MA in the European Union and International Relations

Gain a high-level understanding of political and economic power in a globalised world.

Why choose this course?

  • Study at a leading centre for research on contemporary Europe and international relations
  • Active membership of the Aston Centre for Europe, a thriving research hub which organises debates, study visits, and conferences and seminars on current international issues throughout the academic year
  • Develop wide-ranging skills of critical analysis and approaches to the study of European integration and international relations.

Duration: Full time 1 year. Part time 2 years

Start date(s): October  

Distance learning available: No

Entry requirements:
2.1 Degree in any discipline (or equivalent).

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of an English language qualification. Find out more about our English language requirements.

Fees for 2017/18*: 
UK/ EU: £5,450 
Non-EU: £14,100 
*These figures have not been confirmed, but they are expected to be approximately as stated. Part-time students pay a pro-rata version of full-time fees.  

Application: We recommend that overseas students apply before the end of June due to visa requirements as these can take a few weeks to process.

Apply for this course online

Through this programme, graduates gain a high-level understanding of political and economic power in a globalised world. Studying modules on topics such as Religion and Global Politics, Security and Defence in Europe and International Political Communication and Leaders, students develop wide-ranging insights into political behaviour and skills in the critical analysis of contemporary political issues.

This programme is ideally suited to internationally oriented careers in the public or private sector.

Sample Module Options

The following module descriptions are indications only - the modules on offer and the content of the modules is subject to change.

You will take part in interactive seminars, discussion and simulation exercises, as well as undertaking group project work. There are also opportunities for individual research and guided study. MA students are a fundamental part of the intellectual life of the Politics and International Relations study group. All students on MA programmes take part in the regular series of guest lectures and research seminars on issues of contemporary political relevance as well as taking part in the conferences and events organised and hosted by the Aston Centre for Europe and by the study group.

All students have the opportunity to take part in a week long study trip to visit the EU institutions and related organisation in Brussels. 

All students are allocated a personal tutor at the start of their studies; this member of academic staff can offer individual study advice and guidance and is there to help support your studies.

Assessments on the MA programme take a wide variety of forms, ranging from essays and examinations through to policy reports, briefings and campaign portfolios.

All of our MA Programmes equip students with the knowledge and analytical and transferable skills to pursue further postgraduate research or a successful career in the public and private sector. The careers pursued by our students vary greatly, but typical careers include:

  • employment in international organisations (EU, WTO, UN etc.),
  • research in policy-oriented domestic or international think tanks,
  • careers in government administration,
  • further postgraduate research at PhD level,
  • journalism,
  • international marketing or business.
You will have access to:
  • Our Virtual Learning Environment – Blackboard – to support your studies, including Blackboard discussion groups
  • The University Library, including over 25,000 books and a wide range of electronic journals.  The library has special provision in place to help part time and distance learning students access their resources: www.aston.ac.uk/lis/studentinfo/parttime
  • University wide facilities such as the Careers Service, Students’ Advice Centre, Students’ Jobshop, Counselling Service, Sports Facilities, and Chaplaincy.
A complete list of Politics and International Relations staff can be found HERE.

Read what the staff have to say about their programme:

The Institutions of the European Union

Dr Carolyn Rowe - MA Programmes Director. A contributing author of ''The Institutions of the European Union'' (Oxford University Press)

PhD (European Politics) University of Birmingham; MA (European Studies) Humboldt Universität zu Berlin; BA (Modern and Medieval Languages) University of Cambridge

“This multi-dimensional study programme develops students’ understanding of the EU as a Global Actor, and how it relates to other international organisation. It pushes students hard, but a demanding programme really encourages them to excel!”

Nat Copsey Book Cover

Dr Nathaniel Copsey - Head of Study Group

DPhil (Political Science) Sussex; MA (European Political and Administrative Studies) College of Europe; BA (Modern History) Oxford

“The MA in the European Union and International Relations programme encourages students to develop their critical thinking and engage in contemporary debates about the EU’s role in the world. It is a fascinating world of study”

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Keep In Touch

Student Profile

Student Profile

Ben Harrison

MA in the EU & International Relations

What’s great about studying on this MA is that many of my lecturers are involved with the EU through consultancy work, so they are helping to make an impact in the EU. The involvement of my lecturers with the EU means that Aston has a lot of great contacts, which is always helpful when looking for internships/jobs.


Student Profile

Student Profile

Thomas Novy

MA in the EU & International Relations

This is a really high-quality course run by skillful, experienced and friendly teachers. There are lots of opportunities to express opinions in class and every opinion counts. For me, the benefit of this qualification is that I am able to develop my profile as a specialist in European political issues.


Scholarships and bursaries

Scholarships and bursaries



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