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ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« on: January 05, 2014, 09:27:47 pm »

If you have any queries, comments, complaints or suggestions, feel free to contact alondouek or b^3.

Current Totals:
Arts and Social Sciences: 1
Asia and the Pacific: 0
Business and Economics: 0
Engineering and Computer Science: 0
Law: 1
Medicine, Biology and Environment: 0
Physical and Mathematical Sciences: 1

Total: 3 reviews

Arts and Social Sciences

Asia and the Pacific

Business and Economics

Engineering and Computer Science

Medicine, Biology and Environment

This is a thread for subject reviews only.  If you have any questions, then please PM the member who wrote the review, or alternatively, create a new thread for more information about a subject.  The views expressed are those of the authors and do not represent the opinions of the university.  Keep in mind that despite best efforts, information provided may not be accurate.

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[b]Subject Code/Name:[/b] [url=insert link here]SUBJECT CODE SUBJECT NAME[/url]  Please insert the handbook link for the subject, and replace SUBJECT CODE SUBJECT NAME with the appropriate details

[b]Workload:[/b]  (specify how many lectures, pracs, tutes ect. and their duration)

[b]Assessment:[/b]  (Outline the various assessments which make up the subject and how much each counts for)

[b]Lecture Recording Enabled:[/b]  Yes, with/without screen capture etc.

[b]Past exams available:[/b]  Yes, how many?  No.  Was there a sample exam?

[b]Textbook Recommendation:[/b]  What must you buy?  What is "recommended"?  Do you need it?


[b]Year & Semester of completion:[/b]

[b]Rating:[/b]  Out of 5

[b]Your Mark/Grade:[/b] (Optional)

[b]Comments: [/b] Give your overall opinion of the subject, lecturers, assessment etc. and a recommendation, plus anything else which you feel is relevant.

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Index last updated July 15, 2014, 04:59:29 am - alondouek

Template copied from gemgem49's Monash and stonecold's University of Melbourne subject review pages.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 04:59:29 am by alondouek »
Majoring in Genetics and Developmental Biology

2012 ATAR: 96.55
English [48] Biology [40]

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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2014, 08:53:11 pm »
Subject Code/Name: MATH2322 Algebra 1 Honours: Groups, Rings and Advanced Linear Algebra

3 normal lectures per week, 1 optional lecture that contains material for HPO, PhB and masters students. All 1 hour.
1 hour-long tutorial per week.

This is a tricky one... The assessment for this course is not concrete, the final exam can make up anywhere from 40-100% of your final grade depending on your marks for assignments and the midsemester exam. The scheme is explained well by the lecturer.
Weekly assignments of 3-4 questions taken from Artin.
Occasional quizzes in the lectures.

Lecture Recording Enabled:
Yes, just a handycam recording of the lectures at about 3 fps... Audio and whiteboard.

Past exams available:
We had a few past papers and 1 sample paper given to us on Wattle. I didn't look on the library website so there may or may not be more.

Textbook Recommendation:
Artin's Algebra is the recommended textbook. I went the first term without it but in hindsight I recommend getting it, since the course draws a lot and relies a lot on the text. I just printed a pdf copy at Officeworks for about $50.

Joan Licata for the normal lectures.
Anthony Licata for the 4th optional lecture.

Year & Semester of completion:
Semester 2 2013

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: 94

After feeling a little disenchanted with MATH2405 in semester 1, my expectations weren't great for another 2nd year maths course, but I loved Algebra I.
I certainly looked forward to the lectures and tutorials every week, and the material was fun to learn.
The course material is good, though the linear algebra section could probably be diminished to spend more time on ring theory.

We had Joan Licata and it was her first year taking the course. Great lecturer, very engaging and fun but also very comprehensive. Always happy to backtrack and go over things that may be causing any confusion, I recommend going to her office hours for any issues at all with the material.
Her husband Anthony Licata takes the optional lecture, he was pretty good but sometimes skipped around a bit, though this may just have been the nature of taking only one lecture a week.

Overall the best course that I've taken so far.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2014, 08:55:11 pm by rife168 »
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2014, 02:56:12 am »
Subject Code/Name: HIST2110 History and Theory (H)

Workload:  1 lecture (2 hours) and 1 tutorial (1 hour) a week. Will have to spend time completing readings weekly.

