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Full time & Part time September MSc 12 months full-time, 24 months part-time

About the course


The MSc Empires, Colonialism and Globalisation, taught by the Department of International History, focuses on the history of the non-European world through the study of imperialism, colonialism and the forces that have brought about globalisation.

The core course concentrates on the history of imperialism in Asia, Africa and South America from the 14th century to the present day. You will focus on the histories of non-western peoples, whether they were imperial masters or colonial subjects. You will explore the technologies and ideologies of the Ottoman, Mughal and Qing empires, as well as the Spanish, British and French empires. European overseas empires are studied through postcolonial methodologies: the effects upon and experiences of the colonised are central. Themes

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Entry Requirements

2:1 degree or equivalent in any discipline

Course Content

Institution website

Where is London School of Economics and Political Science


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Student Profile(s)

Scott Gibson

The best thing about the programme is the debates that we have in classes. With students coming from all over the world and from different backgrounds, there were always so many perspectives on different issues. My lecturers were so supportive, knowledgeable about the topics and engaging, and they encourage everyone in the class to get involved. It’s an active and exciting atmosphere to learn in as well as a brilliant chance to make friends with people from across the globe.

I found the range of option modules that this programme had and the variety of topics covered particularly appealing. From 15th Century Chinese mapping to cultural reactions to American nuclear testing, the modules sounded so interesting and different to anything that I had been able to explore before.

A.S. Al-Saffar

I chose LSE because of it's outstanding reputation, course preference compared to other universities, and proximity to where I live.

Teaching and supervision have been top notch. Everyone's at the top of their game and the emphasis is on learning from each other whether it's a tenured professor learning from someone new to the discipline or vice-versa. Social life has also been great. Everyone within in the department is more or less extremely well-rounded - extremely smart and focused but also kind and accommodating.

The most challenging aspect has definitely been managing the workload in the allocated time. As far as excitement goes, being on campus everyday knowing how much LSE has contributed to the way we understand some of the more nuanced problems of our existence and that also in 20 years, the world will be run my fellow alumni is about as thrilling as it gets!


The compelling course content of the MSc Empires, Colonialism and Globalisation was what attracted me to the programme.

Being able to study a range of thought-provoking aspects of a number of different empires in a comparative perspective, as well as being able to explore their continuing legacies appealed to me. The seminar sessions provided a fantastic opportunity to discuss different themes and build on the analytical and research skills developed throughout my undergraduate studies. Teachers and peers are always more than willing to provide support and classroom time proved to be both enjoyable and challenging.

Studying in London at such a highly regarded institution has lived up to its high expectations. Students are never short on options of departmental debates or talks to attend. Furthermore, it also provides great opportunities to become involved with a number of different aspects of academic, sporting and social life.

Once completing my masters I will be going into the education sector and have spent my the past academic year working with The LSE Widening Participation department, tutoring and mentoring school students, which has provided me with invaluable experience for the field that I am going into.


I chose this program because of its focus on the makings of the modern world. The course is designed in a thematic way, enabling the students to make connections between the world’s greatest empires in order to better understand the very notion of empire as a crucial historical phenomenon. The reading and seminar discussions provide for a deeper grasp of the human experience of imperialism, colonialism and globalization. It is an information-packed course and it moves very quickly, but the professors help to draw out the themes in every seminar in order to make the content both tangible and valuable. While the breadth of the course may seem overwhelming at first glance of the syllabus, one begins to enjoy the themes more and more with each weekly reading and seminar discussion.

The professors in the Empires program are great. They are both approachable and thorough in their assessment of student work. The department offers numerous social functions that allow you to meet fellow students outside your seminar sections. Within each seminar, professors usually plan a gathering at the end of each term. For example, my Empires professor, Dr. Sherman, took the class to eat at an authentic Indian restaurant after we studied the Mughal Empire. My advice to the incoming student is to take every advantage to get to know your professors and classmates. They will blow you away with their intelligence and experiences. Overall, the calibre of the department’s social life matches the calibre of the instruction, and getting to know my classmates was the most rewarding aspect of my year at the LSE.

Oindrila Sanyal

What courses did you most enjoy at LSE and why?

I had a very rewarding experience during my masters at LSE. I thoroughly enjoyed my course on empires, colonialism and globalisation because of its subject range. We started with the Ottoman Empire and talked through different empires, we looked scientific racism and ended with an intriguing question as to when did globalisation begin. I enjoyed the classes because of discussions that took place as well as the quality of the same. It was a very diverse class and I encountered some of the most promising arguments put forward by my fellow classmates. We also took turns in bringing an archival source to class on a topic of our choice and that kind of kept it interesting.

What resources at the LSE did you find most useful?

LSE library not only has an exhaustive range of books, archival resources, it also gives us access to a number of online sites which makes it easier for us. Apart from that, LSE life organised a number of workshops to enhance writing skills for an assignment, for dissertation which was beneficial.

What job do you do now and how did your degree help you to get it?

I’m currently teaching international history to A level students at an international school in India. The profile was for an international history teacher and the courses I opted for gave me an upper hand here.

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