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Course content

This course considers some of the most pressing issues of world politics such as the causes of war and peace, the pressures and opportunities of globalisation, the threats posed by terrorism, and the problems of global poverty and injustice.

Who is it for?

This course is intended to attract students who are either currently employed in posts relating to Security Cooperation or those individuals who generally have an interest in issues pertaining to defence and security.

Students come from the following areas:

  • Serving members of the UK MOD (civilian and military)
  • Foreign MOD civil servants and members of foreign armed forces
  • Staff from other UK and foreign government departments, as well as international
  • Governmental and non-governmental organisations, who have an identified need to develop their knowledge of Defence and Security
  • Civilians with an interest in defence and security.

There is often a wide range of nationalities on the course, with a maximum of 30 places available.

Why this course?

The course content is dynamic, challenging, and cutting edge, designed to equip you with the skills and insights needed to understand and authoritatively analyse contemporary debates in international relations using a mixture of theoretical and empirical tools to deal with and confront the challenges presented by contemporary world politics.

The course draws upon our established expertise in international security, foreign and defence policy analysis, security studies, international law, conflict resolution, and environmental issues.

Course details

The course consists of three core modules and a wide range of elective modules, of which you must pass seven, followed by a dissertation.


There are a variety of assessment methods including written assignments, individual and group presentations, dissertation and examinations.

Your career

Students may also wish to pursue careers with private security companies, think tanks, within academia or for foreign governments.

Applicants to this degree come from a range of backgrounds. While we have a number of candidates who have recently completed their undergraduate degrees, we also have a significant number who are civil servants working within defence, serving and retired military personnel and those who working within the financial services. The aim of this course is therefore to provide all students with a high quality, and transferable, postgraduate qualification.

The course therefore assists in taking you on to senior positions in the armed forces, government, international organisations, media and academia.

Visit the International Defence and Security - MSc page on the Cranfield University at Shrivenham website for more details!





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