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Last modified: 22 May 2019 17:07

Course Overview

This course utilises a range of disciplinary and theoretical approaches to analyse the concept of ‘transition’ as a fundamental condition of world history. It examines this through two related processes: the transition from conflict to peace and from peace to conflict at both a macro and micro level. Topics include how states transition through revolutionary violence or through peaceful means, how individuals are radicalized into terrorist groups or become involved in non-violent movements, and transitions in global institutions, norms and technology that generate local and individual changes.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 3
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 30 credits (15 ECTS credits)
Campus Old Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Luisa Gandolfo

Qualification Prerequisites

  • Programme Level 3

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • One of International Relations (IR) (Studied) or Politics (PI) (Studied) or Sociology (SO) (Studied)
  • Any Undergraduate Programme (Studied)

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?


Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

Course Aims:
To acquaint students with the ability to;
a) Analyse whether political and social change is always progressive, leading to a better world
b) Apply general theoretical models to the analysis of global, state and local transitions
c) Construct logical and coherent arguments supported by relevant evidence
d) Appreciate the relationship between action and structure, macro and micro factors, global and the local as it relates to historical transitions

Course outcomes:
a) To familiarise students with the main disciplinary and theoretical approaches in the socio-political and cultural dynamics of historical transition.
b) To develop students analytical skills in identifying the key transitional events of peace and conflict.
c) To engage students in critical and comparative analysis of specific examples of transition, ranging from the Arab Spring, the end of the Cold War, to peace building in Africa.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt
  • 3000-word essay (40%)
  • Examination (60%)


  • Examination (100%)

Formative Assessment

There are no assessments for this course.



Course Learning Outcomes


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