Peace and Conflict Studies PgCert, PGDip, MA

 

Course Code

AHT033 (MA), AHT034 (PGDip), AHT035 (PGCert)

Location

Coventry University (Coventry)

 

Study mode

Part-time
Online/Blended

Duration

8 months (PG Cert)
16 months (PG Dip)
24 months (MA)

Start date

September 2023

The content of this course for September 2023 entry is still being updated.
The information on these pages relates to September 2022 entry and is for guidance only. Please revisit this course page for updated information.


Course overview

Study level: Postgraduate

The MA is a blended distance learning course, allowing you the flexibility to learn about theories and practises surrounding peace and conflict.

Qualifications available:

  • Postgraduate Certificate in Peace and Conflict Studies (8 months by blended/distance-learning).
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Peace and Conflict Studies (16 months by blended/distance-learning).
  • Full Term MA Peace and Conflict Studies (24 months by blended/distance-learning).
  • Fast-Track MA Peace and Conflict Studies (16 months with APEL by blended/distance-learning, omitting the PG Dip stage).
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Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

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Teaching excellence

Taught by lecturers who are experts in their field

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Employability

Career ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Why you should study this course

  • You can complete an MA in 16 months with accreditation of prior experiential learning (APEL1). For those with 5 years+ working experience, you could gain one third of your Master’s degree credits in recognition of what you’ve already achieved, through our APEL (Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning) route.
  • Complete a Postgraduate Certificate in 8 months or a Postgraduate Diploma in 16 months. Our course can be studied at Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Master's Level, with the opportunity to stop, pause or progress between stages. Whilst most complete a full Master’s degree with us, many students choose to pause after the first or second stage, graduating and continuing their careers with ‘PGCert’ or ‘PGDip’ after their name.
  • Study wherever you are, whilst working. We can provide the flexibility of studying online and through short workshops4 where you can network and learn with peers in a diverse range of roles around the world.
  • An international network of professionals. Access to a current network of practitioners2 working in roles related to peacebuilding internationally, as well as the large team of researchers and practitioners working in the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations.
  • A distinctive, international course led by world-leading experts. This course views peace studies as an activist discipline, which looks more holistically at peace than other similar courses. Our courses are global, from the content of the programme and the staff leading them, to the diverse backgrounds of our participants.

Accreditation, Professional Recognition and Exemptions

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL1) is the process by which Coventry University awards credits towards a qualification based on a student’s prior learning and experience in, for example, their career, previous qualifications and other, relevant life experience. For this course, Coventry University is able to award a third of the credits of the qualification based on a student’s reflection on the outcomes of their prior experience and learning, providing a fast-track option and an opportunity to complete a master’s degree in 16 months rather than 2 years. For more information on our APEL route or this course, contact the Postgraduate Programmes Team at study study.ctpsr@coventry.ac.uk or on +44 (0) 2477 659059.


What you'll study

The MA in Peace and Conflict Studies at the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations is rooted in Coventry’s history as a ‘City of Peace and Reconciliation’. This multidisciplinary programme provides you with the opportunity to learn about the complex nature of peace and conflict in the 21st century. You will be taught how to apply theory and draw on case studies to aid peacebuilding in complex situations. The programme enhances the skills and abilities of people seeking to achieve and strengthen peace in their local communities and around the world.

This programme is studied in three stages:

  • Postgraduate Certificate (60 Master's level credits);
  • Postgraduate Diploma level (120 Master's level credits);
  • Master's (180 Master's level credits)

Students start with the Postgraduate Certificate stage, then they move on to the Postgraduate Diploma and finish with the Master’s degree, with the option to stop, pause or progress at each stage. Each stage must be successfully completed before progressing on to the next.

In year one, students start with the three Postgraduate Certificate modules:

  • Peace, Conflict and Security in the 21st Century;
  • Philosophies of Non-Violence and Reconciliation;
  • Peacebuilding: Theories into Practice

If they choose to progress to the Postgraduate Diploma, their final modules in year one will be Project Design and Planning and either Religion, Peace and Conflict, or Preventing Violent Conflicts, depending on their preferred route.

