Published: 21 February 2023

Five reasons to study for a masters in international relations or public affairs at Surrey

Our postgraduate courses in international relations and public affairs provide you with a wealth of personal, professional and academic opportunities. Here are the top five reasons why you should choose the University of Surrey for your politics masters.

1. Learn with academics leading their field

Home to world-class experts, Surrey’s Department of Politics is shaping our understanding of these ever-changing times, examining crucial issues like Brexit and the moral aspects of drone warfare. Get involved in these debates yourself through our interactive teaching style and exciting in-class and off-campus activities.

2. Study a unique course

Surrey’s Department of Politics offers you unique masters courses. Our MSc in Public Affairs and the MSc International Relations – International Intervention pathway are the only courses of their kind in the UK. Both offer a three-month placement option. Our range of international politics modules means you can tailor to your interests and passions in the subject. In the MSc International Relations – International Relations pathway, you will examine relevant issues in contemporary international systems and deepen your knowledge through writing a dissertation.

3. Explore cutting-edge research in the classroom

All members of the Department of Politics are research-active, and bring their cutting edge expertise and research into the classroom. In our public affairs modules, you could study topics including negotiating and lobbying, campaigning and political leadership, taught by leading experts in the field. In our international relations modules, you can learn about international intervention, post-conflict peacebuilding, security and terrorism and international political economy. Our wide selection of modules reflects not only current affairs, but also the ongoing research projects of our staff, ensuring that you’ll learn from internationally-recognised academics who are passionate about what they teach.

4. Make collaborative and international links

At Surrey, we are actively involved with politics at a local, national and international level. The Department holds events throughout the year, including hustings for general and council elections, round table discussions and public lectures. To reflect the ever-changing political environment, we also hold regular events focused on current and topical political issues. Recent examples have included presentations featuring the Catalonian Independence Referendum and Hong Kong democracy activists.

We frequently invite guest speakers from all sides of the political spectrum and international scene to talk on relevant and ongoing political matters.  Guest speakers in the past have included the Australian High Commissioner, the UN special envoy to Somalia, the Deputy Head of Mission and Minister Counsellor at the Embassy of Ukraine in the UK, Eduard Fesko, Federica Mogherini, former High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, and political activists such as Gina Miller, as well as live link-up events with residents of #notinyname activists from Kabul.

5. Join a friendly, supportive community

The School of Politics and International Relations is a friendly community of open-minded academics and students. There are exciting class activities every day with students learning about UN Security Council decision-making processes through simulations, debates on free-trade agreements, frequent guest lectures and field trips to government departments and leading think-tanks in London.

Discover more about the postgraduate international relations and public affairs courses on offer at Surrey.

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