The International Politics MA programme is for students who want to explore international politics more widely. It is designed to help you drill down and follow your specific interests and specialise your knowledge. The course has been designed to give you the chance to pursue your own questions about the way the world works – and to shape arguments where you feel it doesn’t.
The knowledge and skills you develop during the course will enable you to explore a number of rewarding career options – from supporting NGOs to working with the civil service or media.
Is the USA a benevolent global leader or a neo-imperial power? How does the shift in power from the West to the Rest reshape international politics in the 21st century? Can states act effectively in a world increasingly shaped by international institutions and global economic actors?
The International Politics MA will challenge your point of view and help you:
You may have the opportunity to undertake a placement, but it is not a formal requirement of the course. We encourage you to create your own placement, by fostering connections offered by the Careers Service.
There is also the International Politics Careers Day, which helps you to explore career opportunities with international politics degrees. The day includes:
The course is taught by academics within the department with industry professionals offering insight in the form of talks for the Practitioner Series. This is a programme of talks from visiting speakers and alumni working within organisations such as The Refugee Council and Amnesty International.
Each taught module is assessed by an essay, either a 5,000-word essay for 30 credit modules or a 3,000-word essay for 15 credit modules. Your final MA marks are derived from a combination of your essay and dissertation grades.
You are required to submit a dissertation of 15,000 words in an area linked to the MA degree. Your dissertation topic will be agreed with your personal tutor/supervisor.
Your work will be assessed by coursework alone, there are no exams. Many students develop their key interest first when they choose their elective modules, then when they write their essays, and finally when they write their dissertation over the summer term.
The structure of this MA gives you the flexibility to design your own degree.
The taught modules are completed in Terms 1 and 2, normally over a single academic year for full-time students and over two academic years for part-time students. You are required to take a total of 120 credits in taught modules.
There is one core module – 'Theories of International Politics' (30 credits) taught in the first term (30 credits).
The remaining credits will be made up of elective modules that you must choose from the list of electives opened to students in the MA International Politics. Throughout the year you can choose elective modules that suit your interests. You can also opt to pursue your interests by studying across departments with optional modules from the Department of Sociology and The City Law School.
The number of elective modules you take will vary depending on the number of 15- and 30-credit modules you choose. All modules run for a minimum of eleven weeks (or one term).
Choose 60 credits from:
Typical modules offered by the Department of International Politics:
Typical modules offered by the Sociology Department:
Typical modules offered by The City Law School:
The LLM International Law and International Relations examines global politics and international law and the fascinating interplay between the two. Jointly delivered by our prestigious Law School and the highly ranked and regarded Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion (PPR), it enables you to explore the theory and the practice of international relations and international law, and deepen your understanding of the ways that legal principles apply to inter-state relations.
Our Law School is home to the Centre for Crime, Law and Justice, the Centre for Law and Society, and the Centre for Child and Family Justice. These influential centres underpin our postgraduate teaching and you will have access to the much sought-after expertise of academics working at the forefront of research into international affairs, legal and socio-legal issues.
The pathway for the LLM ensures a duality: five modules from the Law School and PPR, and a 20,000 word dissertation, enable you to pursue your own interests whilst becoming practiced at looking at issues from different perspectives.
Your core modules are International Law, Major Approaches to the Study of International Relations, and the LLM Dissertation.
You will study further elective modules from the Law School and/or PPR. We pride ourselves on the breadth of options available and you can focus on the issues that most interest you. Elective modules include (among many others): Theorising Security and War; Environmental Law; International Relations and Politics of the Middle East; Law and Global Health; Conflict Management and Contemporary Conflicts; and, the Rights of Peoples.
The dissertation is an independent, in-depth inquiry into a research topic of your choosing. The topic will link to a key legal or political question or issue and may also directly relate to your professional/career interests. This is your opportunity to make a contribution to the academic community with new, original research and writing. A dissertation supervisor will provide you with support and introduce you to relevant research; their personal research interests will closely align with your chosen topic wherever possible.