Modules

  • This module develops your critical understanding of the key concepts of peace, conflict and security and examines your application to contemporary problems. You will be presented with insights from a range of disciplines on both the causes and consequences of conflict and the practices which aim to address the problem of violence in all its forms.

    Compulsory

  • This module explores a range of philosophies and traditions of non-violence and reconciliation. It extends the exploration of violence and its impacts reviewed in ‘Peace, Conflict and Security in the Twenty-First Century’. The module examines the meanings of ‘peace’, ‘justice’ and ‘power’, interrogating the inherent ethical dilemmas contained in the pursuit of peace. Approaches to peace-making, including pacifism, just war thinking, transitional justice and forgiveness, as well as the liberal peace thesis, are reviewed.

    Compulsory

  • This module consolidates, extends and synthesises your understanding of peacebuilding as a broad range of approaches and practices that emerge from the theoretical perspectives examined in Philosophies of Non-violence and Reconciliation which seek to prevent, end, and transform violence and conflict. Drawing from relevant case and field evidence, the module evaluates peacebuilding practices from the individual to international levels. The module will encourage you to critically examine and reflect on a range of key issues that arise in developing ethical and effective processes and practices of peacebuilding including gender, religion, culture, underdevelopment and poverty, and displacement.

    Compulsory

  • This module enables students to understand aspects of project design and funding proposal development in a variety of contexts such as development, social work, security, NGOs and beyond.

    Compulsory

  • The module will provide you with the opportunity to learn about the impact that core theological and ethical themes within the world’s living religions can have on attitudes to peace and conflict. It will also help you to develop the skills to investigate and encourage you to critically analyse the impact that religious ideas have on contemporary conflict situations and the practice of peacebuilding.

    Compulsory

  • The module enables you to develop the theoretical and analytical capacity to evaluate and critically engage with the relationship between types of conflicts, the manner in which they are settled, and the problems of promoting sustainable post-settlement peace processes. This module aims to examine a range of regional conflicts exploring the manner in which a formal peace agreement came about, and encourages you to identify the range of peacebuilding initiatives involved in the efforts to deepen the peace and promote reconciliation during the post-peace settlement period

    Compulsory

The Postgraduate Diploma stage continues in year two with two further modules:

  • Project Management in Practice, and either
  • Gender, Violence and Justice, or
  • Environment, Conflict and Sustainability, depending on their route.

If students choose to progress to the Master's, the final modules in year two will be Research Design in CTPSR, and the dissertation, supervised by a subject expert from the Centre, for Trust, Peace and Social Relations.

Modules

  • This module helps you to understand how projects are implemented and managed. This will cover a variety of project management tools and approaches to measure progress such as success indicators, milestones and deliverables.

    Compulsory

  • This module encourages you to develop a solid theoretical and practical understanding of violence, conflict, peace and justice from a gender perspective. You will be asked to explore the relationship between gender and militarism and how masculinities and femininities are constructed in times of war and post-conflict transition.

    You will also be offered opportunities to acquire a deeper understanding of the gendered nature of violence in conflict and particularly of the conflict related sexual violence. In doing this you should develop knowledge of transitional justice responses to gender-based violence and critically reflect on the concept of gender Justice. Finally, you will be asked to study the UN framework on “Women, Peace and Security” which originated with the adoption of Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) and you should build an understanding of its policy implications on the national and international level and implemented on the ground.

    Compulsory

  • This interdisciplinary module examines the complex interactions of natural resources, environment, conflict, development and peace on land and at sea. It looks at key theories and concepts in the area such as ‘resource curse,’ ‘extractivism,’ ‘environmental justice’ and ‘political ecology.’ It also analyses specific conflicts and identifies challenges and opportunities for equitable natural resource governance towards sustainable peace and development. The module will provide you with analytical tools from multiple perspectives including politics, sociology, political economy and geography to encourage critical reflection about contemporary debates on resource conflict, natural resource governance and environmental peacebuilding.

    Compulsory

  • This module is designed to enable you to learn how to carefully design and plan your research. You will be asked to identify the appropriate methodology and methods for your chosen project, will be taught the difference about distinct types of research questions, which should help you to gain an understanding of research ethics.

