3 years full-time
AAB (full entry requirements)
September 2023 (semester dates)
Politics is all around us, and it’s moving fast. With our internationally renowned experts you’ll get to the very heart of political thinking.
Explore the principles of power – how it’s won and how it’s used to drive the decisions that influence our daily lives. You’ll discover how issues such as poverty, debt, terrorism, conflict and environmental change affect us all, and investigate emerging powers like China and India.
Adding a placement or a year abroad are both an option with this course too, so you can benefit from the invaluable experience of working or studying in another country.
I’ve found the Politics department at York to be incredibly friendly, and always willing to help you. Your module and seminar leaders are outstanding at providing feedback on assessments.Evie, BA Politics
Read about Evie's experience.
We offer opportunities for local or international work experience, internships and study abroad.
We’re ranked in the UK top ten for the quality of our research outputs and our research environment in the Times Higher Education’s ranking of the latest REF results (2021).
for Politics, according to Complete University Guide (CUG) 2024
We offer a large choice of modules, helping you tailor the course to your own interests and passions.
Learn how to think politically about some of today's most pressing issues, such as:
There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:
The placement year provides you with an opportunity to gain experience in a wide range of fields while putting your academic learning into practice. You could apply to roles that are related to your degree, such as the House of Commons Placement Scheme or a placement with YouGov, or to a business-related placement in a wide variety of organisations and industries.
There are opportunities to spend time in industry as part of this course.
These modules will give you an understanding of the key concepts, theories and approaches in each major area of politics.
In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.
This module covers some of the essential skills and knowledge which will help you to study independently and produce work of a high academic standard which is vital for success at York.
This module will:
In your second year, you'll cover a diverse range of modules and hone the academic skills necessary to analyse political texts, political systems and processes.
You will also study five option modules. You will take at least one option from basket A, at least one from Basket B, and up to two from basket C.
The options available to you will be confirmed later in the year. For further information please get in touch.
In your final year you'll build on the knowledge you've gained over your degree. The year culminates in a dissertation: an extended essay based on your own research.
The dissertation is a chance for you to study a topic of your choice in depth. With the support of a supervisor, you'll identify a question and conduct independent research to find an answer. You will have the opportunity to learn and use quantitative and qualitative analytical techniques which are essential for modern social science research.
You will also study four option modules:
The options available to you will be confirmed later in the year. For further information please get in touch.
Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status.
For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.
Although students may decide to purchase some textbooks or other resources, we have an extensive physical and electronic library, so that there is no requirement to do so.
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2023/24 throughout the year.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
You’ll study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
You'll learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and one-to-ones. We offer a personal approach to learning with much of our teaching conducted in small groups (typically fewer than 15 students in a seminar group). Our staff are very approachable and our doors are always open. Your personal supervisor provides support and guidance throughout your studies, offering weekly feedback and guidance hours.
You'll be taught by academics at the forefront of research across a number of political areas such as conflict, security and development, political economy, international politics, political theory and public policy. As international experts in their field, our staff advise governments and organisations and regularly contribute to news and current affairs programmes. Our expertise and experience feed directly into our teaching.
In your first year, you can expect:
|Lectures||7-8 hours per week|
|Seminars||7-8 hours per week|
These figures are representative of a typical week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.
Outside your timetabled hours, you'll study independently. This may include preparation for classes, follow-up work, wider reading, practice completion of assessment tasks, or revision.
In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during semesters. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.
You will be based in the Department of Politics on Campus West. Most teaching will take place nearby.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
Assessment varies from module to module and includes a combination of exams, written essays and project work.
Your tutors will give you feedback in a variety of forms depending on the specific needs of the module. This may consist of written feedback, in-class discussion, model answers, one-to-one discussions or online responses.
Our teaching involves challenging discussions with your tutors and peers about global issues.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
The figures above are based on data from 2017/18.
A York Politics degree is recognised by employers worldwide. You'll improve your employability with opportunities to gain work experience, undertake internships or study abroad.
Many of our students organise work placements out of term time in an area that interests them. We encourage you to do this so you can gain workplace experience and get a deeper insight into issues that interest you. Previous students have spent the summer months interning at Ernst and Young, the Houses of Parliament and even the Mayor's Office in New York.
Our recent graduates have gone on to work with:
The knowledge I gained at the University of York proved essential for my work in documentaries – particularly when working on the Channel 4 series ‘The Rise and Fall of Tony Blair’. People tend to assume I studied Media at university. Reading Politics has helped me to stand out.Kate Rushworth, BA Politics
YouTube Audience Development Strategist
|Access to Higher Education Diploma||36 credits at Distinction and 9 credits at Merit or higher|
|BTEC National Extended Diploma||DDD|
|Cambridge Pre-U||D3, D3, M2|
|European Baccalaureate||An overall average of 80%|
|International Baccalaureate||35 points overall|
|T levels||We will consider a range of T Level qualifications for entry. Please visit our dedicated T Levels page for a full list of accepted T Levels.|
|Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers||Scottish Highers - AABBB Advanced Highers - not required for entry We may also be able to consider three Advanced Highers or a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers, where an applicant does not meet the grade requirement through Highers alone. Please contact us to discuss your qualifications.|
|International foundation programme||Foundation Certificate from our International Pathway College or an appropriate alternative.|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.
|Widening participation||If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to three A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Black Access Programme, Next Step York, Realising Opportunities, YESS, YorWay to York. More about widening participation.|
|Contextual offers||If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.|
|EPQ||If you achieve C or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
|Core Maths||If you achieve B or higher in Core Maths, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS (Academic and Indicator)||6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, with a minimum of 169 in each component|
|Duolingo||120, minimum 105 in each component|
|GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language)||Grade C / Grade 4|
|LanguageCert SELT||B2 with a minimum score of 33/50 in each component|
|LanguageCert International ESOL||B2 Communicator with a minimum score of 33/50 in each component|
|PTE Academic/PTE Academic Online||61, with a minimum of 55 in each component|
|TOEFL||87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
Get in touch if you have any questions
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