Postgraduate taught 

International Relations MSc

Near Space photography - 20km above ground

This programme is designed for those interested in study of the most challenging problems our world currently faces, such as international conflict and instability, terrorism, climate change, or rapid globalisation. Building on a thorough understanding of international relations theory, it trains you in how to apply and leverage methods and research design to answer the most pressing societal questions of our time.

  • MSc: 12 months full-time; 24 months part-time

Why this programme

  • This programme offers comprehensive training in what international relations has to say about some of the most challenging problems in international politics and equips you with the appropriate methods and a good understanding of research design to analyse political data.
  • The programme draws on expertise in the fields of international relations theory, normative international theory, international security, international organisations, non-state actors, human rights, humanitarian intervention, and international political economy.
  • You will have the opportunity to approach the subject from a variety of disciplinary approaches through courses across the School of Social & Political Sciences, School of Law, history and other subjects.
  • You will benefit from a number of research and teaching initiatives which touch on important international issues, including Global Security Roundtable, Global Security Network, Glasgow Centre for International Development, Glasgow Refugee, Asylum & Migration Network; and Glasgow Human Rights Network.
  • You will gain a wide range of transferrable skills, including how to convey complex ideas and information effectively both orally and in writing, or how to analyse problems in international politics to inform the public debate.

Programme structure

You will take three core and three optional courses. You will attend lectures, seminars and tutorials and undertake independent research.

Core courses

  • International relations research
  • International relations theory
  • Research design OR Quantitative data analysis OR Qualitative methods.

Optional courses may include

  • China’s international politics
  • Chinese politics and society
  • Comparative public opinion
  • Critical perspectives on human rights
  • Environmental policies and problems in China
  • EU in international politics and development
  • Human rights and global politics
  • Humanitarian intervention
  • International organisations
  • International relations and development
  • International security and strategic thought
  • Internet and civil society
  • Media and democracy.

You may also be able to choose from courses in the other subjects in the School of Social & Political Sciences (subject to programme convener's approval).

Programme alteration or discontinuation
The University of Glasgow endeavours to run all programmes as advertised. In exceptional circumstances, however, the University may withdraw or alter a programme. For more information, please see: Student contract.

Career prospects

The programme provides you with key knowledge and analytical tools relevant to a career in a variety of settings related to international relations, such as international and domestic non-governmental organisations, international organisations such as the United Nations or the European Union, government agencies, media, think tanks, or for further academic training and research in a PhD programme. Our programme is supported by the College Employability Office to help students with collaborative dissertation projects, professionalisation of their web presence, job applications and placement. These offerings are supplemented by efforts to build active networks through speaker events, social activities, and alumni events.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees for 2019-20

MSc

Home and EU

  • Full-time fee: £8000
  • Part-time fee: £889 per 20 credits

International

  • Full-time fee: £17620

For applicants starting in 2018 please refer to the 2018-19 fees table.

Fee information is subject to change and is for guidance only

Additional fees

  • Fee for re-assessment of a dissertation (PGT programme): £360
  • Submission of thesis after deadline lapsed: £320
  • Registration/exam only fee: £150

Funding opportunities

University of Glasgow/Glasgow International College Achievement Award

In conjunction with GIC we are pleased to reward our best-performing students who finish the Foundation or Pre-masters course with excellent grades and attendance. This is awarded as a one off tuition fee discount of £3,000

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University International Leadership Scholarship

The University of Glasgow has 19 International Leadership Scholarships available to international (non-EU) students starting a postgraduate taught Masters programme in any discipline in September. The scholarship is awarded as a tuition fees discount.

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University of Glasgow African Excellence Fee Waiver

For September 2018 academic session we are offering 10 scholarship worth the full tuition fee of a one year Masters programme to offer holders from Africa.

If you study here you will benefit from our extensive  knowledge, state-of-the-art facilities and pioneering teaching methods. Studying at Glasgow will prepare you for a wide variety of careers that are in demand internationally and also for future research and study.

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Humanitarian Scholarships

The University of Glasgow is offering 4 scholarships (one per college) for applicants to the University who are staying in the UK on humanitarian grounds and are facing challenges in progressing onto Higher Education. The scholarship is open to prospective undergraduate and postgraduate students of the University of Glasgow applying for entry in 2019. The scholarship meets the full cost of tuition fees for the duration of your programme as well providing an additional £5,000 per year stipend, if the eligibility criteria for university accommodation is met this will also be provided for the duration of your degree. For more information on the accommodation criteria please see the Residential Services section on the website.

We are also offering 4 scholarships to students who hold refugee status. This scholarship is awarded as a £5000 per year stipend toward living costs per year of study.

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University of Glasgow Chancellors Award

The University of Glasgow has a total of 19 Chancellors Awards available. The Award is available to students entering any of the University’s Colleges and are awarded as a tuition fee discount.

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PGT Excellence Scholarship

The University of Glasgow has a total of 28 PGT Excellence Awards available to UK and EU Students. Scholarships are available to students entering any of the University’s colleges and are awarded as a tuition fee discount.

