Brief Encounters: An Introduction to Writing Short Stories ISS9BE
This module has been designed to help students realize their creative potential by producing original and stimulating short fiction. Teaching will consist of specialist workshops conducted by an expert in the field. In addition to engaging with practical aspects of craft and technique, students will learn how to create believable, compelling characters and how to make them live (and die!) on the page. They will also have the opportunity to visit sites of historic importance and natural beauty to inspire their writing.
Excursion(s): The course will culminate in a live ‘reading’ at a leading local arts center when students will have the chance to share the stage with a prominent Scottish writer.
Education and Learning: A Scottish Perspective ISS9EL
In this module, students explore the purposes of education and how this translates into the UK education system, and the wider issues of learner identities, some of which are unique to the UK. What are the implications of social class? Does school uniform impact on learning? How is behavior management constructed and why? What impact might regional languages and culture, ethnicity or sexuality have? This module will also normally include interaction with pupils. This module normally will include a visit to a local school to observe the Scottish education system in action. In addition, an excursion to the Scotland Street Museum in Glasgow will also be included. This is not only a famous Charles Rennie Macintosh building which was a functioning school until 1979 but is now a museum about education in Scotland.
Marketing and Branding Scotland ISS9BS
This module introduces the importance of culture in marketing operations with specific reference to Scotland. Framed within a review of Scotland’s economic and cultural history from both a Scottish and global perspective, it examines the relevance of national identity and country-of-origin effect (also known as nation branding) in the creation of brand value. Contemporary case studies within food and drink production and the cultural industries will be used to illustrate core course concepts. Special attention will be given to the internationalization process of small- and medium-sized enterprises, citing Scottish examples. A multi-disciplinary approach makes this course accessible and interesting to students with a limited marketing background but also useful and informative to business and marketing students who wish to develop their knowledge in this niche area. The instructor will lead an excursion to either a Scottish beverage maker/food producer or Scotland’s national tourism agency.
Photographing the Urban ISS9PU
This art history module draws inspiration from Scottish historical architecture and explores the representation of the built environment through various artistic genres including painting, media, optics, and photography. Underpinning the module is an acquisition of skills in fine art digital photography. Students will research and create their own photographic portfolios based on class assignments and lecture material about the history of photography. During the course, students will have the opportunity to develop skills and new knowledge in the following areas: fine art digital photography; principles of photo documentation; location photography; and image editing. This module includes a one-day excursion to relevant local sites and a 19th-century Scottish mansion, complementing what is learned in the classroom. Note: digital camera required.
Religion and Conflict ISS9RC
Everywhere we look today, from our television screens to the streets of our cities, we see conflict in the name of religion. Some at a verbal level, some at a military level, some at a catastrophic level. Why does it appear that religion and conflict seem to go hand in hand? This course will explore the nature of this supposed relationship, first by looking at what actually constitutes ‘conflict’ (is it the same as ‘violence’, for example?), second, by looking at whether such conflict is actually inherent in what we perceive as ‘religion’ today, and third, by looking at the role the media plays in defining these terms and their relationship for us. Finally, this module broadens its perspective to focus on what global lessons can be learned from Europe. The course gives a more critical perspective on what we see happening around us in the name of religion, and to understand why some religions struggle more than others with the nature of conflict. Students will visit the St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art, in Glasgow.
Rethinking the City
This course provides a general introduction to the design of cities, and how they can be organized and improved, with a particular focus on Scottish New Town design. The course considers, for instance, how the role of social and urban planning of Scottish New Town developments has contributed to our thinking about what makes a livable city. Students will also consider the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (2015) and explore the rights of each person to health, education, shelter, and security and how similar goals informed Scottish town planning. The course has been structured to draw students into conversations on key questions and to provide opportunities to students to use design-thinking to explore how urban centers are designed, and ways in which students might improve them. Students will research and create their own urban plan to identify and evaluate real city examples based on a class excursion, in-class assignments and reading material. Over the duration of the course, students will also be able to develop an understanding of basic concepts of livable city design and will have the opportunity to apply research and critical thinking, photographic skills and social media in their assignments.
