Home > Department of International Relations > Frequently asked questions (FAQS) > Frequently asked questions (FAQS) for offer holders and current students

Frequently asked questions (FAQS) for offer holders and current students

Prospective Applicants: please read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) for applicants wishing to apply for the BSc IR, MSc IR and MSc IR ResearchMSc IR TheoryMSc IPE and MSc IPE ResearchMPhil/PhD programme.

The FAQ is divided into the following sections:

NOTE: During the summer 2015, you will be receiving materials about your registration at the School from the Student Services Centre, and also a welcome letter with some suggested summer reading from the International Relations (IR) Department. Please read these materials carefully before your arrival. A detailed IR Handbook will also be given to you at the beginning of your course. In the meantime, you may find the answers to your questions on this site. You may also find it helpful to look at the School's 'Welcome Week' website.

 

updating announcement
PLEASE NOTE: These FAQs are updated in May or June of each year, when arrangements for the coming academic session have been finalised.

 

General questions

  1. What are the dates of the terms in 2015/16?
  2. Where is the Department of International Relations located?
  3. What is the difference between a 'course' and a 'programme'?
  4. What is the difference between a 'class' and a 'seminar'?
  5. When is the orientation meeting?  Is it important to attend?
  6. Is there a Departmental Common Room?
  7. Is there any formal representation of students in the IR Department?
  8. Do you have an IR student society?  What is the Grimshaw Club?
  9. What is Millennium: Journal of International Studies?
  10. When will I be given access to email? Can I access reading lists before the session begins?
  11. What study skills support is provided by the School?
  12. Does the Department award any student prizes?
  13. How many hours per week are given over to lectures and classes/seminars? How is teaching distributed across the three terms?
  14. Can I tape lectures and access lecture notes?
  15. How often will I meet my academic adviser?
  16. Do students usually work to support themselves while studying, and what paid jobs are available within the School? Also, are internships arranged by the Department?
  17. When will the examinations be held and when will the examination timetable be available?
  18. What careers do most IR graduates move into?
  19. Is there anything I should read before starting in late September?
  20. Are there any social/study events in the IR Department?

Questions for first-year undergraduates (BSc IR)

  1. What induction is provided by the IR Department for first-year BSc IR students?
  2. Who is in charge of my programme?
  3. What is the format of undergraduate teaching?
  4. What kind of tutorial supervision will I receive?
  5. How do I find out who my Academic Adviser is?
  6. How will I choose and sign up for my Year One courses?
  7. How do I find out when and where lectures and classes are held?
  8. How do I change the time of a class?
  9. What guidance is provided on course teaching?
  10. How are the reading lists for IRD courses structured?
  11. What are the methods of assessment for BSc students in the IR Dept?
  12. How do I get my examination results?

Questions for taught course graduate students

(MSc International Relations (IR), MSc IR Research, MSc International Political Economy (IPE), MSc IPE Research and Sciences Po-LSE Double Degree in Affaires Internationales and IR/IPE (SPDD), MSc IR Theory)
  1. Who is in charge of my programme?
  2. What is the format of graduate teaching?
  3. What kind of supervision will I receive?
  4. How will I sign up for my compulsory courses?
  5. How will I choose and sign up for my optional courses? Is there restricted access to any courses?
  6. Are there any courses not running in 2015/16?
  7. How do I find out when and where lectures and seminars are held?
  8. What is the difference between the MSc IR and the MSc IR Research programmes? Is it possible to change from one to the other?
  9. What is the difference between the MSc IPE and the MSc IPE Research programmes? Is it possible to change from one to the other?
  10. What guidance is provided on course reading?
  11. How are the reading lists for IRD courses structured?
  12. What is the method of assessment for MSc students in the IR Dept? 
  13. Can you tell me more about the 10,000 word dissertation?
  14. Are there any rules regarding word-processing or handwriting essays?

