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MSc International Relations Theory

Course Description

About the MSc programme

The MSc in International Relations Theory is based in the Department of International Relations and offers the following benefits:
Study in a leading world centre for the subject, situated in the only UK institution devoted to the social sciences, and in a thriving research community which (together with the Government Department) received one of the highest rankings in the 2014 REF
A strong focus on theory together with a wide range of optional subjects
The opportunity to participate in the editing and production of Millennium, one of the leading international relations journals

The programme is designed for students who want to look deeply at the theoretical aspects of international relations. Materials to be studied include classical and contemporary forms of realism and liberalism, the 'English School', constructivism, critical approaches to the subject, normative theory, and feminist scholarship. The programme is particularly suitable for those students intending to proceed to a research degree and an academic career, but will also be of interest to anyone who wishes to deepen their conceptual grasp of contemporary IR.

Programme details

Most of the teaching takes place in the Michaelmas and Lent terms. A 10,000 word dissertation must be submitted by 1 September.

Compulsory courses

Theories of International Relations covers the main explanatory and normative approaches in international relations theory. Dissertation.
Students will be expected to choose courses to the value of two units from a range of options.

Please note that not every course is available each year and that some courses may only be available with the permission of the course convenor and/or may be subject to space.

Graduate destinations

Most of our former MSc students go on to work in government, international organisations, financial institutions, journalism and corporations, but a good number continue on to research degrees and the academic profession.

Visit the MSc International Relations Theory page on the London School of Economics and Political Science website for more details!

Student Profiles

Graduate Support Scheme - 20+ Awards

LSE's major financial support scheme for study at taught masters level is the Graduate Support Scheme (GSS). Around £2 million is available annually in the form of awards from the Graduate Support Scheme. The Scheme is designed to help students who do not have sufficient funds to meet all their costs of study. GSS awards range in value from £3,000 to a maximum of £10,000, and have an average value of £6,000.

Value of Scholarship(s)

£3,000 - £10,000


The Graduate Support Scheme is open to all applicants.

Application Procedure

Application to the Graduate Support Scheme is via the LSE Graduate Financial Support Application form. This form will be made available to you once you have submitted an application for admission to the School. The form will then be available until 26 April 2012.

Further Information



LSE Country-based Awards - 20+ Awards

The School has a wide range of scholarships available for taught master's students coming to LSE from certain countries and regions of the world. Scholarships are available for LSE students from Europe, North America, South America, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australasia.

Value of Scholarship(s)

Award values vary


Country of domicile. consult LSE Financial Support Office for specific criteria.

Application Procedure

Students must have completed the 2012/13 LSE Graduate Financial Support Application form and received an offer of admission (conditional or unconditional) by 26 April 2012.

When you submit an application for admission to a taught masters programme, the Graduate Admissions Office will acknowledge your application and provide information about how to set up an LSE For You online account. This account will allow you to track the progress of your application for admission, and will provide you with access to the LSE Graduate Financial Support Application Form. The LSE Graduate Financial Support Application form will be available until 26 April 2012.

Entry Requirements

2:1 degree or equivalent in international relations, politics, history, sociology, philosophy or related disciplines; English standard level.

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Recipient: London School of Economics and Political Science
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