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Applied Strategy (International Security) (MA)

Course Description

Immerse yourself in the world of contemporary strategy and gain a deeper understanding of the factors influencing strategy development. Delivered by the Dartmouth Centre for Seapower and Strategy (DCSS) and its partner organizations, you will benefit from a wealth of expertise, and develop the kind of thinking and learning skills that are valuable for employment in the military and other policy-orientated professions, notably diplomacy, journalism, organizational management, and the NGO sector.

Key features

Study the core elements of contemporary strategic studies with modules in, war and strategy, foreign policy analysis, and countering terrorism.

Choose a specialism to match your interests and career goals with pathways available in international security, maritime security, or intelligence.

A distinctive feature of the new MA is its emphasis on ‘cognitive capability’, a recognition that an understanding of the factors influencing the strategy development process should be at the heart of applied strategic studies.

A number of modules will be taught in association with international partners, and may include optional travel to the HUMINT in Romania or NMIOTC in Greece.

Examine the dynamics of individual and organisational thinking, and acquire the key skills and competencies essential throughout your studies and beyond.

Whilst conventional lectures and essays will be used to convey and consolidate key knowledge, we recognize the importance of interactive learning and include seminar discussions, role-play, operational design simulations, and visualization exercises.

Delivered with flexibility in mind, modules are taught as week long blocks, and you can take up to 5 years to complete the degree.

Course details

Core modules:

-War and strategy (20 credits)

-Foreign policy analysis and conflict resolution (20 credits)

-Enhancing cognitive capability: learning, thinking, and communicating in strategic studies (20 credits)

-Naval analysis (for RN/RM personnel only, taught at Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth) (20 credits)

-Dissertation in strategy and international security (60 credits)

-International security pathway modules

-NATO: addressing international security threats in the 21st century (Key pathway elective, 20 credits)

-Security challenges in cyber-space: threats to states and international organisations (20 credit)

-Countering international terrorism (20 credits)

-Mission Design Simulation (20 credits)

A number of modules will be taught in association with international partners, and may include optional travel to the HUMINT in Romania or NMIOTC in Greece.


The University aims to make the application procedure as simple and efficient as possible. Our Postgraduate Admissions and Enquiries team are on hand to offer help and can put you in touch with the appropriate faculty if you wish to discuss any programme in detail. If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by Plymouth University, please visit our Disability Assist Services website. Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email .

Scholarships are available for postgraduate taught programmes.

Visit the Applied Strategy (International Security) (MA) page on the Plymouth University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A relevant degree with honours or an equivalent professional qualification. Other qualifications accompanied by substantial experience in an appropriate field may also be considered. Non-standard applications will be considered on a case by case basis. International applicants will be required to provide evidence of their English language ability, for example by achieving an IELTS score of 6.5 overall (with a minimum of 5.5 in each element) or equivalent. Pre-sessional English language courses are available if you do not meet these requirements.

Course Fees

Full-time: UK/EU: £6,500, International: £11,000; Part-time (per 10 credits): UK/EU: £314, International: £750, Islands: £750

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