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Masters Degrees (Political Ideology)

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Over the last three decades, political economy has been one of the fastest growing approaches in the social sciences. If you are interested in how institutions shape the behaviour of political actors and how political decisions influence markets and vice versa, then you will profit from our course. Read more
Over the last three decades, political economy has been one of the fastest growing approaches in the social sciences. If you are interested in how institutions shape the behaviour of political actors and how political decisions influence markets and vice versa, then you will profit from our course.

Our MRes Political Economy is a two-year course, designed to give you additional training in research design and research methods compared to an MSc or MA. You study modules on political economics and research methods across your two years, while developing a 35,000-word dissertation.

At Essex, we are primarily interested in the study of political institutions and how they might determine economic variables. Our MSc Political Economy covers all aspects of modern political economy, including:
-Micro and macroeconomics
-The quality of governance
-Monetary policy choices
-Mathematical Methods
-Environmental policies
-Market failure

Run jointly between our Department of Economics and our Department of Government, our MRes Political Economy offers excellent preparation for PhD study, combining substantive political economy modules with additional training in research design and research methods. You learn how to develop theories, conduct research, and explore the empirical implications of theoretical models using the most appropriate empirical methods.

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our Department of Economics is top 5 in the UK for research, with over 90% of our research rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’.

Our expert staff

Study and work alongside some of the most prominent economists and political scientists of our time.

Our researchers are at the forefront of their field and have even received MBEs; they are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Many of our economic researchers also provide consultancy services to businesses in London and other major financial centres, helping us to develop research for today's society as well as informing our teaching for the future.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political and quantitative analysis
-ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, economics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

An MRes puts you in a particularly strong position to succeed in a research degree. We offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Other recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

Year 1
-Political Economy
-Advanced Research Methods
-Essex Summer School Module 30 Credits
-Essex Summer School Module 30 Credits
-Mathematical Methods
-Microeconomics
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science

Year 2
-MRES Dissertation
-Applied Research Design
-Macroeconomics
-Research Design
-Applications of Data Analysis (optional)
-Banking
-Behavioural Economics I: Individual Decision Making
-Behavioural Economics II: Games and Markets
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Computational Agent-Based Macro-Economics, Financial Markets and Policy Design
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Econometric Methods (optional)
-Economic Development Theory (optional)
-Economics of Financial Markets (optional)
-Economics of Incentives, Contracts and the Firm (optional)
-Economics of the European Union (optional)
-Economics of Transition (optional)
-Environmental Economics (optional)
-Estimation and Inference in Econometrics (optional)
-Game Theory and Applications (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-International Finance (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-International Trade (optional)
-Market Structure and Strategic Behaviour (optional)
-Mathematical Methods (optional)
-Microeconometrics
-Microeconomics (optional)
-Monetary Economics
-Panel Data Methods (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science (optional)
-Theory of Industrial Organisation (optional)
-Time Series Econometrics (optional)
-Topics in Financial Economics (optional)

Read less
How do ideologies form and sustain political identities and interests? What are the main ideologies and political discourses that frame and organise our lives today? How do theories of ideology and discourse inform contemporary political analysis? How can these theories help us to explain and evaluate key political processes?. Read more
How do ideologies form and sustain political identities and interests? What are the main ideologies and political discourses that frame and organise our lives today? How do theories of ideology and discourse inform contemporary political analysis? How can these theories help us to explain and evaluate key political processes?

Questions concerning the impact of ideological and symbolic processes on the formation of political discourses, identities and communities are of crucial importance. All of these are covered within our MA Ideology and Discourse Analysis.

You explore topics including:
-Poststructuralist, post-Marxist and psychoanalytic theories of ideology and discourse
-Research methods in critical political theory and analysis
-Key concepts for political analysis
-Mass media and democracy
-Philosophy of social science

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our academic staff work on topics ranging from international conflict and violence to British elections, and from the obligations of the younger generation to why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-The ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our MA Ideology and Discourse Analysis will help you secure a solid grasp of key debates in social and political thought, give you a strong foundation in theoretical principles whose relevance and application goes well beyond politics, and instil a wide range of analytical, critical, and communication skills that will enable you to pursue the career of your choice, whether in the public, private, or third sector, whether with a domestic or international focus.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Ideology and Political Discourse
-MA Dissertation
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods
-Advanced Research Methods (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

Read less
Over the last three decades, political economy has been one of the fastest growing approaches in the social sciences. At Essex, we are primarily interested in the scientific study of political institutions and how they might determine economic variables. Read more
Over the last three decades, political economy has been one of the fastest growing approaches in the social sciences. At Essex, we are primarily interested in the scientific study of political institutions and how they might determine economic variables.

If you are interested in how institutions shape the behaviour of political actors and how political decisions influence markets and vice versa, then you will profit from our course.