Our teaching approach is international in scope and comparative by nature, and we actively encourage you to build a beneficial network of academics, peers and alumni during your time with us. All of this will help you to broaden your experience, deepen your understanding, and prepare for your next step.
Your postgraduate LLM/MA degree opens doors to a huge range of careers and provides high-level training for those pursuing careers in areas such as foreign and international affairs, national and international non-governmental organisations, journalism and international business.
You will develop: the skills required to critically evaluate cutting-edge research; inter-disciplinary skills; and, analytical and communications skills. All of which are a real boost in any sector and highly prized by employers.
The LLM/MA is also an ideal stepping stone to PhD study and academia.
Please note: We welcome applications from students without prior study of politics, law or international relations, but you would be expected to work hard to make up the gap to master advanced level study of these subjects.
This Masters degree is based on internationally recognised research and is delivered by its expert authors. You will extend your knowledge of crime by studying different international contexts and key issues facing law makers, legal practitioner and victims.
•Course available to study full time (1 year) and part time (2 years)
•A contemporary Masters degree focusing on key issues in a global context
•Course recognised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority
•Flexible entry points mean you can opt for either an LLM (if you choose exclusively law modules) or MSc (if you decide to take a mix of law and social science modules) award
•Develops critical analysis and assesses legal frameworks from an international perspective
•Can be studied by professionals from a non-law background
Governments and authorities in the 21st century are facing major challenges as they deal with terrorism and complex organised crime which crosses borders and poses difficult issues for legal practitioners and organisations across a variety of sectors.
The MSc/Master of Laws programme in Global Crime, Justice and Security is designed to develop your advanced scholarship and research skills enabling you to progress, academically and intellectually, in a discreet area of international law.
You will critically analyse and understand the complexities of this highly specialist and complex field – both challenging and informing global and comparative perspectives. This course is underpinned by significant engagement with new and established research and advanced scholarship.
For those with a limited knowledge of law, there is a comprehensive induction in the first semester. ‘Law for Non-Lawyers’ covers the essential nature and sources of law and the necessary elements to prepare you for advanced study in this area.
What you will study on this degree
Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
Contemporary issues in global crime, justice and security
Introducing you to core concepts, processes and institutions of international law and how they relate to the programme’s themes of crime, justice and security in a global context
The option modules you will typically study include:
Legal research methods
You will be trained in the process of conducting and writing up research. This module serves as a preparatory stage for the dissertation module at the end of the course
You will undertake a 12,000 word written project on a topic agreed with the programme leader and/or module leader, relevant to the programme's curriculum. A supervisor will be assigned from the programme team to guide you in developing your work
International criminal law
Understand crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes, and explore how international law provides machinery to hold accountable those responsible for such crimes
Conflict and welfare in international law
Explore the legal rules which govern states' recourse to the use of force against one another, as well as the body of humanitarian law which regulates the manner by which armed conflict is conducted
Global crime and security
An in-depth study into the phenomena of cross-border criminal activity and terrorism, and collaborative responses to it
The United Nations international security and global justice
Understand the role of the United Nations in the maintenance of international peace and security. You will explore the UN's experiences in areas such as peacekeeping, military enforcement and the imposition of sanctions
EU foreign security and justice policy
Consider and explore the role of the European Union as an international actor, and understand how it has performed an increased security function on the global stage
Gender perspectives and international law
Consider various aspects of international law from perspectives that are informed by gender, using examples such as sexual violence during armed conflict to explore more theoretical debates about the role of gender in the operation of international law
Statehood, peoples and statelessness
What is the concept of the state and the phenomena of statelessness; how do states relate to their populations, and under which circumstances do states dissolve?
Democracy, rights and rule of law
Understand the theoretical aspects of human rights, and its relationship with democracy in the modern world
Further guidance on modules
The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers. Please email [email protected] if you require further guidance or clarification.