AIFS Abroad

AIFS Study Abroad in Maynooth, Ireland
Fall 2019 and Spring 2020
Course Descriptions


Students can choose up to 6 courses though we strongly recommend a maximum load of 5 courses. AIFS students can select courses from Maynooth University’s full curriculum. Some of the most popular courses chosen by international students are shown below. Prerequisites may be required for some courses. Recommended credits are shown in parentheses.

For a full and current list of available courses, contact the AIFS Admissions Officer

Full Curriculum

Course Code and Credits: AN 229 (3) fall only
Course Title: Medical Anthropology: Affliction and Healing
Course Description:
Offers an introduction to medical anthropology. If sickness and suffering are universal aspects of the human condition, it is also true that disease and illness are always experienced within historically specific sociocultural frameworks. Putting sickness into social context, in this course we tarry with the proposition that disease is never just about biology.
Course Code and Credits: AN 230 (3)
Course Title: Area Studies I
Course Description:
Intertwines an overview of the anthropology of North America with an intellectual history of American cultural anthropology, with a specific focus on race, militarism and the history of labor in the United States.
Course Code and Credits: AN 320 (3) spring only
Course Title: Northern Ireland
Course Description:
Considers the effectiveness of ethnography in throwing new light on a familiar conflict, and also the theoretical and methodological implications of anthropological fieldwork in deeply polarized contexts.
Course Code and Credits: CM 65 (3) spring only
Course Title: Anthropology of Security
Course Description:
Overview of surveillance and security studies, historically and in the contemporary moment. Students will become familiar with notions of security and processes of securitization in a variety of contexts, from 19th century colonial government to U.S. national security, war and counter-terrorism. Reviews contemporary examples and current theory with the aim of staking out an anthropological position in relation to security.

Course Code and Credits: BI 201 (3) fall only
Course Title: Biochemistry I
Course Description:
This module will have a strong emphasis on proteins, the regulation of their activity and their participation to cellular processes. There will also be a focus on essential metabolic pathways, which will be described in detail, but also presented within a physiological context. An effort will be made to present simple experimental evidence for essential concepts. Tutorials will focus on developing problem-solving and analytical skills.
Course Code and Credits: BI 204 (3) spring only
Course Title: Evolutionary Biology
Course Description:
Topics covered include: origin of life; origin of eukaryotes; origin of photosynthesis; origin of animals; the colonization of land; origin of amniotes (including mammals, birds, and reptiles); species concepts and modes of speciation; macroevolutionary patterns and key evolutionary transitions; evolutionary trends and emerging phylogenetic relationships in animals and plants; population genetics: the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium; evolutionary forces in natural populations - mutation, migration, natural selection and genetic drift.
Course Code and Credits: BI 303 (3) fall only
Course Title: Ecology
Course Description:
Topics covered include: Soil ecology and the role of microbes in nutrient cycling; the interaction of climate and soil in the formation of the 10 principal global biomes; vegetation change through succession: patterns, mechanisms and examples from bogs and sand dunes; Lotka-Volterra modeling of organism and population interactions; intra-specific competition within species; inter-specific competition between species; predatory-prey relationships; density-dependent and density-independent selection mechanisms; gradients and patterns of global species diversity. Along with a lab-based practical component there will be a weekend field course to introduce field observation of ecological processes.

Course Code and Credits: EQ 202 (3) fall only
Course Title: Equine Leisure and Tourism
Course Description:
Topics addressed include the economic and social importance of tourism generally and in particular the Irish equine leisure and tourism industry. The Irish equine leisure and tourism sector will also be looked at in the context of the international leisure and tourism industry. Students will learn about and have the opportunity to discuss current and/or topical issues of concern with staff and industry experts.
Course Code and Credits: MN 312 (3) spring only
Course Title: Global Supply Chain Management
Course Description:
Addresses the core functions and process of global supply chain management. This module aims to ensure students understand the role of supply chain management function within an organization and the global impact supply chain management has on all aspects of the business.
Course Code and Credits: MN 215 (3) fall only
Course Title: International Business
Course Description:
Focuses on international aspects in management theory and literature, which are relevant across international cultures and borders. There is a particular focus on comparing the institutional context and cultures of countries. This serves as the basis for analyzing managing in international environments, considering approaches to ethics, negotiation, motivation, and management and leadership across countries.