You will have a great deal of choice for your optional modules as they will be selected from both our Department of Government and Department of Economics. Our MA Political Economy covers all aspects of modern political economy, including:
-Market failure
-Environmental policies
-The quality of governance
-Monetary policy choices

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began.

Our Department of Economics is also consistently rated highly for student satisfaction, and is Top 5 in the UK for research with over 90% rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014). Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Study and work alongside some of the most prominent economists and political scientists of our time.

Our researchers are at the forefront of their field and have even received MBEs; they are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Many of our economic researchers also provide consultancy services to businesses in London and other major financial centres, helping us to develop research for today's society as well as informing our teaching for the future.

Our key academic staff for this course are Dr Alejandro Quiroz Flores, who works on why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters, and Simone Dietrich, who works on who gives, receives, and benefits from aid.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political and quantitative analysis
-ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, economics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

This course is a good choice if you wish to maintain the flexibility of pursuing a career at an international organisation, a government organisation, a private enterprise or as a political consultant. You will develop key employability skills including analytical reasoning, research, problem solving, and essay-writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-MA Dissertation
-Political Economy
-Advanced Research Methods (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Applications of Data Analysis (optional)
-Banking
-Behavioural Economics I: Individual Decision Making (optional)
-Behavioural Economics II: Games and Markets (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Computational Agent-Based Macro-Economics, Financial Markets and Policy Design
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Econometric Methods (optional)
-Economic Development Theory (optional)
-Economics of Financial Markets (optional)
-Economics of Incentives, Contracts and the Firm (optional)
-Economics of the European Union (optional)
-Economics of Transition (optional)
-Environmental Economics (optional)
-Estimation and Inference in Econometrics (optional)
-Game Theory and Applications (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-International Finance (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-International Trade (optional)
-Macroeconomics (optional)
-Market Structure and Strategic Behaviour (optional)
-Mathematical Methods (optional)
-Microeconometrics (optional)
-Microeconomics (optional)
-Monetary Economics
-Panel Data Methods (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science (optional)
-Theory of Industrial Organisation (optional)
-Time Series Econometrics (optional)
-Topics in Financial Economics (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

Read less
Over the last three decades, political economy has been one of the fastest growing approaches in the social sciences. At Essex, we are primarily interested in the scientific study of political institutions and how they might determine economic variables. Read more
Over the last three decades, political economy has been one of the fastest growing approaches in the social sciences. At Essex, we are primarily interested in the scientific study of political institutions and how they might determine economic variables.

If you are interested in how institutions shape the behaviour of political actors and how political decisions influence markets and vice versa, then you will profit from our course.

You will have a great deal of choice for your optional modules as they will be selected from both our Department of Government and Department of Economics. Our MSc Political Economy covers all aspects of modern political economy, including:
-Market failure
-Environmental policies
-The quality of governance
-Monetary policy choices

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began.

Our Department of Economics is also consistently rated highly for student satisfaction, and is Top 5 in the UK for research with over 90% rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014).

Our expert staff

Study and work alongside some of the most prominent economists and political scientists of our time.

Our researchers are at the forefront of their field and have even received MBEs; they are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Many of our economic researchers also provide consultancy services to businesses in London and other major financial centres, helping us to develop research for today's society as well as informing our teaching for the future.

Our key academic staff for this course are Dr Alejandro Quiroz Flores, who works on why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters, and Simone Dietrich, who works on who gives, receives, and benefits from aid.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political and quantitative analysis
-ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, economics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

This course is a good choice if you wish to maintain the flexibility of pursuing a career at an international organisation, a government organisation, a private enterprise or as a political consultant. You will develop key employability skills including analytical reasoning, research, problem solving, and essay-writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-MA Dissertation
-Advanced Research Methods
-Political Economy
-Applications of Data Analysis (optional)
-Banking
-Behavioural Economics I: Individual Decision Making (optional)
-Behavioural Economics II: Games and Markets (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Computational Agent-Based Macro-Economics, Financial Markets and Policy Design
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Econometric Methods (optional)
-Economic Development Theory (optional)
-Economics of Financial Markets (optional)
-Economics of Incentives, Contracts and the Firm (optional)
-Economics of the European Union (optional)
-Economics of Transition (optional)
-Environmental Economics (optional)
-Estimation and Inference in Econometrics (optional)
-Game Theory and Applications (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-International Finance (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-International Trade (optional)
-Macroeconomics (optional)
-Market Structure and Strategic Behaviour (optional)
-Mathematical Methods (optional)
-Microeconometrics (optional)
-Microeconomics (optional)
-Monetary Economics
-Panel Data Methods (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science (optional)
-Theory of Industrial Organisation (optional)
-Time Series Econometrics (optional)
-Topics in Financial Economics (optional)

Read less
How do political scientists explain political outcomes? How does normative theory inform the way researchers approach their work? How do political science approaches differ from historical accounts of political phenomenon? How can political science be used to analyse the real world?. Read more
How do political scientists explain political outcomes? How does normative theory inform the way researchers approach their work? How do political science approaches differ from historical accounts of political phenomenon? How can political science be used to analyse the real world?

