MA/PGDip International Security

Start date
September
Duration
MA 1 year full-time; 2 years part-time
Course Type
Postgraduate, Taught
Fees

Masters:
£9,500 FT (UK)
£4,750 PT (UK)
£20,160 FT (International)
Postgraduate diploma:
£6,333 FT (UK)
£3,167 PT (UK)
£13,440 FT (International)
More Fees and funding details.

Our Masters degree provides an advanced understanding of issues in international security since the end of the Cold War. It focuses on security in relation to issues of force and power in international relations.

The MA in International Security considers the nature of contemporary security threats, the nature and management of security threats, including security cooperation in the absence of an overarching world government. It promotes the study of those problems through theoretical, empirical and ethical inquiry, drawing on the expertise of a team of internationally renowned research-active Security Studies specialists. The degree provides an advanced understanding of issues in international security since the end of the Cold War. It focuses on security in relation to issues of force and power in international relations, and is placed within the relevant theoretical and empirical contexts of contemporary debates.

You will develop an understanding of the core concepts that inform the study and practice of security, including:

  • The changing meaning of security and what issues are considered to be security issues
  • The different concepts that inform the study and practice of security
  • The range of the security issues of the post-Cold War and post-9/11 periods

You will follow a flexible course with a wide choice of modules. You will take take two core modules in Security Studies and Contemporary Security Challenges which will provide you with a foundation for thinking about the subject. You will then design the rest of the course around your own interests by selecting four modules from a wide range of options.  The flexibility of this degree is ideal for those with a broad range of interests in security studies and terrorism or for those who want to construct a curriculum around a particular area of interest.

As a postgraduate student in POLSIS you will also have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of events. You will be welcomed as a member of the International Relations and Security Theory research group. This group includes members of academic staff and postgraduate research students who meet regularly to discuss their own research, recent publications and to organise research events including inviting visiting speakers.

Why study this course?

  • Choose from an extensive range of optional modules
  • Study in a supportive environment with research-active Security Studies scholars
  • Be a part of the International Relations and Security Theory research group
  • Participate in a range of intellectual and social events alongside your programme

Who is the programme for?

This degree will appeal to a wide range of students who have an interest in security issues and practices, including civilian and military officials (most probably junior or mid-level officials), who want to deepen their understanding and upgrade their qualifications. It will also be of interest to those who seek to develop a deeper understanding of these very important aspects of international relations and of the world we live in.

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Modules

This degree programme comprises the following modules:

Compulsory modules

Optional modules

You will choose 4 modules from the POLSIS optional modules list


The optional modules listed on the website for this programme may unfortunately occasionally be subject to change. As you will appreciate key members of staff may leave the University and this necessitates a review of the modules that are offered. Where the module is no longer available we will let you know as soon as we can and help you make other choices.

Fees

Masters degree fees 2021-22
  Full time Part time
UK £9,500 £4,750
International £20,160  -
Postgraduate diploma fees 2021-22
  Full time Part time
UK £6,333 £3,167
International £13,440  -

Please check with the Department for the latest fees information.
Learn more about fees and funding.

Postgraduate Loans for Masters students

The Postgraduate Student Loan has increased its maximum loan amount to £11,570 for courses starting on or after 1 August 2021 For more detailed information view our Postgraduate funding page.

Scholarships and studentships

See the departmental scholarships and funding pages.

International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home government.

For further information contact the School directly or visit  StudentHelp.

How To Apply

1 July 2022 is the application deadline for international students applying through the student route who wish to study in the United Kingdom. We are not able to consider applications for 2022 made after this date. The deadline for Home students is 31 August 2022.

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Our Standard Requirements

For the MA International Security degree you require a good Honours degree or its equivalent. For those whose first language is not English, an IELTS Certificate is required.

Learn more about entry requirements

 

International Requirements



International Students

You can satisfy our English language requirements in two ways:


IELTS 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in any band is equivalent to:

  • TOEFL: 88 overall with no less than 21 in Reading, 20 in Listening, 22 in Speaking and 21 in Writing
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE): PTE Academic 67 with no less than 64 in all four skills
  • Cambridge English (exams taken from 2015): Advanced – minimum overall score of 176, with no less than 169 in any component

We advocate an enquiry-based approach to learning, which means that we encourage you to become an independent and self-motivated learner. Through the programme of study we offer, we will develop the qualities that employers value in today's university graduates - qualities that will set you apart in your future career.

To help you develop the above-mentioned skills, we adopt a range of teaching methods. They may include:

  • Lectures - listening to experts sharing their knowledge and discoveries in challenging and provocative ways. Students are expected to 'read-around' the subject matter of their lectures, adding to their understanding and developing their critical faculties and analytical skills.
  • Seminars - where you present and discuss your ideas and knowledge in smaller groups and debate interpretations and opinions with other students.
  • Tutorials - are your opportunity to discuss your work with your tutor, usually in small groups.
  • Workshops - are problem solving sessions facilitated by a member of academic staff; these sessions usually involve students working in groups.

Our lecturers and tutors will ensure you have all the resources you need to make the transition from A levels to the more rigorous demands of a degree.

More about teaching and learning at the University of Birmingham.

Enhancing your student experience

In the School of Government we offer much more than a degree. As a student here, whether undergraduate or postgraduate, you have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of events, with some or all of the costs paid for by the School.

Some of these are targeted to help you build skills and experience for your CV, others are more open events designed to expose you to high-level speakers on current debates relevant to all School of Government students.

Graduates from the School have gone on to work in a range of careers, with recent graduates working with organisations such as the United Nations, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, local authorities in the UK and overseas and the Department for International Development.

The School takes employability very seriously and as well as linking students to the central careers services, also incorporates opportunities to enhance their employment prospects, including highlighting work experience opportunities, encouraging volunteering in extra-curricular projects (such as student seminars and events) and by inviting backgrounds for students to meet.

Careers Network

The Careers Network provides a dedicated service to help you find work experience or internship opportunities outside of your studies, either part-time during term-time, or over the summer vacation. Right from the start of your degree you will have access to our interactive careers service, through which many regional, national and international employers advertise their vacancies, and your college internship officers will go out and about to find vacancies that will be a useful addition to your CV. 

Find out more about support for work experience and internships, bursaries, or mentoring.

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