Conflict Resolution
Course Code and Credits: MC 102 (3) spring only
Course Title: Understanding Conflict: The Irish Experience
Course Description:
Helps students understand the nature and impact of conflict, with special reference to the Irish situation. It addresses the problem of how humans manage conflict and instills an understanding of the nature and impact of conflict in society. By looking at the Irish conflict from historical, political, sociological and international perspectives, students will explore how it is possible to move from a situation of violent conflict towards a transformative peace.

Design Innovation
Course Code and Credits: PD 201 (3) spring only
Course Title: Design History and Culture
Course Description:
An overview of design history and culture from the turn of the 20th century to date. Gives students an introduction and deep understanding of the design of man-made artefacts and how this influences future design. It will show design as an evolving and cyclical concept. Topics include: the Industrial Revolution and arts and crafts movement in design and society; stylistic and decorative movements of Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Modernism and Bauhaus, Post Modernism in design; the changing face of design in consumer society, design in popular and youth culture, and forecasting design for the future.

Economics, Finance and Accounting
Course Code and Credits: EC 327 (3) spring only
Course Title: Economics of Sport
Course Description:
Introduces students to the economic issues involved in the organization and undertaking of sporting and sports-related activities. Topics that may be analyzed include: demand for sport; pricing of sports events; Pareto efficiency; organization of clubs and leagues; competitive balance; labor markets in sport; broadcasting of sport; public finance and sport; cheating in sport; gambling and sport.
Course Code and Credits: FN 309 (3) spring only
Course Title: International Finance
Course Description:
Reviews the different types of exchange rate regimes and then discusses the current workings of the foreign exchange market. The connections between international assets markets, the ‘’parity conditions’’ are examined in some detail. The core of this course is the issues surrounding exchange rate hedging; when it is required; how much of a hedge is needed and how it should be achieved. Finally, the impact of economic policy on exchange rates is examined.

Course Code and Credits: ED 666 (6)
Course Title: Teacher Education: Policies and Issues
Course Description:
Examines the development of policy in relation to teacher education and teacher educators at national and international levels. Considers issues such as equality and gender and their influences on the development of the teacher educator. National and international considerations of current issues such as school culture and organization, the evolving role of teachers, the changing nature of learning and learners and factors that influence on schools as learning environments for pupils and teachers, facilitate a broader and deeper understanding of the first order setting i.e. the school.

Course Code and Credits: EN 258 (3) fall only
Course Title: Modern American Literature
Course Description:
The literature of the United States since 1900 reflects both national confidence and national anxiety. A nation of migrants is necessarily committed to interrogate its own identity and to redefine what “America” can and should mean in a changing world. This module will treat modern American literature in terms of representative hopes and fears, illustrating how a nation musing on the burden of its own exceptionalism examines the discrepancy between its own claims and its own experience.
Course Code and Credits: EN 354 (3) spring only
Course Title: Irish Studies II
Course Description:
Examines Irish writing and culture since the partition of the island into two separate states in 1921 and explores cinema’s place in Irish life during the 20th century. Having read a variety of literary texts and viewed a range of films, students will be asked to consider these in the light of ongoing debates in Irish Studies about the nature of modern Irish society and culture.
Course Code and Credits: EN 356 (3) fall only
Course Title: Film
Course Description:
Offers a range of approaches to the cinema, focusing on what André Bazin calls “the genius of the system.” An important part of the course will be the screening of films that typify aspects of the historical development of Hollywood. The course seeks to foster an interpretive community – an audience – with the ability to engage with movies critically.

French Studies
Course Code and Credits: FR 216 (3) fall only
Course Title: French Politics, Ideas and Society
Course Description:
An examination of French political culture and its development over the 20th century up to the present day with special reference to the concept of the Republic and its significance in France.
Course Code and Credits: FR 217 (3) fall only
Course Title: Introduction to French Cinema (3) fall only
Course Description:
A survey of French film makers, films and techniques.

