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MA/MS in International Affairs

Course Description

This top-ranked graduate program takes a social justice–oriented interdisciplinary approach to contemporary world problems. Students choose one of five concentrations: Cities and Social Justice, Conflict and Security, Development, Governance and Rights, and Media and Culture. They can gain valuable experience by participating in the International Field Program. The MS option is designed for students with relevant professional experience.

Gain the theoretical and practical tools to engage with the most pressing challenges of international affairs in the 21st century.

Named one of the top international affairs programs by the Foreign Policy Association, the Julien J. Studley Graduate Program in International Affairs (GPIA) is distinctive in the New School tradition: critical, engaged, and committed to social justice.

Students at GPIA gain a truly global and multidisciplinary perspective on international problems. The research faculty is comprised of prominent scholars from around the world with backgrounds in anthropology, sociology, political science, media, and economics. The program also draws on the wide range of leading experts and professionals in New York, who bring to the classroom the most recent international experience with issues such as social and economic rights, urban and community development, new media and technology, environmental justice, migration and refugees, international law, conflict, and peacebuilding. GPIA’s alumni—over 1200 graduates since the Program’s founding in 2001—are pursuing careers in every corner of the world, working in public and government service, international organizations, NGOs and nonprofits, academia, the media, and the private sector.

The GPIA Difference

International Affairs at The New School stands out from other programs for its unique blend of pedagogical and scholarly commitments:
- A critical and global perspective: We believe that international affairs cannot be understood solely from a U.S. perspective or through conventional lenses. We are committed to critical thinking and to a global perspective.

- Engaged learning: Following the tradition of John Dewey, we believe that theory and practice must be intimately linked. We bring practical problems into the classroom and provide students with a variety of opportunities for in-depth long-term field-based learning.

- Social research: At GPIA we know that scholars and practitioners in international affairs need more than technical skills. They also need an in-depth understanding of history and politics and the tools of social research that are central to the tradition of The New School for Social Research.

- Location, location, location: New York City presents unparalleled opportunities for new scholars, practitioners, and activists interested in international issues. GPIA is committed to serving as your gateway to this quintessential global city.
An intimate learning environment: We believe that good graduate education cannot take place through large lectures or a rigid program of study. Our classes are small. Members of our faculty are accessible. And our program is flexible - you can shape your program of study to match your interests.

GPIA offers both an MA and an MS degree in International Affairs. The curriculum is organized around concentrations in Cities and Social Justice, Conflict and Security, Development, Governance and Rights or Media and Culture that weave together theory, social research, and practical engagement. It also includes a range of possibilities for field programs and practice-based learning, notably the International Field Program and the Practicum in International Affairs, one of GPIA’s capstone options.

The International Field Program
Since its inception in 2002, hundreds of GPIA students have participated in our signature International Field Program (IFP) in more than 30 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Europe. The IFP is a platform for students to gain hands-on experience in the field while following a rigorous course of study, combining pre-departure preparation, in-country seminars, professional internships, and independent research with faculty supervision. The IFP’s extended field stays are unique among international affairs programs in the United States. In the course of nine weeks, students work and conduct research with community-based organizations, NGOs, and governmental agencies. The topics range from community development, policy advocacy, and post-conflict state-building to urban planning and long-term monitoring and evaluation.

Connecting To New York
Students at GPIA take full advantage of the incomparable resources available in New York City. The extraordinary range of international NGOs, intergovernmental institutions, and globally important companies—from the United Nations to Human Rights Watch to major media organizations—provides a unique set of opportunities for student research, internships, and practicums. The Practicum in International Affairs connects students with these organizations through projects that launch student careers. GPIA instructors working in these organizations provide students with direct access to the most pressing contemporary issues in the field.

Career opportunities include
Foreign Policy, International Development, Human Rights, Law School, Teaching

Entry Requirements

A bachelor’s degree from an accredited American college or university, or the equivalent degree from a foreign college or university.

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