Visit the MSc European Studies (Research) page on the London School of Economics and Political Science website for more details!
We can only understand in which direction Europe is heading if we know what it is and where it comes from. For this reason, I found the MSc European Studies: Ideas and Identities not only intellectually rewarding, but also highly topical. It is a programme which acknowledges the complexity and breadth of European Studies by offering courses on a wide variety of topics, including politics, philosophy, economics, history and law. The interdisciplinary nature of the programme is reflected by the extraordinary diversity of students at the European Institute. The fact that my fellow students all had different nationalities and different academic backgrounds provoked stimulating discussions, not only within the context of a course but also beyond. And to be honest, in a programme dealing with highly controversial questions such as 'what does it mean to be European', a chat with another student was at time just as insightful as a visit to the library. As Student Representative of the programme, I was able to see for myself the excellent student-staff relationship at the European Institute. Small class sizes in all courses meant that there was always time for questions and feedback. Moreover, the system by which an academic advisor was allocated to each student ensured good preparation for the exams and the dissertation. All in all, the year in London was a great academic and social experience, and I can warmly recommend the programme to anybody interested in gaining a profound insight into one of the most vibrantly discussed fields of the social sciences.
The MSc in European Studies: Ideas and Identities allowed me to become proficient in a wide range of topics that I further explored once I completed my degree. Having decided to obtain work experience in the areas I'd felt the most interested in while at LSE, I undertook, among others, internships at Amnesty International's International Secretariat and at the European Commission. At the latter, I was fortunate enough to be accepted as an External Relations DG (RELEX) trainee during the period of establishment of the European External Action Service (EEAS). As a RELEX and then EEAS trainee, I collaborated on the creation of the new European institution, which allowed me to witness firsthand the challenges posed by such a key and controversial step towards further European integration. My current work at Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, in Delhi, focuses on the elaboration of two major reports: the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting report - this year on Commonwealth National Human Rights Institutions - and the Universal Periodic Review report, which analyses the voting and human rights records of Commonwealth member states at the Human Rights Council and their performance at the UPR."
The MSc European Studies (Research) was the perfect degree for me because I was interested in research and already knew that I wanted to pursue a PhD afterwards. The European Institute offers a very well-designed research seminar for MSc (Research) students and first-year PhD students, which is also attended by students from other departments because of the pluralist perspective it offers. That way, the degree is truly interdisciplinary and a great preparation for advanced research seminars and colloquia. Students can chose one core course and two optional courses from the wide range of courses offered by the department. I attended European Political Economy and courses which built on my undergraduate studies in economics. The combination of lectures and seminars taught by the academic staff were excellent and covered a wide range of topics in depth. Students are also offered the opportunity to take classes at the Methodology Institute where you are able to specialise in the methodological skills most relevant to your own research. As an MSc (Research) student I felt very well integrated into the researcher community - it is indeed very easy to make use of the many workshops the LSE offers for PhD students. In addition, the European Institute and the LSE offer public lectures of outstanding quality with world-renowned speakers. The MSc (Research) gives you an excellent headstart into your PhD."
I like the wide variety of courses from which one can pick and choose to tailor the programme to suit one's own interests and needs.
Whilst the academic record, world class researchers and lectures and the superb library at LSE were among the key determinants when I was choosing a university for my Master's, the type of people that LSE attracts was also a consideration. You can have the cleverest and most ground-breaking ideas in the world, but if there aren't people around you that you can discuss them with, and be challenged and supported by, there's not much to it.
I find the general atmosphere at LSE inspiring. In seminars, there's a real debate and discussion and when you see others working hard, it inspires you to try even harder, too. But it's not only the academic side of things, we have a very nice group of people in my MSc programme and we do lots of things together outside studying; weekly pub night on Wednesdays, almost every weekend somebody organises a party or a get-together etc.
I'm very grateful to those academics who despite their busy schedules have been happy to listen to my ideas and help develop them. As I am considering doing a PhD, this kind of informal interaction has certainly helped me.
Studying at LSE is a privilege that enables you to grow both professionally and personally. LSE is a school for high fliers, a place where people are selected on their merit, no matter where they come from. What attracted me to LSE apart from the skills I would develop here, and unlimited job and career opportunities, were the people; the opportunity to collaborate with students from different backgrounds, to be in the classrooms of world famous professors.
The LSE experience has broadened my horizons through exposure to different cultures, and I would say that LSE represents what multicultural Europe in the 21st century should be. I will never forget the feeling of community I shared with my fellow students. This programme is challenging and exciting. Although the primary aim was to produce theoretical accounts of what it means to be a European in the 21st Century, we also had interactions with EU decision-makers on a weekly basis. This is a very important aspect of the programme as you learn to incorporate the decision-maker's perspective into a theory.
