Penn's Coronavirus COVID-19 Update
2020 SAS summer courses will take place remotely. For undergraduates, please check Penn InTouch for updated summer course information. For graduate and professional students, please consult your schools and programs. Summer study abroad remains cancelled.

The College of Liberal and Professional Studies staff is working remotely to comply with University protocols as we navigate the COVID-19 virus. Penn is committed to maintaining a safe campus and workplace for faculty, students, staff, and visitors. While we are not onsite, we are still available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. by phone and online in case you need support: (215) 898-7326 or

Visit, the University's dedicated coronavirus COVID-19 web page, for the latest updates.

Introduction to International Relations

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Course Number: 
PSCI 150 920
Course Description: 

The discipline of international relations focuses on the actors (e.g. people, countries), structures (e.g. international organizations), and forces (e.g. power, norms) that shape interactions between countries. The goal of studying international relations is to build theories of these interactions that can explain events across time and space. For example, can the same factors explain the destructiveness of World War I and the relative peace of the Cold War? Why does the United States view countries half a world away (China, Russia) with suspicion, but fosters good relations with Canada, with whom it shares thousands of miles of border? IR scholars use the tools of scientific inquiry to answer these questions. This course is an introduction to both the theories that scholars developed to explain world politics and some of the methods that they use to build, test, and revise these theories. In this course, you will also produce a 4-6 minute podcast offering a policy recommendation on an international issue of your choice. You will receive instruction in podcast production techniques and the use of the free audio editing software Audacity. No textbook is required for this course.

Programs for every

type of student


Study online,

all summer long


Summer is the best season

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Penn Summer

3440 Market Street, Suite 100
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3335

(215) 898-7326

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