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The Master of Arts in Political Science degree is designed as a cycle of training and specialisation through research. It allows the student to develop, deepen and complete the knowledge acquired during the Bachelor's degree course.
The programme offers three optional specific orientations covering the main sub-disciplines of political science:
- Public Policies
- International Relations
- Political Sociology
The aim is to allow the student to define his/her own degree course to reflect his/her own interests and professional objectives.
The training benefits from the resources of the Institute of Political and International Studies (IEPI) and its various research groups. IEPI is currently, for the number of its teachers/researchers, one of Switzerland´s foremost centres of research and teaching in Political Science. It is characterised by its open-minded interdisciplinary approach based on collaboration within the UNIL (sociology, history, gender studies, etc.), as well as with other institutions in Switzerland (IDHEAP, UNIFR) and abroad.
The training benefits from the resources of the Institute of Political and International Studies (IEPI) and its various research groups. IEPI is currently, for the number of its teachers/researchers, one of Switzerlands foremost centres of research and teaching in Political Science. It is characterised by its open-minded interdisciplinary approach based on collaboration within the UNIL (sociology, history, gender studies, etc.), as well as with other institutions in Switzerland (IDHEAP, UNIFR) and abroad.The study plan of the Master of Arts in Political Science degree consists of three parts:
The common trunk
It includes the teaching of quantitative and qualitative methods, as well as of subjects that allow the students to develop their epistemological reflections on their own discipline, and to acquire the rudiments of political philosophy.
The specific orientations
The student chooses one of the three orientations that constitutes the main specialisation of his/her degree course.
- Political Action and Mobilisations
This orientation concentrates on theoretical and practical knowledge of the rationale of political action and mobilisations. By focusing on the inner workings of political action, the way in which actors involved in the struggle contribute to the definition, co-production and realisation of social problems, through debates aired in the public arena, is explored. A practical research workshop accompanies the process by which students are introduced to research through a field placement.
- Governance and Public Action
This orientation concerns all forms of intervention by public groups, from their arrival on the political agenda to their implementation and evaluation, while at the same time examining decision-making processes, the different actors involved, or the choice of instruments through which actions are channelled. The main contemporary challenges relating to transformations of public action (Europeanization of national political systems, transformation of institutional management, the rise in power of expertise, public sector reforms, etc) will be examined.
- Globalisation: Political, Social and Environmental Challenges
This orientation proposes a specialisation in the analysis of contemporary international relations centred on the process of globalisation, bringing into focus its political and institutional aspects as well as its socio-economic and environmental consequences.More detailed information about the study programme is available on the Masters website or can be obtained from the study advisor: Mr Raphaël Thélin (email@example.com).
The dissertationThe subject is a theme related to the chosen orientation. The objective is to give the student an opportunity to complete a sizeable personal work assignment, combining a mastery of the theoretical elements with their application to particular empirical contexts, under the close supervision of one or two teachers.
ExaminationsThe evaluation of knowledge takes diverse forms, for example seminar or research work, continuous assessment, oral or written examinations. Each course is validated either by a pass certificate (seminars, research seminar and placements), or by a mark (course work and Masters dissertation). There are three exam sessions per year (winter, summer, autumn). Conditions for passing the Masters degree are described in the regulations of the Master of Arts in Political Science.
MobilityThe students enrolled in a Masters degree cycle have the opportunity to complete one semester in a partner institution recognised by the UNIL. If the mobility study programme is approved by the Study Advisor for Political Science and is confirmed by passing the exams, the credits earned will be recognised and validated in the students degree course.
18 ECTS credits
Specific subjects (depending on the chosen specialisation)
- Compulsory subjects
- Optional subjects
42 ECTS credits
30 ECTS credits
The candidate must hold a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science awarded by a Swiss university. The holders of Bachelors degrees in Political Science awarded by other universities as well as the holders of Bachelors degrees in other social science disciplines may be admitted on the basis of their personal case file. Holders of a Bachelors degree in Social Science with a minor in Political Science awarded by the UNIL are admitted unconditionally to the Master of Arts in Political Science.Another degree or academic title may be judged equivalent and give access to the Masters degree in Political Science, with or without conditions.French. Recommended level: C1.