University of St. Andrews logo
  • Tuition Fee:
  • Local: n/a
  • Foreign: $ 11.2k / 19400
  • Languages of instruction:
  • English
  • Deadline:
  • 30 April 2017
  • StudyQA ranking:
  • 1495pts.
  • Duration:
  • 1 year

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    Course information

    Course highlights

    • The course offers a uniquely deep focus on both the history of political thought and contemporary political theory.
    • This programme is ideal for further academic work leading to a PhD at St Andrews or elsewhere.
    • The MLitt in International Political Theory prepares students for a wide range of professional fields including law, policy research and consultancy, NGOs, charities, international organisations, civil service and publishing.

    Teaching format

    The MLitt in International Political Theory is a one year taught postgraduate programme run by the School of International Relations. The programme commences in September and ends the following August.The programme consists of four taught modules taken over two semesters and a 15,000-word dissertation in an area of your choice. Modules are taught through a mixture of lectures, seminars and tutorials with average lecture sizes ranging from 20 to 30 students and tutorial sizes ranging from 1 to 15 students. Assessment methods include a combination of examination and coursework. Every MLitt student is assigned a dissertation supervisor who will advise on the choice of subject and provide guidance throughout the research process. 


    All International Political Theory MLitt students take two compulsory and two optional modules over the course of the programme. You may, with permission, take modules from other MLitt programmes in the School of International Relations or from another School. The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue.

    Compulsory modules

    • Texts in International Political Theory: explores the work of important political theorists with particular attention to the ways in which their thought is relevant for internaional and global affairs.
    • Analysis and Interpretation in International Political Theory: introduces methods and interpretive approaches that can be taken in the study of international political theory.

    Optional modules

    • Political Philosophy and World Order: explores philosophical reflections on the idea of world order through a study of key political philosophy texts.
    • 'Reason of State': Origin, Nature and Career of a Concept: studies the meaning, origins, development and significance of the notion of 'reason of state' in western political thought.
    • Topics in International Political Thought: introduces key themes in the international realm through close engagement with the ideas of a single theorist.
    • Global Constitutionalism: explores developments in international politics and law that reveal an increasingly constitutional order.
    • Politics After the ‘Death of God’: Evil and Tragedy in Modern Politics: explores contributions in post-Nietzschean political philosophy and twentieth-century political theology as a way to understand the horrors and tragedies of modern politics.
    • Terrorism and Liberal Democracy: explores the development of contemporary terrorism; and the conceptional and definitional issues concerning terrorism.
    • Conflict and Peace in Post-Communist Eurasia: examines where and why conflicts have arisen throughout the post-communist space, Eurasia, particularly in the Balkans, Caucasus and Central Asia.
    • Religion and International Politics: investigates the so-called 'global resurgence' of politicised religion.
    • Identity and Collective Violence: studies the concept of violence as a group or collective phenomenon.
    • Political Economy of Conflict: provides a political economy perspective on conflict in a developing economy.
    • Gender and Terrorism: explores gender as a tool for the construction and maintenance of power.
    • The Evolution of United Nations Peacekeeping: looks at the development of United Nations peacekeeping from the 1940s to the present.
    • Political Order and Violence in the Middle East: examines the causes and consequences of political order and violence in the Middle East.
    • Ideologies and Social Movements in the Middle East: focuses on prominent ideologies in the modern history of the Middle East, and the role ideas play in the political mobilisation of society.
    • Conflicts, Security and Democracy in the Greater Caucasus: examines the history, languages and culture of the Caucasus.
    • Social Movements, Revolutions and Authoritarianism in North Africa: investigates the dynamics and outcomes of social protests in the authoritarian regimes of North African region in the post-colonial period.
    • Foreign Policy Analysis: covers the literature, research topics and current issues in the area of foreign policy analysis.
    • Security and Justice Institutions in World Politics: examines the role of different international institutions in governing world politics.


    The final element of the MLitt is a 15,000-word dissertation. The dissertation should focus on an area of international political theory in which you are interested. Each student is supported by a relevant supervisor from the School who will advise on the choice of subject and provide guidance throughout the research process. The completed dissertation must be submitted by the end of August. If students choose not to complete the dissertation requirement for the MLitt, there are exit awards available that allow suitably qualified candidates to receive a Postgraduate Diploma. By choosing an exit award, you will finish your degree at the end of the second semester of study and receive a PGDip instead of an MLitt.

    UK requirements for international applications

    Universities in the United Kingdom use a centralized system of undergraduate application: University and College Admissions Service (UCAS). It is used by both domestic and international students. Students have to register on the UCAS website before applying to the university. They will find all the necessary information about the application process on this website. Some graduate courses also require registration on this website, but in most cases students have to apply directly to the university. Some universities also accept undergraduate application through Common App (the information about it could be found on universities' websites).

    Both undergraduate and graduate students may receive three types of responses from the university. The first one, “unconditional offer” means that you already reached all requirements and may be admitted to the university. The second one, “conditional offer” makes your admission possible if you fulfill some criteria – for example, have good grades on final exams. The third one, “unsuccessful application” means that you, unfortunately, could not be admitted to the university of you choice.

    All universities require personal statement, which should include the reasons to study in the UK and the information about personal and professional goals of the student and a transcript, which includes grades received in high school or in the previous university.

    University requirements

    Program requirements

    Application requirements:

    • CV
    • letter of intent indicating your knowledge of the programme and how it will benefit you
    • sample of academic written work (2,000 words)
    • two original signed academic references
    • academic transcripts and degree certificates
    • English language requirements certificate.

    Postgraduate candidates will be expected to hold a Russian Bachelor’s degree - Diplom Bakalavra/ Bakalavr Diploma or a Specialist Degree issued by the Russian Federation -  Specialist Diploma / Diplom Specialista.  In either case, students should have completed their degree with an average mark (grade) of 4 or higher on the Russian 5-point marking scale.  Students with higher level qualifications such as Magistr, the Kandidat Nauk, would also be considered for postgraduate study.

    Recent Graduate Discount

    The University of St Andrews offers a 10% reduction in postgraduate tuition fees for students who have graduated during the last three years and are now starting a postgraduate programme.

    Accommodation Award

    For all new postgraduate students, based on financial need. This scholarship can only be used to reduce the cost of University accommodation. Postgraduate awards of £3,000 per annum for the first 2 years of study will be available from September 2016. The award will be means-tested, based on financial need. In order to be eligible, applicants must have a gross annual household income of under £34,000 or a gross annual personal income of under £25,000.

    Thomas and Margaret Roddan Trust Bursary 

    For all new and current postgraduate students; based on financial need and academic excellence.

    Chevening Scholarships

    Chevening Scholarships are the UK government's global scholarship programme, funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and partner organisations. The Scholarships are awarded to outstanding scholars with leadership potential. Awards are typically for a one-year Master’s degree.

    Commonwealth Scholarships: Developing Countries

    The Commonwealth Scholarship Commission offers opportunities to citizens of Developing Commonwealth countries to study in the UK, as part of the UK's contribution to the international Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan. These awards are funded by the Department for International Development.


    Students who graduate from the MLitt in International Political Theory go on to work in various professional fields including law, policy research and consultancy, NGOs, charities, international organisations, civil service and publishing.

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