STV4225B – Strategy and Security Policy

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The aim of the course is to study how the military tool of statecraft is used today, its effects, constraints, and dynamics in the foreign policy of especially Western states. Moreover, the course concentrates on the role of strategic thinking (conditions, constraints, effects) and the employment of military force as a tool for Western states in three types of security policy: great power politics, asymmetric warfare, and coercive diplomacy. 

The course will analyze the post-cold war period only, emphasizing the role of NATO and the UNSC. It will acquaint the student with conventional weapons (land, sea, and air power) as well as WMDs. Understanding and analyzing strategic thinking requires knowledge of the military tool as well as of the main political actors that deploy it.

Learning outcome


The student will:

  • obtain knowledge of international, especially European, security policy
  • be well acquainted with strategy studies of war
  • become familiar with the national security and defence policies of the European great powers and modern warfare (technology and types of war)
  • understand the requirements of strategy versus political "caveats" many European states impose


The student will:

  • learn to analyze European international security policy from the vantagepoint of strategic requirements.
  • become familiar with the security policy of major states and of NATO
  • learn about the UN security council and the ad bellum rules of international law
  • provide analytical skills at understanding the strategic dynamic of international politicism aspecially in the security and defence field


The student will:

  • become conversant with a major field of European politics which is of great importance to Norway


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.

Students enrolled in other Master's Degree Programmes can, on application, be admitted to the course if this is cleared by their own study programme.

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

Apply for guest student status if you are admitted to another Master's programme.

For incoming students

All Master's courses in Political Science must be registered manually by the Department, they will not appear in Studentweb. Contact your international coordinator at UiO.


Recommended previous knowledge

Bachelor's degree in Political Science or similar.



Lectures are held during five weeks, with examination in the sixth week.


3-hour written examination and term paper.

The term paper must:

The written examination counts for more than the term paper in the assessment. You receive one overall grade. You must pass the term paper and your written examination in the same semester.

Previous exams

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.

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read more about how to submit assignments in 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.

Examination support material

Students may use dictionaries at this exam. Dictionaries must be handed in before the examination. Please read regulations for dictionaries permitted at the examination.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper 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

If you are sick or have another valid reason for not attending the regular exam, we offer a postponed exam later in the same semester.

See also our information about resitting an exam.

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.

Facts about this course






Spring 2022

This course is not given on a regular basis


Spring 2022

This course is not given on a regular basis

Teaching language