Taught course

Humanitarianism, Conflict and Development

University of Bath · Department of Social and Policy Sciences

Entry requirements

You should have a bachelor’s honours degree or international equivalent, typically a 2:1 or above.

To apply for this course you should have an undergraduate degree in an appropriate subject such as development studies, human or political geography, sociology, area studies, politics, political economy, economics or international relations.

We will also consider graduates with an undergraduate degree in other subjects where you have relevant professional experience.

We may make an offer based on a lower grade if you can provide evidence of your suitability for the degree.

If you first language is not English but within the last 2 years you completed your degree in the UK you may be exempt from our English Language requirements.

Months of entry


Course content

Develop a critical understanding of conflict and humanitarian crises. You’ll focus on the tools and approaches needed to respond to these challenges.

Throughout this course, you’ll explore the core challenges of conflict and humanitarian crises, using real-world case studies and research from across the planet.

During your academic studies, you’ll focus on enhancing your knowledge of the practical tools and approaches used to respond to peacebuilding, development, human rights and humanitarian response challenges. This will give you a deep understanding of the complexities of resolving conflict, promoting peace and providing adequate and relevant assistance.

Flexibility and real-world knowledge

This is a flexible course that mixes distance learning with face-to-face residential visits in Bath. You’ll also have the opportunity to go on a study trip to Jordan. This combination means you can experience actual humanitarian challenges and apply your theoretical learning.

Due to its distance learning format and content, this course generally attracts a diverse, global cohort. This means you’ll be able to learn from the experiences and insights of your classmates during online group sessions and discussions.

During the Residential Weeks, you'll also meet and work with your cohort and academic staff. This will help you to build a strong professional network to take into your future career.

Learn from experts in the field

You’ll learn from experts in humanitarianism, conflict and development studies, as well as staff in the wider Department of Social & Policy Sciences community. Their passion, knowledge and research shape their teaching to enhance your learning experience.

Gain key skills

This course will provide you with an excellent skillset to pursue careers in policy or programmes in humanitarian, conflict response, or peacebuilding organisations. It is equally relevant if you're already working in these fields and looking to advance your career with a deeper level of specialist knowledge.

On successful completion of this course, you will leave with:

  • in-depth knowledge of humanitarian and conflict response and development policy and practice, with a focus on examples from the Middle East, West Africa, sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia
  • the professional and analytical skills to tackle political, ethical and practical tensions on the ground
  • comprehensive knowledge of sustainable policy solutions that address the needs of those displaced by conflict and natural disasters
  • the skills and knowledge to evaluate diverse perspectives and tools for conflict response and humanitarian action across diverse settings
  • an established professional network for continued knowledge-sharing and effective career development

The theoretical knowledge you’ll gain through the taught units and face-to-face Residential Weeks at Bath will be enhanced during the optional visit to Jordan. During this trip, you’ll have the opportunity to explore humanitarian issues in real-life contexts and engage with people working in the field and those impacted by forced migration.

Graduate prospects

You could go on to work with development or humanitarian NGOs, the United Nations and other inter-governmental organisations, or in conflict or humanitarian advisor roles in government departments such as the Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office of the UK government. You could also progress to doctoral studies.

Graduates from this course have gone on to secure roles such as:

  • Humanitarian Field Officer, UNHCR
  • Women’s Development Coordinator at The Connection
  • EU Partnerships and Advocacy Officer at the British Council
  • Founder of The Washing Machine Project

Fees and funding

View available funding opportunities.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    24 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Taught Postgraduate Admissions
+44 (0)1225 385 115