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International Relations and Spanish BA (Full time) 2018 start

Key facts

UCAS code: LR24

Start date: September 2018

4 years full time

Typical A-level offer: ABB
(specific subjects required)

UK/EU fees See fees section below
International fees £17,500 (per year)

Language requirements
IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component

Study abroad option: Yes
Work placement option: Yes


From US foreign policy to Latin American cinema, this Joint Honours degree allows you to combine two very different disciplines.

You’ll build your Spanish language skills and gain an insight into the culture and history of Spanish-speaking countries. But you’ll also develop a deep understanding of the ways in which countries and societies interact.

Core modules will improve your speaking, reading, listening and writing skills and introduce key concepts and theories of international relations. You’ll then build on this foundation by choosing from a wide variety of optional modules in both subjects.

You could study the politics of aid, Spanish-American literature, security and insurgency or regional identities in Spain to name a few. You could even learn Catalan or work on translation and interpreting.

If you have an A-level in Spanish, this degree gives you an opportunity to explore the complex dynamics of international relations and become fluent in a language spoken in 23 countries.

Specialist resources

Leeds offers great facilities for language students. The most exciting resources we have are the cultural branches of the governments of Spain and Portugal – the Cervantes and Camões Institutes have branches on campus, as does the cultural arm of the Catalan autonomous government, the Ramon Llull Institute.

The institutes seek to promote language teaching and greater understanding of Spanish-speaking, Lusophone and Catalan cultures around the world. Working with our degree programmes, they host many cultural events and academic activities for our students.

In addition our fully-equipped Language Centre hosts digital language labs, audio/video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Our Interpreter Training Suites also offer you the chance to explore a career in interpreting, and our Electronic Resource Information Centre houses specialised computing facilities to support translation studies.

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Course content

A Joint Honours degree allows you to study the same core topics as students on each Single Honours course, but you’ll take fewer options and discovery modules so you can fit in both subjects.

In your first year, you’ll improve your language skills and take core modules introducing you to key issues in international relations, such as globalisation and international politics.

This will give you a good grounding for the following year, when you’ll study key topics such as security as well as choosing optional modules in both subjects. You could study African politics, EU policy, Spanish literature or Latin American history among others. However, you’ll also continue with language classes preparing you to spend your third year working or studying in a Spanish-speaking country.

When you return to Leeds you’ll have sharper language skills, which you’ll refine in advanced language classes. You’ll also benefit from an even more impressive range of optional modules on topics such as religion and politics in Spain, gender and violence, Latin American architecture or feminism and political theory. In addition, you'll apply the skills you’ve developed to a dissertation on a topic of your choice.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Year 1

You’ll choose from a wide range of optional modules while maintaining a balance across your subjects. Follow the links to the Programme Catalogue for more examples of optional modules and the full course structure.

Compulsory modules

IT for LCS Students 5 credits
Politics, Culture and Society 20 credits
Comparative Politics 20 credits
International Politics 20 credits
Practical Language Skills in Spanish 1 20 credits

Optional modules

The Historical Development of Spain and Hispanic America 20 credits
Portuguese Language for Beginners 1A 20 credits
Catalan Language and Culture I 20 credits
Introduction to the Cultural Production of Spain and Spanish-America 20 credits

Year 2

Compulsory modules

Theories of International Relations 20 credits
Security Studies 20 credits
Practical Language Skills in Spanish 2 20 credits

Optional modules

Examples of the optional modules available are shown below. Please contact us for more details of the requirements and choices available.

British Central Government 20 credits
State and Politics in Africa 20 credits
Analysing Data in Politics, Development and International Relations 20 credits
Modern Spanish-American Literature 20 credits
Latin America since Independence (c1800 - c1930) 20 credits
Issues in Hispanic and Lusophone Cinema 20 credits

Year 3

Compulsory modules

Year Abroad 120 credits

Year 4

Compulsory modules

Practical Language Skills in Spanish 3 20 credits
Final Year Project

Optional modules

Examples of the optional modules available are shown below. Please contact us for more details of the requirements and choices available.

