Politics and International Studies

British Politics and Legislative Studies

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About the course

Considering a career in parliamentary research, political consultancy, the media or the Civil Service? This unique degree includes a one-year placement in Parliament – an invaluable stepping stone to your future career in politics. Through this programme, you will develop a detailed understanding of British parliamentary procedures and behaviour, while making sense of our history and politics in a national and international context.

For your placement year, you can choose from a pool of more than 50 MPs across the political spectrum. You will study in the School of Politics, Philosophy and International Studies which has an international reputation for teaching, with staff research commissioned by local, national and international bodies. In the 2014 National Student Survey, 97% expressed that our ‘staff are good at explaining things’. This in-depth course provides you with a solid understanding of the issues involved in international relations and the significance of politics as a global activity.


The first year of the BA Honours degree gives you a broad introduction to political science. In your second year you will study specialist modules on Legislatures, Elections, Voting Systems, British Political History Since 1945 and British Government, which will prepare you for your Westminster placement in Year 3.

During your placement you will be assigned as a research assistant to an individual MP and will participate in two practitioner-led seminar series, enjoying the rare privilege of undertaking original research on which to base your final-year dissertation.

In your final year you will have considerable scope to structure your own degree, taking one core module of Comparative Legislatures and picking four optional modules from more than 20 offered by the department. You will be assessed by exams, essays, projects and dissertations.

Entry Requirements

  • Tariff points: 320 points, can be from any qualification on the UCAS tariff, but must include at least 200 points from two or more A levels, or a combination of appropriate Level 3 qualifications.
  • IB Diploma: 30 points
  • BTEC L3 Extended Diploma: DDM in relevant subject(s).
  • Access to HE Diploma: pass with 45 credits at distinction

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to interview.

We welcome applicants with a range of qualifications from the UK and worldwide which may not exactly match the combinations shown above. Please contact the University’s Admissions Service for individual guidance.

International students (language requirements)
If your first language is not English, you will be required to provide acceptable evidence of your English language proficiency.

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Future prospects

This course leads to a variety of careers, such as political consultancy, the media, the Civil Service, public relations, political parties, parliament, charities, as well as international organisations. Recent examples include Head of Operations at Conservative Campaign Headquarters; Managing Director of Edleman Public Affairs; Head of Development (Factual Programmes) at the BBC; Director of UK Government Affairs at Hewlett Packard Ltd; Public Affairs Manager at Network Rail; and Head of Public Affairs at the Royal British Legion.

We like to keep in touch with our graduates and do so by facilitating the Graduates Association. Members are notified of interesting news and events occurring in the world of Politics as well as receiving an annual copy of the Graduate Directory, which is an excellent tool for networking, particularly in the early stages of your career.