Office Hours: Tuesday, 11:00 am-13:00n

(and by appointment)





This introductory course provides students with the basic concepts, ideas, and analytical tools necessary to understand state behavior and the international relations. We will look at the major concerns, issues, and actors that characterize world politics. We will examine various theoretical explanations for state behaviors, such as realism, liberalism, and constructivism. We will use these theories to analyze the forces that affect state behavior and address some of the most pressing questions in international relations in today’s globalized world. During the course vital topics such as war, cooperation, international law, political economy, terrorism, human rights, and the forms of conflict that characterize the international system will be explored.



FORMAT & Objectives


The course has primarily a lecture format, but it involves―and encourages―discussion in class. That means that lectures will be very interactive and students’ participation is essential for making the best of the learning experience. Typically, the first part of the class will be a lecture and the second part will be devoted to discussions of theories, trends, cases, or other issues pertaining to the course. The main objectives of this course are to introduce students to the basic concepts, ideas, and analytical tools necessary to understand some of crucial issues in today’s globalized world.



Text Book


Introduction to International Relations: Theory and Practice (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2013), by Joyce P. Kaufman.





Regular class attendance at UNYT is mandatory and essential as is careful prior reading of the assigned materials. Absences will generally not be excused, since students are allowed to miss up to 3 hours per semester without affecting the attendance grade. In addition, students should refrain from arriving late; otherwise the hour will be counted as an absence. It is very important that students do the readings before class as the lectures will usually build upon the assigned readings, picking up on issues of particular importance and discussing them in a comparative framework.



Written & Oral Assignments and Deadlines


Your grade in the course will be determined on the basis of your performance on written assignments, with due dates and weighting noted below.

Exams: There will be a midterm exam and a final exam consisting of essay questions.

Coursework: There will be 4 assignments on the readings and class discussions.


The midterm exam will be taken on December 6, 2013.


The final exam will be taken on February 7, 2014.


Assessment criteria: The final grade will be composed as follows:

5% attendance/participation

30% for the midterm exam

20% for the assignments (5% each)

45% for the final exam


Letter % Generally Accepted Meaning
     A 96-100 Excellent
      A- 90-95
      B+ 87-89 Good
     B 83-86
      B- 80-82
       C+ 77-79 Acceptable
     C 73-76
      C- 70-72
        D+ 67-69 Not Acceptable (failing)
     D 63-66
      D- 60-62
     F 50-1 Failing Grade (partial credit)
0 Non-Submission or Plagiarism


Academic Dishonesty:  UNYT does not tolerate academic dishonesty. Read the UNYT Student Honor Code for a more detailed description of plagiarism and cheating.



General Information


Conduct:  Students are expected to behave with appropriate etiquette toward faculty and one another. Cell phones should be silent before class begins and they should not be used until class is over.


Learning Difficulties:  If you feel that you have any exceptional learning difficulties or other serious problems that interfere with your studies, please make an appointment with the UNYT Counseling Office.





1                                  Orientation and Explanation of Course Format

The Study of International Relations

IR as a Field of Study

The Levels-of-Analysis Framework

Broad Theoretical Perspectives

The Concept of the Nation-State

The Concept of National Interest


2                                  International Relations in a Globalized World

What is Globalization?

Globalization as Historical Phenomenon

Timeline of Globalizing (or Planet Shrinking) Building Events

Contemporary Globalization and Its Features

The Global City and Its Kew Functions

Forces of Integration, Disintegration, and Self-Determination?


3                                  One World, Many Theories

                                                            What’s a Theory, and Why Is It Important?

Theories of International Relations: Basic Assumptions

Levels of Analysis: A Framework for Understanding International Relations


4                                                          Introduction to Basic IR Theories (1)

Realism as a Theoretical Model

Neo-/Structural Realism

Limitations and Critique of Realism and Neorealism


5                                                          Introduction to Basic IR Theories (2)

Liberalism as a Theoretical Model / Neoliberalism

Limitations and Critique of Liberalism

Constructivism; Its Limitations and Critique

Other Theoretical Approaches to IR: Marxism and Feminist Perspectives

Limitations and Critique of Marxism and Feminism


6                                  The Nation-State Level

Definition of Nation-State

History of Nation-State

Treaty of Westphalia

Balance of Power and Alliances

Collective Defense, Alliances, and the Cold War


7                                  The National Interest: The Ontological Bases of Foreign Policy

Foreign Policy Orientations

Negotiations as a Tool of Foreign Policy

War and Peace

War as Politics by Other Means

Just War Doctrine

Feminist Theory and War

Issues of Peace and Nation Building




8                                                          Within the Nation-State

Democratizing the State

Democratic Peace

Militarizing the State

Democracy and Feminist Perspectives


9                                                          Culture and Democratic Society

Nationalism and Conflict

Ethnic Conflicts

Intractable Conflicts

The Importance of Looking at Culture and Society

The Role of Individual


10                                 Nonstate Actors and International System

The Changing Nature of the International System

What Are Nonstate Actors?

International (and Intergovernmental) Organizations (IGOs)

The United Nations

North Atlantic Treaty Organizations (NATO)

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank

Regional Organizations: The European Union

IGOs, Sovereignty, and IR Theory


11                                 International Nongovernmental Organizations (INGs)

Multinaltional Corporations

Terrorism: A Challenge to the International System

Terrorism: A Historical Perspective

Terrorism as a Political Toll


12                                 Pulling It All Together (I)

Case 1: Environmental Protection as a Common Good

Background of the Issue

Analyses of the Case

Case 2: The Movement of People in a Globalized World

Background of the Issue

Analyses of the Case


13                                                         Pulling It All Together (II)

Women’s Rights as Human Rights

Background of the Issue

Analyses of the Case

Lessons of the Cases: Understanding International Relations in a Globalized World


                                                            FINAL EXAM

Faculty: Arts & Sciences.

Department: Humanities & S.Sc.

Majors: Humanities and Social Studies.

Study Fileds: Communication and Journalism and Political Sciences International Relations.

Course Year: 2.

Scheduele: WED 09-12:00

Instructor: Prof. Fatos Tarifa


Prerequisite: Composition II, World History II