You are here

  1. Home
  2. Two new OU courses explore some of the world’s most pressing issues

Two new OU courses explore some of the world’s most pressing issues

People walk across a marked road crossing in between high-rise buildings in New York city

Two brand new qualifications have been launched at The Open University, offering students in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences the chance to explore some of the big questions about the world around us.

The new MA in International Relations and BA (Honours) Sociology courses, launched in 2023, allow students to gain insight into, and make sense of, what’s happening in our ever-changing world.

The courses have been introduced by the School of Social Sciences and Global Studies (SSGS), which is continually developing its curriculum offer to explore and ask some of the most important questions about the world, seeking to critically engage with 21st century society, both in the UK and globally.

Dr Edward Wastnidge, Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Studies, says: “The University realised there was a growing interest in International Relations. As a vibrant department, strong on research and teaching with a well-established International Studies programme, we were keen to expand our provision in this dynamic and exciting field.

“The International Relations MA will help equip students with the tools to understand and analyse a range of contemporary global issues. The course will be useful for those looking to enhance their career prospects in a number of areas. These include careers in government and the civil service, NGO and charity sectors, international organisations, international risk management, as well as other opportunities that involve the independent research skills that this degree provides. It is also ideal preparation for anyone wanting to pursue further studies, including at doctoral level.”

Dr Ece Kocabıçak, Lecturer in Sociology, adds: “As the world is changing so fast, so is our curriculum and module development, and we are continually exploring new offerings, as well as ensuring that our existing qualifications and modules are up to date, offering both the latest intellectual content and supporting students in their vocational aspirations.

“Our Sociology course is designed to teach students how to analyse information critically, understand sociological problems and think like sociologists. They can learn to examine social themes – such as construction of identities, unequal power relations and gender, class, race, ethnicity-based disparities – as well as how intersecting inequalities affect people's lives, as seen in the insecurity of those with precarious jobs.

“Students will also study how digital technologies influence various aspects of everyday life, such as the use of artificial intelligence and robots in the workplace and digital objects to improve health, cybersecurity, disinformation, social media, and mental health.”

Register by Thursday 10 August to study the new MA in International Relations this autumn and register by Thursday 7 September to study the BA (Honours) in Sociology.

Request your prospectus

Request a prospectus icon

Explore our qualifications and courses by requesting one of our prospectuses today.

Request prospectus

Are you already an OU student?

Go to StudentHome