International Development and Social Policy 20 credits
Crisis Diplomacy: Coercion, Sanctions and the Use of Force in International Relations 20 credits
Political Psychology: on Authority and Obedience 20 credits
From Bolivar to Chavez: Revolutionary Icons in Contemporary Latin American Culture 20 credits
Spanish in an Economic and Business Context 20 credits
The Crisis of the Spanish Nation? Nationalisms and National Identities in Spain, 1868 - 1978 20 credits

For more information on typical modules, read International Relations and Spanish BA in the course catalogue

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

The Schools of Languages, Cultures and Societies and Politics and International Studies (POLIS) are large and diverse departments, with tutors who are at the forefront of research in their fields.

So that you can benefit from their knowledge and experience, we use a range of teaching and learning methods including lectures, seminars tutorials and workshops. We also attach a lot of importance to independent study, as this is where you get to develop independent research and analytical skills.


We also use different forms of assessment, including exams, essays and case studies. In some modules group work and oral presentations may also be assessed. There is plenty of support on offer, including extra classes on topics like public speaking and exam technique that you can attend throughout your degree.

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Entry requirements, fees and applying

Entry requirements

A-level: ABB including A in Spanish.

  • Access to HE Diploma

    Pass diploma with 60 credits overall, including at least 45 credits at level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. An interview and a piece of written work may also be required. This course has additional subject specific requirements. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

  • BTEC

    We will consider this qualification in combination with other qualifications. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

  • Cambridge Pre-U

    M1, M1, M1 including Spanish.

  • International Baccalaureate

    34 points overall with 16 at Higher Level including 6 in Spanish at Higher Level.

  • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

    H2, H2, H2, H3, H3, H3 including H2 in Spanish

  • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

    BB in Advanced Highers including Spanish and AABBB in Highers, or B in Spanish in Advanced Highers and AAABB in Highers.

  • Welsh Baccalaureate

    The Welsh Baccalaureate is not typically included in the academic conditions of an offer made to you for this course. If you choose to undertake the Welsh Baccalaureate we would strongly encourage you to draw upon these experiences within your personal statement, as your qualification will then be taken into account both when your application is initially considered by the selection panel and again when reviewed by the admissions tutor at the time your A-level results are passed to us.

  • Other Qualifications

    European Baccalaureate: 77% including 85% in Spanish.

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

When an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be ABC at A Level including A in Spanish and grade A in the EPQ.

We welcome applications from mature students with Access qualifications, and from students with a wide range of qualifications.

Alternative entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

Typical Access to Leeds offer: BBC at A Level including B in Spanish and pass Access to Leeds.


We accept a wide range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information contact the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies admissions team.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

If you're an international student and you don't meet the English language requirements for this programme, you may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

School of Languages, Cultures and Societies Undergraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: See fees section below
International: £17,500 (per year)

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2019, the fee for 2019/20 will be £9,250. 

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students starting in the 2019/20 academic year will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

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Career opportunities

A Joint Honours degree in International Relations and Spanish will equip you with political, cultural and commercial awareness, as well as proficiency in a major global language. These qualities will open doors to a range of careers, but you’ll also have valuable transferable skills that employers actively seek.

You’ll have sophisticated communication skills, and you’ll be confident working independently or in a team. You’ll also have presentation and research skills and be able to analyse information from different sources. Because you’ve managed two subjects you’ll have strong organisational skills – and spending time abroad will demonstrate that you’re adaptable.

Graduates have pursued a variety of career paths including diplomacy, the civil service, journalism, the media, business and finance, marketing and education. Others have pursued postgraduate study or specialised training in disciplines like translation and interpreting.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

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Placement opportunities

Residence abroad

You’ll spend your third year in Spain or another Spanish-speaking country, immersing yourself in local culture and cultivating your language skills.

We have partnerships with a number of universities in Spain and Latin America where you could study, or you could undertake a work placement. You could even work as a language assistant in a school under the British Council’s programme.

Whatever you choose to do, you’ll gain a new insight into a Spanish-speaking society as well as valuable experience of adapting to another culture. If you choose to work during your time there, you’ll also return with work experience to increase your appeal to employers. For many of our students, it’s the real highlight of their course.

Read more about Residence Abroad in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies

Order a prospectus online or telephone +44 (0)113 343 2336