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MA

Politics

Political words
  • Level(s) of study: Postgraduate taught
  • Study mode(s): Part-time
  • Location: City Campus
  • Starting: September 2019
  • Course duration: One year full-time / two years part-time

This course offers you the opportunity to study Politics at an advanced and specialised level, emphasising the interplay between the national, regional and global arenas. The underpinning theme of the Politics Masters degree is participation - an issue that has, and looks likely to continue to be a key debate within political discourse.

Throughout the course you will have the unique opportunity to explore this theme through combining academic research skills with a period of work-based learning – either through existing links you might have with an organisation / institution, or through links established throughout the course.

We are pleased to also offer a part-time study route for MA Politics 2019 entry.

What you'll study

*We are currently reviewing the content of our courses to ensure that they remain relevant and current to out students’ future ambitions and society. Please continue to check this course webpage for the latest developments.

Throughout the MA Politics you'll gain an advanced and critical understanding of the discipline, whilst enhancing your research and employability skills.

The course consists of three core modules, one optional module and a dissertation or work-based research project.

  • Course modules

    Core modules include:

    Citizens, Values and Political Participation

    This module enables you to understand the relationships between citizens, the democratic process and political institutions in contemporary Britain. It is concerned with examining changing patterns of political participation and political action, changes in citizens' democratic values, and how these trends are affecting democratic politics and public support for democracy.

    Party Political Development

    This module enables you to understand the history, development and dynamics of political parties and political party systems in a wide variety of political contexts. It places specific emphasis on key concepts and theories, alongside the contextual factors influencing both current and future developments of party systems in the twenty-first century.

    Researching Political Issues

    The aim of this module is to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the methods, techniques, and processes that are involved in the research of Politics and International Relations. This module is shared between both the MA Politics and MA International Relations, which in the past has helped establish a useful basis for the cross-fertilisation of knowledge and research that traverses the disciplines.

    Dissertation / work-based research project

    The final core component of the MA Politics course is an extended piece of written work, which entails two options. The first 'standard' option comprises the development of a coherent and viable research proposal on a topic of your choice, with its eventual assessment being a 12,000 word dissertation. The other option involves a period of work-based learning, spending time engaging with a chosen institution or community-based organisation either in the local Nottinghamshire community or further afield. Here, in contrast to the development of a research proposal geared for the completion of a standard 12,000 word dissertation, your assessment will comprise a research plan of how you intend to draw on your experiences, which ultimately will culminate in a written work-based project of a maximum of 10,000 words.

    Optional modules include one of the following:

    Sustainability, Citizenship and Identity

    This module examines the concepts of sustainability, citizenship and identity, specifically – although not necessarily exclusively – in relation to the non-human world. The module emphasises the interplay between both practical and theoretical aspects of ecological politics, spanning environmental ethics, the politics of sustainability, utopian literature and philosophy.

    Global Governance and International Institutions

    This module provides a programme of study on the concept, theories and processes of global governance with a focus on the role of contemporary international institutions. The study of global governance is becoming increasingly important in a world facing a multitude of problems requiring multilateral action.

    Please note: The number of places available on some optional modules may be limited. These will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Students who are unable to select their first choice will be offered an alternative from the remaining optional modules.

Course specification

View the full course specification
Please note that course specifications may be subject to change

Combine academic research skills with a period of work-based learning.

How you’re taught

Study and support

Each module on the MA Politics adopts an explicitly national, regional and / or global perspective on a range of political, economic, social and environmental issues. Most of its modules are team-taught, which allows for a responsive and varied curriculum which reflects the individual and collective research interests of the team. All modules have been designed and selected specifically to adhere to the overarching theme of participation.

Support within the Department of Politics and International Relations is supplemented by effective School-based academic and pastoral support, which is widely publicised and used well by existing students.The MA Politics has regular Course Committees where a representative of your course can share your experiences and provide on-going feedback. We value feedback very highly and will encourage you – and the course team – to reflect on continually as the course progresses.

Assessment methods

Each module employs a range of assessment methods which, through their combination of both summative and formative forms, seeks to encourage a strongly developmental approach to learning. The majority of assessments will be writing-based, ranging from essays, article reviews, reports and e-portfolios. You'll also be assessed through individual and group presentations, involving both peer and tutor-led feedback. This course has no exams.

An active research environment

Throughout the course you'll have chance to integrate yourself into NTU's research culture by attending the Politics and International Relations Departmental Research Seminars, and NTU's annual Alternative Futures conference.

Find out more about research in Politics and International Relations.

In-sessional English language support

In-sessional English language support classes are available to all international (non-EU) students studying on degree courses at NTU. There is no extra charge for these classes.

Learn from research-active staff with specialisms in political theory, European politics and transnational media.

Careers and employability

NTU has a justified reputation among the UK's universities for the high level of employability of its graduates. While the primary aims of a university course have traditionally been intellectual in nature and specific to the subject(s) under study, NTU realises the importance of the role of higher education in training graduates to move into the labour market. The MA Politics will provide you with a range of ‘transferable skills' which will be essential to employment in a range of occupations, including:

  • The ability for independent and critical thought
  • Analysing and evaluating complex and unfamiliar problems
  • Working to tight deadlines
  • Presenting your ideas with confidence and clarity both in writing and in speech
  • Working and learning collaboratively with peers from a range of personal, academic and national backgrounds.

Alongside providing such transferable skills, we believe that the optional pathway through the Dissertation module will strongly enhance your employability skills and, more generally, the course's engagement with contemporary global issues – particularly those of participation, sustainability and citizenship – will ensure that your knowledge and ‘openness' to the wider world is up-to-date and relevant.


