-existent information to an existent source.
3. Misrepresenting source information.

Academic misconduct ​occurs when students commit academically dishonest acts other than
plagiarism, cheating, and misrepresentation. Examples of academic misconduct include the

1. Being a party to any act of plagiarism, cheating, misrepresentation, or academic

misconduct (i.e. selling term papers, permitting someone to copy one’s work, writing essays
for someone else).
2. Attempting to gain or gaining an unfair advantage over others by offering services or
materials in exchange for favourable consideration.
3. Changing or altering grades on essays, examinations, or assignments.
4. Changing or altering grades on official documents, electronic or otherwise.
5. Any act associated with obtaining and sharing examinations or answers to examinations
before the examinations are given.
6. Theft or unauthorized use of library materials.
7. Copyright infringement of published materials (print/media/ Internet).

Students who are discovered to have committed academic dishonesty will receive a penalty,
or penalties.

Course instructors will identify how they will deal with academic dishonesty in their course
outlines. Actions may include the following:

1. Reduced grade on the assignment or examination.

2. Reduced final grade in the course.
3. An F grade on the assignment or examination.
4. An F grade in the course.

In all cases where academic dishonesty is proved, the course instructor will inform the Registrar
in writing of both the infraction and action taken. This information will be kept in the student’s
file and in cases of severe infraction or repeated incidents of academic dishonesty, the name
and incident(s) will be reported to the Academic Committee, which may choose to take further

This may include the following:

1. Written reprimand.
2. Academic probation.
3. Suspension from the University
4. Dismissal from the University.
5. Suspension of any degree already awarded.
6. Withdrawal of any degree already awarded.
Students who are penalized for academic dishonesty may appeal through the regular
academic grievance procedure.