Taught course

International Relations Theory

London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) · Department of International Relations

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Entry requirements

A 2:1 degree or equivalent in international relations, politics, history or a similar discipline.

English higher level.

Months of entry


Course content

About this MSc programme

MSc International Relations Theory is an advanced, academic study of the subject from a theoretical perspective.

The programme offers a deeper exploration of the ways in which people think about international relations, how international relations are theorised and conceptualised, and why they act the way they do when conducting international relations as a field of practice. The compulsory course covers the main explanatory and normative approaches in international relations theory - realism, liberalism, the "English School", constructivism, normative theory, gender and feminist writings and postcolonial perspectives. It explores international relations as knowledge, as a social science and as a practical discipline. You will also submit a 10,000-word dissertation and can choose optional courses within the Department or elsewhere in the School.

You may also be interested in the MSc International Relations (Research) programme which shares the same core course, Theories of International Relations, but entails a compulsory methodology course.

You may also be interested in the MSc International Relations programme which has a different core course, International Politics, but does not entail a compulsory methodology course.

Department of International Relations

The Department is ranked 5th in the QS World University Ranking by Subject 2018 tables for Politics and International Studies. Its reputation for international excellence was recognised in the most recent National Research Assessment Exercise when the IR and Government Departments, assessed as one unit, received one of the highest rankings. In the Foreign Policy''s 2018 Best International Relations Schools in the World Table, LSE was listed top UK institution for the 'Top Master's Program for Policy Career in International Relations'.

Information for international students

For country-specific information regarding entry requirements, fees, and scholarships avaliable, please visit LSE's country pages.

Fees and funding

Every graduate student is charged a fee for their programme.

This programme is eligible for needs-based awards from LSE, including the Graduate Support Scheme, Master's Awards and Anniversary Scholarships.

More information on funding and scholarships can be found on the LSE website.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Student Recruitment Office
+44 (0) 20 7955 6613