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MSc in International Relations

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The application deadline for this programme is 13th July 2018.

Welcome from the Programme Director

Here in the Graduate School of Social and Political Science we are passionate about international relations and the pressing problems humanity faces in the international realm. Our staff and students are concerned with war, terrorism, power, diplomacy, climate change, trade, poverty, migration and international cooperation, but also what to do about them, how to understand them, and how to study them. Our MSc International Relations programme is for anyone who shares these passions and concerns. It offers intensive training in the theory and practice of international relations, and preparation for a diverse range of international careers or further research.

Our approach to international relations combines innovative research with creative and inspirational teaching. Together, our staff combine intricate working knowledge of the great international institutions with a deep appreciation of historical change and the most important ideas in international thought. Through our research at the cutting edge of the discipline we hope to inspire our students to a world of possibilities, from the sociology of the financial crisis to state survival in the Middle East and the social construction of security.

Recent graduates talk about their experiences here.

Both the city and University of Edinburgh are dynamic, cosmopolitan centres of international political engagement, culture and learning. They combine centuries of political, economic, military and intellectual history, including the legacy of the Scottish Enlightenment, with the modern institutions of a forward thinking capital city. Edinburgh itself is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the University is currently ranked 20th in the world in the Times Higher Education - QS World University Rankings.

Please don't hesitate to get in touch if you have any further queries,


Dr. Andrew Neal

Programme Director, MSc International Relations


Please note: In academic year 2014/15, on-course students  please address any queries to acting Programme Director Dr. Jana Hönke

How to Apply

Guidance on how to apply and entry requirements, etc. is available on the Graduate School website. Please feel free to contact the Programme Director with any further queries.

Applicants with an academic background not directly related to Politics and International Relations or the social sciences who have taken courses relevant to the programme will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

A non-refundable application fee of £50 is payable at the time of application submission, once a UUN has been issued. Please click here for more information on how to pay the application fee.

Please note: Your application will not be processed until we have received your application fee payment.

Fees and Scholarships

Bologna Compatibility

Like all University of Edinburgh Masters programmes, the degree is fully Bologna compatible, and is recognised across Europe and beyond under the principles of the Bologna framework. The programme comprises 180 Edinburgh credits, which are equivalent to 90 ECTS credits.


Edinburgh4Learning offers an intuitive and easy to use funding information tool which allows students to search using a series of handy drop-down lists. Students can access the Edinburgh4Learning portal direct from the Scholarships and Student Funding Services website. Registration requires a valid university of Edinburgh e-mail address and in a matter of moments students can access numerous funding opportunities to help them during their studies.