    Compulsory

  • This module is designed to enable you to write an extended piece of written work entailing independent study and the use of appropriate research techniques and source materials – your dissertation. The dissertation may consist of a critical evaluation of literature, of a reassessment of evidence, of an evaluation of particular approaches or techniques, or of a limited piece of original or applied research. The dissertation should build on the foundation provided by the Peace and Conflict Studies taught modules and may involve either the fuller development of subject matter and techniques encountered in the taught programme or the exploration of new areas and techniques appropriate to the overall programme of study.

    Compulsory

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.


How you'll learn

The course combines short workshops with interactive online learning, making it perfect for people who need to integrate their studies with family or work commitments.

For online teaching, students use Aula. The design is based on existing social media platforms so it feels familiar, meaning you can quickly and easily find your way around and engage with others. Some of Aula’s benefits include:

  • User friendly interface – browse content and module materials on a central newsfeed, where you can share comments or join in conversations. Here, you are only ever one click away from course information and connecting with others
  • Engaging – create small working groups or chat privately with peers, friends, lecturers and tutors
  • Integrated – interact with existing tools, such as OneDrive, The Big Blue Button and more
  • Flexible – take control over when and where you study, with direct online access on laptops, tablets and mobile phone devices

This course is part-time. Whilst we would like to give you all the information about our part-time offering here, it is tailored for each course each year depending on the number of part-time applicants. Therefore, the part-time teaching arrangements vary. Please call +44 (0) 2477659059 or email study.ctpsr@coventry.ac.uk our team if you have questions about  part-time study and teaching hours.


Teaching contact hours

The number of part-time contact hours and self-directed study hours may vary from semester to semester, however, on average, it is likely to be around 20 hours per week, in total.
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 response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are prepared for courses due to start in or after the 2022/2023 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.


Assessment

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will vary depending upon the module.

Assessment methods include:

  • Essays
  • Group work
  • Presentations
  • Reports
  • Projects
  • Coursework
  • Individual Assignments

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.


Entry requirements

All applications will be evaluated individually with admissions decisions made by CTPSR. Admission decisions are based on the entry criteria elaborated below and an evaluation of the required application documents. Ordinarily, the minimum entry criteria for each stage (PGCert, PGDip & MA) of the Peace and Conflict Studies programme are as follows:

Applicants should hold a 2:2 or above degree (or equivalent international grade/qualification), from a recognised University, preferably in a social science subject (e.g. Sociology, Psychology, Security Studies, International Relations, Politics, Peace and Conflict Studies, Development Studies, etc.).

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning:

To be eligible for AP(E)L an applicant must have a minimum of five (5) years evidenced working experience in a relevant field to Peace and Conflict Studies and be operating in a relevant role at the level of mid-management or above at the time of application, or have operated within a relevant role at the level of mid-management or above within 12 months of the time of application. An eligible applicant seeking AP(E)L will be assessed by a portfolio and admissions interview, alongside their capacity to complete the programme successfully.
For further information on eligibility and the application process please email study.ctpsr@coventry.ac.uk.

We recognise a breadth of qualifications; speak to one of our advisers today to find out how we can help you.

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All applications will be evaluated individually with admissions decisions made by CTPSR. Admission decisions are based on the entry criteria elaborated below and an evaluation of the required application documents.

Ordinarily, the minimum entry criteria for each stage (PGCert, PGDip & MA) of the Peace and Conflict Studies programme are as follows:

Applicants should hold a 2:2 or above degree (or equivalent international grade/qualification), from a recognised University, preferably in a social science subject (e.g. Sociology, Psychology, Security Studies, International Relations, Politics, Peace and Conflict Studies, Development Studies, etc.).

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning:

To be eligible for AP(E)L an applicant must have a minimum of five (5) years evidenced working experience in a relevant field to Peace and Conflict Studies and be operating in a relevant role at the level of mid-management or above at the time of application, or have operated within a relevant role at the level of mid-management or above within 12 months of the time of application. An eligible applicant seeking AP(E)L will be assessed by a portfolio and admissions interview, alongside their capacity to complete the programme successfully.

For further information on eligibility and the application process please email study.ctpsr@coventry.ac.uk.

