One main reason Aston stands out is the the placement year. It can be life changing." Radhika Madlani Parliamentary Affairs Officer, Industry and Parliament Trust
A-levels: ABB from 3 A-levels. General Studies accepted.
*Variable offers available.
This multi-disciplinary programme has a key emphasis on the practical application of International Relations and English Language to the real world, through the optional placement year and professionally relevant modules which draw directly on Aston’s cutting-edge research.
Apply: 3 years full time Apply: 4 years with integrated placement year
ABB - BBB from 3 A Levels. General Studies accepted.
A Level applicants who select this course as their Firm UCAS choice may be eligible for our lowered offer scheme. This means that the grades that you will need in order to be accepted on to the course will be reduced.
BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) / BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate: Distinction plus two A Levels at grade BB.
BTEC Level 3 Diploma (QCF) / BTEC Level 3 National Diploma: Distinction, Distinction plus grade B in one A-level.
BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF) / BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma Distinction, Distinction, Distinction.
Applicants who select this course as their Firm UCAS choice may be eligible for our lowered offer scheme. This means that the grades that you will need in order to be accepted on to the course will be reduced
32 points in the IB diploma (including TOK/Bonus points) with 6,5,5 at HL.
Standard level Maths and English grade 5 required in lieu of GCSE English and Maths grade C/4.
Applicants who select this course as their Firm UCAS choice may be eligible for our lowered offer scheme. This means that the grades that you will need in order to be accepted on to the course will be reduced.
Pass Access to HE Diploma with Merit in each module. Humanities, Social Sciences or Business Access course preferred, but other courses considered on an individual basis.
EPQ: A Level applicants who meet our offer criteria will be made the standard offer for their programme of choice, plus an alternative offer which will be one grade lower plus a grade B in EPQ providing this course is selected as their Firm UCAS choice.
Other qualifications: If your qualification is not listed, please contact us using the form at the bottom of the page
International Qualifications: International students can discover more about the qualifications we accept on our international pages. Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of an English language qualification. Find out more about our English language requirements.
Foundation Programme in Social Science (Aston University): For students with good A-level (or equivalent) grades, but who narrowly miss our standard requirements, it is also possible to gain entry to this course by completing a Foundation Year, although please note the progression requirements.
3 years full time or 4 years with integrated placement year UCAS Code: LQ23 GCSE requirements: GCSE English Language and Maths Grade C/4.
Tuition fees 2018/19: £9,250 (£1,250 during placement year) for UK/EU students. £14,300 (£2,500 during placement year) for overseas students. More on fees.
Application for second year entry will be considered by the programme director if there is space on that year of the programme. Typically, successful applicants for second year entry will:
View our Admissions Policy.
The information contained on this website details the typical entry requirements for this course for the most commonly offered qualifications. Applicants with alternative qualifications may wish to enquire with the relevant admissions teams prior to application whether or not their qualifications are deemed acceptable. For less commonly encountered qualifications this will be judged on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the academic admissions tutor.
This multi-disciplinary programme has a key emphasis on the practical application of International Relations and English Language to the real world, through the optional placement year and professionally relevant modules which draw directly on Aston’s cutting-edge research. You will examine the nature of relations between states and also of the roles played by international institutions, other intergovernmental organisations, multinational corporations and NGOs. You will also be provided with the theoretical knowledge and understanding of English language and how it works in society. Important strengths of the course include the research-active teaching staff who are internationally recognised for their work on Western and Eastern Europe, Forensic Linguistics, Language and Gender and TESOL Studies. Aston is also one of only a few UK universities to offer International Relations and English Language with a fully integrated placement year. The distinctive placement year is an optional feature of the programme and is designed to give our students a distinct advantage on the graduate labour market. Our International Relations and English Language graduates are in demand from a wide range of employers where a sound understanding of societies, organisations, institutions and communication skills are required.
Sample module options: The modules below are indicative only. When an offer is made, students will receive a detailed programme specification which forms part of our terms and conditions.