Our MSc Political Science gives a general overview of such topics, and as our most flexible postgraduate course offers you a very wide choice of optional modules. You explore the main theoretical approaches to the study of politics and look at what the basic theoretical framework required to conduct research in political science is.

Your optional modules may cover topics including:
-Survey measurement and research methods
-The economy and the state
-Democracies in Europe
-Theories of justice
-Conflict resolution

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our academic staff work on topics ranging from international conflict and violence to British elections, and from the obligations of the younger generation to why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
A programme of seminars and events run by the department
Your future
All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our graduates from this course can expect to find jobs in market research, the media and central or local government. It also provides a foundation for further research in political science. You will gain key employability skills such as analytical reasoning, research design, and report writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-MA Dissertation
-Advanced Research Methods
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design
-Theories of International Relations (optional)

Read less
How do political scientists explain political outcomes? How does normative theory inform the way researchers approach their work? How do political science approaches differ from historical accounts of political phenomenon? How can political science be used to analyse the real world?. Read more
How do political scientists explain political outcomes? How does normative theory inform the way researchers approach their work? How do political science approaches differ from historical accounts of political phenomenon? How can political science be used to analyse the real world?

Our MA Political Science gives a general overview of such topics, and as our most flexible postgraduate course offers you a very wide choice of optional modules. You explore the main theoretical approaches to the study of politics and look at what the basic theoretical framework required to conduct research in political science is.

Your optional modules may cover topics including:
-Survey measurement and research methods
-The economy and the state
-Democracies in Europe
-Theories of justice
-Conflict resolution

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our academic staff work on topics ranging from international conflict and violence to British elections, and from the obligations of the younger generation to why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our graduates from this course can expect to find jobs in market research, the media and central or local government. It also provides a foundation for further research in political science. You will gain key employability skills such as analytical reasoning, research design, and report writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-MA Dissertation
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science
-Advanced Research Methods (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

Read less
How are we to understand political life – as the expression of violence, tradition, domination, the search for freedom, the struggle for equality? How should… Read more
How are we to understand political life – as the expression of violence, tradition, domination, the search for freedom, the struggle for equality? How should we think about democracy – as the participation of citizens, the contest of representatives or the search for a common good through deliberation? What is justice – equality for all human beings, solidarity among some human beings or the free play of personal choice?

These questions have exercised minds since ancient Athens and, in recent years, they have received new interpretations in political theory, one of the most intellectually fertile sub-disciplines of politics.

Our MA Political Theory will help you secure a solid grasp of key debates in social and political thought, give you a strong foundation in theoretical principles. You explore topics including:
-Research methods in critical political theory and analysis
-Classical and contemporary texts of political theory
-Democratic theory and social justice
-Philosophy of social science
-Ethics and public policy

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

The key member of our academic staff for this course is Professor David Howarth, who works on faith, politics and public space in democracies.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
The ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
A programme of seminars and events run by the department
Your future
All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

This course will instil a wide range of analytical, critical, and communication skills that will enable you to pursue the career of your choice, whether in the public, private, or third sector, whether with a domestic or international focus.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-MA Dissertation
-Political Theory
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods
-Advanced Research Methods (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

Read less
When angry at a particular government policy, some people sit in their armchair and complain, others write letters and organise committees, some participate in social media campaigns, while others still protest or even riot in the street. Read more
When angry at a particular government policy, some people sit in their armchair and complain, others write letters and organise committees, some participate in social media campaigns, while others still protest or even riot in the street. Politicians care about public opinion, so how do we explain these choices? How are reactions shaped by people’s social background, their economic circumstances, their personality, or even their genetic inheritance? Can politicians and the media influence public opinion and if so, how?

MA Public Opinion and Political Behaviour explores the interaction between the mass public and political elites in advanced industrial democracies. You are introduced to the latest theoretical debates about the nature, significance and measurement of public opinion, exploring when and how these opinions translate into political participation, from voting behaviour and signing petitions to suicide bombing.

You also look at the main theoretical approaches in the study of politics, combined with a selection of optional modules including:
-Quantitative data analysis in political explanations
-Survey measurement and question design
-Political parties in Britain and Europe
-Measuring public opinion
-Democracies in Europe

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our key academic staff for this course are Professor Paul Whiteley, who works on British elections, and Professor Lawrence Ezrow, who works on party ideology and strategy.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-The ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our course can lead to a career in the polling industry, market research, British and European Politics or the private sector. You will develop key employability skills including analytical reasoning, survey design, polling, research design, and report writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Advanced Research Methods
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science
-MA Dissertation
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

Read less
When angry at a particular government policy, some people sit in their armchair and complain, others write letters and organise committees, some participate in social media campaigns, while others still protest or even riot in the street. Read more
When angry at a particular government policy, some people sit in their armchair and complain, others write letters and organise committees, some participate in social media campaigns, while others still protest or even riot in the street. Politicians care about public opinion, so how do we explain these choices? How are reactions shaped by people’s social background, their economic circumstances, their personality, or even their genetic inheritance? Can politicians and the media influence public opinion and if so, how?

