University of Essex

University of Essex

International Relations

This course focuses on general theoretical perspectives, providing the tools for our students to understand historical and contemporary events by placing these within an analytical framework. Although we cover a number of theoretical perspectives, the emphasis is on explaining and understanding international events, rather than simply the intellectual history of international relations as a field.

Entry requirements

Our applicants should have a 1st, 2.1 or high 2.2 degree (or equivalent) in a relevant social science such as politics, international relations, economics, political economy or sociology. Degrees from other subjects may be considered where there is evidence of some mathematical training, statistical background and relevant work experience, although you will be required to submit a personal statement with your application form. If English is not your 1st language, then we require IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.

Course modules

Core modules: Theories of international relations; advanced research methods; political explanation; dissertation. Optional modules include: Comparative European politics; conflict resolution; contemporary theories of justice; ideology and political discourse; international environmental politics; international security studies; political economy; political parties in Britain and Europe; political theory; public opinion and political behaviour; research design; research seminar in political theory and methods; survey measurement and question design; theories of international relations; theory and explanation in political science.

Assessment methods

Written coursework, assignments, end of term tests and an exam at the end of the year. Your grade for each module is calculated with a 50 per cent weighting for both coursework and exam. Dissertation grade included in final grade.

Sponsorship information

Research councils, some University of Essex studentships available; this course has ESRC Doctoral Training Centre accreditation, meaning it can form part of a 1+3 funding opportunity worth up to �18,000 for talented postgraduates; the University is one of only 21 ESRC-accredited Doctoral Training Centres in the UK.


Qualification Study mode Fee Course duration
MA Full-time £ 7,725 per Academic year (home fees) 12 months
MA Full-time £ 14,950 per Academic year (overseas fees) 12 months
MSc Full-time £ 7,725 per Academic year (home fees) 12 months
MSc Full-time £ 14,950 per Academic year (overseas fees) 12 months
MA Part-time £ 3,750 per Academic year (home fees) 24 months
MA Part-time £ 6,750 per Academic year (overseas fees) 24 months
MSc Part-time - 24 months

Campus details

Campus name Town Postcode Region Main campus Campus Partner
Colchester Campus Colchester CO4 3SQ South East

Key information

Graduate Administrator, Department of Government
Telephone number: 
01206 872719