Intelligence And International Relations MA

Location Distance Learning
Duration 3 Years
Course start February, September
LocationModeStart dateApply
Distance LearningPart-time2018/19 Academic YearApply Direct
Distance LearningPart-time2019/20 Academic YearApply Direct


The total course fee is £4950 and the course is listed in three parts on the ELCAS website:


PG Cert - £1650 (60 credits)

PG Dip - £1650  (60 credits)

MA IIR (Dissertation) - £1650   (60 credits)


Part-time fees

Fees for part-time study are pro-rata to that paid for full-time study. This means that regardless of whether you choose part-time or full-time study, you pay the same amount for the course you choose to undertake.

The duration of the course and the fees you are charged each year or semester are determined by the speed at which you wish to progress through the course. This is called the 'intensity of study'. So if you choose to study at half the rate of a full-time  student, you’d pay half the full-time course fees each year, and take twice as long to complete your course compared to full-time. If you choose to study at a different intensity this will alter the duration and fee payment rate. If you would like to discuss what this means to you then please get in touch with our Enquiries Team

Course outline

Our Masters degree in Intelligence and IR is designed specifically for MOD Intelligence personnel.

The course focuses on International Relations which will help contextualise your Intelligence Branch training and complement your professional development.

You will develop key skills in research, making and presenting written arguments, and critical analysis; all designed to enhance post-service employability.

Course content

Modules studied:

Globalisation, Power & World Order

This module defines IR today, and looks at the development of IR Theory, starting with early twentieth century liberalism and concluding with contemporary debates on globalisation. It examines key theoretical traditions such as realism, neo-realism, neo-liberalism and constructivism as well as key concepts such as states, sovereignty, power, balance of power and global governance.

Security and Strategic Studies

Study the traditional conceptions of security examined in relation to the deployment and use of force. Explore the philosophy of strategy, the work and importance of Clausewitz, the nuclear arms race of the Cold War and arms races, arms control and the arms trade today. 

Alternative/newer approaches to security and strategies are also examined via a consideration of Peace Research and Critical security Studies. 

Intelligence and IR

Explore the role of intelligence and intelligence agencies in international politics in the 20th century world. Using British, US and worldwide examples, you will look at the establishment and development of intelligence agencies and critically analyse the use of intelligence since the Second World War. 

The module also discusses future trends in intelligence matters in international relations; from increased international cooperation and advances in technology, to the impact of international law on the (increasingly accountable) intelligence services themselves.    

Dissertation in Intelligence and IR 

Produce an extended essay in your chosen research topic, assisted by a supervisor.

Plus one choice from the following options:

  • Money, Trade and Development in the Global Political Economy
  • Foreign Policy Analysis
  • Transnational History
  • International Security

Entry requirements

Entry Requirements

Direct entry to Postgraduate Certificate:FO/Lt/Sub/Lt

30 Credits at Postgraduate Level:Flt Lt/Capt/Lt

60 Credits at Postgraduate Level:Maj/Sqn Ldr/Lt Cdr

If you do not hold any rank mentioned above but have a first degree you may be eligible to join the programme, please contact HM forces team by email: to discuss this further.

Teaching and learning

Study method:

Each module is delivered through our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) with the option of two face-to-face workshops for each module; one at the start of the module and one towards the end.

Typical duration:

Two to three years is the typical duration. However you will have up to 6 years to complete the course, depending on entry level, accreditation and any time you may need to take out.

Meet the experts

The course is taught by experienced and committed experts in both the discipline and in distance learning; and who have understanding and experience of teaching Armed Forces personnel.

  • Dr Sita Bali - Politics of South Asia, politics of international migration and refugee movements, security studies

  • Dr Tony Craig (Associate Professor) - Irish history, British Empire, governments and intelligence communities

  • Dr Pauline Elkes - German and European history, propaganda, intelligence organisations

  • Dr Peter Lamb - Political theory, history of international relations thought, socialist thought

  • Dr Fiona Robertson-Snape - World politics and international relations, international ethics and human rights

  • Dr Alan Russell - Politics of the world economy, international organisation, politics and journalism

  • Dr Simon J Smith - EU and NATO security cooperation, Institutionalism, transatlantic security and reforming European defence

  • Prof. David Webb - Recent and contemporary European philosophy, French epistemology and philosophy of science and Foucault.

Student experience

"The course delivers highly relevant content challenging our personnel’s critical thinking skills and deepening their knowledge, which can then be applied in their daily work supporting military operations worldwide. In addition, the course provides valuable civilian qualifications that will assist personnel when the time comes to leave the Service and seek civilian employment. The popularity of the courses is a reflection of the quality of the University staff across the Faculties involved." 

RAF Intelligence Branch and Trade Sponsor

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Enquiries Team
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United Kingdom
t: +44(0)1782 294400
Enquire about this course