International Relations MA 2021/22 entry

Course code:

AHT023

Study options:

1 year full-time
2 years part-time

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2021

 

Fees:
Faculty:

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

+44 (0) 24 7765 4321
Request information

Course code:

AHT023

Study options:

1 year full-time
2 years part-time

Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2021

 

Fees:
Faculty:

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

+44 (0) 24 7765 4321
Request information

Course code:

AHT023

Study options:

1 year full-time
2 years part-time

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2021

 

Fees:
Faculty:

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

+44 (0) 24 7765 4321
Request information

The information on these pages relates to September 2020 entry and is for guidance only.
September 2021 entry content will be updated here in due course.

Overview

If you are interested in pursuing an international career in government, public administration, diplomacy, policy formation or research, this course will help you to examine and interpret issues and challenges facing our increasingly interconnected world.

Covering themes as varied as globalisation, international law, international trade, diplomacy, war and peace, it is designed to build on the strengths and expertise that the School of Humanities has in the field of international politics and security. We adopt a multidisciplinary approach, drawing on theories and practice from political science, history, sociology, economics and cultural studies, among others.

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

COVID-19

The University may deliver certain contact hours and assessments via emerging online technologies and methods across all courses. In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are prepared for courses due to start in or after the 2020/2021 academic year to be delivered in a variety of forms. The form of delivery will be determined in accordance with Government and Public Health guidance. Whether on campus or online, our key priority is staff and student safety.

Due to the ongoing restrictions relating to Covid-19, some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) and some non-academic offerings (particularly in relation to international experiences), may vary from those advertised and may have reduced availability or restrictions on their use.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

Employability

Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Student experience

All the support you need, in a top student city

Accreditation and Professional Recognition

This course is accredited and recognised by the following bodies:

As part of this course you will undertake a professional development module which is currently accredited by the Chartered Management Institute Chartered Management Institute (CMI) for the 2020-21 intake. Upon successful completion of the module, you will gain the Level 7 Certificate in Strategic Management and Leadership Practice at no additional cost. Further details can be found under the ‘course detail’ tab and on the Professional Development module homepage.

Coventry University’s accreditation with CMI is currently ongoing for the relevant modules and is regularly reviewed and monitored by the CMI through their quality systems. Whilst Coventry University anticipates that these reviews will continue to be successful, if they were to be unsuccessful, the relevant module in this course would no longer be accredited and we would notify applicants and students of this change as soon as possible.

Course information

This fascinating course explores the discipline of international relations, from a theoretical and practical perspective and in the context of issues and events in contemporary politics and society.

You will study eight modules covering a range of theoretical and empirical approaches to the study of international relations, including modules exploring the nature of diplomacy and the challenges facing the international system.

Using case studies and actual events, you can explore the actions of governmental, inter-governmental and non-governmental agencies, private enterprise and international bodies in relation to key threats to international cohesion, such as terrorism, insecurity, poverty and human trafficking. You will have opportunities to gain insights into the motivations of policy-makers, as well as assessing the impact of these theats on individuals, communities and countries. 

To attain the award of Master of Arts, you will be required to complete an extended dissertation examining in depth an area of the course that particularly interests you, based on research undertaken with the support of a dedicated supervisor. In the last year, students have researched Europe’s refugee crisis; celebrity diplomacy; the implications of drone technology for diplomacy; the relationship between Iran and Saudi Arabia; cyber diplomacy; and piracy off the coast of Nigeria.

The relevance of course content is reinforced by our staff’s current involvement in professional organisations, such as the British International Studies Association (BISA), the Political Studies Association (PSA), the University Association for Contemporary European Studies, the African Studies Association of the UK (ASAUK) and the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR).

The School of Humanities maintains an outstanding network of professional contacts spanning diplomats and diplomacy specialists in a range of prestigious external organisations, both private and public. Our network includes Chatham House, the International Slavery Museum, the Royal African Society. These links are reflected in regular talks and events. Past examples include workshops facilitated by the assistant district attorney of Sicily; a senior anti-trafficking prosecutor from Nigeria; the CEO of the NHS Counter-Fraud Authority; a senior manager from the UK’s National Crime Agency and a forensic accountant from the Italian national police (talks and events are subject to availability).

Course Specification
Download PDF

Modules

Overview

During the first two semesters, you will study eight mandatory modules designed to establish the core agenda of the programme. In Semester Three, you will be required to complete a 15,000-word dissertation and take the Global Professional Development module. All modules are assigned 15 credits, except the Global Professional Development module which is assigned 10 credits. The dissertation is assigned 50 credits. 

This course includes the Professional Development module. Each of the participating postgraduate courses have an individually tailored version of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Global Professional Development module.

Modules

  • Semester 1

    • Critical Thinking
    • Diplomacy and the International System
    • Resilience in the International System
    • Applied International Relations Theory

  • Semester 2

    • Threats to Global Secruity
    • Governance for Security in the Developing World
    • International Security Praxis
    • Changing Character of War and Terrorism

  • Semester 3

    • Global Professional Development - Consultancy
    • Dissertation in the Humanities and Social Science

We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.

