Taught course

Global Security

University of Glasgow · School of Social and Political Sciences

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for postgraduate taught programmes are a 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent qualification (for example, GPA 3.0 or above) in a relevant subject.

Months of entry


Course content

The traditional military threats which defined global security matters for the best part of the 20th century have been quickly replaced by new and re-emerging security challenges. This programme offers you the opportunity to examine many of these contemporary threats.

  • You will take a study visit to Brussels which offers the chance to experience security and political institutions like NATO and the European Commission and meet key security personnel.
  • You will develop your knowledge of the security challenges impacting our rapidly changing social and political environment at a local, national and global level. These range from terrorism and cyber warfare to disease, migration and climate change.
  • You can combine a broad spectrum of subject areas into your degree, including politics, sociology, Central & East European studies, war studies, archaeology, computing science, geography, law, business and education.
  • You will have the opportunity to take part in policy development exercises: working with government officials and policy-makers to simulate the process of responding to major international security crises.
  • The programme will also include a series of master classes from high profile professionals and academics working in the field of security.

Programme Structure

Core courses

  • International security and global politics
  • Thematic issues in global security
  • Comparative approaches to warfare and violent conflict
  • Either: Qualitative research methods OR Social sciences statistics
  • Dissertation.

Optional courses

You will supplement the core elements of the programme with a range of elective classes chosen from a broad list of optional courses.


In addition to the general degree programme students have the opportunity to study one of 3 specialised pathways. Current pathways include:

Politics, Information and Security

Provides students with the opportunity to examine how cyber issues and information communications technologies challenge the way states and citizens alike attempt to use and constrain information in a range of societies for security purposes.
Specialised courses within this pathway include:
- The Internet and Civil Society
- Human-Centred Security*
- Systems and Networks*
*these two courses provide students with some basic practical knowledge and training in ICT related security issues. Students do not need to have an computing science background to do these courses.

Social and Cultural Perspectives

Provides students with the opportunity to examine global security from a critical perspective, reflecting on social and cultural aspects and constructions of 'security'. Important to this pathway will be an interrogation of the relationship between security, vulnerability and the ethics of care.
Specialised courses within this pathway include:
- Critical Perspectives on Securities and Vulnerabilities
- A range of related electives

Strategy and Defence

Provides students with the opportunity to examine shifts in Western strategic thought in both a historical and contemporary setting. Particular attention will be given to how strategy and defence is currently developing within a new interdependent global context.
Specialised courses within this pathway include:
- Comparative Approaches to Warfare and Violent Conflict
- The American Way of War: from Revolution to the War on Terror
- A range of related electives

Information for international students

IELTS 6.5 (with no subtest less than 6) iBT TOEFL 92 (with no less than 21 in Listening & writing, 22 in reading, 23 in speaking) Cambridge ESOL Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) - B minimum or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) - C minimum

Fees and funding

UK students
International students


Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months
part time
24 months

Course contact details

Dr Eamonn Butler