Questions for first-year Research Students (MPhil/PhD)

  1. Who is in charge of the research programme?
  2. Are there any deadlines for applications for MPhil/PhD?
  3. When is the orientation meeting?  Is it important to attend?
  4. What kind of supervision will I receive?
  5. What kind of research training will I receive?
  6. Can you tell me more about Research Panels?
  7. How do I find out when and where lecture, seminar and research workshops are held?
  8. How should I organise my research?
  9. When will I be able to transfer from MPhil to PhD registration?
  10. Does the Department provide any special facilities for research students?
  11. Can I teach an undergraduate class in the Department?
  12. What happens if I wish to change my research topic substantially?
  13. Will I be supported to attend conferences during my MPhil/PhD?

Answers to general questions

 

updating announcement
PLEASE NOTE: These FAQs are updated in May or June of each year, when arrangements for the coming academic session have been finalised.

 

1.  What are the dates of the terms in 2015/16?

Michaelmas Term: Thursday, 24 September 2015 to Friday, 11 December 2015 (Teaching begins on Monday, 28 September 2015).
Lent Term: Monday, 11 January 2016 to Thursday 24 March 2016
Summer Term: Monday, 25 April 2016 to Friday, 10 June 2016

2.  Where is the Department of International Relations located?

The IR Department is located in Clement House, 99 Aldwych (see Finding your way around LSE: room numbering and accessibility), a few minutes' walk away from the main LSE campus. (Please note that the postal address is LSE, Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE). Academic staff offices are located on the 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th floors and administrative staff offices are located on the 6th floor, as are notice boards, academic and administrative staff postboxes and student pigeonholes. A small suite of staff offices is also located in St Clement's Building in 95 Aldwych, next door to Clement House. We also have a Graduate Teaching Assistants' room and two research student rooms in 'SHF' building in Sheffield Street.

3.  What is the difference between a 'course' and a 'programme'?

The term 'programme' refers to your degree as a whole – either the 3 years of the BSc International Relations or the year-long MSc degrees. The term ‘course’ refers to individual courses such as ‘IR100 Concepts of International Society’ or 'IR410 International Politics'.  They can either be full year courses (ie teaching takes place in both the Michaelmas and Lent terms) or half unit courses (with teaching taking place in just one of these terms).  You may also find your Academic Advisor referring to ‘papers’.  These are the individual components of your ‘degree programme’.  A ‘paper’ may entail a single compulsory course (ie Paper 5 on the BSc IR degree is IR200 International Political Theory or Paper 1 on the MSc IR is IR410 International Politics) or it may entail a choice from a selection of courses.  It will all make sense when you arrive here!

4.  What is the difference between a 'class' and a 'seminar'?

Classes are held for undergraduate students to provide an opportunity to discuss issues raised in lectures and as a result of private study.  In the 1st and 2nd year, classes normally have up to 14 students and meet for one hour a week.  In the 3rd year, some of the specialist half unit options may meet for 90 minutes or take the form of a two hour taught seminar. Most classes involve student presentations as a way of starting discussion.

Seminars are similar to classes but are held for postgraduate students and will normally have up to 15 students.  They are normally 1.5 hours in length.

5.  When is the orientation meeting?  Is it important to attend?

The International Relations Department will be holding the following orientation meetings for new IR students on Thursday 24 September and Friday 25 September 2015, where you will meet the Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning), and the Departmental Tutor (for undergraduates) and Programme Directors (for postgraduates).  

  • BSc IR (first year undergraduates):
    Thursday 24 September, 12.45-13.45. Room CLM.3.02 (see also Qn 1 BSc IR below)
  • General Course:
    Thursday 24 September, 12.00-12.45, Room TW2.2.04
  • MSc IR:
    Thursday 24 September, 09.30-10.45, Room CLM.3.02
  • MSc IPE (International Political Economy)/MSc IPE Research:
    Thursday 24 September, 11.00-12.00, Room CLM.3.02
  • SPDD (Sciences Po-LSE Double Degree in Affaires Internationales and IR/IPE): Thursday 24 September, 09.00-09.30, Room CLM.3.07
    DD students should also attend the MSc IR or MSc IPE meetings above, depending on their choice of programme.

Refreshments will be available in CLM.2.05 immediately after the above meetings, except for the Sci Po Double Degree meeting.

  • MSc IR Theory (IRT):
    Friday 25 September, 10.30-12.00, Room CLM.3.04 
  • MSc IR Research:
    Friday 25 September, 12.00-13.00, Room CLM.3.04 

There will be an opportunity for you to chat with your fellow MSc IRT and MSc IRR students over refreshments in CLM.2.05 at 11.30 on Thursday 24 September 2015.

