Taught course

International Relations (Distance Learning)

University of Portsmouth · School of Area Studies, History, Politics and Literature

Entry requirements

A good honours degree in a Social Science, Humanities or related subject. Equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will also be considered.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.5.

Months of entry

January, September

Course content

Almost all aspects of life – economic, social, cultural and political – are influenced by players beyond the borders of national states.

If you want the skills to understand this dynamic international order and you're interested in the relations between countries, this MA International Relations Master's degree course gives you the platform to address some of the most contentious subjects in international affairs.

You'll study key topics across the spectrum of international relations and examine theories and historical inquiry. This will equip you with the tools to challenge conventional explanations and develop arguments of your own. You'll develop advanced analytic skills and critical assessment abilities, and learn to write engaging reports, policy briefs and essays.

When you graduate, you'll be in a strong position to generate creative solutions that benefit the global economy and international society.

You'll be suited for roles in security, development, social policy, governance, advocacy and communications. Previous graduates have gone on to work in parliaments, political parties, third sector and civil society organisations.

What you'll experience:

On this course, you'll:

  • Study pressing topics, such as: why war and conflict are a permanent feature of global affairs; why powerful states interfere with weak or fragile countries; the role of the United Nations, World Trade Organisation and EU in promoting cooperation; and whether global civil society and the third sector can promote security, development and rights
  • Complete an independent research project in a subject relevant to your future career
  • Get to study with members of CEISR (Centre for European and International Studies Research),the UK's largest centre for European Studies
  • Develop expertise in issues relating to Europe-ideal if you want to pursue a career in European institutions or with political lobbyists and think tanks
  • Be taught by internationally recognised experts, including members of the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence for the Study of Transnational Europe
  • Develop transferable skills in qualitative and quantitative research, critical reading, communication, and executing major projects
  • Have the opportunity to undertake a supervised work-based project if you work in a relevant field or do an internship during the course
  • Tap in to our Library's electronic resources, which you can access from anywhere with a Web connection

You can study the course full-time or part-time.

Work experience and career planning

If your not already in employment, our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course.

We can help you identify placements, internships, voluntary roles and opportunities that will complement your studies.

Careers and Opportunities

With a rounded skill set, and knowledge of international issues, you'll be an informed global citizen, with a sense of responsibility and commitment to ethical practice and issues of global social justice.

The MA International Relations Master's degree will put you in a strong position to pursue job roles in areas and organisations such as:

  • National, European and International state institutions
  • Political parties
  • Political lobbyists
  • Think tanks
  • Security and risk analysis
  • Foreign affairs analysis
  • Political communication and journalism

You could also continue your studies in postgraduate research, leading to a qualification such as a PhD.

You can get help and support from our Careers and Employability service in finding a role and for 5 years after you leave the University.

Fees and funding

UK students
Full Time Distance Learning: £7,300* Part time Distance Learning: £3,650 p/a* *All fees are subject to annual increase
International students
Full time Distance Learning: £7,300* Part time Distance Learning: £3,650 p/a**All fees are subject to annual increase

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA
    full time
    12-24 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    12-24 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification
  • Further details of qualification

    1 year full-time distance learning, 2 years part-time distance learning

Course contact details

Admissions Team