Royals and Rascals: Contemporary Studies in British Journalism ISS9JO
For centuries, Britain’s kings and queens have had a powerful impact on society and on its institutions. Following the rise of celebrity culture, members of the British Royal family and other public figures have used their influence and financial muscle to push back journalists in order to reclaim their privacy. This module is aimed at journalism students and others interested in the media and its relationship with public figures, including Britain’s royals, who want to explore fundamental ethical principles and press freedom issues from the vantage point of some of the world’s most fascinating news stories. These cases range from Princess Diana’s death, for which the Paparazzi were blamed, to Prince Harry’s more recent indiscretions, which played out in the digital media.
Excursion (s): Balmoral Castle and a visit to a Scottish newsroom (eg. BBC).
Scotland the What? Contemporary Scottish Literature & Identity ISS9SC
This course examines the literary and political currents shaping contemporary Scottish identity, introducing students to key twentieth- and twenty-first-century texts. The course encounters and explains a range of cultural debates concerning language, class, democracy, and nationhood in Scottish writing.
With attention focused on the question of independence, recent debates concerning Scottish culture and identity gain a heightened political charge. Literature has not only reflected but actively shaped such debate. What role has writing played in political change, and to what extent has Scottish culture escaped its own stereotypes?
Excursion: There will be an excursion to Edinburgh, including a visit to the Scottish Parliament building and Scottish Writers Museum
Scotland on the Screen ISS9SS
This module explores images of Scotland in film and television in the context of historically recurrent Scottish cultural themes, with sideways references to literature and Scottish history, and an introductory approach to the topic of representation. The themes of the module are Scotland in Hollywood: Brigadoon to Braveheart (Scotland on the American screen); Urban Scotland: Culture and Crime; Filmmaking in Scotland: the Importance of Shorts; and the Politics of Representation: Contemporary Scotland in Cinema and Television. This module will include a visit to a celebrated screen location in Central Scotland. In the past, this has been a trip to the Edinburgh International Film Festival, one of the world’s oldest and most established film festivals.
Crime and Justice in Scotland: The Criminal in Scottish Society ISS9CJ
This module is designed to introduce students to the subject of criminology through the lens of the Scottish Criminal Justice System. The module begins with an overview of the Scottish Criminal Justice System before examining the major avenues by which the public obtain information about crime – as victims of crime and from the media and official statistics. The module examines the processes that have developed our definitions of crime and the broader social and political context within which this crime occurs. This module includes a visit to HM Prison Glenochil, an adult male prison near Stirling.
Green Politics: Theory & Practice ISS9GP
This introductory module provides students with an understanding of environmental issues and the characteristic features in environmental problem solving; illustrate the multitude of concepts, ideologies, actors and political settings involved in environmental politics; make you aware of the shared as well as setting-specific dilemmas in environmental politics and policy; evaluate the link between environmental policy intentions and reality. Key areas this module will focus on including political parties, EU / US environmental relations, green consumerism and environmental protest campaigns. This module includes a day visit to Whitelee wind farm in Glasgow, Europe’s largest onshore wind farm.
International Relations ISS9IR
This module explores contemporary issues and debates that shape world politics today. It starts by introducing International Relations (IR) theory before turning to two broad themes that dominate IR: conflict and peace. Key issues covered include nuclear weapons, private military companies, humanitarian intervention and failed states. Students will also apply the themes of conflict and peace to a case study of the Northern Ireland conflict exploring the key political developments and the transition to a post-conflict settlement. This module will also include a workshop that examines the use of wall murals to articulate conflict / post-conflict identity. This module includes a day trip visit to Belfast where students will undertake a historical/political tour of the city taking in the wall murals and other key sites linked to the Northern Ireland conflict. Students taking this module may incur a small additional charge for the trip to Belfast.
Internship for International Summer School ISS9IN
This exciting opportunity, run in partnership with the Career Development Centre at the University of Stirling, will give students opportunities to carry out four-week internships in a number of sectors in the Stirling area. These sectors may include sports, environmental science, politics, charity / non-profit and marketing, though this list is subject to change. Through this internship, students will develop an understanding of the UK labor market and the specific sector of their internship; develop their team working skills, and develop their written and oral communication skills. Students can expect to spend approximately 140 hours in their internship placement and an additional 10 hours on associated classroom sessions, review days, writing reflective journals, and online tutorials run by the Career Development Centre. Assessment will take the form of a presentation given about your internship, completion of your journals, and submission of a project report.
