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Our taught MPhil programme in International Relations is a step beyond the usual one-year MA.

This is a two-year, Bologna-compatible master's programme combining both taught modules and a substantial research component. The first year mirrors the format of our MA programmes, and the second year allows you to complete a substantial research dissertation.

What will you study?

Year 1

The course is designed to develop your research skills while allowing flexibility to suit your own particular interests. Teaching in the first year consists of either two or three 20-credit modules that give you the philosophical and methodological tools that you need to be an effective researcher in the social sciences.

  • Philosophical Issues in the Social Sciences
  • Introduction to Research Methods in Politics and International Relations
  • Introduction to Quantitative Methods in Politics and International Relations

In addition, you take 120-140 further credits, which may be modules from the list below, or from any of the other MA modules available in the Department of Politics and International Relations. You can also opt to take a language module and you can take up to 60 credits in modules from other departments, in consultation with the Programme Director.

  • International Relations
  • International Security Studies
  • Contemporary Diplomacy
  • Politics of Public Policy
  • Strategic Theorists
  • Strategic Practice
  • Conflict in the Middle East
  • Terrorism in a Globalising World
  • Public Ethics
  • Parliamentary Studies

Year 2

During the second year, you take 60 further credits in taught modules. These may include any of the Department's MA modules that you have not taken in the first year, and up to 40 credits from another MA programme, subject to the approval of the programme director.

The bulk of the second year is occupied by researching and writing a substantial research dissertation of 26-30,000 words. This gives you the opportunity to explore in great depth a topic of interest to you.

What career can you have?

We provide lots of opportunities for you to develop transferable skills for your future career. Our graduates move on to a wide range of roles, including UK ambassadors, military officers, members of the SAS or intelligence analysts, bankers, political analysts, university lecturers, staff college lecturers, journalists, officials in international organisations or police officers. Others have gone into industry, teaching, local government administration, charitable foundations or Parliament.

Visit the International Relations MPhil page on the University of Reading website for more details!




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