LOUGHBOROUGH UNIVERSITY. Programme Specification. International Financial and Political Relations

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1 LOUGHBOROUGH UNIVERSITY Programme Specification MSc in International Financial and Political Relations Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if full advantage is taken of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information on the learning outcomes, content and teaching, learning and assessment methods of each module can be found in Module Specifications and other programme documentation and online at The accuracy of the information in this document is reviewed by the University and may be checked by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education. Awarding body/institution: Loughborough University Teaching institution (if different): Details of accreditation by a professional/statutory body: Name of the final award: Programme title: UCAS code: Subject Benchmark Statement: Date at which the programme specification was written or revised: MSc International Financial and Political Relations Not applicable Geography September Aims of the programme To develop an integrated advanced interdisciplinary knowledge of theories and issues in financial and political development, beyond bachelor degree level To develop knowledge of globalization processes in fields of finance, politics and commerce To give students training that is vocationally relevant to employment in government, commerce and industry To equip students with appropriate tools of analysis that will allow them to undertake applied research for their employers in the areas of financial and political development 2. Relevant subject benchmark statements and other external and internal reference points used to inform programme outcomes The MSc in Financial and Political Development is intended for students who can demonstrate prior knowledge of at least one of the disciplines of the degree: banking and financial markets, geography or political science, at the level of an honours degree from a recognised UK University or international equivalent. The academic level at which the MSc programme is taught and assessed is guided by the criteria for the degree of Master in The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications in England Wales and Northern Ireland, published by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, January This document is to be found at 1

2 The MSc programme conforms to the Loughborough University standards and codes of practice in teaching and teaching support as described by the University Learning and Teaching Strategy document, to be found at 3. Intended Learning Outcomes Knowledge and Understanding Understand the functions and operations of institutions, financial markets and systems, with reference to central and commercial banks and other intermediaries, in international financial and political development; Understand and explain the core principals of economic geography, with reference to financial globalization, the regional agglomeration of financial services and the significance of trends in globalization for international financial and political development; Understand and explain the core principals of politics and international relations, with reference to political communication, international institutions and the governance of the world economy; Undertake independent research in the core disciplines of the degree, using research tools and quantitative/qualitative methods appropriate to the conduct of independent research. Learning and teaching is provided through lectures, seminars and tutorials, computerbased laboratory workshops, web-based guided study and independent work. Group work is integral in particular modules, and there may be opportunities for fieldwork (charged at cost). Provision for learning assistance by personal contact with module teachers is provided through timetabled office hours. Feedback to the learning process is through coursework assignment, class tests, webbased study (for example, structured exercise and answer packages that allow selfassessment of progress) and one-to-one contact with staff. Feedback may sometimes occur through tutorials, seminars or workshops, as determined by individual module organisers. Demonstration of learning achievement is through formal examination, tests and assignments, and preparation of a dissertation or research seminar presentations. Skills and other attributes a. Subject-specific cognitive skills Analyse theoretical and practical problems in banking and the operation of financial markets, the development of financial markets in a global economy, international relations and the governance of the global economy, by using the appropriate theories and research methods; Analyse the impact of developments in banking, financial globalization international political relations on international financial and political development; Synthesise important issues and themes from the professional and academic literature in the disciplines of the degree; Use the professional and academic literature to formulate questions suitable for research; Complete critical and exhaustive literature reviews of professional and academic research on globalization. 2

3 Formal assessment of skills in research methods (including statistics, econometrics, social survey and qualitative research methods) through modules delivered by all disciplines of the degree. Preparation of essays that critically review theories and their application in the different disciplines of the degree. Preparation of a dissertation on an issue in one of the disciplines of the degree using appropriate research methods to formulate, analyse and execute appropriate research questions. b. Subject-specific practical skills Present word-processed written reports and critical essays, appropriate to professional and academic standards in the disciplines of the degree; Collect and analyse quantitative and qualitative data, interpret such data, and carry out statistical hypothesis testing and other research analysis, appropriate to the professional and academic standards in the disciplines of the degree Preparation of assessed coursework essays, delivery of a dissertation and research seminar presentations Formal assessment by tests and examinations of ability to deploy quantitative and statistical methods c. Key/transferable skills Apply skills in analysis (including statistical analysis) to areas of general debate other than the disciplines of the degree; Use skills in synthesis to formulate key issues in areas of general debate other than the disciplines of the degree. More generally, students should have further developed skills in: Numeracy; Logical thinking and problem solving; Use of information technology (retrieval of data, web-based information searching, handling of data in computer files, basic word-processing and spreadsheet methods); Written and oral communication; Time management and decision-making; Independent study; Group study. Skills are acquired and assessed across the entire range of taught modules and in the dissertation and research practice seminars. Different modules will emphasise different skills. Numeracy skills are taught in the two research methods modules. Core modules address the theories that form the basis for analysis and synthesis in the disciplines of the degree. All modules use written communication. The dissertation potentially involves all skills except group study. The Researching Global Flows module potentially involves all skills including group study and oral presentations. Feedback on assessed coursework covers all aspects of skills acquisition. 3