Course Code and Credits: GY 326 (3) fall only
Course Title: Medical Geography
Course Description:
Explores issues relating to the biological and social causes of human disease and considers the importance of geography in the context of medical/health data and the uses of and challenges involved with using such data. Considers the various ways that environment influences health, including the relationship between early life exposures and disease in later life. The module also explores ‘popular epidemiology’ and real versus perceived disease patterns. It reflects on the relationship between poverty, inequality and health and examines the role of social capital.
Course Code and Credits: GY 339 (3) fall only
Course Title: The City in Film
Course Description:
Films reflect the remarkable changes in urban life that have occurred since the turn of the 20th century and represent the promises and failures of globalization, urban development, and living with strangers. Students will gain an understanding of such themes as: urban aesthetics, design, and planning; urban form and technology; social and cultural conflict in cities; political and economic processes tied to urbanization (including colonialism, globalization, real estate development, deindustrialization); changing racial and gender relationships; and utopian and dystopian views of urban futures.

Course Code and Credits: HY 3 (3) spring only
Course Title: The Archaeology of Early Medieval Ireland
Course Description:
Archaeological evidence for secular settlement and social systems, the development of the early Church and monastic sites, the emergence of late ‘Celtic’ artistic traditions and the wider European influences that contributed to this rich period of Irish society is introduced and examined in detail.
Course Code and Credits: HY 4 (3) spring only
Course Title: Ireland and the Vikings
Course Description:
Covers a period in which the central theme is the impact of the Vikings as raiders, invaders and settlers. The Scandinavian background, the motivation of the Vikings in coming west, their interaction, hostile and otherwise, with the Irish and the nature of the sources for this are explored.
Course Code and Credits: HY 230 (3) fall only
Course Title: History of Health and Medicine
Course Description:
Provides an introduction to the history of health and medicine.
Course Code and Credits: HY 271 (3) spring only
Course Title: The City in History
Course Description:
Studies the innovative milieu of the city in history.

International Development
Course Code and Credits: KD 303 (3) fall only
Course Title: Food, Nutrition and Climate Security
Course Description:
Looks at the root causes of food and nutrition insecurity, how climate change is contributing to increased vulnerability of the poor, particularly in the Global South, and how ‘adaptation to climate change’ is essential for any efforts to promote sustainable food systems and food, nutrition and livelihood security. This module will also introduce the ‘Sustainable Livelihoods approach’ (SLA) to poverty reduction and how SL thinking can inform community based climate change adaptation strategies and food security planning.
Course Code and Credits: KD 353 (3) fall only
Course Title: Development and Conflict
Course Description:
Current events around the world, including conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, South Sudan and Yemen, highlight once more the devastating effect that conflict can have on the lives and prosp of millions of people globally. This course will explore the relationship between development and conflict. Drawing from a diverse range of disciplines, it will examine different perspectives in conflict and conflict resolution processes, tying this literature to issues of development and security, with a particular focus on human security.

Course Code and Credits: LW 631 (3) fall only
Course Title: Criminology and Criminal Justice
Course Description:
Provides an introduction to key theories underlying the field of criminology against the backdrop of criminal justice policies and processes. It investigates the nature and origins of the discipline of criminology, and provides an insight into the complex trends and theoretical paradigms which shape the study of crime. A broad overview of the operation of the criminal justice system is provided, and its functioning considered in the context of criminological theory.
Course Code and Credits: LW 635 (3) fall only
Course Title: International Human Rights
Course Description:
Introduces students to international and regional systems for the protection of human rights. The module covers the various pathways for the enforcement of human rights at national, regional and international levels, in order to understand how these various jurisdictions attempt to curb state and corporate power and to bolster rights protection. It examines the different categories of human rights that have been and analyzes the international treaties and conventions and judicial interpretations that have contributed to the evolution of human rights jurisprudence.

Media Studies
Course Code and Credits: MD 216 (3) spring only
Course Title: History and Theory of Documentary
Course Description:
Examines key historical developments and theoretical articulations of documentary as a form encompassing the first films through wartime propaganda, ethnographic film, city-symphonies, cinéma vérité/direct cinema and both more recent feature documentaries and a wide array of non-fiction television genres.
Course Code and Credits: MD 240 (3) fall only
Course Title: Film and Screen Studies
Course Description:
Provides an introduction to film as an aesthetic, economic, and cultural phenomenon. Mastering the vocabulary associated with narrative, editing, cinematography and sound, which are the fundamental tools required for the close analysis of film texts, lays the groundwork for the interpretive analysis of film texts.