Important note: Students taking this module must enroll full time in ISS Block 1 (and take two modules). Students may also be required to obtain an appropriate UK visa, such as a Tier 4 visa, the cost of which will be additional. Please also note the earlier application deadline.
For testimonials of past internship participants, click here.
*APPLICATION DEADLINE if applying for ISS9IN Internship for International Summer School: March 15.
(Additional application materials will be sent to applicants for the internship.)
Monsters and Vampires: The Impact of British Gothic on Contemporary Popular Culture ISS9MV
Focusing on key texts from the nineteenth century, this course aims to explore the ways in which Gothic tropes established during this period recur throughout contemporary popular culture. Students will discuss the representation of monsters and vampires as they appear in the British nineteenth-century Gothic texts Frankenstein, Wuthering Heights and Dracula and their influence on popular narratives such as those found in fiction, film, tv and music video. Assessment will be through presentation and essay. This course will also include a tour around The Edinburgh Dungeon and a visit to the Gothic theme bar The Jekyll & Hyde. On this excursion, the class will explore ideas of Gothic tourism, Gothic marketing, and end of Gothic.
This course provides a general introduction to contemporary art history, with examples and inspiration drawn from the University of Stirling’s public art and sculpture collections. The course is specially designed for students to explore sculptural representation from figurative artworks at the end of the 20th century to the commencement of Modernism and its relationship to new technologies and different forms of art representation. To complement an understanding of this transformational period in art history, the course has also been designed to provide students with a practical approach. In particular, students will be provided with an opportunity to gain knowledge of basic sculptural construction and critique methods. Students will undertake research and create their own art portfolios based on the class excursion, lecture material, and assignments. Portfolio assignments will include the creation of sculptural drawings and/or small models (maquettes) to support student learning of basic sculptural design and concepts.
Scottish History: The Jacobites ISS9TJ
The focus of enduring romanticism and myth, the Jacobites remain an intriguing subject. Themes for this module include royalism, covering the Stewart monarchy in general and James VII in particular; multiple monarchies, looking at relations between Scotland, England, and Ireland; Highlands and Lowlands; the wider European context of Jacobitism; early modern warfare; and spying and espionage. You will be given the opportunity to make use of the University’s own collection of Jacobite material, the Amulree Collection, and to use images and manuscripts which offer an intriguing insight into the world of the Jacobites. This module will include a field trip to Killiecrankie, a key site during the first Jacobite rebellion of 1689 in support of King James VII, and to nearby Sherrifmuir, the site of the famous battle of 1715.
Witchcraft in Early Modern Scotland ISS9WS
Between 1563 and 1736, during years of political and religious turmoil, around 4,000 people were accused of witchcraft in Scotland. This module will examine this significant aspect of Scottish history, looking at the phenomenon of witchcraft belief as part of the early-modern culture, as well as its prosecution. Other themes that will be covered include religion, popular culture, law and order, illness and death, community tensions and gender issues. Students will also consider the continuity and development of ideas about magic and witchcraft. This module will visit the village of Dunning, Maggie Wall’s monument near Dunning, Robert Kirk’s burial site and the Fairy Tree at Aberfoyle, all sites related to early modern witchcraft in Scotland.
Junkies and Jezebels: Scotland and Gender
Recent advances in feminist and LGBT+ liberation movements have had a visible and global impact on culture, literature, politics, and commerce. This module examines gender and sexuality in a Scottish context. As binary understandings of gender and sexuality are increasingly shown to be outdated and outmoded, developments in our understanding of gender and sexuality are making headlines and becoming a regular part of our daily discourse in both our social and working lives. This course enables students to apply their knowledge of identity politics to a dynamic range of relevant texts.
The texts in this module examine the decline of the traditional, industrialist, ‘hard man’ masculinities in Scotland. Through an exploration of dynamic, contemporary and highly acclaimed texts, this course examines broken masculinities, resistant femininities, and resurgent Scottish LGBT+ fictions. A select range of relevant secondary sources will accompany this exploration of primary literature, introducing students to iconic theorists, as well as relevant contemporary critics examining Scottish literature from a gendered perspective.
There will be optional opportunities to submit creative work as an alternative to an essay assignment, enabling students to demonstrate an understanding of the stylistic and thematic aspects of the course as creative practitioners.