  • Research (new students only):
    Friday 25 September, 16.15-17.45, Room CLM.3.05 
    Drinks with the Deputy Heads of the IR Department and supervisors will be held in the local pub after the meeting.

It is important to attend your orientation meeting as the structure of your course and administrative arrangements will be explained at this time. As BSc, GC and some MSc appointments with Academic Advisers will be scheduled for the afternoon of Thursday 24 September and for Friday 25 September 2015, we would be grateful if you could keep your diary free of other engagements on those days.   

Please note that names of academic advisers and appointment times cannot be given out in advance and that it is not possible to request a particular academic adviser.    

Occasionally some graduate students accept a place on a programme in the hope of changing their course of study on arrival. If you fall into this category, please note that this is only allowed in exceptional circumstances and the matter should be discussed with your academic adviser. You are therefore expected to attend only the orientation meeting for the course for which you have been accepted.

6.  Is there a Departmental Common Room?

Yes.  There is a large IR student common room with study carrels and a large, open-plan area with soft seating on the 7th floor of Clement House.

7.  Is there any formal representation of students in the IR Department?

Yes.  There are two International Relations Staff-Student Liaison Committees. An IR departmental Staff-Student Liaison Committee for Taught Courses (SSLCTC) and a Staff-Research Student Liaison Committee (SRSLC) both meet at least once a term to discuss matters of common interest. These are consultative, not executive bodies.

The SSLCTC consists of the Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning) as Chair, the Departmental Manager, the Committee Secretary and student representatives from each programme covered by the Committee.

The SRSLC consists of the Director of Doctoral Programmes as Chair, the Departmental Manager, the Research Programme Administrator as Committee Secretary, and students representing both new and continuing research students.

Further details about elections for the two Committees and dates of meetings will be provided at the beginning of the session. 

8.  Do you have an IR student society?  What is the Grimshaw Club?

The Grimshaw Club is the student society of the International Relations Department and the oldest LSE society. It is organised by a group of around ten IR students who are elected to positions on the Executive Committee by the Club's members at the beginning of each session. The Club welcomes all students interested in current affairs but also provides an important social forum for student and staff members of the Department.   Unlike many other LSE student societies, which are purely social affairs, the Grimshaw Club regularly hosts speaker and panel discussions through the year as it aims to stimulate debate on a wide range of subjects relating to international relations. The Club also organises study trips abroad during the Easter vacation and holds a number of parties. Further information about how to get involved in the Grimshaw Club will be provided at the beginning of the session.  You can also read some more about it on the Grimshaw Club webpage. 

9.  What is Millennium: Journal of International Studies?

Millennium is one of the pre-eminent journals in the field of international relations theory and has a world-wide circulation. Published by Sage, it is one of the few academic journals edited completely by postgraduate students, it maintains a high professional standard and a reputation for publishing innovative work by young scholars as well as by established figures in the field. Weekly Editorial Board meetings involve students in lively discussion and debate.  Furthermore, a number of Management Team positions will be filled in November, normally by graduate students. Further information about how to get involved in Millennium will be provided at the beginning of the session. You can also read more about Millennium on the Millennium: Journal of International Studies webpage.  

10.  When will I be given access to email? Can I access reading lists before the session begins?

If you are coming to the IR Department as a BSc IR or General Course student, you will be sent detailed information in late August regarding the date from which you can access your LSE network log-in and email account. Please note that for new undergraduate students this information will be sent to you along with your statement of confirmation once all conditions attached to your offer have been met.

LSE network log-in for new students is likely to be activated during September, prior to registration.  Once you have been granted access, you will be able to make your course selection via LSE For You (see also FAQs for New Students - first year undergraduates Qn 6), and to register on Moodle, the School's virtual learning environment, where you will find reading lists.

If you are coming to the IR Department as a post-graduate student, you should check the Graduate Admissions website during the summer for a link to information regarding your network log-in and email access which will be via the School's LSE For You.

Once you have an LSE network account, you will be able to register on Moodle, the School's virtual learning environment, and gain access to the readings and other information, even if you decide not to take the subject as an examination option.

