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Politics (MPhil)

Course Description

We accept students into the Department of Politics and International Relations on the basis of a match between your proposed research and the current research interests of a potential supervisor as well as an assessment of qualifications and suitability for a research degree.

Initial discussions about supervision are therefore on the basis of a brief research proposal prepared by prospective students before a formal application is made.

If you'd like to come and discuss your research with the Director of Postgraduate Studies and/or with a potential supervisor, please contact the Departmental Secretary to make an appointment.

Registration and study

Initially, you register for a Master of Philosophy (MPhil) programme to train you in the research methods necessary to complete a PhD.

You can apply to upgrade to PhD registration when you have satisfactorily completed an agreed part of the research and training programme; this usually happens before 18 months if you are studying full-time, or before 36 months if part-time.

You should aim to complete and submit your PhD thesis within an agreed period, usually three to four years for full-time students, and four to six years for part-time.

If you decide not to upgrade to PhD registration, you can submit your thesis for an MPhil after two years if you are studying full-time, or after three years if part-time.

With the agreement of your supervisor, you can change your registration from full to part-time or vice versa.

North American applicants especially should note that the British system does not include preparatory taught classes or examinations as part of the MPhil/PhD programme, except for an initial module in research methods.

Find out more about research degrees at Goldsmiths.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Professor Sanjay Seth


Research supervision

You're assigned members of staff qualified to supervise your research throughout your period of registration. Please see our staff page for details of the teaching staff and their research interests.

You usually have a single supervisor, although in some cases joint supervision is agreed, and two members of staff are involved in the supervision.

Supervision involves regular meetings throughout the period of study, and ideally involves the development of an intensive intellectual relationship between you and your supervisor, from which both parties gain.

Research training

All research students who have not completed an MRes or MPhil degree will have to attend modules on quantitative and qualitative research methods held in their first year of study.

A College-wide programme of research training is also provided, which involves an induction module (which all students should attend), introduction to information technologies and the use of library and bibliographic resources, basic training in quantitative research methods, and sessions on research planning, presentation skills and ethics.

Optional elements

There are seminars held within the Department, which you can attend. Also, you may, after consultation with your supervisor, audit the appropriate postgraduate options from any of the taught MA/MRes programmes offered in the Department. This involves participating in seminar discussions and/or writing coursework, but not being formally assessed for the course.


Examination of the MPhil is by a thesis (60,000 words maximum for an MPhil) and a viva voce.

Skills & Careers


Central and local government; management and personnel work; finance; the media; teaching, lecturing and research; health service administration. Many of our graduates undertake professional training in law, accountancy, journalism, business administration, teaching, social work or nursing.


You'll develop:
•a critical awareness of social and political issues and processes
•originality in engagement with the discipline of political science
•communication and presentation skills

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths http://www.gold.ac.uk/skills-careers/


Please visit http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/ for details.

Visit the Politics (MPhil) page on the Goldsmiths, University of London website for more details!

Student Profiles

Banco Santander Scholarships - 7 Awards

In partnership with Banco Santander, Goldsmiths will be awarding seven scholarships to outstanding candidates from within the Santander Universidades network. Each scholarship provides a £5,000 fee waiver and is tenable for one year only.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Scholarships will be open to students applying to study a taught masters degree (excludes MRes and Masters by Research) in any discipline starting in September 2016. The countries targeted (although not exclusively, should exceptional candidates apply from other eligible countries*) will be:Mexico
* The Santander Universidades scheme covers institutions in Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Germany, Ghana, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, United Arab Emirates, UK, Uruguay and USA.

Application Procedure

Your scholarship application should be completed online through your myGoldsmiths account. This is the online account that you created in order to apply for a course at Goldsmiths.As part of the application, you'll be asked to answer three questions relevant to the award that you are applying for.For more information, please see the Banco Santander Scholarships page.

Further Information



Goldsmiths Masters Scholarships - 20+ Awards

Please note that scholarship schemes and awards are subject to the availability of funds, and the details given here are subject to change at any time. we therefore encourage you to check this information regularly.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Home and EU students (full-time and part-time).

Application Procedure

Applications for 2015 entry are now closed.

Further Information



The Goldsmiths' Company Postgraduate Bursaries - 4 Awards

Please see website for more details

Value of Scholarship(s)



Students on taught postgraduate programmes (not including MA Filmmaking or PGCEs) starting October 2015. You must be: a UK student; new to postgraduate study; experiencing financial difficulties. You should also demonstrate academic potential and you must not be in receipt of any Goldsmiths, AHRC or ESRC funding.

Application Procedure

Applications for 2015 entry are now closed.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

You should normally have (or expect to be awarded) a taught Masters in a relevant subject area. You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.Equivalent qualifications We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.English language requirementsFor this programme we require:IELTS 7.0 (including 7.0 in the written test)

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