Essay 1 (35%):
There'll be a list of essay questions to choose from, about lecture topics covered in the first half of the course. IIRC, this includes Structuralism, Herodotus/Thucydides, Historical 'Facts', Marxism etc. 1,500 words, 35%

Essay 2 (55%):
There'll be another list of essay questions to choose from, as well as a list of notable works of history to write on. 3,000 words, 55%.

Class participation: 10%

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available:  No exams.

Textbook Recommendation:  Recommended pre-reading is Curthoys & Docker, Is History Fiction?. Not necessary, though interesting. The weekly readings are mostly introductions/chapters/excerpts from a famous historical work as well as 1-2 journal articles with a critical treatment of the work.

Lecturer(s): Dr Alex Cook, he's brilliant. In my year, the tutorial groups were divided between Alex and Alexis Bergantz, a PhD student. Both are very good, and can facilitate discussion very well.

Year & Semester of completion: 2013 Sem 1

Rating:  5 of 5

Comments: It's a great survey of the different milestones of the actual discipline of history, beginning from Ancient Greece's Herodotus and Thucydides, through to movements such as feminism, marxism, post-colonialism and ending in today's history wars. You'll be reading lots of primary material, some of which can be hard to digest if you're unfamiliar with that sort of thing. The topics almost inevitably lead to lively tutorials and foster a lot of debate (people tend to disagree vehemently with each other, but strangely in my semester, it was stimulating as opposed to frustrating). This is also a postgrad course (Course code HIST6110), and a compulsory course for History honours. This makes the demographic of students really diverse, and you get a wide range of history students taking this course.
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2014, 03:45:31 am »
Subject Code/Name: LAWS2203: Corporations Law
Workload:  (specify how many lectures, pracs, tutes ect. and their duration)


Tutorial Exercise/Answer: (5%)
Tutorial Participation: (10%)
Research Essay or Policy Paper: (25%)
Exam (60%)

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available:  Yes, a substantial amount. But no model answers. ANU LSS provide a few answers - highly inadequate; the quality poor.

Textbook Recommendation:  I recommend Ford's Principles of Corporations Law (15th Ed).

Lecturer(s): Dr Kath Hall. The Dean, Professor Bottomley, teaches the last few weeks.

Year & Semester of completion: 2013 Semester 1.

Rating:  3/5.

Your Mark/Grade: 78.

Comments: I find the subject matter of corporations or company law generally interesting. In particular, I find the first few weeks on the theory of incorporation and its consequences fascinating. For the research essay, one of the two questions was about the recent UK Supreme Court decision regarding piercing the corporate veil, i.e. disregarding the separate legal entity. I enjoyed it. However, the course quickly becomes very much statute-based (Corporations Act). I also particularly enjoyed the last few weeks on Member Remedies. 

Dr Kath Hall is a competent lecturer. She is friendly and professional; and strives very hard to make us feel comfortable before the exams. However, her lecture slides needs to be more carefully revised (they are sometimes inadequate or contain irrelevant content, perhaps from past years). She also rambles a little too much. Generally, she is quite clear and her style of lecture involves a considerable extent of 'babysitting'. Professor Stephen Bottomley is clear and incisive - he explains cases well. 

Tip - There is also the Corporate Legislation book, which is quite expensive. The statutes can be read online, but in the exams it would be wise to bring a copy along (I am not sure whether library borrowed books can be brought to the exam). Students will be consistently told that knowing where the sections are in the statute book is crucial; I disagree. There is simply no time to flip through the book in the exam (even with tabbings); you should have familiarised yourself with the content of the sections before the exam. The content of the statutes should be paraphrased and be placed in your notes for very quick reference during the exam.

Take the other assessments (research essay, tutorial exercise/answer) seriously. A few marks here and there in law is vital. It can also mean gaining a few extra marks from scale-up. In my year, my raw mark was high enough for me to gain a substantial scale up (4-5 marks), boosting my final mark.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 05:01:50 am by LOVEPHYSICS »
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2017, 03:11:27 pm »
Subject Code/Name: PHIL1004 Fundamental Ideas in Philosophy: An Introduction 

Workload: 2x1hr lectures and a 1hr tutorial per week

Assessment:  tutorial participation 10%, essay 1 20%, essay 2 30%, final exam 40%
The format for the final exam asked us to write 3 essays answering 3 questions regarding the readings we studied in class.

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture etc.

