BASS Social Anthropology and Sociology / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Global Migration

Course unit fact file
Unit code SOCY20272
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


This course will examine contemporary and historical features of global migration. Core elements include an engagement with multi-scalar governance, the role of ‘gender’, ‘class’ and ‘race’ in lived experience, and the power inequalities that structure the process of global migration itself. The course will revisit key historically-embedded theoretical approaches to global migration, providing critiques of the formation and impact of engrained concepts in sociological, economic, and political theory. It will include an emphasis on the role of forced migration and the implementation of border controls in the context of EU migration governance, as well as an examination of specific policy responses in the context of the racial state. Students will be encourages to reflexively draw on real-world examples of global migration in the contemporary world, and to critically analyse political discourses that continue to persevere. 


This course aims to equip students with an understanding of the key concepts in global migration including the causes and consequences of migration, national and international responses to migration and the diversity of migrant flows within a global context. Students will critically evaluate the theoretical perspectives that inform the sociology of migration alongside the inter-disciplinary aspects of research and scholarship in the area of Migration Studies. Students will understand how and why migration has changed, the governance of migration will be explored alongside the consequences and experiences of policy such as new and dangerous migrant routes including the growth in irregular migration, the feminisation of migration, responses to migration, racism and the transnational activities of migrants.  

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course students should be able to: 

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of key concepts in migration studies, the main theoretical paradigms and the causes, consequences and impact of global migration on sending and receiving countries and on migrants themselves.  

  • Critically evaluate theoretical ideas and supranational and national policies relating to global migration.  

  • To synthesis, summarise and critically evaluate information from a range of sources including academic and grey literature in order to produce assessed coursework.   

  • Acquire and demonstrate transferable skills through group work and debates.  

In addition to the above objectives, students will develop and utilise skills in presentation of ideas in written work and in the use of a wide range of information resources.

Teaching and learning methods

Lecture material will be delivered weekly through a two hour lecture. Additionally, weekly one hour small-group tutorials will be delivered on-campus  

Assessment methods

One 2000-word end of semester essay worth 100% of the final grade.

Feedback methods

All sociology courses include both formative feedback - which lets you know how you're getting on and what you could do to improve - and summative feedback - which gives you a mark for your assessed work. In this course you will receive individual written feedback on a non-assessed assignment and your coursework essay, as well as general verbal feedback throughout the course in tutorials and lectures.  

Recommended reading

Castles, S, de Haas, H. and Miller, M.J. (2014) The Age of Migration: International Population Movements in the Modern World, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan (5th edition). 

Samers, M. and Collyer, M. (2016) Migration, Abingdon: Routledge  

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 20
Seminars 10
Independent study hours
Independent study 168

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Alice Bloch Unit coordinator

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