International Relations

Universidade Católica Portuguesa

Course Description

  • Course Name

    International Relations

  • Host University

    Universidade Católica Portuguesa

  • Location

    Lisbon, Portugal

  • Area of Study

    International Relations

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview


    At the end of the semester, students should be able to demonstrate:

    ▪ Understanding of the major schools of thought in International Relations and of the evolution of the international system.

    ▪ Knowledge of the great classics and of the most recent international scholarship on power, conflict and cooperation.


    At the end of the semester, students should be able to:

    ▪ Apply International Relations theory and concepts to the analysis of contemporary debates and historical cases in international politics.

    ▪ Demonstrate mastery of core academic skills developed in the International Relations course and reinforced in other required coursework, such as: following key bibliographic conventions; identifying and critiquing academic arguments and their assumptions; and demonstrating advanced writing and oral presentation skills. 

    Course Content:

    1. The study of International Relations: Theoretical models and research methods. How to structure academic essays and policy briefings.

    2. Major schools of thought in international relations.

    3. The concept of power.  

    4. Realism in International Relations: Security, conflict, and peace in international politics.

    5. Liberalism, international trade, and world politics.

    6. Interdependence and sovereignty.

    7. International organizations.

    8. US foreign policy.

    9. China´s model of global influence and the rivalry with the US.

    10. The energy revolution and regional politics in the Middle East.

    11. A changing world: Climate disaster and International Cooperation.

    12. Great concerns in strategic autonomy: Critical raw materials, rare earths, semiconductors, and energy.

    13. Current affairs: War in Europe.

    14. Student Presentations. 


    The subject is taught in theoretical-practical sessions. Classroom teaching privileges collective work of critical text analysis.


    Evaluation is continuous and includes the following components, with respective weightings: 

    Class participation 25%

    Oral presentation in class supported by a written summary essay (one page) 15%

    Mid-term written examination 30%

    Final written examination 30% 

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.


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