11.  What study skills support is provided by the School?

The School offers a range of study support facilities, via the Library, IMT Services, LSE Learning World (via Moodle, run by the Teaching and Learning Centre (TLC)), LSE Language Centre, and Student Services Centre.  TLC support includes study skills lectures and workshops as well as one-to-one 'tutorials' for students requiring more detailed support. Easy access to the various events and support activities are available via LSE Learning World Moodle website set up by TLC.

12.  Does the Department award any student prizes?

Yes.  Prizes to the value of £250 are awarded annually as follows:

  • BSc IR Year 1 (The Geoffrey Stern Prize): for the best IR100 Structure of International Society examination performance by an IR student.
  • BSc IR Year 2 (The Goodwin Prize): for the best examination performance by a second year BSc IR student.
  • BSc IR Year 3: for the best degree performance overall by a third year BSc IR student.
  • BSc IR Year 3 Dissertation Prize: for the best 10,000 word BSc IR Dissertation.
  • MSc IR (The Philip Windsor Dissertation Prize): for the best 10,000 word MSc IR Dissertation.
  • MSc IR (The Michael Donelan Prize): for the best IR410 examination performance.
  • MSc IPE (The Susan Strange Dissertation Prize): for the best 10,000 word MSc IPE Dissertation.
  • MSc IRT Dissertation Prize (The Fred Halliday Dissertation Prize): for the best 10,000 word MSc IRT Dissertation.
  • MSc IR Research/MSc International Political Economy Research (The Martin Wight Dissertation Prize): for the best 10,000 word MSc IR Research or MSc IPE Research Dissertation (sponsored by the Martin Wight Memorial Trust).

Those awarded prizes will be notified after the relevant Examination Board meetings.  

13.  How many hours a week are given over to lectures and classes/seminars? How is teaching distributed across the three terms?

For each examinable course that you will be taking, there will normally be a weekly 1-hour lecture and an accompanying 1-hour weekly class (for undergraduates) or 1.5 hour weekly seminar (for MSc students). These normally run during Michaelmas and Lent Terms with a revision session in Week 1 of the Summer Term. In Week 6 of both the Michaelmas and Lent Terms there will be a 'reading week'.

Sometimes you will also be advised by the Course Coordinator to attend a complementary set of lectures. Details of the teaching arrangements for individual courses can be found in the relevant Undergraduate course guides and Postgraduate course guides

You can also view the online Sessional Timetable. This will tell you the terms in which teaching is held, ie. MT = Michaelmas Term, LT = Lent Term, ST = Summer Term, the week in which teaching for a given course begins, the room and any room changes that are due during the course of the year.

14.  Can I tape lectures and access lecture notes?

Many lectures are 'captured' and made available as video podcasts.  The recording of other lectures requires the consent of the lecturers, who may also distribute lecture notes and slides at their own discretion. The Department will make reasonable adjustments for the needs of students with disabilities.

15. How often will I meet my academic adviser?

This and other details of academic adviser provision can be found in the Code of Good Practice for Undergraduate Programmes: Teaching, Learning and Assessment and the Code of Good Practice for Taught Course Masters Programmes: Teaching, Learning and Assessment.

16.  Do students usually work to support themselves while studying, and what paid jobs are available within the School? Also, are internships arranged by the Department?

Some students do take on part-time work during their studies. However, as it is important not to over-commit yourself, it is advisable to speak to your academic adviser about any such plans. Unfortunately, the School has relatively few part-time employment opportunities but you may find it helpful to ask the Library and your hall of residence if there are any vacancies.  You should also register with LSE Careers and check the LSE Career Hub which is regularly updated with part time jobs and volunteering opportunities.

The Department does not arrange internships, but you may find the LSE Careers webpages on Internships and Work Experience helpful. If you are planning to pursue this, it is advisable to speak to your academic adviser beforehand to ensure that the time commitment involved will be compatible with your studies. Graduate students may be interested in the LSE Internship Scheme.

17.  When will the examinations be held and when will the examination timetable be available?

Examinations are held in the Summer Term.  They will start in Week 2 for undergraduate students and Week 4 for MSc students. The provisional examination timetable, which is organised by the School's Examinations Office not the IR Department, is normally published by the end of the Lent Term.