In more detail...

  • High levels of student satisfaction. The course achieved 100% overall satisfaction in the 2020 Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES).
  • Opportunity to attend a programme of guest speakers, which in 2020 included the assistant district attorney of Sicily; a senior anti-trafficking prosecutor from Nigeria; the CEO of the NHS Counter-Fraud Authority; a senior manager from the UK’s National Crime Agency and a forensic accountant from the Italian national police (talks and events are subject to availability).
  • The chance to participate in field trips in the UK and abroad, which in 2019 included trips to the EU and NATO headquarters in Brussels; the Ministry of External Affairs and foreign missions in The Gambia; the UK Houses of Parliament; Chatham House; the International Maritime Organisation and the International Slavery Museum in Liverpool (subject to availability, meeting visa requirements and additional costs).

Strong professional links with distinguished scholars at universities around the world, as well as relationships with IR practitioners in government, non-governmental organisations, international organisations and prominent think-tanks.

Your main study themes are:

  • The theory and practice of international relations: Explores the relevance of international relations theory to real world events and the importance of empirical evidence. Each text or school of thought studied will be tested by a case study, such as, for example, the relevance of Allison’s bureaucratic model of decision making in explaining the Cuban missile crisis, or Morgenthau’s Politics Amongst Nations to the Cold War.
  • Diplomacy: Introduces the role of diplomacy, as both process and institutional mechanism, its historical development, changing role and modes of operation. Specific case studies, including the topics of trade, security and the environment, examine in detail the way in which the diplomatic system operates in the contemporary world.
  • Contemporary threats: The course explores a number of key threats to peace, security and well-being that require regional, global and transnational responses including human trafficking and modern slavery, climate change, poverty, inequality, terrorism and international crime.
  • Trafficking in human beings: Aims to provide a critical understanding of the issues surrounding trafficking in human beings or ‘modern slavery’, outlining problems, both within the UK and internationally. We will also consider differences and inter relationship with people smuggling, together with an overview of the response from law, Government, national and international organisations.
  • Academic skills and techniques: This course provides initial training in the higher cognitive skills of critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis and the related scholarly techniques of critical reading, reflection and writing. These transferable skills are prized by employers and are reinforced throughout the course.

The course has been devised primarily as a one-year full-time programme. It may also be taken over two years on a part-time basis with the part-time students participating in the same classes as the full-time students. For part-time students, the taught modules will be split evenly between the two years.

During the first two semesters, you will study eight mandatory modules designed to establish the core agenda of the programme. In Semester Three, you will be required to complete a 15,000-word dissertation and take the Global Professional Development module. All modules are assigned 15 credits, except the Global Professional Development module which is assigned 10 credits. The dissertation is assigned 50 credits.  

We provide a series of specialist workshops, delivered by experienced practitioners including ambassadors, UN weapons inspectors and senior security professionals. We also organise field trips to institutions in the UK. For example, in the past we have visited the Houses of Parliament, Chatham House and the International Maritime Organisation (workshops, talks and field trips are all subject to availability). Field trips are also subject to additional costs.

We also offer opportunities to experience and observe diplomatic practice through study trips to, for example, Brussels and The Hague and to The Gambia. These study trips expose you to the realities of formulating foreign policy. You can also take part in online international learning: participating in live online debates in Italy or presenting with fellow international relations students in Argentina (subject to availability, meeting visa requirements and additional costs).

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will vary depending upon the module. Assessment methods include essays, the dissertation, reviews, reports, reflective writing, practical coursework, presentations and a management consultancy project. Assesment may also include exams, individual assignments or group work elements.

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards achieving the intended learning outcomes. Assessments may include exams, individual assignments or group work elements.

On successful completion, you should have knowledge of:

  • The nature of the international system and its development over time.
  • How international relations adapt to different political environments.
  • The conduct of international relations, as practised by key institutions and actors.
  • Differing approaches to, and prominent issues of debate within, the study of international relations.
  • How the boundaries of the subject matter are advanced through research by being at the forefront of the discipline. 
  • The principles of consultancy and the theories and practices found in leadership.


On successful completion, you should be able to:

  • Locate and critically review a range of information sources, to gather and marshal relevant evidence successfully.
  • Apply knowledge of the dynamics of international relations in a wide range of situations and organisations.
  • Show awareness of, and sensitivity to, differing international environments and the impact these have on political, economic and social actors.
  • Apply advanced research skills, identify appropriate sources and methods, take personal responsibility and demonstrate initiative in dealing with complex and unpredictable environments.
  • Demonstrate advanced analytical and evaluative skills to construct fair, coherent and convincing arguments.
  • Exhibit advanced problem-solving skills, tackling complex issues both independently and as part of a team, identifying appropriate solutions in a systematic, creative and constructive manner.

In a typical week you will have up to 15 ‘contact’ hours of teaching. This generally breaks down as follows:

  • Large group teaching: 6 hours of plenary workshops each week.
  • Small/medium group teaching: 9 hours of group workshops each week.