Past exams available:  no, but possible exam questions were released

Textbook Recommendation:  no textbooks for this course :) just do the readings provided by the lecturer on Wattle
I would, however, recommend that you do the readings though. Quite a few of the readings may be somewhat complex to understand but it gets explained in the lecture. It is possible to get by this class without doing the readings, but still, just do the readings anyway.
Additional readings are also provided but tbh, I couldn't find time to do them but if you're interested you should.

Lecturer(s): Dr Bronwyn Finnigan.
Bronwyn's lecture deliveries are quite different to your typical lecturer (well so far from experience). Her slides are very colourful and engaging so if you like that kind of stuff, then you'll like it. She is also fairly easy to follow along and she seems like a super nice person :) some weeks there may be guest lecturers

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1 2017

Rating:  3.5 Out of 5

This subject is a great course to the introduction of philosophy! Because this is an intro course it takes a few readings from a variety of different areas: God, knowledge, mind-body problem, personal identity, human nature, freedom and morality. You look at a variety of different philosophers and their works (each lecture, mainly, she will talk about the main views/arguments put forward by the philosopher). Many ideas and objections are also presented in class and she also asks questions in lectures about our opinions and views too. This does lead to quite some lively discussions in tutorials too (although I didn't really take part). I would recommend this course to anyone who's even slightly interested in philosophy. You don't need to have studied philosophy or any experience before, and this subject gets you to think critically/in a different way :)
« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 05:46:00 pm by strawberries »
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2017, 03:29:59 pm »
Subject Code/Name: POLS1002 Introduction to Politics 

Workload: 1x2hr lecture and 1x1hr tutorial per week

Assessment:  tutorial participation 10%, quizzes 20% (5 quizzes, so 4% each), essay 30%, final exam 40%
Online quizzes were all multiple choice and timed and must be taken on select days
The format for the final exam is entirely short and long-answer questions, asking us to define concepts or compare/contrast terms

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture etc.

Past exams available:  no

Textbook Recommendation:  The Science of Politics: An Introduction - Josep Colomer
Most of the readings will come from this textbook so I would recommend that you buy it, however, you can borrow from the library if you don't wish to buy it. I really like the textbook and found it quite easy to follow.

Dr Andrew Banfield & Dr Matthew Kerby, alternating every 1-2 weeks
Both are fairly engaging and funny. They're also Canadian and have great stories :)

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1 2017

Rating:  4 Out of 5

Comments: I quite liked this intro course to politics. Some people may find it dry and some found this course slightly boring but personally I quite liked it and found it interesting and fun to learn. A variety of different topics are studied such as power, public goods, collective action, game theory, democracy, federalism, presidential/parliamentary systems and judicial politics. This course gives a well-rounded basic overview to these topics and also lots of examples and comparisons are taught. My favourite part was presidential/parliamentary systems and comparing the different voting systems around the world, but every week is pretty engaging and you learn a lot of content in one lecture. The online quizzes are every 2 weeks and are a good way to make sure you're up to date and actually learn the content. I would recommend this course and as I am intending on studying politics-related courses in the future I'm not too sure how much this course will help or lead on to other areas but this course is still a very good course where you can learn quite a bit :)

I would recommend taking this course with POLS1005. A few parts of the content do overlap (such as game theory) and your studies in one may help the other :)
« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 05:47:17 pm by strawberries »
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2017, 03:58:09 pm »
Subject Code/Name: POLS1005 Introduction to International Relations: Foundations and Concepts 

Workload: 1x2hr lecture and 1x1hr tutorial per week.
However, the lecture is run twice a week because the cohort is so big so if you miss one you can go to the other :)

Assessment:  quizzes 10% (one quiz each week worth ~1%ea), midterm 25%, response paper 15%, final exam 40%, tutorials 10% (2.5% on role profile, 2.5% on position paper, other 5% for participation iirc)
Quizzes are multiple choice
Both exams consist of multiple-choice, short answer and essay questions.

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture etc.

Past exams available:  No. There was a practice exam for both the midterm and final though :)

Textbook Recommendation:  World Politics: Interests, Interactions, Institutions - Frieden, Lake, Schultz
Would definitely recommend getting this book. A lot of stuff in this course is not explained in this lecture and this book would be really helpful for exams and extra reading. However, if you don't wish to purchase the book you can borrow it from the library but this is a very popular course so it may be hard to find a copy to borrow

Lecturer(s): Dr Richard Frank

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1 2017

Rating:  4.5 Out of 5

Comments: This is a very good intro course to the area of IR and it definitely is doable even without any prior knowledge in this area so even if you've been living under a rock, you can still follow along quite easily. Although I say it's doable, it isn't easy to get a high mark and you do have to work hard obviously, but you can definitely follow along this course easily without any experience in the study of global politics. The cohort for this subject is very large (alot of students take IR degrees) and the lecture is run twice a week to accommodate that, and there are a variety of students who take this subject.