18.  What careers do most IR graduates move into?

Please see our webpage on recent IR career destinations, and the International Relations pages at LSE Careers which feature IR graduate career destinations, undergraduate and post-graduate careers, and graduate profiles.

19.  Is there anything I should read before starting in late September?

You will be sent a welcome letter from the IR Department via email in early summer which will include some suggested reading.

20.  Are there any social/study events in the IR Department?

The IR Department holds a number of social events during the year and the Grimshaw Club offers a varied programme of both social and study events.

The IR Department also hosts a weekend conference during the session, though space is necessarily limited.   It is held at Cumberland Lodge, Windsor Great Park (to the west of London) in late November and provides an opportunity to discuss a particular topic in depth, and enable staff and students to mix informally in pleasant surroundings. Further details about signing up for the conference will be provided at the beginning of the session.

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Answers for first-year undergraduates (BSc IR)

 

updating FAQs
PLEASE NOTE: These FAQs are updated in May or June of each year, when arrangements for the coming academic session have been finalised.

 

1. What induction is provided by the IR Department for first-year BSc IR students?

In addition to the formal orientation meetings to be held on Thursday 24 and Friday 25 September 2015 (see FAQ 5 General Questions), Mr Mark Hoffman (Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning)) and Professor Christopher Coker (Departmental Tutor) will be hosting a lunch for all BSc IR Year 1 students early in the Michaelmas Term.  This will be an excellent opportunity to break the ice and meet your peers before the academic year begins.  Further details will be provided in due course.

2. Who is in charge of my programme?

In 2015/16, the BSc IR will be overseen by the Departmental Tutor (DT), Professor Christopher Coker. If you have an urgent enquiry which cannot wait until the orientation meeting, where much will be explained, you should email Adnan Khan, BSc IR Programme Administrator, at A.Khan16@lse.ac.uk or telephone him on 020 7955 7562 and he will refer it to the DT. Matters related to your registration/payment of fees should be directed to the Student Services Centre.

3.  What is the format of undergraduate teaching?

Each course generally comprises a series of lectures which are not compulsory but which you are strongly advised to attend and an accompanying class at which attendance is compulsory. While lectures can attract large numbers of students, classes are limited in size and provide an opportunity for students to give presentations and discuss issues raised both in the lectures and as a result of private study. You are entitled to attend any lectures offered throughout the School but should only attend those classes for which you are registered. Students are expected to supplement formal contact hours by extensive unsupervised reading, preparation for classes and essay-writing. Reading lists, and, in many cases, lecture handouts, are provided electronically. The former will be available from the beginning of the new session. See also Question 9 and Question 10 below.

4.  What kind of tutorial supervision will I receive?

Your academic adviser maintains an overview of your progress and offers advice on your first-year compulsory IR course, IR100 Concepts of International Society. Arrangements for meeting your academic adviser on a regular basis will be explained at your first meeting with him/her. Although you may not request a particular academic adviser, if the relationship proves unsatisfactory, it is entirely proper for you to approach the Departmental Tutor (or, if your academic adviser is the Departmental Tutor, the Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning)) to request a transfer. In seeking such a transfer, requests for a specific academic adviser are not permitted.

5. How do I find out who my Academic Adviser is? >

You will be informed of your academic adviser's name and first appointment shortly before or at the end of your orientation meeting (see General Question 5). 

6. How will I choose and sign up for my Year One courses?

Please consult the Student Services Centre 'Welcome Week' webpage for information regarding course registration.

7.  How do I find out when and where lectures and classes are held?

Timetabling is undertaken by the School rather than by Departments and the Module Timetable, which gives lecture times and venues, is available on-line (see LSE Teaching and Timetabling) shortly before teaching begins. Once you have been allocated to classes, this information will also be accessible via LSE For You towards the end of week 1 of Michaelmas Term. (Please note that the Module Timetable also lists details of MSc seminars and research student workshops which are not relevant to you.) Relevant Course Guides in the online Undergraduate Handbook also provide details of timetable arrangements, e.g. the number of meetings and when teaching begins.