Course Code and Credits: Music 363 (3) spring only
Course Title: Irish Traditional Music
Course Description:
Examines the history of Irish traditional music in the 20th and 21st centuries, in particular focusing on the transformations associated with different revivals in this period.

Course Code and Credits: PO 312 Gender and Politics (3) spring only
Course Title:
Course Description:
Provides an assessment of the key debates about the relation between gender and politics in the Western political tradition. It will explore how gender has shaped and been shaped by key political ideas (including the public-private distinction, the idea of contract, political representation, rights, justice, identity and equality), connections between conceptual debates institutional politics and, more specifically, gender inequality and political representation.

Course Code and Credits: PS 302 (3) spring only
Course Title: Abnormal Psychology
Course Description:
The concept of ‘abnormality’ in psychology; key theoretical paradigms in understanding abnormal thought and behavior; the social context of mental health and illness; the classification of psychological disorders including psychosis, mood disorders, anxiety disorders and personality disorders; current evidence regarding aetiology, prevention and treatment of common disorders; the lived experience of mental illness.
Course Code and Credits: PS 201 (3) spring only
Course Title: Biological Bases of Behavior
Course Description:
The biological basis of rudimentary and complex issues such as stress, sleep, learning and memory. Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Neurotransmitters, chemistry and receptor type. Modern neuroscientific techniques. Functions of the frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital lobes. Practical work exploring a scientific topic in biological psychology.

Course Code and Credits: SO 208 (3) fall only
Course Title: Media and Society
Course Description:
Focuses on the evolution of the mass media (both old and new) and issues of ownership and control, production process and media content, and media audiences. The current restructuring of the media and culture industries in Ireland, and across the European Union. The outlook for public service broadcasting. The potential of the mass media to act as an instrument of cultural integration.
Course Code and Credits: SO 209 (3) spring only
Course Title: Sociology of Health
Course Description:
In many countries medical sociologists are among the largest speciality groups in sociology. Sociology frequently forms parts of the curriculum of health care disciplines but among sociologists there has also been a concern to maintain a critical distance from the subject they study and to ensure that lay, as well as professional, perspectives are explored. This course lays emphasis on policy relevance in its exploration of this sub-field of sociology.
Course Code and Credits: SO 212 (3) spring only
Course Title: Community and Class
Course Description:
An examination of the relationship between social class and community, with special emphasis on particular topics such as working class communities.
Course Code and Credits: SO 214 (3) spring only
Course Title: Northern Irish Society
Course Description:
Introduces the ways in which contemporary Northern Irish society is organized, experienced and represented. The major social and political divisions within Northern Irish society are analyzed.
Course Code and Credits: SO 338 (3) fall only
Course Title: Sex, Law and Society
Course Description:
In this course we move beyond common sense and ‘natural’ explanations of sexuality to show how it is a social construct of competing scientific, religious and legal discourses. We focus specifically on the state’s regulatory role in the field of sexuality and how it has contributed to the creation of sexual insiders and outsiders through the extension of sexual citizenship (e.g. marriage, civil partnerships, hate crime laws etc). We examine resistances to this regulatory code governing sexuality and how it has contributed to the construction of sexual identities and social movements. The course also focuses on contemporary debates around the political economy of sexuality exploring controversies around the criminalization/decriminalization of sex work and the sexualization of children.
Course Code and Credits: SO 345 (3) spring only
Course Title: Crime and Society
Course Description:
Is crime more or less prevalent now than before? Why are some people more likely to engage in criminal activity than others? Why are some behaviors defined as crime and others are not? These are some of the questions taken up by sociologists concerned with the relationship between crime and society. In this module, students learn about the major theoretical and empirical debates and issues in the sociology of crime literature. Special attention is given to placing the Irish case in comparative perspective.

Theology Modules

Students studying at Maynooth University will also have the option of studying Theology Modules through St Patrick’s College which is located on the beautiful south campus with its stunning gothic buildings. St Patrick’s College opened as an educational institution in 1795 and specializes in the teaching of philosophy and theology.