MA Public Opinion and Political Behaviour explores the interaction between the mass public and political elites in advanced industrial democracies. You are introduced to the latest theoretical debates about the nature, significance and measurement of public opinion, exploring when and how these opinions translate into political participation, from voting behaviour and signing petitions to suicide bombing.

You also look at the main theoretical approaches in the study of politics, combined with a selection of optional modules including:
-Quantitative data analysis in political explanations
-Survey measurement and question design
-Political parties in Britain and Europe
-Measuring public opinion
-Democracies in Europe

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our key academic staff for this course are Professor Paul Whiteley, who works on British elections, and Professor Lawrence Ezrow, who works on party ideology and strategy.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-The ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our course can lead to a career in the polling industry, market research, British and European Politics or the private sector. You will develop key employability skills including analytical reasoning, survey design, polling, research design, and report writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Political Explanation (optional)
-Advanced Research Methods (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science
-MA Dissertation
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Comparative European Politics (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

Read less
How do political scientists explain political outcomes? How can political science be used to analyse the real world? Our MRes gives you additional rigorous training in research design and methods compared to an MSc or MA, preparing you for PhD research in any sub-field of political science. Read more
How do political scientists explain political outcomes? How can political science be used to analyse the real world? Our MRes gives you additional rigorous training in research design and methods compared to an MSc or MA, preparing you for PhD research in any sub-field of political science.

You learn how to ask questions across political science, developing theories, conducting research, analysing data and exploring the empirical implications of theoretical models empirical methods. You learn to draw your own conclusions as to which approaches are appropriate for the questions they want to ask and answer, and gain a thorough and rigorous understanding of such research tools.

You study modules on theories of political explanation, research design, and empirical and mixed research methods across your two years, whilst developing a 35,000-word dissertation.

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We’re rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the political science work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in the field. You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Our key academic staff for this course are Professor Jonathan Slapin, who specializes on political organizations and political parties and whose research has received multiple awards. Dr Simone Dietrich, who uses laboratory, field, and survey experiments to study foreign aid provision and its effect on economic and political development around the world. Dr Daina Chiba, who has interests in the areas of militarised conflict, international institutions, and political methodology. Dr Anna Getmansky, who works on the electoral impact of terrorism. Laura Montanaro, who works on democratic theory in the area of non-electoral representation and Dr Alejandro Quiroz Flores, who studies the political economy of natural disasters as well as research methods.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

An MRes puts you in a particularly strong position to succeed in a research degree. We offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields:
-Government and politics
-Ideology and discourse analysis
-International relations
-Political behaviour
-Political economy

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Other recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also work with the University’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Read less
This programme provides you with the systematic knowledge and intellectual tools to critically review developments in the theory and practice of international relations. Read more
This programme provides you with the systematic knowledge and intellectual tools to critically review developments in the theory and practice of international relations. It enables you to evaluate in a sophisticated and critical fashion concepts, theories and paradigms within the broad field of international relations, drawing lessons from empirical studies involving both quantitative and qualitative investigations.

Students are able to develop their ability to deploy research strategies and methods in an appropriately advanced fashion to critically evaluate current research and advanced scholarship. Each study route aims to provide advanced knowledge and understanding of the dynamics, including cultural and local political and ideological factors, which shape the contemporary international relations of the area.

The course also provides an opportunity for studying international relations and in comparative and historical perspective taking account of regional specific political and economic factors.

Student Profiles

“Attending the Master in International Relations (European) at Durham University has been so far the best experience of my life. Indeed engaging in conversation with colleagues from different nationalities and professors willing to listen to your opinion has helped me analyse the world dynamics from different perspectives. Honestly I have learned more in the last year than throughout any of my academic experience. In sum living and studying at Durham has had a great impact on my life to the extent that it made me realize my real potential and what my future career could be like. Therefore I would certainly recommend studying this course at Durham University as it has positively changed my life and it might have the same effect on you.” Luca Marro, 2015/16