4 4. Programme structures and requirements, levels, modules, credits and awards The MSc programme involves core modules (compulsory), optional modules and the Dissertation, with formal examination. A more detailed description of the MSc programme structure and modules (including a list of optional modules and module specifications) can be found by following links to postgraduate information from the Graduate School. All taught modules are worth either 15 or 30 credits. The Dissertation is worth 45 credits and involves full-time study throughout the summer period. Because the modules follow a developmental sequence the order of semesters cannot be changed. The modular structure is: Semester 1 The Financial System (theory of financial institutions, intermediation and markets) Financial Globalization (examined in semester 2: the economic geography of financial globalization and the regional agglomeration of financial services) International Relations Theory (international and systemic nature of world politics, the conduct of international relations) Research Methods I (principles of applied statistics, econometrics, social survey techniques and qualitative methods) Research Communication (to develop skills in literature review in preparation for research by oral and written synthesis of ideas and themes in published journal articles and books; additional English language support for international students) Semester 2 Banking and Financial Markets (current issues and trends in financial systems and markets) Financial Globalization (the economic geography of financial globalization and the regional agglomeration of financial services) The European Union and the Global Political Economy (External economic policy of the European Union and the governance of the world economy) Researching Global Flows (principles of exploratory statistics, social survey techniques and qualitative methods) Summer Period Dissertation of between 10,000 and 15,000 words, on a topic from one of the discipline of the degree 5. Criteria for admission to the programme The normal admission requirement is a good (upper second class) UK honours or joint honours degree in one of the disciplines of the degree, or an international equivalent. The Graduate School reserves the right to vary the entry requirement. Full details of relevant admissions information (including international admission requirements) can be obtained by sending a request for information to Programme Director, Tel or Fax English language competence is required. This can be satisfied by TOEFL 600 including written English (or 250 for the equivalent computer-based test), or IELTS 6.5 overall band (including written English) or Cambridge English Proficiency Certificate grade C or above. Exemptions may be made for candidates who have studied in the UK for at least one year or who have taken University degrees taught entirely in English. 6. Information about assessment regulations Assessment details can be found in individual module specifications and combines coursework (essay, class test or other assignment) and examinations. 4

5 Students take 4 modules in semester 1, each with a modular weight of 15 credits. In semester 2, students take 3 modules each with a modular weight of 15 credits. In addition, the 30-credit weighted module Financial Globalization is taught across both semesters. The dissertation is prepared in the summer period and carries a modular weight of 45 credits. In order to gain credit for a module, students must achieve a pass mark of 50%. Master of Science: awarded if 150 credits are accumulated and a module mark of at least 40% is awarded in the remaining 30 modular weights. Loughborough Postgraduate Diploma: awarded if 105 credits are accumulated from modules other than the dissertation and module marks of at least 40% are achieved in the remaining module(s). Loughborough Postgraduate Certificate: awarded for the accumulation of 60 modular credits from modules other than the dissertation. Re-assessment With the exclusion of dissertation, provision will be made for candidates who have a right of re-assessment in a module to undergo re-assessment in the University s Special Assessment Period (SAP). Re-assessment of the Research Practice Seminar must be undertaken not later than three weeks before the MSc Programme Board each year. Full details of re-assessment arrangements are contained in the official Programme Regulations and the University s Regulation XXI. 7. Indicators of quality The Departments of Loughborough University which offer support for this degree are highly rated with respect to both teaching quality (with near-perfect scores in recent External Subject Reviews) and research (two scores of 5 out of 5). Loughborough University ranks among the very best institutions for teaching quality. 8. Particular support for learning: Please see information provided at 9. Methods for evaluating and improving the quality and standards of learning: Please see information provided at 5

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