This intro course covers a broad range of areas at an intro level. The first half of the semester is mainly focused on wars such as why wars occur, IR theories (interests, interactions, institutions), civil wars, terrorism and international institutions (eg UN) etc. The second half of the course focuses on the political economy (trade, finance, development) and transnational factors (international law, human rights, environment). Each lecture covers a different topic and Dr Frank also provides many examples that apply, and at the end, he includes a case study in that area, which is often particularly interesting. However, the content covered in each lecture is pretty simple and doesn't cover the entire content that will be assessed on quizzes and exams so I would recommend that you do the textbook readings. The online quizzes each week, although only worth 1%, provide an incentive to make sure you actually do the readings and keep up with the content.

In addition to the lectures, in the tutorials there is also a simulation regarding the Syrian civil war. I believe that this was the first year it was run. In each tutorial group, each student is an actor in the Syrian conflict and in the 2nd half of the term, there is a peace conference where actors will try to come up and propose some sort of solution or compromise (in the weeks beforehand you have to research about your actor and talk about their interests and such) - and this is where the response paper assessment comes in. Not sure if this will happen in future years though but the simulation was quite interesting and it highlights why it's hard to come up with agreements in international relations.

This was my favourite subject and I would definitely recommend it, even if you don't know much at all :)

I would recommend taking this course with POLS1002. A few parts of the content do overlap (such as game theory) and your studies in one may help the other :)
« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 05:47:58 pm by strawberries »
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2017, 03:19:18 pm »
Subject Code/Name: POLS2120 Foundations of Political Theory 

Workload: intensive winter course run over 2 days (Tues + Thurs) each week for 3 weeks
10-3 each day, with a one hour break in between
~45-60mins in the second half of each day (except final day) was dedicated to the discussions, known as 'classic chats'

class participation/attendance 10%
exam 40% (3x500-word essay questions)
essay 50% (3000 words)

Lecture Recording Enabled:  I believe so, but he did not use slides

Past exams available:  no

Textbook Recommendation:  the official textbook is Readings in Classical Political Thought, edited by Peter J. Steinberger
Personally, I would recommend it as it is "only" $50, but it is up to you. Most texts (except 1 or 2) we study are from this textbook, and there will be quite a few texts in the textbook not covered in this course (but it's good if you want to read them!), but you can also find copies of the text in libraries etc., however, this textbook is edited so the readings are easier to understand than say 'original' translations, and the lecturer does use the textbook when explaining

Lecturer(s): Prof John Uhr + Dr Will Bosworth (runs the classic chats)

Year & Semester of completion: winter 2017

Rating:  2.5 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: TBA

This course was an intensive winter course, and has been run in the past as both a winter and semester-long course. This is a political philosophy or political theory course, that focuses on the oldest Western political thinkers and their ideas. We thought about why these thinkers think this way, and how this might line up with contemporary society. In addition to reading these old works, we also did read some modern reviews on these works (these were the 'classic chats', which was more of a tutorial discussion format).

The texts we studied this year were (only in selected parts, not the full texts):
- Homer’s Iliad
- Herodotus: Histories
- Thucydides: History of the Peloponnesian War (including the Funeral Oration, Mytilene Debate, Melian Dialogue)
- Sophocles: Antigone (I really liked this text!)
- Plato: Apology
- Plato: Republic (this one we actually read the whole thing...fair to say it was quite a handful)
- Aristotle: Rhetoric
- Aristotle: Nicomachean Ethics
- Aristotle: Politics
In the past, this course has had students study Machiavelli and such, but we only stopped at Aristotle, especially as this was an intensive course. The texts are pretty hard to understand (I got lost and confused many times), but there are resources such as Sparknotes that can help. Going into this course, I really did not know much (at all) about philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle, so it was good to get to know their most famous works and ideas, and yeah, let's just say I have quite an interesting view on one of them :P.

