International Politics (Dual Degree)

This exciting new, two-year Masters degree offers you the opportunity to experience living and studying in two very different but complementary cultural and academic worlds on opposite sides of the globe. MA International Politics is hosted by two departments with enviable reputations for the quality of their teaching and research in the field of international politics: the Department of International Politics at Aberystwyth University and the School of International Service at American University in Washington, D.C. On successful completion of your degree you will have the opportunity to apply for internships with government or non-governmental organisations in Washington, D.C. under the Optional Practical Training Scheme.

Typical Entry Requirements

Entry Requirements 2:1 Bachelors (Honours) degree in a relevant subject area, or equivalent, passed with a minimum score of UK 64%/US cGPA 3.3 or equivalent.  Non-graduates will be considered individually based on relevant work experience.

English Language Requirements IELTS 7.0 with minimum 6.0 in each component, or equivalent

Other Requirements Applicants are encouraged to submit an up-to-date CV as part of their application.

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Course Overview

You will spend your first year in Aberystwyth where you will take advantage of the Department’s distinctly normative and critical perspectives on the discipline. You will explore concepts that typically comprise the bedrock of the study of International Relations (such as sovereignty, anarchy, and security) and subject those concepts to rich and multi-layered interrogation from perspectives that unsettle conventional understandings of international relationships and how they function.

During your second year in Washington, D.C., you will connect your studies with practical experience and interaction with the policy community, which American University’s School of International Service is uniquely positioned to provide.

The MA International Politics (Dual Degree with American University) is available as a Specialist pathway degree. You will have the advantages of combining advanced, subject specific study in Aberystwyth with core modules in Social Science research methodology and Economics, alongside option modules from your chosen field of specialisation, taken at American University.

Course Details

Degree type: MA

Course code: L286A

Duration: 2 years (full-time)

Contact time: At least 6 hours a week, including one 2-hour seminar per module, during the year in Aberystwyth.


Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.


Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Research Paper IPM2360 60
International Politics IPM1920 20

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Course Content


During the first year in Aberystwyth, you will study the core module International Politics: Theories and Concepts, along with the Research Paper, which gives you the opportunity to produce an in-depth piece of research through a guided, structured process.

International Politics: Theories and Concepts

This module examines ‘classical’ concepts within international politics, such as the contested meanings of anarchy, sovereignty, power and security, but also tackles the role of colonialism, environment and gender. Attention is paid to contestation and differences of meaning ascribed to core concepts, the political, ethical, practical and methodological consequences involved in the choice of concepts used, and the role of conceptual innovation in the study of a dynamic and diverse subject matter.

In addition to the core module and Research Paper, you will choose from a range of optional modules, examples of which include:

·     Global Challenges and the Future of International Relations Theory

·     Fear, Cooperation and Trust in World politics

·     Post-Western International Relations

·     Indigenous Politics: Challenging the Global Order?

·     The EU in Crisis? Integration and Fragmentation

·     Feminist Approaches to Security

·     Emerging Powers and the Global Order

During the second year in Washington, D.C., you will take core modules in Social Science research methodology and Economics. You will undertake a major research project (either the Practicum in International Affairs or the Substantial Research Paper). Your optional modules will be chosen from one field of specialisation. These include:

·     Energy and Environment

·     International Development

·     Social Enterprise

·     US Foreign Policy