“Undertaking postgraduate study is a huge commitment. Not only is it a period of intensive academic study, it is a financial and time consuming one too. Therefore, I was naturally very thorough when deciding upon which university I wanted to attend. Ultimately, my decision to study at SGIA was based on two factors. Firstly, the reputation of Durham University ensures that I receive a degree which is highly valued and respected by employers. Secondly, by undertaking the MA in International Relations (Europe) I have been able to develop an area specialisation and study a topic which is of immense interest to me. These two points proved fruitful results, when, during my first term at Durham, I was able to secure graduate level employment for when I leave. A high point of this perhaps, was attending the assessment centre for the position only to find three other people from SGIA at the event - you can thus be confident that deciding to undertake an MA puts you in a very good position!” Thomas Knight, 2015/16

As a Master’s student in International Relations (Europe), I have benefitted from the vast knowledge of the academics who are specialised in the European Union. I learnt both technical and theoretical details about the EU. Therefore, as a EU-funded Jean Monnet Scholarship holder, MA in International Relations (Europe) met the aim of my scholarship to develop Turkey’s human resources with trained EU experts for the accession. Not only the vigour of academic staff of the SGIA but also the good research facilities as well as the extremely helpful team of the School Office have made this experience unforgettable and fruitful for me." Asli Kandemir, 2014/15

Course Content

Students will take five core modules to the value of 150 credits and optional modules to the value of 30 credits, 15 of which must be from the regional module list.

Core Modules:
-International Relations Theory
-Model United Nations
-Research Methods and Dissertation Production
-Dissertation

European Route Core Module:
-European Security

Regional Modules:
-European Institutions and the Policy Process
-The European Union as a Global Actor
-Collective Memory & Identity in Post War Europe

Non-regional Modules - In previous years these have included:
-German Foreign Policy
-Collective Identities and Political Thought in Britain
-Contemporary Socio-Political Issues in Muslim Religious Thought
-International Relations and Security in the Middle East
-The Political Economy of Development in the Middle East
-America and the World: The Making of the US Foreign Policy
-Human Rights
-Political Ideology
-Issues in the Politics of Military Occupations
-Just War in Political Theory and Practice
-Nationalism Revolution and Reform in Contemporary China
-Political Economy and Development of Chinese Business
-Political Ideology
-Region, Nation and Citizen in Southeast Asia
-Strategic Asia: Policy and Analysis
-The Contemporary Politics of the Middle East
-A module offered by the School of Modern Languages and Cultures

Learning and Teaching

At the beginning of the academic year, students go through five-day induction events in which they are informed about University, the School, the MA/MSc programmes and the facilities available for their learning.

The 180 credits one-year MA degree programme is divided into four core and two optional modules of 15 credits each. Furthermore, students have to submit a dissertation of 75 credits of not more than 15,000 words. Most of the modules are delivered during the first two terms and students spend the remaining time to write the dissertation.

Usually a module has 18 contact hours spread over 9 weeks and 132 hours of self-directed learning. The modules are mainly delivered through weekly 2 hours sessions which can either take the form of seminars or one hour of lecture and one hour of tutorial. The form in which seminars are conducted can differ from one module to another. Typically modules would have elements of lectures, discussions, and presentations from students—the extent of each of these components would differ from one module to another.

All modules have written exercise for formative assessments. Upon getting feedback on these assignments, students can meet their lecturers to discuss their marks before then eventually completing a summative assessment. Typically summative assessments are 3000 word essays but some modules may be assessed by examination. Students can also meet their module coordinators during their weekly contact hours or by making an appointment. When students are working on their dissertations during the later half of the year, they meet their assigned supervisors for a minimum of 6 hours. Students also have access to the academic advisors whenever there is a need.

SGIA has a wide variety of resources available to students such as: computer room/work room with networked PC’s, printing facilities including scanner and photocopier, audio system, Wi-Fi and a relaxation area with satellite television system.

SGIA conducts weekly seminars and organises lectures and conferences which all postgraduate students can attend. These events provide students the opportunity to engage with, and debate, the most important issues in current political and international studies.

Towards the end of the programme students can contact the Careers Office of the University to get advice on available job prospects and get assistance on applying for these.

Read less
This programme provides you with the systematic knowledge and intellectual tools to critically review developments in the theory and practice of international relations. Read more
This programme provides you with the systematic knowledge and intellectual tools to critically review developments in the theory and practice of international relations. It enables you to evaluate in a sophisticated and critical fashion concepts, theories and paradigms within the broad field of international relations, drawing lessons from empirical studies involving both quantitative and qualitative investigations.

Students are able to develop their ability to deploy research strategies and methods in an appropriately advanced fashion to critically evaluate current research and advanced scholarship. Each study route aims to provide advanced knowledge and understanding of the dynamics, including cultural and local political and ideological factors, which shape the contemporary international relations of the area.

The course also provides an opportunity for studying international relations and in comparative and historical perspective taking account of regional specific political and economic factors.

