The MSc in International Relations offers you the opportunity to study international order/disorder in relation to the interaction among states; transnational institutions; non-governmental organisations; multinational corporations; popular culture and everyday life. The disciplinary landscape of International Relations (IR) has expanded considerably in the early twenty-first century, with a number of new challenges confronting a now outmoded global architecture of power. IR's traditional concern with war, security and diplomacy have been called into question by the end of the Cold War and the War On Terror and have been further complicated by far-reaching epistemological and methodological shifts in social theory. Debates about the nature of globalisation, international institutions, development/post-development, global political economy, culture and identity, citizenship and rights bear prominently on efforts to understand the ebb and flow of contemporary IR. In theory and practice, understanding the modalities of power in constituting the ‘international,’ as well as challenges to hegemonic stabilizations of it, has gained a particular urgency, making the study of IR central to apprehending the complexity of global social life. The MSc in International Relations provides you with a sustained engagement with key issues in contemporary International Relations including development & political economy, critical & human security, globalisation, gender, identity, human rights and governance. It builds a foundation on the conceptual/ theoretical underpinnings of IR, the programme offers a range of courses that enable individualized programmes of specialized study on a particular theme or region.
Teaching includes a range of interactive methods and approaches to learning in order to enhance students’ critical thinking, presentation and interpersonal skills. The aim of the programme is to provide a nuanced understanding of key concepts and paradigms that structure the disciplinary study of International Relations and the theoretical and analytical tools to engage debates about them. Several areas of thematic and regional specialisation that reflect their research and professional interests. For each area, students develop the relevant empirical and theoretical knowledge and understanding to produce in-depth analysis of complex problems. Taken together, these area choices provide students with an understanding of the multifaceted nature of contemporary International Relations.
By coursework, written examination, or a combination thereof, as prescribed for each course and by submission of a dissertation.
How to apply
When you are thinking about studying overseas, it is important that you understand all the costs involved and budget accordingly. It is essential to budget for your studies prior to leaving your home country and to arrange all your funding for BOTH your tuition fees and your living costs.
Applicants for admission will normally be expected to hold a relevant Honours degree with at least 2:1 standard from a recognised university or body. Applicants without this qualification may be admitted subject to having an alternative qualification, or an approved level of work experience appropriate to the field of study. Also taken into careful consideration is the trajectory of results, an applicant without an overall 2.1 but with 2.1 results in their final two years of study may be admitted.
English language requirements
|IELTS (Academic)||6.5||Overall - 6.5 with: Listening - 5.5 or above; Reading - 6.0 or above; Speaking - 5.5 or above; Writing - 6.0 or above. IELTS Indicator or IELTS General Training are not accepted.|
|TOEFL (iBT)||90||TOEFL iBT and TOEFL iBT Home Edition: Overall - 90 with: Listening - 17 or above; Reading - 21 or above; Speaking - 20 or above; Writing - 21 or above. DI code is 0818|
|PTE Academic||62||Overall - 62 with: Listening - 59 or above; Reading - 59 or above; Speaking - 59 or above; Writing - 59 or above. Online test is not accepted.|
|Institution's Own Test||Academic English Pre-sessional Programme (PSE) - Pass (valid for 1 year). Academic English Preparation Programme undertaken at other UK HEI - accredited by BALEAP and within 1 year of start of course.|
|Cambridge English Advanced||C||Overall - 176 with: Listening - 162 or above; Reading - 162 or above; Speaking - 162 or above; Writing - 169 or above.|
To study for a postgraduate degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write academic English fluently. These skills will allow you to understand lectures, produce high standards of written work, and perform well in examinations. We can assess your English language proficiency through a variety of means: through your nationality, through the qualifications you gained in high school, through the degree you undertook or are undertaking at university, or through a recognised English language test. Postgraduate Higher requirements are used by the Schools of Business; Divinity, History and Philosophy; Education; Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture; Law; and Social Sciences. The MSc in Oil and Gas Enterprise Management and the MSc in Integrated Petroleum Geoscience also make use of the Postgraduate Higher requirements. Please note certification must be within the two years prior to commencement of your degree programme, unless otherwise stated.
Please use the checklist at the following webpage to determine how you can meet our English language requirements:
Fees and funding
|Republic of Ireland||£23800||Year 1|
|Northern Ireland||£11077||Year 1|
|Channel Islands||£23800||Year 1|
Additional fee information
View the University of Aberdeen Online Prospectus programme page to find out about any scholarships and funding you may be eligible to apply for.
University of Aberdeen
Directorate of External Relations
Course contact detailsVisit our course page