This course is supposed to be a politics or political science course (or political philosophy/theory), but at times I felt like it was a literature course, so keep in mind when writing your exam and essay to think of it from a political view and how these texts explain political phenomena rather than a literary one. What you will find, however, is that many of these texts actually do have things quite in common with modern day society and their ideas actually have been quite influential. While it can be interesting, reading a lot over an intensive period can get boring.

The Exam was 3 500-word essay questions about any of the 3 texts studied. There was a question for each text so we just got to pick our ‘favourite’ texts. It was offered as a take-home exam this time.

I would recommend this course if you’re interested in the foundations of political theory and philosophy, but personally, I might have been more interested in later political philosophers such as Marx. I would also recommend if you want to do a winter course, because there aren’t many available. However, there are many situations where it is quite difficult to understand - especially because I do not have much knowledge on philosophy or political theory, as many students taking this course have done other courses in similar fields which may have helped them better.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 05:19:06 pm by strawberries »
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2017, 03:23:55 pm »
Subject Code/Name: STST1001 Introduction to International Security Studies 

Workload:  1x2hr lecture + 1x1hr tutorial a week

Tutorial presentation 10%
Short assignment (500 words) 10%
Mid-term exam (short answer questions) 20%
Essay synopsis (500 words) 20%
Essay (2500 words) 40%

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture etc.

Past exams available:  no

Textbook Recommendation:  Asia-Pacific Security: An Introduction - Wallis and Carr (ed.)
I personally would not recommend buying the textbook. While the textbook is very informative, I found it unnecessary. 

Lecturer(s): Dr Greg Raymond

Year & Semester of completion: first semester 2017

Rating: 2.5 Out of 5

I found this subject pretty difficult, especially for a first-year course. This is run by the College of Asia-Pacific, so the focus will be on the Asia-Pacific region. I remember the first few topics were on IR schools of thought (e.g. realism/liberalism/constructivism etc.), and then about great/middle/small powers. I didn’t bother going to classes basically after mid-sem so I don’t know what was discussed later but I believe it was something like nuclear weapons and terrorism and so on. Honestly, I've forgotten most of the stuff we did so I can't really say much else :P I personally did not find the lectures too interesting and engaging, and I felt like I learnt more from the readings. Yeah this is a very short review, I can't really remember much of this course, and while international security is very interesting itself, I can't really say I quite enjoyed this subject.

The tutorial presentation was a 5-min presentation on one of the readings in a future week that the tutor will assign you in the first week. You present what the reading is about followed by leading a discussion with your tutorial group.

The short assignment was a 500-word report on an IR school of thought (realism, liberalism, constructivism etc.)

While it is very interesting, I would not recommend it unless you are particularly interested in this area and prepared for it (however, this is a core course for students studying an International Security degree) as it’s also very reading-heavy. However, this course actually will also be quite helpful to students studying International Relations as there are quite a few crossovers. 
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2017, 02:34:08 pm »
Subject Code/Name: POLS1006 Introduction to International Relations: Contemporary Global Issues 

Workload:  1x2hr lecture per week and 1x1hr tutorial per week

-tutorial participation 10%
-2x essays 25% each
-final exam 40%
The indicative assessment appears to look different for 2018 (but don’t quote me on this).

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  No. There was a sample exam with sample questions. But I don’t think it really helped because the final would have different questions

Textbook Recommendation:  Introduction to International Relations – Grieco, Ikenberry, Mastanduno 2016
I would recommend this book because we use it for most weeks and contains important information – some of which isn’t discussed in lectures. 

Lecturer(s): Dr Charlie Miller & Dr Michael Zekulin. I found that both were pretty good and knowledgeable. Dr Miller took most of the lectures, especially in the first half of the course. Dr Zekulin took a few in the second half. We also had 2 guest lectures by Dr April Biccum.

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 2, 2017

Rating: 4 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: TBA

This subject follows on from POLS1005, but it is definitely doable without having done POLS1005 which is the case for many students starting in Semester 2. This is a core course for IR majors and IR degrees, and there was a large cohort of ~600 students or something, and in the first few weeks we had to have lectures streamed into another theatre.

All in all, I found this a pretty good foundation course into IR. The first half of the course was mainly focused on IR theories of realism, liberalism, constructivism + critical theories (which weren’t heavily looked at in POLS1005). The second half was more focused on contemporary global issues – nuclear weapons, terrorism, ethnic conflict and international political economy. I found the second half slightly better than the first when we applied theories and stuff to real-world contemporary issues.