Select your region to find detailed information about entry requirements:

You can view our full list of country specific entry requirements on our Entry requirements page.

Alternatively, visit our International hub for further advice and guidance on finding in-country agents and representatives, joining our in-country events and how to apply.

English language requirements

For non-UK applicants, the entry requirement is English language proficiency at IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. Where applicants do not hold up-to-date IELTS certification, we will look at whether an applicant has previously studied and successfully completed a Higher Education qualification in English. Where an applicant does not hold such a qualification entry will be at the discretion of the Course Director and subject to a review of documentation and an interview. Please call or email our team if you have questions about this requirement.

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5

If you don't meet the English language requirements, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course. 

For more information on our approved English language tests visit our English language requirements page.

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Fees and funding

Student Full time Part time
UK TBC per year TBC
International TBC per year TBC

For advice and guidance on tuition fees3 and student loans visit our Postgraduate Finance page.

We offer a range of International scholarships to students all over the world. For more information, visit our International Scholarships page.


Facilities

Our aim is to offer you sector-leading facilities4. The MA is a blended learning course – a mixture of distance and face-to-face study – allowing you the flexibility to integrate your studies with work and personal commitments. To see our campus, you can take a virtual tour.

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Talent Team

You will benefit from our support designed to help you succeed and our industry-relevant teaching and resources. These include our modern library and computing facilities, dedicated careers advice and Students’ Union.

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Aula

Aula is our online learning platform, accessible from your phone, desktop or tablet. The design is based on existing social media platforms, so it feels familiar and easy to use.

 

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The Library

You will benefit from our support designed to help you succeed and our industry-relevant teaching and resources. These include our modern library and computing facilities, dedicated careers advice and Students’ Union.


Careers and opportunities

This course equips students who have an interest in peace and conflict with the skills, knowledge and understanding needed to work for a broad range of organisations such as:

  • International non-government organisations
  • Multi-national government organisations like the United Nations
  • Regional communities such as the European Union or the Economic Community of West African States
  • Faith groups
  • Faith-based organisations
  • Community organisations
  • The private sector
  • Think tanks and academia.

The MA in Peace and Conflict Studies is currently taught by experts in the broad field of peace and conflict studies and is informed by their research, practice and activism. The programme provides students with a deeper insight into theoretical and practical challenges in contemporary peacebuilding.

The course seeks to create a learning community sharing and debating ideas and challenges with academic staff, alumni and current students during the course and long after it has concluded. The course provides practitioners with opportunities to broaden their professional network and draw on the experience of other practitioner students. We consider this to be useful in the workplace and gaining a formally accredited Postgraduate qualification may enhance career progression.


How to apply

  • 1Accreditations

    The majority of our courses have been formally recognised by professional bodies, which means the courses have been reviewed and tested to ensure they reach a set standard. In some instances, studying on an accredited course can give you additional benefits such as exemptions from professional exams (subject to availability, fees may apply). Accreditations, partnerships, exemptions and memberships shall be renewed in accordance with the relevant bodies’ standard review process and subject to the university maintaining the same high standards of course delivery.

    2UK and international opportunities

    Please note that we are unable to guarantee any UK or International opportunities (whether required or optional) such as internships, work experience, field trips, conferences, placements or study abroad opportunities and that all such opportunities may be subject to additional costs (which could include, but is not limited to, equipment, materials, bench fees, studio or facilities hire, travel, accommodation and visas), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable travel COVID and visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the visa requirements, please contact the International Office.

    3Tuition fees

    The University will charge the tuition fees that are stated in the above table for the first Academic Year of study. The University will review tuition fees each year. For Home Students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, the University 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.

    For International Students, we may increase fees each year but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation. If you defer your course start date or have to extend your studies beyond the normal duration of the course (e.g. to repeat a year or resit examinations) the University reserves the right to charge you fees at a higher rate and/or in accordance with any legislative changes during the additional period of study.

    4Facilities

    Facilities are subject to availability. Due to the ongoing restrictions relating to COVID-19, some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) may vary from those advertised and may have reduced availability or restrictions on their use.

    Student Contract

    By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. The 2022/23 Contract is currently being updated so please revisit this page before submitting your application. 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.

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