After graduating from the MA Politics, you might decide to continue your studies to MPhil / PhD level and there are a range of such opportunities here at NTU. Graduates will also be well placed to pursue careers and training in a wide variety of professions such as research, politics or public administration.

Employability team

Our expert Employability team will work closely with you at every stage of your career planning, providing personal support and advice. You can benefit from this service at any time during your studies, and for up to three years after completing your course. Find out more about the service.

Entry requirements

Applying with prior qualifications

  • You will need an undergraduate degree equivalent to a UK undergraduate honours degree (normally a 2.2 or above).

If you hold a first degree but it doesn't meet the entry requirements above, please refer to the information below.

Applying with non-standard entry qualifications/experience

  • Applicants with non-standard entry qualifications and/or relevant experience will be considered on an individual basis. You will be required to demonstrate how your experiences and knowledge would enable you to study this course at Masters-level in your Personal Statement.

No references are required when applying for this course.

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions team or call +44 (0)115 848 4200.

We accept qualifications from universities all over the world for entry onto our courses. If you’re not sure how your international qualification matches our course requirements please visit our international qualifications page.

Applying with prior qualifications

  • You will need an undergraduate degree equivalent to a UK undergraduate honours degree (normally a 2.2 or above).

If you hold a first degree but it doesn't meet the entry requirements above, please refer to the information below.

Applying with non-standard entry qualifications/experience

  • Applicants with non-standard entry qualifications and/or relevant experience will be considered on an individual basis. You will be required to demonstrate how your experiences and knowledge would enable you to study this course at Masters-level in your Personal Statement.

No references are required when applying for this course.

Pre-masters and foundation courses

If you need to do a foundation or pre-masters course to meet our course requirements please visit Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC). If you’re already studying in the UK at a school or college and would like to know if we can accept your qualification please visit our foundation and pre-masters courses page.

English language entry requirements

If English is not your first language you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.

For a list of our language requirements please visit our English language page.

If you need to do a pre-sessional English language course to meet the English requirements please visit our pre-sessional English course page.

Help and support

If you have any questions about your qualifications or about making an application to the University please contact our international team for advice.

How to apply

All applications to this course can be made through our NTU Applicant Portal.

You can apply for this course throughout the year. Most of our postgraduate courses are popular and fill up quickly though, so apply as soon as you can.

Writing your application

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember, we can only make a decision based on what you tell us. Make sure you include as much information as possible, including uploading evidence of results already achieved, as well as a personal statement.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU in our postgraduates’ guide.

All applications welcome

We welcome applications from prospective students with a range of qualifications and experience, and all are assessed on an individual basis. Applicants who do not meet the standard entry criteria can still be considered providing they have relevant experience to compliment any qualifications. All applicants will need to apply through our NTU Applicant Portal.

If you're applying without prior qualifications, you'll need to submit comprehensive details of your achievements with evidence to substantiate your claim (any documentation can be uploaded to the My Documents section of the Applicant Portal). This type of application will be considered with respect to the University’s provision for ‘accreditation for prior experiential learning’. Decisions regarding the accreditation of prior learning are a matter of academic judgement.

Keeping up to date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process - so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Open days

The School of Social Sciences holds open events throughout the year. Come along and learn more about our courses, speak to programme leaders and find out about studying with the School.

Getting in touch

If you need more help or support, you can call our Admissions Team on +44 (0)115 848 4200, or email applications@ntu.uk.

Good luck with your application!

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

All applications to this course can be made through our NTU Applicant Portal.

You can apply for this course throughout the year. Most of our postgraduate courses are popular and fill up quickly though, so apply as soon as you can.

Apply for your course as early as you can so that you have time to prepare for your studies. If you need a visa to study here you need to plan this into your application.

Keeping up to date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process - so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Getting in touch

If you need more help or support, you can call our Admissions Team on +44 (0)115 848 4200, or email applications@ntu.uk.

Good luck with your application!

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Fees and funding

Fees for 2019 entry

Study routeHome (UK/EU students)
Full-time£7,000
Part-time£3,500 (for Year One*)

Fees may be subject to change.

*Please note if you are considering a part-time route that runs over more than one year, the tuition fee stated is for the first year of study. The course fee for the second year may be subject to annual review.

Funding your studies

Preparing for the financial side of student life is important, but there's no need to feel anxious and confused about it. We hope that our fees and funding pages will answer all your questions.

There are numerous sources of funding available for postgraduate students, both from external sources such as the Government and funding bodies, and from the University.

There are two main costs involved with postgraduate study: the cost of your tuition fees which is paid directly to the University, and living expenses such as accommodation, travel and food.

You might be able to get a scholarship to help fund your studies, We award scholarships to those students who can demonstrate excellent achievement, passion and dedication to their studies.

Please take a look at our postgraduate fees and funding page for information about sourcing grants, bursaries and scholarships, and much more.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service.

Tel: +44 (0)115 848 2494

Fees for 2019 entry

Study routeInternational
Full-time£14,500
Part-time£7,250 (for Year One*)

Fees may be subject to change.

*Please note if you are considering a part-time route that runs over more than one year, the tuition fee stated is for the first year of study. The course fee for the second year may be subject to annual review.

Funding your studies

We offer prestigious scholarships to new international students holding offers to study at the University.

For more information on these and other opportunities for funding please visit our international scholarships page.

For information on how to pay your fees to the University please visit our international fee payment page.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service.

Tel: +44 (0)115 848 2494

Still need help?

School of Social Sciences Enquiries
+44 (0)115 848 4460