Student Profiles

“Students in the International Relations (East Asia) programme are exposed to an internationally diverse atmosphere in the class which leads us to be open-minded and objective. The wide range of modules allows students to not only discover a specialized area (East Asia) but to also explore other areas and foster global viewpoints. Therefore, students can further pursue interdisciplinary research at Durham University. Most importantly, lectures and seminars which are provided by professionally specialized professors enable students to nurture the ability to logically organize their thoughts and to propose solutions to difficult problems which may have no right answer. I am confident that graduates from this course will take an active role in interdisciplinary work across the globe because they learned how to be innovative and effective collaborators throughout this well-structured programme. I would highly recommend this programme to anyone interested in international relations and engaging in critical dialogue.” Kyoko Kato, 2015/16

“When making the step up from undergraduate studies to a Masters degree, you want to move up both in terms of university quality and in terms of the academic rigour. The MA International Relations program at SGIA provided me with that. The department boasts some of the top academics in the country and immediately you realise that you must step your game up to thrive on a postgraduate program at one of the top few universities in the country. The course offers an excellent balance of compulsory modules; which improve study and research techniques, and selective modules; which allow you to specialise in areas of interest. I made two really fascinating observations about the department: one was how much of a diverse international presence SGIA contains, and the second was that the seminars are a complete open forum, which allow for a wide spectrum of ideas. If you can justify your intellectual position; then all viewpoints are accepted. I’m delighted I chose this course and I feel this degree puts me on a path to progress in my future career. Simply put: Durham and SGIA are the place to be!” Edward Spann, 2015/16

“My favourite aspect of the Master course is the unique learning experience at the university. Over here in Durham, students are encouraged to actively participate and even lead discussions and debates regarding the module content. Independent research outside the classrooms therefore becomes essential and inevitable in students' learning experience. Additionally, the School of Government and International Affairs has also been regularly inviting prominent and influential speakers in the field of politics and international affairs to give a seminar so as to enhance the students' learning curve.” Chanatip Padungdetpasuton

Course Content

Students will take five core modules to the value of 150 credits and optional modules to the value of 30 credits, 15 of which must be from the regional module list.

Core Modules:
-International Relations Theory
-Model United Nations
-Research Methods and Dissertation Production
-Dissertation

East Asia Route Core Module:
-Strategic Asia: Policy and Analysis
-Regional Modules:
-Region, Nation and Citizen in SE Asia
-Political Economy and Development in Chinese Business
-Nationalism, Revolution and Reform in Contemporary China.

Non-regional Modules - In previous years these have included:
-European Institutions and the Policy Process
-The European Union as a Global Actor
-German Foreign Policy
-Collective Identities and Political Thought in Britain
-Collective Memory and Identity in Post-War Europe
-Contemporary Socio-Political Issues in Muslim Religious Thought
-European Security
-International Relations and Security in the Middle East
-The Contemporary Politics of the Middle East
-The Political Economy of Development in the Middle East
-America and the World: The Making of US Foreign Policy
-Human Rights
-Political Ideology
-Issues in the Politics of Military Occupation
-Just War in Political Theory and Practice
-Political Ideology
-A module offered by the School of Modern Languages and Cultures

Learning and Teaching

At the beginning of the academic year, students go through five-day induction events in which they are informed about University, the School, the MA/MSc programmes and the facilities available for their learning.

The 180 credits one-year MA degree programme is divided into four core and two optional modules of 15 credits each. Furthermore, students have to submit a dissertation of 75 credits of not more than 15,000 words. Most of the modules are delivered during the first two terms and students spend the remaining time to write the dissertation.

Usually a module has 18 contact hours spread over 9 weeks and 132 hours of self-directed learning. The modules are mainly delivered through weekly 2 hours sessions which can either take the form of seminars or one hour of lecture and one hour of tutorial. The form in which seminars are conducted can differ from one module to another. Typically modules would have elements of lectures, discussions, and presentations from students—the extent of each of these components would differ from one module to another.

All modules have written exercise for formative assessments. Upon getting feedback on these assignments, students can meet their lecturers to discuss their marks before then eventually completing a summative assessment. Typically summative assessments are 3000 word essays but some modules may be assessed by examination. Students can also meet their module coordinators during their weekly contact hours or by making an appointment. When students are working on their dissertations during the later half of the year, they meet their assigned supervisors for a minimum of 6 hours. Students also have access to the academic advisors whenever there is a need.

SGIA has a wide variety of resources available to students such as: computer room/work room with networked PC’s, printing facilities including scanner and photocopier, audio system, Wi-Fi and a relaxation area with satellite television system.

SGIA conducts weekly seminars and organises lectures and conferences which all postgraduate students can attend. These events provide students the opportunity to engage with, and debate, the most important issues in current political and international studies.

Towards the end of the programme students can contact the Careers Office of the University to get advice on available job prospects and get assistance on applying for these.

