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School of Social and Political Science: Graduate school




The dissertation is an extended piece of scholarship in which a student is expected to produce a substantive piece of independent research in International Relations of the Middle East. The dissertation will be no longer than 15,000 words on a topic related to the international relations of the Middle East to be submitted by a date specified in the University Regulations.

The dissertation is expected to tackle a research problem, engage the relevant literature, and build upon the relevant concepts and theories introduced in the taught elements of the degree. Students will deploy a range of primary and secondary sources as well as appropriate data-analytic and bibliographic skills. Each student will be allocated a research supervisor from either IMES or PIR by the Spring to advise on and oversee her or his research progress.


Intended Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • learn to undertake a sustained piece of independent research within the disciplinary fields of International Relations and Middle Eastern studies that demonstrates the research skills, training and knowledge acquired in the previous coursework;
  • refine their abilities to engage critically and analytically with the significant literature in the field of their specialist interest;
  • train to formulate a research problem;
  • utilise relevant theories, theoretical frameworks and concepts in tackling a research problem;
  • learn to develop a systematic research design;
  • demonstrate scrupulous attention to the relevant data-analytical, referencing, and bibliographic conventions.