Postgraduate study

International Relations of the Middle East

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time

This programme offers an advanced theoretical and empirical understanding of the international relations of the Middle East, exploring and applying several theoretical models: realism, constructivism, historical sociology and structuralism.

This programme offers an in-depth understanding of the main historical events, processes and actors that have shaped and continue to shape the political dynamics of the Middle East.

The politics of Islam, oil, the Arab-Israeli conflict, the Arab Spring and continuing regional unrest pose crucial questions about the Middle East and about its place in the world order. This recently developed programme draws on our research strengths in politics and international relations and Islamic and Middle Eastern studies to offer you a unique opportunity.

As well as placing the region in broader analytical, conceptual and theoretical debates of international relations and political science, we also aim to foster knowledge of Middle East international relations by examining local cultures, histories, languages and religions.

You’ll acquire a strong understanding of theoretical and conceptual tools required to understand Middle East international relations.

The programme will be delivered through lectures, seminars, group work and guided independent study.

You will complete two compulsory courses and four option courses, after which you will work towards an independently researched dissertation.

In addition to your work on your taught masters programme, you may wish to take advantage of opportunities to learn Persian or Turkish while at the University.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScInternational Relations of the Middle East1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2018/19
MScInternational Relations of the Middle East2 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2018/19

The specialist knowledge you acquire through this programme will equip you for a career relating to international/Middle Eastern relations, either in academia or with an international institution.

In addition, the transferable skills you gain in areas such as communication and research will give you an edge in the employment market, whatever your eventual career.

A UK 2:1 honours degree or its international equivalent.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

All applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:

  • an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Degrees taught and assessed in English must be no more than three years old at the beginning of your degree programme. Language tests must be no more than two years old at the beginning of your degree programme.

Find out more about our language requirements:

A non-refundable application fee of £50 must be paid after you submit your application. Your application will not be processed until we have received your application fee.

Find out more about tuition fees and studying costs:

  • Graduate School of Social & Political Science
  • Chrystal Macmillan Building
  • 15A George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LD

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

You must submit a reference with your application.

Application fee

A non-refundable application fee of £50 must be paid after you submit your application. Your application will not be processed until we have received your application fee.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Graduate School of Social & Political Science
  • Chrystal Macmillan Building
  • 15A George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LD