In addition to the textbook, there are also journal articles for us to read each week. Personally, I don’t feel you had to have read them, but they can help. Many of them were quite intense but the lectures do go over stuff like “X said this” but they are not assessed.

The first essay asked us to apply our knowledge of IR theories into historical events in the 20th century. The second essay was more about our opinions regarding the threat of the modern-day issues listed above. They were only short essays of 1000 words each.

Final Exam:
The final exam was just to pick 2 essay questions from 3 and to write two essays regarding themes we learnt the whole year. They were quite broad as well. I don’t know if the format will change in future years though.

Tutorials are “compulsory”, so we technically do not have to attend but we get marked on attendance and participation levels so we are expected to interact and share ideas/thoughts. The first half was just mainly going over what was taught in lectures, but the second half involved simulations in class regarding hypothetical scenarios relating to the contemporary issues (e.g. we suppose that there is a terrorist attack and what can we do? Etc.)

Overall I found this course pretty good. Not difficult at all to follow along, but you do need to have at least a mild interest (even if you have little background) in this course. There will be some students who are super passionate though. If you are a non-Arts/IR student, I would recommend as an elective only if you are interested in IR or if you are willing to put in the effort required (the assessments aren’t that bad, but still requires a bit of effort) as this is not a ‘bludge’.

After completing this course, I would strongly recommend having completed STST1001 in Semester 1 (I wrote a review here), and I really regret not paying much attention in that unit when I completed it. Obviously, it is definitely doable without having done STST1001 but it would strongly help as there are many overlaps regarding IR theories and security issues.
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Re: ANU Subject Reviews and Ratings
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2017, 08:43:31 pm »
Subject Code/Name: POLS2094 – Issues in International Political Economy 

Workload:  1x2hr lecture and 1x1hr tutorial per week

- tutorial participation/attendance 10%
- midterm (multiple-choice) 20%
- essay (2500 words) 40%
- final exam (multiple choice and short answer) 30%

Lecture Recording Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture etc.

Past exams available:  No. There were sample questions for the midterm. No sample questions for the final.

Textbook Recommendation:  International Political Economy – Oatley
Would recommend getting it. You won’t cover all of it, but definitely useful for the chapters we studied.

Lecturer(s): Dr Chungshik Moon

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 2 2017

Rating: 3.5 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: 80 HD

Personally, I found this course fairly straightforward. I wouldn’t consider it “easy”, but if you are able to follow along with what he says in class then you should be fine.

This course looks at the relationship between economics and politics – how domestic and international politics influence the international economy as well as how international economic relations drive political action. This is a political science course, and not an economics course, however, so many things are looked at from a political perspective. Our tutor mentioned that many students without economic backgrounds struggled, but personally, I found it quite okay. The readings included economic modelling and PPF curves etc, but we don’t need to know about them.

The first half was focused on world trade – looking at the WTO and how domestic politics influence trade outcomes. It began with a refresher of first-year IR concepts as well. The second half was focused on 3 areas: foreign direct investment and multinational corporations, monetary policy and exchange-rate politics, and economic development. I personally found the monetary policy part to be a little challenging. Many examples and studies are also looked at.

Readings mainly come from the prescribed textbook, but also some journals as well as the POLS1005 textbook (which he provides photocopies of). I would definitely recommend doing the textbook readings. The journal readings - he pretty much summarizes them in lectures, although you will be questioned on them in the exams.

The midterm was entirely multiple choice, and the final exam contained multiple-choice questions as well (as well as short answer). It is important to understand the concepts carefully because sometimes the MCQs can be contradictory so you need to know to pick the right one.

Even though this is a 2nd-year course which I completed in first-year, I found it more ‘straightforward’ than my first-year courses, probably because it was more focused on a certain area of political science and to me, things just seemed logical and reasoned and fairly structured. Some concepts may take a while to get your head around, but overall, it’s very doable if you follow along with lectures. (however, as mentioned previously our tutor said many students struggled. It varies by person I guess.)

This is a core course for IR degrees and majors, and most students complete it in their 2nd year. In saying that, I would recommend having done POLS1005 beforehand (which most would have done anyway). This course may be of interest to anyone studying economics as well, or just anyone interested in IR/economics/politics, but there is a pre-requisite of having completed 2 POLS courses prior.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2018, 11:40:20 pm by strawberries »
VCE '15
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