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MA Diplomacy

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  • Objectives
    To introduce students to theoretical and practical approaches to the study of international diplomacy through the study of a core module in Contemporary Diplomacy and to encourage interdisciplinary scholarship. In particular this degree programme encourages the ability to delineate and evaluate issues, select relevant materials and produce arguments encompassing policy, existing practice and knowledge at an advanced level in diplomacy and the international relations of States. It seeks also to develop those practical, generic and personal transferable skills necessary to conduct independent research
  • Entry requirements
    Entrants to this programme are normally required to have obtained a First or Upper Second Class Honours in any relevant discipline. All applicants are considered on their individual merits and the Institute may vary these requirements if it sees fit.
  • Academic Title
    MA Diplomacy
  • Course description
    Transferable skills
    Students are encouraged to act independently in planning tasks and use feedback to
    reflect on their performance and re-assess the appropriateness of current levels of
    knowledge and skill. They are expected to acquire an ability to think analytically, to
    develop frameworks for considering and resolving complex problems, and to
    discriminate between good and bad arguments. In addition, an MA graduate will be
    used to presenting arguments (both technical and general) orally and in writing and
    should be able to present such arguments clearly and concisely. Students will be able
    to research a variety of sources in libraries and on the internet, and, in particular, to
    research and assess academic literature. Particular elements of the programme expose
    students to the use of information technology and encourage the development of
    general professional capabilities including recognition of deadlines and time
    management.

    Programme content

    The MA in Diplomacy consists of 180 credits: a taught component (120 credits) and a
    dissertation (60 credits). Within the taught element there is one core module in
    Contemporary Diplomacy. In addition, students choose option modules totalling 90
    credits [or one 30 credit option plus the full complement of research training (60
    credits)], from the list of optional modules outlined below. Students may take up to 40
    credits in another MA programme subject to the approval of the Director of GIPIS.

    Compulsory modules: Credits Level

    -Contemporary Diplomacy
    -Dissertation

    Research Methods (for MA w/research training):
    -Philosophical Issues in the Social Sciences
    -Data Collection and Analysis

    -Essentials of Research Methods for the Social Sciences
    -Transferable Skills for Social Sciences

    Optional postgraduate modules:

    -Conflict and Conflict Resolution
    -International Human Rights Law
    -International Law and World Order
    -International Relations
    -International Relations of the Mediterranean
    -International Security Studies
    -International Politics of the Asia Pacific
    -War, Peace and International Ethics
    -The UN Humanitarian Intervention and Cont Warfare
    -Terrorism and Security
    -The Practice of Strategy in History
    -Strategic Theory
    -Modern Strategy

    Part-time/Modular arrangements
    The programme can be taken part-time over two years. In the first year of study, a
    student will be required to complete the core module in Contemporary Diplomacy and
    one further module; in the second year of study, a student will be required to two
    further optional modules and the Dissertation. The programme may not be completed
    over more than two years.

    Progression requirements
    None
    Summary of teaching and assessment
    Teaching methods will vary from module to module but teaching will primarily be by
    means of seminars. Certain modules may be partially taught by means of lectures and
    tutorials.
    All modules, other than the Dissertation, will be assessed by means of a timed, unseen
    examination together with assessed written work or other forms of assessed work (for
    example an oral presentation). Details of the methods of assessment in individual
    modules are given in the Module Description Forms.

    For Masters Degrees
    To pass the MA students must gain an average mark of 50 or more overall including a
    mark of 50 or more for the dissertation and have no mark below 40 in any module.
    The total credit value of all modules marked below 50 must not exceed 55 credits.
    Students who gain an average mark of 70 or more overall including a mark of 60 or
    more for the dissertation and have no mark below 50 will be eligible for a Distinction.
    Those gaining an average mark of 60 or more overall including a mark of 50 or more
    for the dissertation and have no mark below 50 will be awarded eligible for a Merit.

    For PG Diplomas
    To pass the Postgraduate Diploma students must gain an average mark of 50 or more
    and have no mark below 40 in any module. In addition the total credit value of all
    modules marked below 50 must be less than 60 credits.
    Students who gain an average mark of 70 or more and have no mark below 50 will be
    eligible for the award of a Distinction. Those gaining an average mark of 60 or more
    and have no mark below 50 will be awarded eligible for a Merit.
    For PG Certificate

    To pass the Postgraduate Certificate students must gain an average mark of 50 or
    more and have no mark below 40 in any module.

    Support for students and their learning
    University support for students and their learning falls into two categories. Learning
    support includes IT Services, which maintains several hundred computers across the
    university, and the University Library, which across its three sites holds over a million
    volumes, subscribes to around 4,000 current periodicals, has a range of electronic
    sources of information and houses the Student Access to Independent Learning
    computer-based teaching and learning facilities. There are language laboratory
    facilities both for those students studying on a degree programme and for those taking
    modules offered by the Institution-wide Language Programme. Student guidance and
    welfare support is provided by Personal Tutors, the Careers Advisory Service, the
    University’s Special Needs Advisor, Study Advisors, Hall Wardens and the Students
    Union.

    Within the Graduate Institute of Political and International Studies, Directors of
    Studies will provide help and guidance on academic, and where appropriate, other
    matters. A member of the academic staff of the Institute acts a Careers Advisor and
    the Institute has a Director and a Deputy Director to provide student support. In
    addition, all students receive a detailed Handbook to help them study successfully.

    Careers prospects

    A postgraduate degree will open many doors in more specialised areas of employment
    such as academia (with further postgraduate study), the media (journalism and
    broadcasting), the civil service and other branches of public service. This degree is of
    particular relevance to those wishing to pursue a career in the international civil
    service with an international organisation or non-governmental organisation or indeed
    in the foreign service of their home State.

    Opportunities for study abroad

    The programme does not involve study abroad.

    Educational Aims of the programme
    The overarching aim of this course is to provide a programme of study which affords
    a conceptual framework for the study of diplomatic relations between states. As well
    as specific knowledge of international negotiation, international law and international
    economic relations, students should acquire the intellectual and practical skills
    expected of students with a postgraduate qualification.

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