8.  How do I change the time of a class?

Students are allocated to classes centrally by the Student Services Centre.  In exceptional circumstances you can ask to be assigned to another class. For further details, please see the Student Services Centre website. 

9. What guidance is provided on course reading?

Each course has its own detailed reading list, which is on the School's virtual learning environment (VLE) called 'Moodle'.  Some teachers make additional course materials available.

10. How are the reading lists for IRD courses structured?

The IRD's teaching philosophy places great emphasis on independent study and student initiative. You are expected to read widely and deeply enough to be able to contribute to class discussions and to write essays. Reading lists for individual courses will be found on the Moodle teaching platforms for each course. The readings will normally be divided into a short section listing ‘essential’, ‘required’ or ‘recommended’ readings and longer ‘general’ or ‘further’ readings. The ‘essential’ readings are meant to identify keys readings for that week’s class discussions and will often have hyperlinks that will take you to e-versions of the readings. These can be accessed while on the LSE campus and remotely. The ‘further’ readings are meant to provide a wider range of readings that you can draw on in making class presentations and in writing your essays. You are free to choose from these readings as you judge appropriate for the topic at hand, as well as seek advice from your class teachers and/or academic advisor on which of the further readings may be of relevance to the ideas and arguments you wish to develop.

11. What are the methods of assessment for BSc students in the IRD?

The Department uses a wide variety of assessment mechanisms to assess your achievement of learning outcomes at both the individual course level and the programme as a whole.  Assessment can be formative essays, seminar presentations, group projects, blogs, videos/films, assessed essays, written exams, and/or dissertations.

Different forms of assessment are linked to the material covered in a particular course and its learning outcomes.  In some cases, this will take the form of an unseen examination at the end of the year.  These encourage you to develop the ability to synthesize a significant amount of material, developing concise, effective arguments in your own voice.  Examinations develop the ability to write and argue concisely, a set of transferable skills that will prove valuable whatever career path you choose.

In other cases, this will take the form of summative assessed essays or a dissertation.  These require you to pursue guided independent research, formulating your own research questions and developing your own ideas and arguments, marshalling the relevant evidence to sustain your argument.  This form of assessment offers a greater reward for originality and creativity than in an unseen exam.

Some courses may entail more novel forms of assessment, such a collaborative projects, films and videos, or writing blogs.  In each case, the nature of the assessment is linked to the particular learning outcomes for that course – as well as developing transferable skills that you will draw on and make use of after completing your degree.

All of these forms of assessment are complemented by formative assessment.  These usually are short essays (about 1,500 words in length).  These essays are marked but the marks don’t count towards your final degree.

Formative work allows you the opportunity to explore and experiment in developing your ideas and arguments, importantly to make and learn from mistakes, without the adverse consequences of the work counting towards your final grade.  They provide the basis for detailed feedback on how far you have come in terms of the learning objectives of an individual course.  And, whether a course makes use of unseen exams and/or assessed coursework, formative assessment allows you to develop ideas and arguments that you will make use of in formal assessment.

The combination of these methods within individual courses and across the degree as a whole is designed to provide feedback to you on your learning, help you improve your academic performance and develop transferable skills.   It also allows the Department to gauge your achievements – what you have learned, what you know, your critical analytical skills - and assists the Department and School in making decisions on progression from one year to the next in the degree and as well as forming the basis for decisions on final degree classification.

As part of their assessment, all BSc IR students can choose to write a 10,000-word Dissertation in their third year (IR398). The Dissertation is a guided but unsupervised piece of research and must be entirely the candidate's own work. The IR398 Course Coordinator will give advice and may also refer you to other members of the Department for advice of a general and bibliographic nature on the basis of the submitted outline. In no circumstances are they, or any other teachers within the School or the wider university community, permitted to read or comment upon a draft of the dissertation or any part thereof. Further information regarding the Dissertation is provided in the IR398 Course Guide and the School Calendar and in our IR Student Handbook which will be given to you at your orientation meeting.

12. How do I get my examination results?

Official results are sent to students' home addresses by the central Student Services Centre during August. Provisional results are available online in mid-July. If you fail to meet the progression requirements for the degree (e.g. if you fail more than one examination), you will be automatically sent details to your email address by the central administration on what you need to do next. This will be done by the end of July.  