Read less
This programme provides you with the systematic knowledge and intellectual tools to critically review developments in the theory and practice of international relations. Read more
This programme provides you with the systematic knowledge and intellectual tools to critically review developments in the theory and practice of international relations. It enables you to evaluate in a sophisticated and critical fashion concepts, theories and paradigms within the broad field of international relations, drawing lessons from empirical studies involving both quantitative and qualitative investigations.

Students are able to develop their ability to deploy research strategies and methods in an appropriately advanced fashion to critically evaluate current research and advanced scholarship. Each study route aims to provide advanced knowledge and understanding of the dynamics, including cultural and local political and ideological factors, which shape the contemporary international relations of the area.

The course also provides an opportunity for studying international relations and in comparative and historical perspective taking account of regional specific political and economic factors.

Student Profiles

“From the moment I applied for the MA International Relations (Middle East) programme at Durham University, I knew it was going to be a perfect fit. The combination of theoretical and technical modules, coupled with the option to specialise in the regional area of my choice, immediately made this programme stand out. I was equally drawn to the academic reputation and international background of the SGIA department. Whilst seminars and lectures were intellectually stimulating, the academic staff was very approachable and keen to guide our independent research. Although many of us applied for the International Relations programme with a background in a different subject, the transition – although challenging – proved to be rewarding. Overall, my time at Durham has been an incredibly enriching and unforgettable experience.” Nina Schroeter, 2015/16

“My year at SGIA studying International Relations of the Middle East has allowed me to engage critically with the subjects I have studied. The department offered a rich variety of modules, including language courses delivered through the School of Modern Languages and Cultures. SGIA’s international and multicultural environment is ideal to study a transnational subject like international politics. The assessments have been stimulating occasions to apply the knowledge acquired and feedback has been provided throughout the year by helpful and available lecturers. All activities were properly organised and resources abounded, from the well-stocked library to the modern classrooms and an efficient staff. All this contributed to make my stay in Durham a pleasant and a rewarding one.” Simone Clericuzio, 2015/16

“Pursuing the International Relations (Middle East) MA at Durham has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. The School of Government & International Affairs offers all students a chance to really engage in the issues they are interested in. The department provides the opportunity of specialising the course based on the world's regions you are most passionate about, while simultaneously opening your eyes to other issues in the wider world of International Relations. Coupled with a very approachable department with exceptional teaching standards, this course is both as comprehensive as it is detailed, attracting students and views from all over the world. These factors combine to offer an extremely positive and enriching experience, providing an exceptional foundation for future academic or professional goals.” Scott Chipolina, 2014/15

Course Content

Students will take five core modules to the value of 150 credits and optional modules to the value of 30 credits, 15 of which must be from the regional module list.

Core Modules:
-International Relations Theory
-Model United Nations
-Research Methods and Dissertation Production
-Dissertation

Middle East Route Core Module:
-International Relations and Security in the Middle East
-Regional Modules:
-Contemporary Socio-Political Issues in Muslim Religious Thought
-The Contemporary Politics of the Middle East
-The Political Economy of Development in the Middle East

Non-regional Modules - In previous years these have included:
-German Foreign Policy
-European Security
-Collective Memory and Identity in Post-War Europe
-European Institutions and the Policy Process
-The European Union as a Global Actor
-Collective Identities and Political Thought in Britain
-America and the World: The Making of US Foreign Policy
-Human Rights
-Political Ideology
-Issues in the Politics of Military Occupation
-Just War in Political Theory and Practice
-Nationalism Revolution and Reform in Contemporary China
-Political Economy and Development of Chinese Business
-Political Ideology
-Region, Nation and Citizen in Southeast Asia
-Strategic Asia: Policy and Analysis
-A module offered by the School of Modern Languages and Cultures

Learning and Teaching

At the beginning of the academic year, students go through five-day induction events in which they are informed about University, the School, the MA/MSc programmes and the facilities available for their learning.

The 180 credits one-year MA degree programme is divided into four core and two optional modules of 15 credits each. Furthermore, students have to submit a dissertation of 75 credits of not more than 15,000 words. Most of the modules are delivered during the first two terms and students spend the remaining time to write the dissertation.

Usually a module has 18 contact hours spread over 9 weeks and 132 hours of self-directed learning. The modules are mainly delivered through weekly 2 hours sessions which can either take the form of seminars or one hour of lecture and one hour of tutorial. The form in which seminars are conducted can differ from one module to another. Typically modules would have elements of lectures, discussions, and presentations from students—the extent of each of these components would differ from one module to another.

All modules have written exercise for formative assessments. Upon getting feedback on these assignments, students can meet their lecturers to discuss their marks before then eventually completing a summative assessment. Typically summative assessments are 3000 word essays but some modules may be assessed by examination. Students can also meet their module coordinators during their weekly contact hours or by making an appointment. When students are working on their dissertations during the later half of the year, they meet their assigned supervisors for a minimum of 6 hours. Students also have access to the academic advisors whenever there is a need.

