Postgraduate Students - NCRE - University of Canterbury - New Zealand

Bachelor of Arts with Honours in European Union Studies - BA (Hons)

The NCRE graduate programme is a unique training and development initiative designed to produce graduates with the necessary skills and knowledge for the 21st Century. The Honours degree in European Studies is the only one offered in New Zealand and our Master and Doctoral degrees by research theses are internationally benchmarked against some of the world's leading EU studies programmes.

As Graduate of the NCRE you will belong to an international institutional network, part of the University of Canterbury's elite university wide research centres, a member of the NZ EU Centres Network as well as a number of Asia'Pacific EU studies networks and the global Jean Monnet programme. Through these linkages NCRE graduates will have the opportunity to participate in conferences, workshops, and untertake exchanges - within New Zealand, as well as with partners in Asia and the EU.

Bachelor of Arts with Honours in European Union Studies - BA (Hons)

In 2003, the National Centre for Research on Europe at the University of Canterbury launched the European Studies Honours degree. The primary aim of the degree is to foster the interdisciplinary study of Europe in its diversity and to initiate research in all manner of areas related to Europe, and since its inception many returned for further EU related study.

The European Studies Honours degree offers students the opportunity to study contemporary European issues from a range of disciplinary perspectives. Courses are offered that focus on the European Union and on the individual member states of the EU, as well as on the wider Europe (including Russia). The undergraduate and Honours programme involves courses that examine questions of economic and political integration, European geography, government, foreign policy, post-war history and European culture and identity. To adequately understand contemporary Europe and the "idea of Europe" students are encouraged to enrol for a wide range of courses from competing disciplines and, while optional, wherever possible develop some European language competence.

The European Studies Honours degree at the University of Canterbury is also a stepping stone for anyone interested in pursuing further post-graduate research at the Masters and PhD level. The National Centre for Research on Europe offers many opportunities for ongoing Honours students, including scholarships, research and travel opportunities.

Students from all undergraduate backgrounds are encouraged to apply. Please contact Prof Martin Holland in the first instance.

Degree Structure and Prerequisites

The BA (Hons) degree in European Studies consists of four papers, including two compulsory core courses.

The core paper EURO 401 'The Idea of Europe' is multidisciplinary and designed to be thematic and conceptually define "The Idea of Europe". It is taught by members of staff throughout the University of Canterbury as well as by visiting lecturers to the NCRE.

In EURO480 'Research Paper' students undertake training in research methods and techniques (in the first semester) and write a 9,000 word research paper (in the second semester). The paper is publicly defended (viva voce style) after submission.

Other courses are contributed from a range of disciplines - Political Sciene, History, Geography, Economics, and European Languages and Cultures. Typically, the European Union Studies Honours programme enrols between 8-10 students a year.

Prerequisites are, either:

  1. a major in European Union Studies, with a B average or better; or
  2. a B+ average or better in approved subject majors.

There are no language prerequisites, bar those that may be required for individual courses taught as part of the programme.

Courses Offered

EURO Honours students can choose courses from the following list of options in the 2015 academic year.

Course Title Information
EURO401 The Idea of Europe and European Integration   Core module

The EU in Europe and in the World: The EU's External Identities

Semester 1

The EU and "Europeanisation" of Europe

Semester 1
EURO415 Challenges of Post-Communism Semester 2

Nationalism and ethnic conflict in Post-Soviet Space

Whole year

After the Fall of the Wall: The New Germany in the New Europe

Semester 1

Issues in Modern European History

Whole year

European Business Law

Semester 1


European Foreign and Security Policy

Semester 1

EU Development Policy

Semester 2
EURO480 Research Topic Core module

Special Topic: European Studies Internship Paper

Whole year

Assessment Procedures

The NCRE Postgraduate Coordinator will liaise with all contributing staff, negotiate workload expectations so as to ensure comparability of the various courses, and plan appropriate overall programmes of study with intending European Studies Honours students.

All the contributing departments have their own, properly vetted, assessment procedures for level 400 courses, including external assessment. Assessment of EURO 401 and EURO 480 will be by contributing lecturers with external assessment.

Scholarships and Internships

The NCRE is part of the NZ European Union Centres Network which each year offers Postgraduate Domestic Fee Scholarships of around NZD$3,500 and Research Awards for Research and Travel to many of Honours, Masters and PhD students at the Network's Partner Institutions. Academic merit is the sole criterion for eligibility.

As well, the EUCN in conjunction with Members of the European Parliament's Delegation responsible for relations with Australia and New Zealand offer a unique opportunity for two postgraduate students a year from any of the Network's Partner Institutions to travel to Europe and work as an intern for a Member of the European Parliament for up to three months.

There are also many scholarships available through the University of Canterbury's own Scholarships Office.

Want to know more?

Please contact us if you have questions about studying at the NCRE.

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