Life at LSE has offered me opportunities in many extra-curricular activities. I chronicled for The Beaver student paper on Serbia's effort to rebuild after Milosevic. I also interviewed the Foreign Policy advisor to the Serbian president, Mr. Dusan Spasojevic. I came to LSE to learn, and today I am interested in producing knowledge. I am looking forward to being a part of the LSE community in the future by producing a PhD thesis at the European Institute.
I decided to apply for the MSc European Studies (Research) degree because it combines exactly what I needed after completing my degree in Economics. My aim was to improve my research skills, as well as develop my knowledge on a range of topics on Europe and the European Union. The degree offers a range of exceptional subjects, and I have particularly enjoyed the subject choice within my stream- Politics and Government in the EU. The degree provided me with an understanding of EU processes and policy-making which I believe will be particularly beneficial to my future career. Moreover, the European Institute offers students the chance to experience many combinations of course choices. This led me to take courses from the Departments of Social Policy and Methodology. I attended various quantitative and qualitative methods courses; I particularly enjoyed the Applied Regression Analysis course which I know will be beneficial for my dissertation, research and my future PhD studies. I regard my time at the European Institute as a great privilege. I feel honoured to have worked with the academic staff and my diligent classmates and to have experienced the excellent variety of resources and events that LSE offers. Our Students’ Union offers a range of societies to join, such as the LSE SU Debate Society. This helped me to become a better speaker which in turn enabled me to be a better participant at the Model European Union events in Bratislava (December 2013) and in Strasbourg (April 2014). Furthermore, studying at LSE has allowed me to take advantage of London’s endless opportunities to improve my skills, through volunteering and internships, joining LSE SU Amnesty International’s campaign on children’s rights and working at the political unit of the Slovak Embassy in London. As the Student Representative for the MSc European Studies (Research), I obtained feedback from my fellow classmates. As a consequence I can reassure future applicants that this programme is excellent in every detail!
One of the main reasons which motivated me to choose LSE was the European Institute, which is an interdisciplinary hub for the study of Europe and related issues. The combination of various disciplines under a single roof had sparked a true dialogue across academic fields which profoundly enriches my research.
One area where this conversation takes place is the PhD research seminar on European Studies, which attracts many students, also from other LSE departments. An important element influencing my decision to choose the European Institute is its excellent PhD training programme, comprised of a research oriented MSc (Research) degree specialising in my field of political economy, followed by three years of supervised research. The MSc (Research) programme was constructed of a comprehensive core course in European Political Economy, quantitative and research methods trainings, as well as a variety of courses which I could choose and tailor according to my particular interests. Furthermore, we were encouraged to orient our masters dissertation as pilot projects for our PhD thesis, which significantly improved the quality of research in the second year and saved us a lot of time. Such a programme compliments my individual research with important knowledge and academic tools.
Having completed a BSc in Business Administration I decided to do a Master’s degree in European Studies as I have always been interested in both analytical thinking and European issues. I chose the MSc in European Studies at LSE because it is very interdisciplinary and allows every student to opt for different modules that suit his or her interests. What makes LSE a special place is the international environment and a vibrant and active student community.
There are also many opportunities to get engaged in other areas than Politics or Economics, for example I very much enjoyed being part of LSE’s student orchestra. The location in London, the political, economic and cultural centre of the UK rounds off the package. This could also be seen with the great variety of talks with leading academics from LSE together with high profile guest speakers. The year at LSE has taught me to revise opinions one has adopted over time and challenge views others or yourself have about different policy issues. After the Master’s I am planning to do a PhD.
MSc European Studies: Ideas, Ideologies and Identities offers a theoretical framework for anyone interested in European integration. To understand why the European construction has been both divisive and uniting, one has to look at the historical developments and philosophical traditions on the European continent. The way the programme is structured, with a primary focus on the concept of Europe itself, completed by an approach to practical issues and contemporary challenges to the European Union, allows us to develop a comprehensive perspective on the debate.
Beyond the nature of the programme and the content of its courses, my experience in the European Institute allowed me to meet theory with practice: encounters with others - convinced or sceptical Europeans - who make up the Institute was perhaps the best way to open a debate on what it means to be or feel European. Finally, my role as a Student Representative gave me the opportunity to get more involved by organising social events and also a Brussels Careers trip which proved very successful in meeting potential employers in different organisations, and in getting to know each other better to create lasting bonds, that I am sure, will last after our time at LSE. The programme itself, on top of all the services provided by LSE (library, Careers Centre, Student Union societies, networking events...), guarantees a fruitful and intensive year, paving the way for careers in European affairs.