SGIA has a wide variety of resources available to students such as: computer room/work room with networked PC’s, printing facilities including scanner and photocopier, audio system, Wi-Fi and a relaxation area with satellite television system.

SGIA conducts weekly seminars and organises lectures and conferences which all postgraduate students can attend. These events provide students the opportunity to engage with, and debate, the most important issues in current political and international studies.

Towards the end of the programme students can contact the Careers Office of the University to get advice on available job prospects and get assistance on applying for these.

Read less
Why does the behaviour of political actors – leaders, parties, pressure groups, voters, protestors, and so on – vary across countries and over time? And what are the consequences of political institutions for regime stability, economic development, political representation, and the dynamics of electoral politics?. Read more
Why does the behaviour of political actors – leaders, parties, pressure groups, voters, protestors, and so on – vary across countries and over time? And what are the consequences of political institutions for regime stability, economic development, political representation, and the dynamics of electoral politics?

This course allows you to focus on these and other questions of interest and apply them to politics in the developed and developing worlds.

Our course provides you with an overview of classic controversies and contemporary debates in comparative politics. You learn about the main theoretical approaches to the study of politics, as well as the major issues and topics in this subfield of political science. You also choose from a wide range of optional modules including:
-Global environmental issues
-Democracies in Europe
-International relations
-International security
-Conflict resolution

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our academic staff work on topics ranging from international conflict and violence to British elections, and from the obligations of the younger generation to why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our MSc Global and Comparative Politics will help you develop key employability skills which will make you attractive in both the public and private sector, including analytical reasoning, research, communication, and essay-writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Advanced Research Methods
-Comparative European Politics
-MA Dissertation
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)

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Why does the behaviour of political actors – leaders, parties, pressure groups, voters, protestors, and so on – vary across countries and over time? And what are the consequences of political institutions for regime stability, economic development, political representation, and the dynamics of electoral politics?. Read more
Why does the behaviour of political actors – leaders, parties, pressure groups, voters, protestors, and so on – vary across countries and over time? And what are the consequences of political institutions for regime stability, economic development, political representation, and the dynamics of electoral politics?

This course allows you to focus on these and other questions of interest and apply them to politics in the developed and developing worlds.

Our course provides you with an overview of classic controversies and contemporary debates in comparative politics. You learn about the main theoretical approaches to the study of politics, as well as the major issues and topics in this subfield of political science. You also choose from a wide range of optional modules including:
-Global environmental issues
-Democracies in Europe
-International relations
-International security
-Conflict resolution

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began. Ranked top 10 in the world for political science and international relations according to the Centre for World University Rankings (2017)

Our expert staff

Some of the biggest names in the field work at Essex, giving you unparalleled access to some of the best minds in politics. Our staff are advising the CIA on counter-terrorism, training politicians and civil servants in democratising countries, and commentating on political events in national and international media.

Our academic staff work on topics ranging from international conflict and violence to British elections, and from the obligations of the younger generation to why authoritarian leaders welcome natural disasters.

You join an active and prolific research team, with the opportunity to work alongside a member of staff on their research instead of completing a dissertation; some of these projects have even resulted in joint staff/student publications.

Specialist facilities

-Laboratories of networked computers featuring extensive software for political analysis
-The ESSEXLab provides opportunities for experimental lab research
-Student societies for politics, debating, and Model UN
-We organise the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Analysis
-A programme of seminars and events run by the department

Your future

All Essex politics graduates have the distinction of a qualification from one of the world’s leading politics departments.

Our MA Global and Comparative Politics will help you develop key employability skills which will make you attractive in both the public and private sector, including analytical reasoning, research, communication, and essay-writing.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for the following high-profile organisations:
-The Civil Service
-Local government
-The World Bank
-The United Nations
-NATO
-YouGov and YouGov America

We also offer supervision for PhD and MPhil in the following fields: government; ideology and discourse analysis; international relations; political behaviour; and politics.

Our academic reputation is illustrated by the fact that many of our graduates now teach or research at universities, colleges of higher education and schools. For example, recent graduates are now research fellows and academic staff at: Mannheim, Germany; ETH Zurich, Switzerland; Duke University, USA; NATO/SHAPE, Belgium; and University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

We also work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Comparative European Politics
-MA Dissertation
-Theory and Explanation in Political Science
-Advanced Research Methods (optional)
-Political Explanation (optional)
-Contemporary Theories of Justice (optional)
-International Security Studies (optional)
-Ideology and Political Discourse (optional)
-Political Economy (optional)
-Political Parties in Britain and Europe (optional)
-Political Theory (optional)
-Public Opinion and Political Behaviour (optional)
-Research Design (optional)
-Research Seminar in Political Theory and Methods (optional)
-Theories of International Relations (optional)
-Conflict Resolution (optional)
-Environmental Politics (optional)
-Survey Measurement and Question Design

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