Skip to content

Module Catalogue

Breadcrumbs navigation

IR5518   Conflict in the Middle East

Academic year(s): 2024-2025

Key information

SCOTCAT credits : 30

ECTS credits : 15

Level : SCQF level 11

Semester: 1

Planned timetable: Mondays 11.00am - 1.00pm

This module examines conflict in the modern Middle East looking at the causes, development and consequences of conflict in the region including interstate, civil war, ethnic, religious and terrorism. It examines the historical formation of the nation state system in the Middle East and the development of competing ideologies. The legacies of these processes are explored through case studies including the Arab-Israeli conflict, Lebanon and Iraq. The rise of political Islam in the region is explored in both its violent and non-violent manifestations. The region has been characterised by authoritarian regimes and this legacy and the impact of the 2011 Uprisings is examined including conflicts in Syria, Libya and Yemen. The link between identity and threat is discussed in relation to the Islamic Republic of Iran and its impact on regional security. External intervention in the region is addressed in relation to Iraq post-2003 and debates relating to responses to the 2011 Uprisings.

Learning and teaching methods and delivery

Weekly contact: 1 lecture and 1 seminar per week (may run online)

Scheduled learning hours: 22

Guided independent study hours: 278

Assessment pattern

As used by St Andrews: 100% Coursework

Re-assessment: 100% Written Examination


Module coordinator: Dr F Guiney

Intended learning outcomes

  • A strong knowledge of the historical, political, socio-economic and strategic causes of conflict in the Middle East
  • A clear understanding of the main issues relevant to past and ongoing conflicts in the region.
  • Awareness of the difficulties and prospects of resolving conflict in the Middle East both between and within states.
  • To identify, assess and utilise appropriate information sources.
  • To assimilate and disseminate, to defend and critically assess data, information and concepts.
  • To articulate this understanding in written and oral form including essays, examination, presentations and participation in tutorials.