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Course Details

Course Details

Course Code: IRLS503 Course ID: 3568 Credit Hours: 3 Level: Graduate

This course introduces issues surrounding the two major categories of international institutions: intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) such as the United Nations, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) such as the International Committee of the Red Cross. The course studies the theories, origins, principles, organization, activities, legal authority and performance of major international organizations as world actors in areas of economic development, international security, trade, and humanitarian assistance. IGOs serve as forums for communications, as regulators, as distributors, as organs of military security, and as peacekeepers.

Course Schedule

Registration Dates Course Dates Session Weeks
12/28/20 - 06/04/21 06/07/21 - 08/01/21 Spring 2021 Session D 8 Week session
02/22/21 - 07/30/21 08/02/21 - 09/26/21 Summer 2021 Session I 8 Week session
04/26/21 - 10/01/21 10/04/21 - 11/28/21 Fall 2021 Session B 8 Week session

Current Syllabi

After successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

CO-1: Examine the roles of international organizations within international relations, peacekeeping, economy, security, and conflict resolution.

CO-2: Analyze the relationship between international organizations and the theories of socialization, interest convergence, and behavior.

CO-3: Apply theories of human rights and state sovereignty to specific international organizations and institutions.

CO-4: Distinguish how the theories of liberalism, realism, and constructivism have been incorporated within the international system.

Co-5: Evaluate the ability of the United Nations to work with regional organizations in peacekeeping initiatives.

The course grade is based on the following assessments:

Discussion Forums – 20 percent

Posts should reflect an assimilation of the readings. Students are required to provide a substantive initial post by Thursday at 11:55 pm ET and respond to 2 or more classmates by Sunday 11:55 pm ET. Forum posts are graded on timeliness, relevance, knowledge of the weekly readings, and the quality of original ideas.

Research Proposal Assignment – 15 percent

The components of this 2-3 page assignment include a research question and explanation of the research design.

Literature Review Assignment – 30 percent

This assignment consists of a literature review of scholarly sources to help the student prepare for the final research paper. The literature review should be 3-5 pages in length.

Research Paper – 35 percent

The research paper incorporates the literature review assignment, and should be 10-16 pages total.

Required Readings

  • External websites and other assigned readings are found in the Lessons area of the classroom.

  • Weekly Lesson Notes and videos or audio files are found in the Lessons area of the classroom.
Book Title:Various resources from the APUS Library & the Open Web are used. Please visit to locate the course eReserve.*
Book Title:The European Union Explained, Third Edition : Institutions, Actors, Global Impact (Ebook available through the APUS Online Library)
Publication Info:Indiana University Press
Author:Andreas Staab

Previous Syllabi

Not current for future courses.