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Master of Arts in International Relations

Master of Arts in International Relations Mission Statement

The Master of Arts in International Relations at USD offers a 30 unit curriculum of comparative politics and international relations.  The program is structured around academic and professional preparation for students interested in international careers.  The academic core of the program consists of 1.5 to 3.0 unit seminars taught by accomplished faculty in various subfields of global affairs.  The coursework is intellectually rigorous and emphasizes analytical, writing, and research skills as well as general international competence and sophistication.  Research Design, Comparative Politics, International Relations Theory, and the Capstone are required courses.  The professional dimension of the program is developed in regular semester electives and in collaboration with other graduate programs at USD in the schools of law, business, and peace and justice.  The international dimension of the program is reinforced by one to three week travel opportunities for credit through international courses, workshops, and conferences.  The curriculum includes summer courses and can be comfortably completed in sixteen months by full-time students, and in twelve months on fast track.  Part-time students are accommodated by a schedule that convenes most seminars one evening per week and most workshops on weeknights or weekends.  The department offers partial scholarships on the basis of academic merit; the University also offers a significant amount of loans and grants including a 15 per cent tuition discount for the military community.   The program concludes with a capstone paper and conference format presentation.  Graduates from the program have moved into careers in the military, in government (especially in intelligence, law enforcement, and diplomacy), in the nonprofit and private sectors, and in higher education, including PhD programs.  USD is nationally ranked and recognized for its international excellence; the MAIR program is among its several successful and innovative programs.