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Peace and Peacebuilding, 15 Credits

Swedish name: Fred och fredsbyggande

This syllabus is valid: 2019-09-02 and until further notice

Course code: 2FO026

Credit points: 15

Education level: Second cycle

Main Field of Study and progress level: Peace and Conflict Studies: Second cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements

Grading scale: VG Pass with distinction, G Pass, U Fail

Responsible department: Department of Political Science

Established by: Head of Department of Political Science, 2019-05-21


The purpose of the course is to prepare the students for a career in the area of peacebuilding. The course will develop knowledge and competencies which will form a basis for professional roles in the field at local, national and international level. The course is also preparatory for postgraduate studies.

The studies include advanced literature studies, exercises, scientific analysis and empirical case studies.

Expected learning outcomes

Students who successfully complete the course are expected to be able to:
  • describe and compare how various theories define, understand and analyze peace and peacebuilding processes in post conflict communities,
  • describe and compare institutions and processes for peacebuilidng at local, regional, national and international level
  • identify, collect and analyze empirical as well as theoretical material relevant for performing written and oral assignments,
  • analyze peace processes in post conflict communities.
To achieve this the student should have:
  • insights into existing literature on peace,
  • insights into existing literature on peacebuilding,
  • ability to independently identify and analyze societal issues in post conflict environments,
  • ability to independently identify and analyze scientific problems in peace and conflict studies,
  • ability to think critically and constructively about competing scientific perspectives,
  • ability to deal with issues on methodology and systematic collection of information.

Required Knowledge

Peace and Conflict Studies 90 credits, including an individual thesis 15 credits, or Political Science 90 credits, including an individual thesis 15 credits, or equivalent. Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish Upper Secondary course English A. Where the language of instruction is Swedish, applicants must prove proficiency in Swedish to the level required for basic eligibility for higher studies.

Form of instruction

The instruction is given by lectures, literature seminars, and tutoring sessions for writing reports and essays.

The lectures aim to introduce key concepts and theories essential for the understanding of peace and peacebuilding and for studying peace processes in post conflict communities.

Literature seminars are a complement to lectures with the purpose to provide an opportunity for in-depth study into selected aspects of the course literature.

Tutoring for writing reports and essays is given both individually and in group.

Examination modes

The course is examined through participation in seminars and written assignments.

Individual written take-home exam/assignments: The participants of the course are expected to author one long report of about 15-20 pages on peace and peacebuilding in a selected post-conflict area. The written assignment is individual and carry 75 % of the total grade on the course.

Other form of examination: The participants of the course are expected to in groups of 2-3 discuss and propose solutions to current problems in the field of peace and peacebuilding. The work is carried out through seminars and group work and is presented in a report consisting of about 3-5 pages. The group work carry 25 % of the total grade on the course.

Students must acquire at least the grade Pass (G) in every examination.

The course as a whole is graded on the scale: U (Fail), G (Pass) and VG (Pass with Distinction).

Students who have failed an examination can participate in a re-take exam at least 5 times.

The study guide presented at the start of the course offers further guidance on the examination.

General rules regarding examination
A student who does not meet the requirements to pass an examination can, if decided by the course instructor, be given a complementary assignment to reach the requirements to pass the examination. The complementary assignment can be individually modified to the specific requirements that the student has failed to reach, but the assignment must be of corresponding proportion to the original examination.
Ordinarily, the complementary assignment is given at the end of the course or when the grades at the original examination is announced. When the student has been given the complementary assignment, he/she should finish the assignment within ten days (not including weekends and holidays). If the student fail to finish the assignment within the required time, a new complementary assignment can only be given the next time the course is arranged, or during the two weeks of re-take exams the Department arranges every year during week 34 and 35.
If it is not possible to do complementary assignments (if so, it is stated next to each individual examination above), the student is required to do a re-take exam. The first re-take exam should be given two months after the original examination, at the latest, but no sooner than ten days after the grade on the original examination has been given (not including weekends and holidays). If the examination is given during May or June, the first re-take exam should be given no later than three months after the original examination. Two weeks of re-take exams are also arranged every year, which means complementary assignments are treated during this time independently of when the course was given. These weeks are arranged during week 34 and 35.
Students who fail an examination may retake that examination. A student has the right to request a new examiner if he/she fails two sub-course examinations (i.e. an examination and a re-take). In such cases students should contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies (Studierektor). Examination in accordance with the same syllabus as during the original examination can be guaranteed for up to two years after the student's first registration.

The appointed examiner may decide to use other forms of examination if required by particular circumstances.

Transfer of Credits
Students who wish to transfer credits from other Departments or universities (Swedish or foreign) should do so in accordance to the Principal's decision "Tillgodoräknandeordning vid Umeå universitet (Dnr. 545-3317-02)".

The application must be submitted in written form. The request should specify which module or course the request applies to. An official transcript should also be submitted. The transcript must include the following information: where and when the course was given, the discipline and level of the course, total course credits and grade received. A syllabus describing the course and a list of required readings should be submitted with the request. Where applicable, written research papers should also be submitted.
Upon completion of this course, the credits can be transferred to a selective course. However it is always the responsible Department or program that determines the possibility for credit transfers and the extent of the credit transfer. The student should therefore always contact the responsible Department or program before submitting an application for credit transfers.

Other regulations

A written and anonymous course evaluation is given at the end of the course. During the course an oral evaluation is also arranged, and the student can also anonymously submit thoughts and opinions in digital form.


Valid from: 2019 week 36

Barash David P.
Approaches to peace : a reader in peace studies
Fourth Edition. : 2017 : x, 310 pages :
ISBN: 9780190637590
Search Album, the University Library catalogue

Peacebuilding : a field guide
Reychler Luc, Paffenholz Thania
Boulder, Colo. : Lynne Rienner Publishers : 2001 : 573 s. :
ISBN: 1-55587-912-8 (h
Search Album, the University Library catalogue

Understanding quality peace : peacebuilding after civil war
Joshi Madhav, Wallensteen Peter
Abingdon, Oxon : Routledge : 2018. : xxi, 291 pages :
ISBN: 978-1-138-30767-4
Search Album, the University Library catalogue

Diehl Paul F.
Peace: A Conceptual Survey
Oxford Research Encyclopedia of International Studies : 2019 :

The Peace Scale: Conceptualizing and Operationalizing Non-Rivalry and Peace
P. Klein James, Goertz Gary, F. Diehl Paul
Included in:
Conflict management and peace science [Elektronisk resurs].
Ithaca, N.Y. : World University Division, World Research Center : 25 : pages 67-80 :

Paffenholz Thania
International peacebuilding goes local: analysing Lederach's conflict transformation theory and its ambivalent encounter with 20 years of practice
Included in:
Peacebuilding [Elektronisk resurs]
2013- : 2 : pages 11-27 :

Gawerc Michelle, I.
Peace-building: Theoretical and concrete perspectives
Included in:
Peace and change. [Elektronisk resurs]
31 : pages 435-478 :

Additional reading: All articles available under “publications" section of the website.