Master of International Relations

The information on this page applies to future students. Current students should refer to their faculty handbooks for course information.

The discipline of international relations is dedicated to the study of relations among states and between states and non-state actors. The field covers the history, current nature, and possible evolution of the international system. International relations applies a diverse set of theories to help understand and address the world’s most pressing challenges: war and peace; social and economic justice; poverty, development, and environmental sustainability. International relations brings together poilitical, economic, social, security, and cultural dimensions in the study of international affairs.

The new Master of International Relations is an intellectually rigorous Masters program that is embedded within the discipline of international relations while enabling students to select areas of specialism based upon their interests and professional goals.

The course will also encourage students to relate theoretical concepts they learn to specific, relevant world issues and challenges in international affairs today. Students will graduate from the University with specialist knowledge and an understanding of major developments and issues in specific fields in international relations, particularly in the realms of international security, international organisations, foreign policy, international economy, and globalisation. Graduates will be trained to conduct independent scholarly research in international relations through a combination of in-class study, and personal research projects under the supervision of an academic staff member. The course features a strong emphasis upon teaching students core concepts of international relations theory, reaching back into classical philosophy while employing cutting-edge approaches in critical theory.

Students enrolled in the Master of International Relations will also be able to draw on a range of electives in the languages to enhance their cultural skills and also from a range of social science and humanities areas including Asian studies, history, philosophy, law, economics, political economy and sociology.
This degree is designed to provide a pathway to professional employment while also offering research options that lead talented students to a PhD.

Please note: The units of study listed below are subject to change and are to be used as a guide only.

CORE UNITS
GOVT6137 Forces of Change in Int Relations
GOVT6147 Foundations of International Relations
GOVT6116 International Organisations
GOVT6119 International Security
GOVT6123 Globalisation and Governance

CORE ELECTIVE UNITS
CISS6001 New Security Challenges
CISS6002 Strategy & Security in the Asia-Pacific
CISS6006 Statebuilding and Fragile States
CISS6013 Middle East Conflict and Security
GOVT6121 Northeast Asian Politics
GOVT6135 Global Environmental Politics
GOVT6225 Essential Readings in Int’l Relations
GOVT6304 Development in World Politics

CAPSTONE UNITS
GOVT6340 Dissertation Part 1
GOVT6341 Dissertation Part 2
GOVT6139 Research Design

ELECTIVE UNITS OF STUDY
Students who take between 18-24 credits within a single cognate discipline with relevance to International Relations will be awarded a ‘Minor’ as part of their degree. The student must satisfy any prerequisite for enrolment into a particular unit.

Foreign Language minor
ASNS6010 Asian Language Acquisition 1
ASNS6011 Asian Language Acquisition 2
ASNS6012 Asian Language Acquisition 3
ASNS6013 Asian Language Acquisition 4
EUST7010 European Language Acquisition 1
EUST7011 European Language Acquisition 2
EUST7012 European Language Acquisition 3
EUST7013 European Language Acquisition 4

Economics minor
ECON6001 Microeconomics Analysis 1
ECON6002 Macroeconomics Analysis 1
ECON6006 Market Structure and Strategic Behaviour
ECON6008 International Money and Finance
ECON6009 Economics of the Labour Market
ECON6010 Public Economics
ECON6016 Trade and Development
ECON6018 Environmental Economics
ECON6021 Financial Economics
ECON6023 International Trade
ECON6024 Private Equity
ECON6025 Strategic Decision Making
ECON6027 Experimental Economics
ECON6101 Special Topic in Economics
ECON6901 Microeconomics Analysis 2
ECON6902 Macroeconomics Analysis 2

Political Economy minor
ECOP6010 International Trade Regulation
ECOP6011 USA-Europe-Japan: Trade and Investment
ECOP6015 Global Employment and Migration
ECOP6016 China and the World Economy
ECOP6018 Economic Development: Growth & Wellbeing
ECOP6101 Core Concepts in Political Economy
ECOP6103 Strategic Debates on Economic Change
ECOP6108 Economic Management for Sustainability
ECOP6130 Human Rights & International Development
ECOP6901 Finance and Economic Change

