European Politics and Policy MSc

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Why Surrey?

In the current political and economic climate, and the reconfiguration of Britain’s relationship with Europe, a deep understanding of EU governance and institutional structure is critical for those working in government, media and economics.

Our programme will provide you with a detailed overview of key contemporary debates in European politics and policies, and insights into cross-national and comparative perspectives.

Programme overview

The MSc in European Politics and Policy offers students two pathways. The European Politics and Policy pathway explores in detail the EU’s main policy areas. The second pathway, European External Relations, offers the opportunity to focus on the EU as an international actor.

Both pathways involve a common set of compulsory modules, including Research Methods and Politics of the European Union. Each pathway has two further compulsory modules, in addition to three optional modules from a range of European and/or international politics topics.

Students are required to complete either a dissertation or placement project on a topic of their choice.

Programme structure

This programme is studied full-time over one academic year and part-time over two academic years. It consists of eight taught modules and either a dissertation or placement.

Example module listing

The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

Educational aims of the programme

The aims of the programme are:

  • To enable students to understand and evaluate contemporary debates in the study of European politics and policy, concerning the relationship between the European and national levels, institutional structures and the external relations of the EU
  • To deepen students’ knowledge of theoretical aspects of European politics and policy, including different theories of European integration and external relations
  • To enable students to develop their knowledge and understanding in at least three sub-fields of international politics: students take fiveprogramme compulsory modulesand three further modules from a list of optional modules available in the postgraduate curriculum
  • To provide students, with the opportunity, through the placement option, to spend three months working in a field related to their degree (this will not only provide students with new insights into European Politics and Policy but also develop a broad array of transferable skills)

Programme learning outcomes

The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:

Knowledge and understanding

Students will gain:

  • A critical knowledge of contemporary debates in the study of European politics and policy studies with particular reference to the relationship between European and national levels and institutional structures
  • An in-depth understanding of theoretical aspects of European politics, including different theories of European integration
  • A detailed knowledge and understanding within at least two sub-fields of European politics and policy, for example in-depth understanding of policy evolution and historical change in relation to European politics
  • An understanding of processes of knowledge creation and contestation within European politics
  • An understanding of techniques of research and enquiry and their application to the study of politics

Intellectual / cognitive skills

Students will learn how to:

  • Gather, organise and deploy evidence and information from a range of different sources
  • Analyse and synthesise a wide range of material in verbal and numerical formats
  • Deal with complex issues systematically and creatively
  • Make sound judgements on the basis of incomplete evidence
  • Demonstrate self-direction and originality in solving problems and analysing evidence
  • Construct reasoned argument
  • Apply theoretical frameworks to empirical analysis

Professional practical skills

Students will have learned to:

  • Make appropriate use of information and communications technology
  • Form effective arguments
  • Organise own workload to meet deadlines
  • Formulate research questions
  • Use software packages to analyse qualitative and quantitative data
  • Present research findings orally and in writing

Key / transferable skills

Students will know how to:

  • Communicate and present ideas effectively
  • Reason critically
  • Use information and communication technology for the retrieval and presentation of material
  • Organise and plan their own work
  • Adopt a proactive approach to problem-solving
  • Collaborate with others to achieve common goals
  • Deploy a range of relevant research skills
  • Make decisions in complex situations
  • Take responsibility for their own learning

Global opportunities

We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.

In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.

Learn more about opportunities that might be available for this particular programme by using our student exchanges search tool.


Study mode Start date UK/EU fees Overseas fees
Full-time Sep 2017 £7,500 £17,500

Please note these fees are for the academic year 2017/2018 only. Annual fees will rise by four per cent (rounded up to the nearest £100) for each year of study.

A complete list of all fees for our Masters Programmes

Related programmes

Postgraduate (Taught)

Related departments/schools

Related research areas

Programme leader

Dr Theofanis Exadaktylos

Find out more

General enquiries:

+44 (0)1483 681 681

Admissions enquiries:


Programme facts

Type of programme:


Programme length:

  • Full-time: 12 months

Start date:

Sep 2017

Entry Requirements

A first or 2.1 undergraduate degree in a relevant social science or humanities discipline (or an equivalent qualification).

View entry requirements by country

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, 6.0 in each component (or equivalent)

We offer intensive English language pre-sessional courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.


Loans, scholarships and financial support

There are many streams of funding for postgraduate students including awards, scholarships and loans. Learn more.


For more details

Discounts for Surrey graduates

Thinking of continuing your education at Surrey? As an alumnus of Surrey you may be eligible for a ten per cent discount on our taught Masters programme fees.

For more details

Admissions Information

Our Admissions Policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students.

Further information for applicants

Postgraduate Study Advice

Steps to Postgraduate Study is an official, independent guide for anyone considering a taught postgraduate course. The guide is produced by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, the Scottish Funding Council and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland.

Find out more


Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

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