International Public Policy & Diplomacy
The MSc in International Public Policy & Diplomacy (MSc IPPD) is an innovative, interdisciplinary, taught master's course that provides graduates with the expertise required for successful careers in international policy environments.
Offering core modules in Government and Politics, History, Law and Food Business and Development, the course will give you access to expertise across a diverse range of subjects. The MSc International Public Policy & Diplomacy is strongly orientated toward vocational skills training, through coursework and an opportunity to undertake a work placement.
The course will be of interest to you if you aspire to a career in, or are already working in, departments of foreign affairs and other government ministries, international political and financial organisations, the armed forces, aid agencies, non-governmental organisations, think-tanks, and international businesses.
The taught part of the course runs from September to the end of the following March. You will complete the research dissertation between April and the end of September.
The part-time option will be taught during weekday working hours over two years.
During the taught part of the course, students have approximately 8-10 hours per week of lectures/seminars. This is supplemented by recommended reading, preparation of presentations and other group work and time spent completing assignments (essays, policy reports, research projects, etc).
In Part 1, the course is assessed through a variety of coursework assignments, including
· research essays
· policy reports
· group work
· seminar discussions.
The assessment is designed to help you to develop both an understanding of issues and the practical skills necessary to work in international affairs.
In Part 2 of the course, students complete a research dissertation which takes the format of either a 15,000-word independent research dissertation or an 7,500-word work-based research dissertation & a 1000-word placement practice report.
Core modules are taught by staff of the Departments of Government and Politics, Law, History and Food Business and Development. Elective modules are offered by Food Business and Development, Government and Politics, History, Languages, Law, Management and Marketing, Philosophy, Sociology and Women's Studies. Our staff has expertise in areas such as global governance/international organisations, foreign policies and foreign policy decision-making, the European Union, international law and human rights, gender politics as well as in more specialised areas such as US foreign policy, European security and migration.
The MSc in International Public Policy & Diplomacy programme is divided into two parts totalling 90 credits.
Part 1 (60 credits)
In Part 1, students take a combination of compulsory and elective modules from selected disciplines. The core modules (40 Credits) invite you to engage with:
the contemporary global challenges facing policymakers
processes of government decision-making in relation to international affairs
international economic policies and institutions
the institutions and policies of the European Union (EU)
In addition, you will develop practical and analytical skills relevant to working in international affairs and gain an insight into personal and group dynamics associated with leadership.
You will also choose from 20 credits of elective modules offered by a wide range of disciplines including Food Business and Development, Government and Politics, History, Languages, Law, Management and Marketing, Philosophy, Sociology and Women's Studies. Students' choice of elective modules must be considerate of the programme's academic calendar, and in light of this, may be shaped by the programme's timetable.
Part 2 (30 credits)
Part 2 of the course challenges you to apply the skills acquired in Part 1 either by undertaking an independent research dissertation, or a work-based research dissertation as follows:
GV6013 Work-based Dissertation in International Public Policy & Diplomacy (30 credits) or
GV6014 Dissertation in International Public Policy & Diplomacy (30 credits)
On completion of the course, you will be able to identify and assess global policy challenges and global policymaking processes and will have gained expertise in analysis and evaluation, report writing, oral presentation skills and leadership.
For a complete list of modules please consult the College Academic Calendar here (MSc IPPD).
Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our Book of Modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.
You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.
The minimum requirement for applicants is a Second Class Honours Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) in any subject;
Candidates who hold a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) will also be considered under
Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) subject to their 'motivation statement' and references;
In Exceptional circumstances, substantial professional experience in a relevant field may be accepted as compensating for the absence of an undergraduate degree, subject to approval by the programme director and the College of Arts Celtic Studies and Social Science.
All applicants will be required to submit a 'personal statement' (indicating why they are interested in taking the MSc (International Public Policy and Diplomacy) and why they think they would be suited to the programme.
English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university-approved English language requirements. Please visit our PG English Language Requirements page for more information.
For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland
Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements. For more information see our Qualification Comparison page.
For full details of the non-EU application procedure visit our how to apply pages for international students.
In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.
Note that not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above. For more information contact the International Office.
The closing date for non-EU applications is 30 June 2023
How Do I Apply
1. Check Dates: Check the opening and closing dates for the application process in the fact file boxes at the top of the page.
For Irish and EU applicants we operate a rounds system and you can check the rounds closing dates here.
Note that not all our programmes are subject to the rounds system so check the opening and closing dates for your specific programme in the fact file boxes above.
2. Gather Documents: Scanned copies of supporting documents have to be uploaded to the UCC online application portal and include:
Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC.
Any supplementary items requested for your course if required.
3. Apply Online: Apply online via the UCC online application portal. Note the majority of our courses have a non-refundable €50 application fee.
Any questions? Use our web enquiry form to contact us.
Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:
You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.
Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.
Please enter the names and email addresses of 2 referees, at least one must be an academic referee.
During the taught part of the course, students have approximately 8-10 hours per week of lectures/seminars. This is supplemented by recommended reading, preparation of presentations and other group work and time spent completing assignments (essays, policy reports, research projects, etc.). During the taught part of the course you will also take classes in preparation for the work placement.
In part 1, the course is assessed through a variety of course work assignments, including
The assessment is designed to help you to develop both the understanding of issues and the practical skills necessary to work in international affairs.
In part 2 of the course, the assessment involves
-a detailed work placement portfolio if you are undertaking the work placement, or
-researching and writing a 15,000-20,000-word dissertation (if you are completing the dissertation).
The course is taught by staff of the Departments of Government and Politics, Law and History. Our staff have expertise in areas such as global governance/international organisations, foreign policies and foreign policy decision-making, the European Union, international law and human rights, as well as in more specialised areas such as US foreign policy, European security and migration.
1 year full-time, 2 years part-time.
Start Date 7 September 2020
Post Course Info
Skills and Careers Information
We recognise the importance of equipping our students with the skills they need to progress following graduation. You will be given expert advice on career development by a dedicated work placement manager and also have access to UCC's Career Services.
The course has established links with important international policy institutions from which you will benefit. Having completed the course, you will be a skilled analyst of international affairs and have the confidence and experience to apply that expertise in the real world.