KOR2510 – North Korea: Ideology, Society and Politics

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

North Korea is a society which challenges our conventional ideas about ‘development’ or ‘modernity’. While still proclaiming itself a “socialist” country (“in our style”), it relies heavily upon essentially Confucian notions of “loyalty” and “filial piety” for legitimising itself internally. Its ideology, “self-reliance” (chuch’e), represents a combination of Third- World nationalism with elements of the traditional East Asian thought.

This course is aimed at giving a coherent outline of North Korea’s development from its beginnings and until our days, in economy, society, politics and ideology. In addition, the culture of North Korea which is little known outside of the county – its literature, visual arts and cinema – will be treated as well. International relationship and their importance for North Korea’s economy, society and culture will be one more topic to focus on.

Learning outcome

You will:

  • Acquire a structured, coherent understanding of the process of North Korea’s historical development.
  • Gain in-depth knowledge of the main features of North Korea’s economy, society and its political and ideological system.
  • Develop skills in critical understanding of North Korea’s cultural products.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


The course consists of weekly lectures (2 hours each). Active participation, in the form of questions and discussion on the basis of the class content, is strongly recommended.

Compulsory activities

  • A digital multiple-choice test in Canvas. More detailed information will be available after the semester start.

All compulsory activities must be approved in order to qualify for the exam. It is your responsibility to check whether or not the compulsory activities are approved.

This is how you apply for valid absence from compulsory activities/compulsory attendance.

Access to teaching

A student who has completed compulsory instruction and coursework and has had these approved, is not entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework. A student who has been admitted to a course, but who has not completed compulsory instruction and coursework or had these approved, is entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework, depending on available capacity.


4 hours digital school exam.

Passing the compulsory digital multiple-choice test is the pre-requisite for being allowed to take the examination.

Previous exams and grading guidelines.

Written examination

The written examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera. You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

Read more about written examinations using Inspera.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English.You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Periodic evaluation fall 2017

Periodic evaluation fall 2019

Facts about this course






Every other autumn starting 2017


Every other autumn starting 2017

Teaching language