Core modules: Introduction to the Concepts and Methods of International RelationsThe Making of the Modern WorldIntroduction to the European UnionWhat’s trending? (Current affairs in International Relations and Politics)
Introduction to Discourse AnalysisLanguage in SocietyGrammar and MeaningAcademic Communication Skills
Core modules: International Relations: Theories and IssuesRegional Politics and Society
Written Text Analysis Psychology of Language and CommunicationWorking with Language Data
Optional modules: Introduction to Political EconomySecurity Studies in a Changing World
Teaching English to Speakers of Other LanguagesLanguage at WorkComputer-mediated CommunicationThe Language of the LawLanguage in the News MediaLanguage Policy and Language PlanningWork-based Project
Core modules: DissertationResearch and Dissertation Skills
Optional modules: EuroSim: Learning Negotiation through Simulation GamesThe International Relations of East AsiaReligion and Politics in Contemporary EuropePolitical CommunicationThe American PresidencyNationalism & Political PowerPolitical Parties and Party SystemsConflict and Politics in Contemporary BalkansContemporary ConflictDiplomacy and Soft PowerThe Far Right in EuropeThe Politics of Climate ChangeUnderstanding Foreign PolicyNortheast Asia: From Conflict to CooperationGender and PoliticsInterest groups and lobbyingRegions and Regionalism in EuropeContemporary Political TheoryPolitical Leaders: Case Studies and Comparative PerspectivesIntellectuals and Politics Power and Parliamentary Decision-MakingEthics and International Politics
Spoken Discourse AnalysisLearning EnglishCorpus LinguisticsMultimodal AnalysisLanguage as EvidenceLanguage Contact and Globalisation
You will be involved in: lectures, tutorials, seminars, e-seminars, small-group work, project work and independent study. Many of your modules will be in workshop format, alternating theoretical input with practical analysis, and allowing you to test out your understanding in discussion with other students and your tutor. There are also opportunities for group and collaborative work. Students undertake a major piece of independent research in final year.
You will be allocated a Personal Tutor when you join us and you will be encouraged to make regular contact with them throughout your studies. Personal Tutors are there to help discuss academic and, in some cases, personal issues. Personal Tutors can also often offer support by writing references for placement/graduate employment and academic research.
Assessment is through a combination of written and oral exams, coursework, essays, translation tasks, presentations and an extended dissertation during your Final Year. Exams take place in January and May/June.
“My research focuses on post-conflict societies and their democratisation and reconciliation, drawing on Serbia and Kosovo as specific cases. Throughout my research, I also collaborate with other scholars, and therefore the issues that I look at can be quite wide ranging. For instance, I’ve recently investigated how Serbia as a society deals with war crimes and legacies of the past, but also how Serbia and Kosovo – previously at war – interact in peacetime. Much of this feeds directly into my teaching. I teach a module called ‘Conflict and Politics in Contemporary Balkans’, where I include insights from my research and trips to the region. On a module called ‘Conflict, Intervention and Reconciliation’, there are sessions dedicated to post-conflict justice and prosecuting of war crimes, so Serbia and Kosovo often feature as examples which we compare to other parts of the world. Most recently, I spent some time at the Centre for European Studies, Harvard, as a visiting scholar, where I worked on a new research project on social movements in Serbia. There is a rich tradition of protest and social movements in the Western Balkans more generally, so this will be the basis of one of the lectures I will teach next semester.”
“In my five years at Aston possibly the most flattering praise I received came from a student who said ‘This module messes with my head’. ‘Messing with students’ heads’ is not necessarily what the official course description promises but in my teaching I try and challenge students’ perceptions of what language is and what it can – and cannot – do for them. The key message I try to get across is that understanding the linguistic phenomena we encounter, but rarely notice, on an every-day basis is crucial for understanding and shaping the world around us. We all acquire knowledge in essentially two ways – either through direct experience or from others. For most of our knowledge we have to rely on other people’s perceptions, which, before reaching us, are encoded into language. Language then carries knowledge; once we realise the importance of this simple notion, we can make fully informed and conscious choices as to how we can use language as a powerful tool to achieve certain aims. At Aston our focus is on language use rather than structure. We do make sure our students acquire the relevant theoretical concepts, but our ultimate aim is to show how language works in actual interactions. We focus on the practical applications of English Language studies. We are passionate about teaching and, importantly, use our own research to inform it. As a result our students often have access to the latest research findings even before they are published in academic journals or the media.''