MSc International Relations

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

MSc International Relations probes into the causes and consequences of phenomena such as war, trade, regional integration, migration and terrorism.
  • Examine theoretical approaches in the contemporary study of international politics and their application.
  • Improve your skills in research design and qualitative and quantitative analysis.
  • A wide range of specialisations are available to enable you to develop your specific expertise.

Careers & Employability

Graduates are employed in roles such as Government Social Researcher, Diplomatic Advisor, and Public Affairs Consultant.

Graduates work with international private-sector employers, government agencies and Non-Governmental Organisations including:

United Nations, New York and Geneva
EU Delegation of the European Commission
IBRD (World Bank)
Anderson Consulting
Embassy of the United States of America
Economist Intelligence Unit, The Economist

Curricular information is subject to change


Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

This programme aims to provide a comprehensive and critical grounding in key issues in politics and international relations and to allow students critically engage with cutting edge issues in the discipline.

  • develop methodological research expertise
  • develop oral presentation skills
  • develop student's research and professional development skills
  • develop students ability to understand power in an anarchic world
  • enhance group work skills
  • enhance students' understanding of international organisations
  • equip students with the skills necessary to understand and critically assess issues in international politics and security

View All Modules Here

The MSc in International Relations is a 90-credit programme. Full time students must take three 10-credit modules in the autumn trimester, and three 10-credit modules in the spring trimester. Students must also submit a thesis worth 30 credits that will be written during the summer term.

Core and Option Modules for MSc International Relations

These are the current modules for 2023/24 but are subject to change. Each of the following modules carries 10 credits unless otherwise specified. 

Core Modules

  • POL40950 Introduction to Statistics - Autumn
  • POL40050 Theories of International Relations - Autumn
  • POL41640 Qualitative Research Methods for Political Science - Spring
  • POL42310 Thesis (30 credits) - Summer 

Core Options Choose minimum of 1

  • POL42440 Political Economy of Security - Spring
  • POL42060 International Security - Spring

Option Modules (Select Two)

Autumn Trimester 

  • POL40140 Global Justice
  • ​POL40160 Comparative Public Policy
  • POL40540 Comparative European Politics
  • POL41020 Politics of Human Rights
  • POL41510 Middle East & North Africa
  • POL41650 The Global Political Economy of Europe
  • POL41870 Political Economy of Institutions and Comparative Development
  • POL41980 Peace & Conflict Studies
  • POL42040 Gender & the Political System
  • POL42070 Politics of (mis-)information

Spring Trimester

  • POL40100 Politics of Development
  • ​POL40370 International Political Economy
  • POL40610 EU Foreign and Security Policy
  • POL40970 Politics European Governance
  • POL41030 Theory of Human Rights
  • POL41720 Gender, Peace, and Security
  • POL41780 The Politics of Inequality
  • POL41860 Governance, Politics and Development
  • POL42050 Quantitative Text Analysis
  • POL42060 International Security
  • POL42340 Programming for Social Scientists
  • POL42350 Connected_Politics
  • POL42440 Political Economy of Security

MSc International Relations (W036) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 9310
nonEU    fee per year - € 21520

MSc International Relations (W109) Part Time
EU          fee per year - € 6110
nonEU    fee per year - € 10760

***Fees are subject to change

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships.

SPIRe operates a Graduate Scholarship programme, which opens on May 1st. To access details, see SPIRe Graduate Scholarship Scheme. Please note that not all programmes are eligible for this Scholarship, please check the T&C's carefully when they become available.

A primary degree with at least Second Class Honours Grade 1 (2H1) in a relevant subject such as political science, international relations, social science, sociology, history, geography, economics, global studies, public policy, development studies, EU studies, law. 2H1 is equivalent to 60 per cent, B minus or 3.08 GPA - in American system: B or 3.00 GPA.

  • Your application will be considered on its individual merits and relevant professional experience will also be taken into account.
  • English language requirements: applicants whose first language is not English should have met TOEFL, IELTs, or computer-based TOEFL requirements (600, 6.5, or 250 respectively), or the Cambridge English Test (Certificate in Advanced English at a minimum of Grade B, or Certificate of Proficiency in English at Grade C). Applicants who obtained a previous degree from an English-speaking university may be exempted from this requirement. Click here for further info.
  • Students meeting the programme’s academic entry requirements but not the  English language requirements, may enter the programme upon  successful completion of UCD’s Pre-Sessional or International Pre-Master’s Pathway programmes. Please see the following link for further information http://www.ucd.ie/alc/programmes/pathways/ 
  • These are the minimum entry requirements – additional criteria may be requested for some programmes

Sandra Perron
President of Imagine Foundation

Completing the MSc in International Relations at UCD was one of the best decisions of my life. Interacting with high calibre students from around the world, I quickly realised how little I knew about international politics and relations, and how my cultural paradigms, mostly based on limited knowledge, have influenced my decision making in the past.

Now, whether it is in my role as a Global Purchasing Director, President of a non-profit organisation or a simple citizen of my country, my studies at UCD have enabled me to better understand the world I live in, and consider more profoundly such elements as human rights, global climate change, or international security in my decision making.

Jasmin Marston, Graduate MSc International Relations

"With the completion of my Master of Science I have been equipped with a solid basis of research approaches and methods. Furthermore I had the opportunity to take, as well as audit, a plethora of subjects (classes and paper titles) that allowed me to explore my interests in politics and development.
I have had personal interest in Ireland, as is was the first (and longest) colony of Great Britain and has been under international pressure since the collapse of the global economy in 2008 to implement austerity measures. Both of these facts are similar to what many Sub-Saharan African countries have experiences, and hence an intriguing facet to studying developmental issues in the West. Furthermore my friends recommended studying in Ireland, as it was known for their good schools".

The following entry routes are available:

MSc International Relations FT (W036)
Duration
1 Years
Attend
Full Time
Deadline
Rolling*
MSc International Relations PT (W109)
Duration
2 Years
Attend
Part Time
Deadline
Rolling*

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised

A comphrensive FAQ can be found here