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Alumni Discount

The University offers a 10% discount on all Postgraduate Research and full Postgraduate Taught Masters programmes to its alumni. This includes University of Glasgow graduates and those who have completed a Study Abroad programme or the Erasmus Programme at the University of Glasgow. The discount applies to all full-time, part-time and online programmes.

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Master's Loan England only

If you’re starting a master’s degree, you could get a Postgraduate Master’s Loan of up to £10,609 to help with course fees and living costs. You have to repay your Postgraduate Master’s Loan at the same time as any other student loans you have. You’ll be charged interest from the day you get the first payment.

If you’re studying by distance learning, you can also apply.

Examples of postgraduate master’s qualifications include:

  • MSc (Master of Science)
  • MA (Master of Arts)
  • MPhil (Master of Philosophy)
  • MRes (Master of Research)
  • LLM (Master of Law)
  • MLitt (Master of Letters)
  • MFA (Master of Fine Art)
  • MEd (Master of Education)
  • MBA (Master of Business Administration)

If you plan to study for Master of Architecture (MArch) or an Integrated Master’s qualification, you should apply for undergraduate support

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Postgraduate Talent Scholarships

The University of Glasgow awards Postgraduate Talent Scholarships each academic year to support students who could face financial difficulties in taking up their place to study at the University. The value of each scholarship is £2,000 and they are for students undertaking a one or two year Taught Masters programme, in any of the University’s Colleges. For two year Taught Masters programmes, the scholarship is available in year one only. 

More Information

The scholarships above are specific to this programme. For more funding opportunities search the scholarships database

Entry requirements

2.1 Honours degree or non-UK equivalent in politics, law or related social science subject. We will consider applications from graduates from other fields, but you should submit a one-page personal statement indicating why you are interested in changing fields or the connection to your previous study. We will also take relevant work experience into account.

International students with academic qualifications below those required should contact our partner institution, Glasgow International College, who offer a range of pre-Masters courses.

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • overall score 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0
  • or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification:

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:

  • ibTOEFL: 90; no sub-test less than:
    • Reading: 20
    • Listening: 19
    • Speaking: 19
    • Writing: 23
  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English):  176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses

The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

FAQs

What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's English for Academic Study Unit offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact the Recruitment and International Office: pgadmissions@glasgow.ac.uk


 

For further information about English language requirements, please contact the Recruitment and International Office: pgadmissions@glasgow.ac.uk

International students

We are proud of our diverse University community which attracts students and staff from over 140 different countries. Find out more about visa requirements, and the support we offer:

How to apply

To apply for a postgraduate taught degree you must apply online. We cannot accept applications any other way.

Please check you meet the Entry requirements for this programme before you begin your application.

Documents

As part of your online application, you also need to submit the following supporting documents:

  • A copy (or copies) of your official degree certificate(s) (if you have already completed your degree)
  • A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing full details of subjects studied and grades/marks obtained
  • Official English translations of the certificate(s) and transcript(s)
  • One reference letter on headed paper
  • Evidence of your English Language ability (if your first language is not English)
  • Any additional documents required for this programme (see Entry requirements for this programme)
  • A copy of the photo page of your passport (Non-EU students only)

You have 42 days to submit your application once you begin the process.

You may save and return to your application as many times as you wish to update information, complete sections or upload supporting documents such as your final transcript or your language test.

For more information about submitting documents or other topics related to applying to a postgraduate taught programme, check Frequently Asked Questions

Guidance notes for using the online application

These notes are intended to help you complete the online application form accurately; they are also available within the help section of the online application form. 

If you experience any difficulties accessing the online application then you should visit the Application Troubleshooting/FAQs page.

  • Name and Date of birth: must appear exactly as they do on your passport. Please take time to check the spelling and lay-out.
  • Contact Details: Correspondence address. All contact relevant to your application will be sent to this address including the offer letter(s). If your address changes, please contact us as soon as possible.
  • Choice of course: Please select carefully the course you want to study. As your application will be sent to the admissions committee for each course you select it is important to consider at this stage why you are interested in the course and that it is reflected in your application.
  • Proposed date of entry: Please state your preferred start date including the month and the year. Taught masters degrees tend to begin in September. Research degrees may start in any month.
  • Education and Qualifications: Please complete this section as fully as possible indicating any relevant Higher Education qualifications starting with the most recent. Complete the name of the Institution (s) as it appears on the degree certificate or transcript.
  • English Language Proficiency: Please state the date of any English language test taken (or to be taken) and the award date (or expected award date if known).
  • Employment and Experience: Please complete this section as fully as possible with all employments relevant to your course. Additional details may be attached in your personal statement/proposal where appropriate.

Reference: Please provide one reference. This should typically be an academic reference but in cases where this is not possible then a reference from a current employer may be accepted instead. Certain programmes, such as the MBA programme, may also accept an employer reference. If you already have a copy of a reference on letter headed paper then please upload this to your application. If you do not already have a reference to upload then please enter your referee’s name and contact details on the online application and we will contact your referee directly.

Standard application deadlines

  • International applications (non-EU): 21 July 2019 
  • UK and EU applications: 25 August 2019

Applications open on 1 October 2018. 

Classes start September 2019 and you may be expected to attend induction sessions the week before.

Apply now

More information about this programme