COURSEWORK ASSIGNMENT

COURSEWORK ASSIGNMENT 2:  4,000-WORD ESSAY [Contributes 75% to total module mark]

You should choose one essay question from the eight listed below and construct an essay based on best academic practice. At post-graduate level you are expected to demonstrate analytic capability and to construct a fluent and logical argument. Your work should evidence extensive reading and research and be fully and accurately referenced. Full marking criteria are as below:

Distinction: 70%+
(i)    structure        Very clearly organised and logically
structured, following through coherent thesis
from aims to conclusion.
(ii)    content        Covers material in a full and accurate manner
and approach    revealing careful attention to relevant
evidence and arguments; excellent
understanding of relevant issues. Develops
its thesis with the aid of a coherent
critical analysis.
Some degree of innovation or originality in
its approach to topic.
(iii)    style and        Very well written, with good command of
presentation        grammar, syntax, spelling and punctuation;
clearly presented with wide range of sources
and with accurate and consistent references.

Merit:  60-69%
(i)    structure        Clearly organised and logically structured,
following through coherent thesis from aims
to conclusion.
(ii)    content and        Covers material in a competent manner, with
approach        careful attention to relevant evidence and
argument. Develops sound understanding of
issues and problems raised in question. Develops                 its thesis with an analytical approach, focused on                 the question throughout.
(iii)    style and        Well-written with generally good grasp of
presentation        grammar, syntax, spelling and punctuation;
clearly presented with use of relevant
sources and with accurate and consistent

references.
50-59%
(i)    structure        Sound organisation, though with some
inconsistencies; follows through thesis from
aims to conclusion in limited but adequate
manner.
(ii)    content and        Covers material in generally thorough manner,
approach        though with some inconsistencies. Somewhat
lacking in attention to relevant evidence,
examples or arguments. Develops adequate
understanding of issues and problems raised
by the question, though not always focused on
actual question. Approaches material with an
essentially descriptive rather than analytical focus
(iii)    style and        Adequately written with generally sound
presentation        command of grammar and syntax, though with a
few errors of spelling and punctuation;
clearly presented with use of limited but
relevant sources and with consistent
references.

40-49%
(i)    structure        Some evidence of relevant organisation and                         structure with a few aims clearly set out.
(ii)    content and        Limited focus on question, which displays
approach        some attention to relevant evidence and arguments.
Evidence of some understanding of the issues
and problems raised by the question.
(iii)    style and        Limited style and presentational skills. A command of
presentation        English though with errors of grammar and syntax, and
spelling. Uneven use of sources and references.

Fail: below 40%
(i)    structure        Disorganised with no logical     structure.
(ii)    content and        Unfocused; minimal attention to relevant
approach        evidence or arguments, together with minimal
understanding of problems and issues
raised by the question.
(iii)    style and        Very poorly written, with inadequate command
presentation        of grammar and syntax, and with numerous
errors of spelling and punctuation; presented
with inadequate or non-existent sources or
references.

Essay Questions
The questions relate to the workshops and you should refer to the readings listed there as starting points.
1.    ‘In the era after the end of the Cold War, liberalism has replaced realism as the dominant explanation for the nature of the international system.’ Do you agree with this assertion?
2.    ‘With the proliferation of non-state actors, diplomacy is more relevant than ever in the 21st Century’.  How far do you agree with this statement?
3.    To what degree can Richelieu be considered ‘the father of modern diplomacy’?
4.    How far do you agree that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is an evolving institution?
5.    To what extent can the Falkland Islands War of 1982 be seen as a failure of diplomacy?
6.    Does successful diplomacy rely on ‘ripe moments’? Discuss with reference to at least two case studies.
7.    To what extent is the Durban Platform a break-through in global climate change negotiations?
8.    ‘Call it public diplomacy, or public affairs, or psychological warfare, or — if you really want to be blunt – propaganda’. Is Richard Holbrooke correct to characterise public diplomacy in these terms?

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