Peace and Conflict Studies minor
PACS6901 United Nations, Peace and Security
PACS6909 Culture of Violence
PACS6911 Key Issues in Peace and Conflict Studies
PACS6912 Nonviolence: Philosophy and Practice
PACS6913 Conflict in Organisations
PACS6914 Conflict-Resolving Media
PACS6915 Human Rights, Peace and Justice
PACS6917 Religion, War and Peace
PACS6921 Peace of Mind: The Psychology of Peace
PACS6922 Peaceful Conflict Transformation
PACS6923 The Human Right to Food
PACS6924 Democracy in the Developing World
PACS6925 Peace and the Global Compact
PACS6927 Transitional Justice and Peacebuilding
PACS6928 Community Mediation: Theory and Practice
PACS6930 Ethics for a Sustainable Peace
PACS6934 Conflict Sensitive Development Practice

Sociology, Social Policy and Development minor
DVST6901 Development: Critical Perspectives A
DVST6904 Rethinking Poverty
DVST6905 Development Project Evaluation
DVST6906 Culture & Politics of Health Development
SCLG6902 Doing Social Research
SCLG6903 New Debates in Social Theory
HRTD6906 The Philosophy of Human Rights

International Law minor
LAWS6047 Law of the Sea
LAWS6061 International Environmental Law
LAWS6062 International Law-the Use of Armed Force
LAWS6218 International Humanitarian Law
LAWS6243 International Law I
LAWS6161 International Human Rights
LAWS6846 Human Rights and the Global Economy
LAWS6928 Law Justice and Development

Units of study

For an up-to-date list of units of study for this degree, please refer to the online postgraduate handbook.

Full units of study list

Embedded courses

Further course information

Study plan

Candidates for the Master of International Relations are required to complete 96 credit points, including: (a) a minimum of 30 credit points of core units of study; and (b) a minimum of 24 credit points of core elective units of study; and (c) a maximum of 30 credit points of elective units of study, which can include an optional minor as listed in the unit of study table. With the permission of the Degree Coordinator a maximum of 6 credit points of elective units can be taken from units of study outside those listed in the International Relations subject area of the Postgraduate Unit of Study Table, including units of study offered by other faculties and; (d) a minimum of 6 credit points of capstone units of study.

Course outcomes and further study

Graduate opportunities

The Master of International Relations is designed to provide a pathway to professional employment in a wide array of professions, including international business, consulting, government agencies, international organizations such as the United Nations or European Union, and journalism. This course also provides an opportunity for professionals in these sectors to gain advanced training to support career advancement.

Admission

Admission requirements

Admission to candidature for the Master of International Relations requires:

(a) a bachelor's degree with a credit (65%) average calculated over the whole degree, from the University of
Sydney, or an equivalent qualification; or

(b) completion of the requirements for the embedded Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma in International Relations with a minimum credit (65%) average, or an equivalent qualification.

How to apply

Domestic students

How to apply

Australian citizens, permanent residents, New Zealand citizens, and holders of a permanent humanitarian visa, apply through the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences - click on the 'Apply now' icon on this page to proceed with your application. 

International students

How to apply

Overseas applicants may apply:

(i) directly to the University, via the International Office. For information about closing dates and application procedures, visit the International Office website; or

(ii) through a University overseas representative (education agent).

Fee disclaimer

Domestic students

Indicative postgraduate student contribution amount

This student contribution amount for a Commonwealth Supported Place is an indication only of the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2014 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). The exact student contribution that you pay will depend on the specific units of study in which you ultimately enrol. If you are a Commonwealth supported student and was enrolled in a University course before 1 January 2013 your student contribution may differ.

Annual review for postgraduate student contribution amount

Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.

Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee

This 2014, tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student represents the fee that is payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2013 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review for postgraduate domestic tuition fee

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. For further information about these additional incidental fees, please visit the University's Future Students' website.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information in this prospectus, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

The academic requirements that are displayed are applicable to currently available courses only, and are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Faculty Handbook and the University of Sydney Calendar are the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney, and you are referred to those documents

Please note that if you are classified by the University as a Research Training Scheme student in accordance with the Other Grants Guidelines (Research) 2010, you will be exempt from the payment of any SCA or tuition fees for courses undertaken as part of a Research Masters degree and Research Doctoral degree. More information about your eligibility for this Scheme is available here.

International students

International tuition fees for postgraduate students

This 2014, tuition fee for international postgraduate students represents the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2014, for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees and health insurance

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the tuition fees. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing, and equipment. The University's Future Students' webpage has further information about these additional incidental fees for postgraduate coursework students and postgraduate research students.

In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through an approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.