Taught course


University of Birmingham · Department of Political Science and International Studies

Entry requirements

For the MA programme you require a good Honours degree or its equivalent. For those whose first language is not English, an IELTS Certificate is required.

Months of entry


Course content

Our Masters in Politics offers you insights into the causes and consequences of a variety of different political phenomenon across the globe.

On our MA in Politics you will explore key controversies in political science from a variety of different perspectives. You will be introduced to the major concepts in political science and learn to apply those concepts and approaches to explain the variety of political phenomena across the globe. You will learn through a blend of lectures, seminars and individual research.

The Politics MA examines central questions of political science related to power, the state and the sources of political change. It is designed for students who are either familiar with the study of political science and issues at undergraduate level or who are enthusiastic to focus on this area of study at the postgraduate level.

You will take two core modules, Doing Political Research and Varieties of Politics that will provide you with a foundation for thinking about the subject. You then design the rest of the programme around your own interests by selecting from a wide range of options. The flexibility of this programme is ideal for those with a broad range of interests in politics or for those who want to construct a curriculum around a particular area of interest. View our course page for a list of modules

As a postgraduate student studying for a Masters in Politics you will also have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of events. You will be welcomed as a member of a variety of research groups which include members of academic staff and postgraduate research students who meet regularly to discuss their own research, recent publications and to organise research events including inviting visiting speakers.

Key issues and questions examined throughout this Masters in Politics include:

  • Where does power lie and how is it exercised?
  • What is the role of the state and what is its relationship to society?
  • Why are democracies not ubiquitous and why do we see a mixture of democratic and non-democratic regimes across the globe?
  • Why do democracies vary in their form and content?
  • Who wins elections and why?
  • What role do electoral systems, social context and campaigning play in determining election outcomes?
  • Why does political conflict emerge and how can it be managed?

Why study this course?

  • Choose from an extensive range of optional modules
  • Study in a supportive environment with research-active political scientists
  • Be a part of one of more of the research groups e.g. British Politics, Asian Politics, Middle East Politics, European Studies, Political Economy, and Parties, Voters and Elections
  • Participate in a range of intellectual and social events alongside your programme

Who is the programme for?

This Masters in Politics will be of interest and benefit to those interested in government, the civil service, international organizations and NGOs. In all cases, students are encouraged to work closely with staff in a supportive and intellectually-committed environment.

Information for international students

  • IELTS 6.5 with no less that 6.0 in any band
  • TOEFL: 88 overall with no less than 21 in Reading, 20 in Listening, 22 in Speaking and 21 in Writing
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) including online: PTE Academic 67 with no less than 64 in all four skills
  • Cambridge English (exams taken from 2015): Advanced – minimum overall score of 176, with no less than 169 in any component

Fees and funding

UK students
£10,530 FT/£5,265 PT
International students

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

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