SP335      Half Unit
Migration: Current Research, Critical Approaches

This information is for the 2021/22 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Lucinda Platt OLD.2.25 


This course is available on the BSc in International Social and Public Policy, BSc in International Social and Public Policy and Economics, BSc in International Social and Public Policy with Politics and BSc in Social Policy and Sociology. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit. This course is available with permission to General Course students.

This course is only available to third year undergraduate students.

Course content

This interdisciplinary course addresses contemporary global migration issues with reference to both developing and developed country contexts and to different patterns and forms of migration. The course examines the relationship between migration and social and public policies, including the implications for how migrants and migration are conceptualised, for inequalities in the movement of people, for welfare systems, and for the impacts of migration in countries of origin and destination. It draws on current approaches to researching migration, and considers the implications of those approaches.  


Courses in Social Policy will follow the Teaching Model which has been adopted by the Department of Social Policy during the period of the pandemic. This is outlined HERE: https://www.lse.ac.uk/social-policy/Current-Students/teaching-in-the-department-of-social-policy

This course will be taught through a combination of either a recorded lecture plus a follow-up Q and A session or a ‘live’ on-line lecture; and classes/seminars of 1-1.5 hours (with size and length of classes/seminars depending on social distancing requirements).

Further information will be provided by the Course Convenor in the first lecture of the course.

The course will be delivered in Michaelmas term.

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 essay in the MT.

Indicative reading

  • Goldin, I., Cameron, G.  & Balarajan, M. (2012) Exceptional People: How Migration Shaped Our World and Will Define Our Future, Princeton University Press. CHAPTER 1
  • Shachar, A. (2009) The Birthright Lottery: Citizenship and Global Inequality, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press. INTRODUCTION.
  • Migali, S. and Scipioni, M. (2019) “Who’s About to Leave? A Global Survey of Aspirations and Intentions to Migrate.” International Migration, 57: 181-200.
  • Laczko, F.  and Aghazarm, C. (2009) Migration, Environment and Climate Change: Assessing the Evidence. Geneva: International Organization for Migration (IOM).
  • Donato, K. et al. (2006) "A Glass Half Full? Gender in Migration Studies", International Migration Review, 40: 1, 3-26.
  • Lee, J. et al. (2014) "The International Migration Review at 50: Reflecting on Half a Century of International Migration Research and Looking Ahead", International Migration Review, 48: Anniversary Issue, S3–S36.
  • Ambrosini, M. and Van der Leun, J. (2015) “Implementing Human Rights: Civil Society and Migration Policies”, Journal of Immigrant & Refugee Studies, 13:2, 103-115.
  • Czaika, M. and De Haas, H. (2013) "The Effectiveness of Migration Policies", Population and Development Review, 39: 3, 487-508.

The reading list includes required and supplementary readings that demonstrate current debates and approaches. Readings will be complemented by podcasts, videos and interactive materials relating to the readings. A film showing will also provide an early point of reference and discussion.


Essay (100%, 1500 words) in the LT.

The course is assessed by one summative assignment (100% weighting). This is a written essay that should address one question from a set provided.

The summative assignment is due at the beginning of the term following the term in which the course is taught. 

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Social Policy

Total students 2020/21: 15

Average class size 2020/21: 8

Capped 2020/21: Yes (15)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication