Top 15 Masters of International Relations Degree Programs

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With a career in International Relations, graduates from one of these programs will learn techniques in developing proper diplomacy between different countries and cultures. As an ambassador for the United States, international relations majors have the opportunity to travel across the globe and interact with other peoples and cultures. Students should expect to address complex issues without black and white resolutions, but instead require more interactive solutions. Skills acquired in this degree include mathematics, anthropology, sociology, psychology, and many more, in order to fully respond to the issues involved in political relationships between countries, which require very careful, confident diplomats. This list was meant to provide student with a wide range of possibilities—outstanding and world-class programs, affordable and in-depth programs, and online programs.

Methodology for this list was composed through the research of different lists of online programs and availability of information on each schools’ website. With a median salary of about $102,000 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job outlook for individuals in this profession is on the rise in the next 10 years at 21%.

ST. MARY’S UNIVERSITY, TEXAS

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Program Standouts:
St. Mary’s online International Relations program gives students a comprehensive education in the concepts of international diplomacy while also focusing heavily in international security. Issues range from nuclear proliferation and conventional arms trade to narco-trafficking, trade imbalances, environmental conflict and race/ethnic/gender/religious issues.

Campus Location: San Antonio, TX

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $830 per credit hour
  • $20 per semester—academic assessment fee
  • $310 per semester—activity fee

Financial Aid: Scholarships, federal and alternative loans, grants

Acceptance Rate: 61%

Admission Considerations:
All applicants to this program must submit a statement of purpose, two letters of recommendation, GRE test results, as well as one transcript from all previous undergraduate and graduate programs.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum
  • Security Policy

Course Flexibility:
This online program allows students to fit coursework into their professional schedules as well as give students opportunities for study abroad and internships. Students complete a set curriculum of 12 courses with a focus in Security Policy. Two courses are offered concurrently each semester. Coursework for the master’s degree can be completed in two years

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TROY UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
Constantly adapting to the vicissitudes of world politics, Troy University provides a Master’s Degree in International Relations that will prepare graduates for navigating the complex political relationships between world countries. Students are encouraged to gain a wide-ranging appreciation of the political, historical, cultural, economic, and geographical factors that affect international relations.

Campus Location: Troy, AL

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $488 per credit hour
  • $250 per credit hour—Military tuition

Financial Aid: Federal and institutional loans, work study, grants, and Veterans benefits

Acceptance Rate: 71%

Admission Considerations:
Hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university with a minimum overall undergraduate grade point average of 2.5 (4.0 scale) or a 3.0 grade point average on the last 30 semester hours. All hours attempted in the term in which the 30 semester hours were reached will be used to calculate the grade point average. All transcripts from all colleges or universities attended are required.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum
  • Global Studies
  • National Security Affairs
  • Regional Affairs

Course Flexibility:
This program requires students to adapt to the changes in political diplomacy techniques and skills. As an online program, students also must have moderate tech savvy and self-discipline to complete coursework at their own pace and leisure.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

NORWICH UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
Students of all backgrounds from law to mathematics are encouraged to get involved in Norwich University’s online Diplomacy Program. The university seeks a broad approach to international diplomacy. The curriculum explores international relations from a macro and micro perspective, beginning with a foundational examination of the political, cultural, and geographical complexity of the international environment.

Campus Location: Northfield, VT

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

Tuition and Fees:

  • $708 per credit hour
  • $575 per semester—technology fee
  • $550 per semester—resource fee
  • $150 one time—graduation fee

Financial Aid: Scholarships, federal and private loans and grants, employer tuition assistance, military benefits

Acceptance Rate: 66%

Admission Considerations:
Applicants to this program must submit one easy, letter of intent, one letter of recommendation, official transcript of your undergraduate degree from a regionally or nationally accredited university

Concentrations:

  • International Terrorism
  • International Conflict Management
  • International commerce

Course Flexibility:
Small class sizes and students from diverse cultural and professional backgrounds enable in-depth discussions and cultivate multifaceted perspectives. Through this flexible online platform, students can access program content and contribute to class discussions on their own schedule each week. Four start dates per year (March, June, September, and December) allow students to engage with the program when it’s most convenient.

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NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
As the need for strong diplomats rises, Northeastern University has adapted their curriculum to meet the growing need. Masters students in this program can direct their major in one of five concentration areas while also receiving a and education in the core requirements of a successful diplomat.

Campus Location: Boston, MA

Accreditation: New England Association of Colleges and Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $632 per credit hour
  • $29,072 full tuition

Financial Aid: Grants, scholarships, loans, payment plans, student employment

Acceptance Rate: 31.9%

Admission Considerations:
All applicants to this program must submit a statement of purpose, a professional resume, two letters of recommendation, official undergraduate degree documentation, and proof of English literacy test results.

Concentrations:

  • Conflict Resolution
  • Development and Global Health
  • Diplomacy
  • International Economics and Consulting
  • Global Student Mobility

Course Flexibility:
This fully online graduate degree maintains a core curriculum centered on economic, political, cultural, and business theories and topics as they relate to the global world. As an online student, individuals with professional careers can apply techniques and skills learned in their program to their work lives.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

WEBSTER UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
Webster University gives its students the unique opportunity to take advantage of their global campuses by studying abroad. As an international relations student, it is crucial that students have experience in travel and immersion in other cultures in order to gain perspective as a diplomat. Webster University provides them this chance.

Campus Location: Webster Groves, MO

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $755 per credit hour—civil tuition
  • $470 per credit hour—activate military, reservists, and National Guard tuition

Financial Aid: Grants, loans, scholarships, and student employment

Acceptance Rate: 72%

Admission Considerations:
Webster University seeks out students with experience and knowledge within the international relations field. All students must submit GRE test results as well as transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions, as well as letters of recommendation, and letters of intent.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum

Course Flexibility:
Online programs allow students to earn their degree while traveling and gaining experience within their future career field! Webster University provides masters students with this possibility with its “global footprint.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

AMERICAN UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
According to their website, “The traditional Master of Arts in International Relations (MAIR) program features live online classes led by faculty at AU’s top 10-ranked School of International Service, self-paced coursework, and real-world, immersive learning experiences.” Depending on students future career goals, students can concentrate in one of four specialization areas.

Campus Location: Washington, D.C.

Accreditation: Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $1,526 per credit hour
  • $30 per 9 credit hours and above—grad activity fee
  • $120 per 9 credit hours and above—technology fee

Financial Aid: Grants, loans, scholarships, student employment, veterans benefits

Acceptance Rate: 43.1%

Admission Considerations:
Applicants must submit a statement of purpose, unofficial transcripts, a résumé, writing samples, a portfolio, and GRE and GMAT test results.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum
  • International Relations Executive Program—intended for international relations students with nine or more years of experience in the field

Course Flexibility:
International Relations masters students are encouraged to travel and apply their academic experience to their professional experience, and an online method of delivery allows students to travel and complete coarse work uninterrupted.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO

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Program Standouts:
According to their website, “The Committee on International Relations, which began its activities in 1928, is the nation’s oldest graduate program in international affairs. Combining rigorous core instruction with an interdisciplinary curriculum, CIR allows students to explore the complexities of international relations and interact with world-class faculty, scholars and professionals.”

Campus Location: Chicago, IL

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $6,687 per course per quarter

Financial Aid: Student and alternative loans, fellowships, scholarships, assistant-ships, earnings from part-time work, and student loans.

Acceptance Rate: 7.8%

Admission Considerations:
UC strives to find the strongest candidates possible, in its admissions process, CIR considers academic background, intellectual interests, work experience, and the fit of the candidate with the strengths of program. The statement of purpose and the writing sample are especially critical to our admission process.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum
  • International Relations Dual Degree in either Business, Law, or Public Policy

Course Flexibility:
The CIR at the University of Chicago allows students to direct their Master’s program in a direction of their choosing. Students have opportunities to work closely with other students and world class factory, while also working with other colleges and schools within the University of Chicago.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

HARVARD EXTENSION SCHOOL

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Program Standouts:
As a Masters student in this program, students gain critical insight into the complex systems that are used within negotiating diplomatically with other nations—international political economy; international law; and the complex relationships between governments, multinational corporations, and organizations around the world.

Campus Location: Cambridge, MA

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

Tuition and Fees:

  • about $2,200 per course

Learn more about course tuition, HERE!

Financial Aid: Federal, state, and institutional aid/loans; alternative and individualized payment plans

Acceptance Rate: unavailable

Admission Considerations:
At the Harvard Extension School, applicants must prove their academic competency in three admission courses before being admitted to the program. Of course, students must also submit relevant documentation—undergraduate transcripts, GRE test results, as well as critical reading and writing verification.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum

Course Flexibility:
As a student at the Harvard Extension School, not only are individuals capable of traveling and attending class simultaneously, but also are receiving an education from one of the finest institutions in the United States. Without be shackled to a fixed class schedule, online masters students can apply their knowledge to personal and professional activities while they learn.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

TUFTS UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:

Campus Location: Medford, MA

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

Tuition and Fees:

  • $48,412 per year—full tuition

Financial Aid: Subsidized and unsubsidized loans, grants, fellowships, assistantships, work study, payment plans.

Acceptance Rate: 17.2%

Admission Considerations:
All applicants to this program must submit an application, two personal essays, three letters of recommendation, GRE test results, a letter of intent, a resume of all past professional experience, and must complete and evaluative interview.

Concentrations:

  • Development Economics
  • Human Security/Comparative Politics
  • Humanitarian Studies
  • International Business and Economic Law
  • International Business Relations

View the complete list of 22 concentrations areas, HERE!

Course Flexibility:
This impressive university offers a Masters Degree in International Relations that gives to students the opportunity to take full advantage of the world class programs many different resources and areas of study, of which there is a plethora.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

MONTEREY INSITUTE OF INTERNATIONAL STUDIES

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Program Standouts:
A graduate school affiliated with Middlebury College in Vermont, this impeccable graduate program in international policy will give students the opportunity to specialize in one of seven concentration areas, as well as work with students and faculty members with relevant and impressive resumes in international relations.

Campus Location: Monterey, CA

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

Tuition and Fees:

  • $18,550 per semester—tuition
  • $29,226 per semester—tuition and fees

Financial Aid: Scholarships, grants, loans, need-based assistance, work-study, and veterans’ benefits

Acceptance Rate: unavailable

Admission Considerations:
Find information on the Monterey Institute’s admission requirements, HERE!

Concentrations:

  • Complexity and Systems Thinking
  • Gender, Power, Identity
  • Human Rights and Advocacy
  • Human Security
  • Migration
  • Program and Policy Evaluation and Research Methods
  • Social Change Organizational Management and Leadership

Course Flexibility:
Due to the level of experience from the professionals and experts that make up the faculty at MIIS, students can apply what they learn immediately to their professions. Upon graduation, alumni are a part of a world-wide network of professionals that guide graduates seamlessly into their field.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
This rigorous curriculum at a world-class institute requires students to complete internships and real-life experiences in order to graduate. In this way, students learn to apply the skills and techniques that have gathered and built in the program to what will be a future in a high profile career path.

Campus Location: New York, NY

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Tuition and Fees:

  • $1,426 per point
  • $23,476 per semester (based on an 18 pt. scale)—full tuition

Financial Aid: Scholarships, loans, work-study, fellowships, Fulbright opportunities

Acceptance Rate: 6.9%

Admission Considerations:
The two-year Master of International Affairs (MIA) degree is one of the most flexible programs at Columbia SIPA. Admission is competitive, based largely on academic excellence and professional focus. There are strict deadlines and students should take care to stay alert by visiting their website.

Concentrations:

  • Economic and Political Development (EPD)
  • Human Rights and Humanitarian Policy (HRHP)
  • International Security Policy (ISP)
  • Energy and Environment (EE)
  • International Finance and Economic Policy (IFEP)
  • Urban and Social Policy (USP)

Course Flexibility:
Students in this impressive program will have the skills necessary to act as diligent representatives and diplomats, with an in-depth understanding of political and international affairs. Coursework interweaves public policy and international affairs as well as curricula within each specialization, to form a complex and rigorous degree program.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

ST. JOHN’S UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
With new emerging world trends and needs such as developments in sustainability and environmentalism, it is necessary for students to have solid foundation of understanding in a wide array of disciplines. At St. John’s University, graduates will have the tools and skills necessary to communicate complex idea between nations.

Campus Location: Jamaica, NY

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Tuition and Fees:

  • $1,145 per credit hour

Financial Aid: Scholarships, grants, loans, payment plans, and military benefits

Acceptance Rate: 52.6%

Admission Considerations:
Admission to the program is contingent upon an assessment of the candidate’s ability to successfully pursue graduate study. Ability is demonstrated by previous academic performance, letters of recommendation and other factors that suggest academic potential and motivation.
Learn about Admissions at St. John’s University HERE!

Concentrations:

  • International Communications General Curriculum

Course Flexibility:
Preparing students for a broad range of communication networks, St. John’s University delivers a comprehensive education in International Communications for students of all academic and cultural backgrounds.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

UNIVERSITY OF DENVER

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Program Standouts:
At the University of Denver, “The Josef Korbel School of International Studies is one of the world’s leading schools for the study of international relations.” This experiential program prepares students to be world leaders in public, private, and non-profit sectors as well as government agencies.

Campus Location: Denver, CO

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Tuition and Fees:

  • $1,142 per credit hour
  • $4 per credit hour—technology fee

Financial Aid: Merit, academic, and need-based scholarships, grants, fellowships, and student employment

Acceptance Rate: 68%

Admission Considerations:
Applicants can download the Graduate Admission handbook .pdf HERE!

Concentrations:

  • International Affairs General Curriculum

Course Flexibility:
Constantly voted as one of the countries best schools in international affairs, the University of Denver’s graduates go on to become world-class professionals in their field. Students have access to the best in faculty and research facilities to support their Masters in International Affairs.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:

Campus Location: Baltimore, MD

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Tuition and Fees:

  • $48,710 per year—tuition
  • $4,871 per year—non-resident fee

Financial Aid: Individualized payment plans, loans, grants, scholarships, student employment

Acceptance Rate: 15%

Admission Considerations:
The Admissions Committee values applicants with solid academic preparation (including course work in economics), practical professional experience, and international exposure. We strongly encourage students of varied undergraduate backgrounds to apply.

Concentrations:

  • International Relations General Curriculum
  • Conflict Management
  • Global Theory and History
  • International Law and Organizations

Course Flexibility:
All students are expected to take solid coursework in public policy upon graduation, as well as maintain an exceptional understanding of their field within their concentration. Experience is highly valued at Johns Hopkins and students are also expected to meet certain experience and internship requirements.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE

GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY

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Program Standouts:
Consistently ranked as the best international relations program in the country, Georgetown University prepares all masters students to be absolutely exceptional within their field of nation-to-nation diplomacy and communication. According to their website, “With the unparalleled resources of Washington, D.C., we are one of the world’s foremost institutions for the study of international affairs and cultural diplomacy. Domestically and internationally recognized academic excellence, intercultural understanding, and Jesuit ideals of service are some of the hallmarks of studying international relations at Georgetown.”

Campus Location: Washington, D.C.

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Tuition and Fees:

  • $47,754 per year—tuition

Financial Aid: Scholarships, institutional/federal/private loans and grants, payment options, student employment, fellowships

Acceptance Rate: 17.1%

Admission Considerations:
Admission to Georgetown University is highly competitive and students are encouraged to gain experience within their field before sending in an application. All students must submit professional experience, letters of recommendation, GRE test results, and transcripts from undergraduate institutions.
Concentrations:

  • Foreign Service/Master of Public Policy
  • Foreign Service/Master of Business Administration
  • Foreign Service

Course Flexibility:
Accomplished faculty includes leading scholars, a former secretary of state and other high ranking government officials. Georgetown’s diverse faculty and student body enhance the learning environment both in and outside the classroom.

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