The contact hours may be made up of a combination of face-to-face teaching, individual and group tutorials, and online classes and tutorials.

As an innovative and enterprising institution, the University may seek to utilise emerging technologies within the student experience. For all courses (whether on-campus, blended, or distance learning), the University may deliver certain contact hours and assessments via online technologies and methods.

In addition, you will be expected to undertake a further 25 hours of self-directed study each week, eg. working on course assignments and preparing for workshops.

In addition to the international opportunities described above, the School of Humanities currently has a partnership with Lazarski University in Warsaw, Poland. There is the possibility of individual students exchanging with Lazarski under the Erasmus programme. Students from both institutions have also previously participated in Model European Parliaments, supported by EU funding, in Coventry and in Lecce, Italy. We have also held Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) activities, including webinars and exchange visits, with the University of Costa Rica, the University of Buenos Aires and with the South-South International Cooperation organisation in Sicily. 

These activities are subject to availability, competitive application, meeting visa requirements and additional costs.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2018/19, we were able to provide a total of 5,469 experiences abroad that lasted at least five days.

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

International experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni 2016/17


5,469

Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2018/19


12,000

and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally since 2016

12

global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses


Entry Requirements

Successful applicants must normally hold a second class honours degree in a relevant discipline.

Applicants who can demonstrate considerable experience at an appropriate professional level but who do not have the formal academic entry qualifications may also be admitted, subject to an application and assessment.

Successful applicants must normally hold a second class honours degree in a relevant discipline.

Applicants who can demonstrate considerable experience at an appropriate professional level but who do not have the formal academic entry qualifications may also be admitted, subject to an application and assessment.

English as a Foreign Language: This course requires IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Successful applicants must normally hold a second class honours degree in a relevant discipline.

Applicants who can demonstrate considerable experience at an appropriate professional level but who do not have the formal academic entry qualifications may also be admitted, subject to an application and assessment.

English as a Foreign Language: This course requires IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

Starts

Fee


September 2021

£10,400 (per year)


UK Scholarships

If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2021

£16,600 (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly exceptional candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2021

£16,600 (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly exceptional candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional achievement and academic excellence.

EU student fees

EU nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year remain eligible for the same fees as home students and the same financial support. Financial support comes from Student Finance England, and covers undergraduate and postgraduate study for the duration of their course, providing they meet the residency requirement.

For tuition fee loans:

EU nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year must have resided in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland for the three years prior to the start of their course. The purpose of that three year residency should not have been mainly for the purpose of receiving full time education.

For maintenance loans:

EU nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year must have resided in the UK and Islands for the five years prior to the start of their course. The purpose of that five year residency should not have been mainly for the purpose of receiving full time education.

Career prospects

Graduate Immigration Route visa

Based on current information from the UK Government, international students whose study extends beyond summer 2021 may be eligible for a visa under the UK Government’s Graduate Immigration Route, which will enable students to stay and work, or look for work, in the UK at any skill level for up to two (2) years. Check the most up to date guidance available to check your eligibility and any updates from the UK Government before making an application or enrolment decision.

Employers are looking for individuals with the ability to work across different cultures, to manage teams and possess problem-solving and critical analysis skills.

As well as giving you the opportunity to achieve two additional awards, the CMI* accredited Global Professional Development module will help set you apart in a competitive job market. It'll provide practical leadership skills to critically evaluate and develop solutions for complex, inter-related, multi-faceted issues that you will experience in your future organisations.

The course will provide both an academically demanding experience and one which will be of practical use in your career. We encourage you to gain first-hand experience through volunteering and placement opportunities. Previously students have, undertaken internships in embassies and high commissions, such as the Thai Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, think-tanks, including the Royal Institute of International Affairs in London, the Institute of Cultural Diplomacy in Berlin and the South-South International Cooperation organisation in Palermo, and undertaken research in universities abroad such as the Arab-American University in Jenin.

The course prepares you for roles such as public administration within a Foreign Service or other government department, international civil service (such as the United Nations or European Union), international agencies and non-governmental organisations, as well as multinational corporations, the international media, teaching and research.

Where our graduates work

Our previous graduates have been successful in securing employment in the foreign services of a range of countries from Ethiopia to the UK, as well as working in government departments in Barbados, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and the United Kingdom. Several have gone on to enter the diplomatic service in their home country; others have sought careers in international organisations, nongovernmental organisations, or international commerce and business.

Disclaimer

By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. A copy of the 2020/21 Contract can be found here. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the University will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the university.

The tuition fee for the course that is stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study will apply. We will review our tuition fees each year. For UK and EU students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, we may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase is expected to be in line with inflation. Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, EU students should be aware that there may be a change to UK laws following the UK’s exit, this may change their student status, their eligibility to study part time, and/or their eligibility for student finance. We will act in accordance with the UK’s laws in force in relation to student tuition fees and finance from time to time.

For International students the tuition fee that is stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study will apply. We will review our tuition fees each year. For international students, we may increase fees for each subsequent year of study but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation.