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General Assembly Hall, UN

MSc/PgDipDiplomacy & International Security

Why this course?

The MSc Diplomacy & International Security gives graduates from a range of academic backgrounds the opportunity to gain expertise in a vital area of international engagement. It will also appeal to professionals interested in moving into positions requiring a breadth of knowledge on diplomacy, history and security issues.

The practice of diplomacy is vital to international negotiations and this practice has distinguished and established lineage. Additionally security, broadly defined, includes areas such as terrorism, cyber security and climate change.

This Master’s programme offers a genuinely interdisciplinary experience. Drawing on the academic expertise in the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences, you will be able to select classes from History, the School of Government and Public Policy, and the Law School.

Diplomacy and international security are among the most pressing issues facing the world today. Success or failure can have huge implications for the international community and society as a whole. That’s why this programme has been welcomed by diplomats, politicians and academics. Our students will think strategically, reflect historically.

Dr Rogelia Pastor-Castro
Programme Director

The Masters in Diplomacy & International Security has links with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Consular Missions in Edinburgh. Distinguished diplomatic and foreign policy practitioners will contribute to the programme and you will have the opportunity to visit the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London.

What you’ll study

The MSc in Diplomacy & International Security introduces and familiarises you with contemporary and historical issues relating to the course topics, examining them through historical, political and legal viewpoints.

The course is organised into core and elective classes. The core classes focus on the evolution and practice of diplomacy and will provide students with the research skills required. The opportunity to carry out an extended piece of original historical research and writing is provided in the form of the dissertation.

There are two core modules and you are required to choose at least one optional class from each school. Your experience is further enhanced by learning alongside students from other disciplinary backgrounds.

Dissertation

MSc students also write a dissertation of 15,000 words. You’ll research a topic of your choice, under the supervision of a member of staff.

Course content

Compulsory classes

The Evolution of Diplomacy

This course provides an advanced study of the evolution of diplomacy. While giving an historical overview it asks questions throughout about the current relevance of various diplomatic practices such as the appointment of ambassadors and the elite nature of policy-making in the diplomatic field. The class will also discusses the broader issues about the definition and purpose of diplomacy.

Chose one module from the following three subject-specific research classes:

Research Skills, Sources & Methods for Historians

This class introduces students to methodological and practical issues in historical research. The class is designed to help you decide a research topic and a design that you will use for your dissertation. Topics covered include formulating research questions, developing concepts, and how to select cases to study.

Principles of Research Design

This class covers key research design issues and enables you to evaluate alternative research designs and create appropriate research proposals. The class is designed to help you decide a research topic and a design that you will use for your dissertation. Topics covered include formulating research questions, developing concepts, and how to select cases to study.

Legal Research Skills

Students from a non-law background will be required to undertake this short online course at the start of the semester. Topics cover the main sources of legal information, how to use these sources and how to develop an effective research strategy.

Optional classes

Contemporary Security Challenges & Responses

The concept of national security expanded to incorporate not only ‘traditional’ threats from hostile actors, but a host of issues ranging from the impact of climate change, natural disasters, resource security and even recession. Security has become increasingly globalised and interconnected in threat and response while also increasingly recruiting the populace to be ‘secure citizens’. The relevant theories underpinning these developing trends will be examined alongside the key institutions and actors.

Embassies in Crisis

Embassies are integral to international diplomacy, their staff instrumental to inter-governmental dialogue, strategic partnerships, trading relationships and cultural exchange. But embassies are also discreet political spaces. Notionally sovereign territory ‘immune’ from local jurisdiction, in moments of crisis embassies have often been targets of protest and sites of confrontation. It is this aspect of embassy experience that this class will explore.

Britain, France & the United States 1945-1955 Diplomacy, Strategy & Alliance

This class explores the diplomacy of the post war world. It will provide students with a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the key international issues faced by Britain, France and the United States after the Second World War. Students will examine the issues which strengthened the post-war alliance and those which challenged it.

Contemporary International Relations

This class introduces students to the literature and research agendas related to conflict and cooperation in international relations studies.

We'll cover a wide array of approaches that relate to interstate and intrastate (civil) conflict, cooperation and other contemporary security topics such as post-conflict peace, peacekeeping operations, terrorism, and human rights violations.

Terrorism & the Law

While legal responses to terrorism long pre-date the attacks of 9/11, the events of that day prompted a radical shift, with certain countries expanding their already substantial counter-terrorist offences and powers, while others moved to criminalise acts of terror as distinct crimes for the first time.

International Human Rights Law

Human rights protection is a global concern. This class examines civil and political rights along with economic, social and cultural rights, and assesses the range of international monitoring and supervision regimes. Topics covered include the major international treaties and bodies. It also looks at the challenges to human rights in transitional societies as well as the right to self-determination.

International Institutions & Regimes

The purpose of this class is to provide students with a comprehensive overview of the concepts and theoretical approaches central to understanding and analysing the role of international institutions and regimes in the contemporary world.

This class will survey a variety of international institutions and regimes, exploring how they shape global interactions in a number of cross-cutting issue areas such as security, trade, human rights and the environment. The overall analysis will contribute to the understanding of the theories, practices and processes through which global politics are organised, and to an assessment of the future of international institutions and regimes in global governance.

Learning & teaching

This course is taught mainly through face-to-face teaching where class time is spent discussing and debating the weekly topic. Each class is delivered through two-hour weekly seminars, which students are required to attend.

Assessment

Assessment is conducted with a mixture of presentations, written assignments and exams that vary module by module.

Entry requirements

First or upper second-class Honours degree, or international equivalent, in social sciences/law subjects or substantial professional experience.

English language requirements

You're required to have a suitable minimum level of competency in the English language if your first language is not English or if you have not been educated wholly or mainly in the medium of English.

For postgraduate studies, the University of Strathclyde requires a minimum overall score of IELTS 6.5 (with no score below 6.0) or equivalent. Tests are valid for two years.

Pre-sessional courses in English are available.

If you’re a national of an English speaking country recognised by UK Visa and Immigrations (please check most up-to-date list on the Home Office website) or you have successfully completed an academic qualification (at least equivalent to a UK bachelor's degree) in any of these countries, then you do not need to present any additional evidence.

If you are from a country not recognised as an English speaking country by the United Kingdom Vis and Immigration (UKVI), please check our English requirements before making your application.

Pre-Masters preparation course

The Pre-Masters Programme is a preparation course held at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre, for international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for a Masters degree at University of Strathclyde. The Pre-Masters programme provides progression to a number of degree options.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

Fees & funding

2019/20

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU

  • £7,600

Rest of UK

  • £7,600

International

  • £15,700 

Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students

Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students may be able to apply for support from the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS). The support is in the form of a tuition fee loan and for eligible students, a living cost loan. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Students coming from England

Students ordinarily resident in England may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance England. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Students coming from Wales

Students ordinarily resident in Wales may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance Wales. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.´╗┐

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Students coming from Northern Ireland

Postgraduate students who are ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland may be able to apply for support from Student Finance Northern Ireland. The support is a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

International students

We have a large range of scholarships available to help you fund your studies. Check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Strathclyde Alumni

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Alumni Discount

10% tuition fee discount is offered to all Strathclyde alumni completing a full-time postgraduate taught course in the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences.

Please note

The fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

Careers

The programme will equip students with the skills and knowledge to pursue professional careers in areas including:

  • government (whether domestically or in supra-national organisations such as the EU or UN)
  • non-governmental organisations
  • international agencies
  • journalism
  • think-tanks
  • law firms

The strong research focus means this course will also act as a route to advanced postgraduate study in:

  • history
  • politics
  • international relations
  • law
  • security studies

For those who wish to pursue a career outside academia, this research component will be beneficial for various research and policy roles, and the public and third sectors.

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Diplomacy and International Security

Qualification: MSc, Start date: Sep 2019, Mode of delivery: attendance, full-time

Diplomacy and International Security

Qualification: MSc, Start date: Sep 2019, Mode of delivery: attendance, part-time

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