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MA International Relations Who is it for?

You are a graduate from any discipline seeking to gain an understanding of global issues and develop the intellectual skills and knowledge to engage in discussions on decisions at the forefront of the international agenda. Your career aspirations may lie within international, governmental or NGOs, politics, journalism, education or Doctoral research.

About the Course

International Relations is a vital and dynamic field of intellectual inquiry that offers an exploration of human interaction. Although the course is set within a strong political and sociological framework, it is enhanced through the study of law and economics. The course provides an opportunity to engage with and adapt to changing international, national and regional realities post 9/11.

Optional Modules

The Politics of Latin American Development

A regional case study for the exploration of International Relations in the context of economic development, political transformation and rapid social change in Latin America.

European Integration

This module considers the historical development of the European Union using the conceptual apparatus required to understand its putative evolution towards supranational status, and its place in the contemporary system of International Relations.

Course Content

You will attend lectures and seminars throughout two taught semesters, followed by a period of supported independent study whilst you complete your dissertation. The course consists of a mixture of core compulsory and optional modules.

Compulsory Modules

International Relations One: Great Debates, New Directions

The module will introduce you to some of the key concepts and perspectives in International Relations theory, beginning with classical theory. The module then moves to an exploration of modern and postmodern thought.

International Relations Two: Governance and Security

This module focuses specifically on themes and issues concerned with security and governance.

Methodology and Research Design in Politics and International Relations

This module provides preparation for the dissertation.


The dissertation will provide you with an opportunity to study a particular area of International Relations in-depth and over a sustained period of time.

America after 9/11

This module examines the development of American foreign policy after the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 and the evolution of the policy of a ‘War on Terror’.

Media, Culture and Politics in the Middle East

This module provides a broad picture of the construction of society, religion, and modern states in the region and focuses on the internal ideological, political, and social conflicts of the Middle East. It considers inter alia the roles played by the Ottoman Empire, European imperialism and the United States in the making of the modern Middle East.

The International Politics of the Post-Soviet Space

This module introduces you to the analysis of the international relations of Post-Soviet politics.

The Political Economy of East African Development

This module provides an analysis of the political economy of East African development.

The Politics of Southern Africa

The module considers the way in which the concepts of democracy and political organisation on a formal and informal level operate in ways that place South Africa in a unique position within Africa as a whole as well as within the broader global arena.

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European and International Human Rights

The module will analyse how effectively European and international law recognises, protects and enforces human rights standards, examined in the context of specific legal documents and particular human rights violations such as alleged crimes against humanity and terrorism.

National Security, Terrorism and the Rule of Law

This module analyses the nature and legal definition of terrorism. It also looks at the response to terrorism (policy and law) in relation to the UK, Europe and the United Nations and the compliance of these responses with human rights standards.

The Politics and Society of South Asia

This module introduces students to the politics and society of South Asia, principally India.


The taught components of the course are assessed by a balanced combination of essays, seminar portfolio, oral presentations and a dissertation. There are no formal examinations.

Career Opportunities

International Relations graduates find employment in a wide range of areas including business, national and international governmental and non-governmental organisations, voluntary and charitable organisations, civil and diplomatic service, journalism and education. You may also progress to Doctoral research.

Duration of Course

Students may join the course in September or February and study for 12 months.

Entry Requirements

You will normally hold a recognised First or Second Class Bachelor’s degree. Applicants for whom English is not their first language will need to demonstrate that they meet the minimum English language entry requirements of IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent).


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