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Answers for taught course graduate students 

(MSc International Relations (IR), MSc IR Research, MSc International Political Economy (IPE), MSc IPE Research and Sciences Po-LSE Double Degree in Affaires Internationales and IR/IPE (SPDD), MSc International Relations Theory (IRT))

 

updating FAQs
PLEASE NOTE: These FAQs are updated in May or June of each year, when arrangements for the coming academic session have been finalised.

 

1. Who is in charge of my programme?

Each graduate programme in the Department is overseen by a Programme Director (PD), who is a full-time member of the IR Department. The names of the PDs will be confirmed in the IR Student Handbook at the beginning of the new session.  However, if you have an urgent enquiry which cannot wait until the orientation meeting, where much will explained by your PD, you should instead email the relevant Programme Administrator as follows:

MSc IR:
Ms Uzma Lone (u.lone@lse.ac.uk, tel 020 7955 7129)

MSc IR Research
Ms Martina Langer (m.langer@lse.ac.uk tel 020 7955 7560)

MSc IPE/MSc IPE Research:
Ms Martina Langer (m.langer@lse.ac.uk tel 020 7955 7560)

LSE-Sci Po Double Degree:
Ms Martina Langer (m.langer@lse.ac.uk tel 020 7955 7560)

MSc IRT:
Ms Martina Langer (m.langer@lse.ac.uk tel 020 7955 7560)

However, it would be appreciated if such enquiries could be kept to a minimum. Matters related to your registration/payment of fees should be directed to the Student Services Centre.

2.  What is the format of graduate teaching?

Graduate students often ask about the intended role of lectures and seminars. The following provides a brief guide. 

Lectures:  Each course generally comprises a series of lectures which you are strongly advised to attend. Lectures, though important, are not compulsory. As graduate students, an important part of your learning will be done through reading the course literature and discussing the issues in and outside seminars. You should understand that you will be expected in your own written work to go considerably beyond the content and approach of lectures in your subjects.

Lectures are intended to fulfil various functions, but they are not a substitute for independent reading and thought. Lectures are intended to provide students with an overview of a particular subject-area, its related concepts and issues, and to introduce the most important relevant academic literature. This can mean that lectures will often not be able to achieve the depth of coverage that you will find in the relevant literature. Lectures also provide you with exposure to the individual styles and approaches of different teachers at LSE. We strongly encourage you to attend lectures both in your subjects and in other areas that interest you; we hope that you will find many of the lectures available in the Department and in the School interesting and stimulating. (Note: Many lectures are 'captured' and made available as video podcasts.  The recording of other lectures requires the consent of the lecturer concerned. For students with disabilities, the Department will make 'reasonable adjustments' on a case-by-case basis.)

Seminars:  In addition to lectures, teaching is conducted in seminars. These are usually held weekly over the period of the course, with students allocated permanently to groups of, normally, ten to fifteen. Although each course has a 'Teacher Responsible' (also known as 'Course Coordinator') for its overall organisation (as indicated in the Graduate Course Guides in the online Graduate School Handbook), the academics involved in the teaching of courses are responsible for individual seminar groups. While lectures can attract large numbers of students, seminars are limited in size and provide an opportunity for students to give presentations and discuss issues raised in the academic literature. Students are expected to supplement formal contact hours by extensive unsupervised reading, preparation for seminars and essay-writing. Reading lists, and, in many cases, lecture handouts, are provided in hard copy and electronically. The former will be available from the beginning of the new session after you have been given network access (see FAQ General Question 10 and Question 10 below).

Note that attendance at seminars is compulsory. Participation in a seminar represents a commitment to the seminar leader and your fellow students.

3.  What kind of supervision will I receive?

MSc IPE/IPE Research students will be supervised by their IR450 International Political Economy seminar teacher, whom they will meet during week 1 of Michaelmas Term.

MSc IRT/IR Research students will be supervised by their IR436 Theories of International Relations seminar teacher, whom they will meet during Week 1 of Michaelmas Term.

All MSc IR students will be allocated an academic adviser with an appointment to meet them before teaching begins (on Monday 28 September 2015). Please keep your diary free of other engagements on 24 and 25 September so that you are free to attend the appointment.  Further details will be provided at your orientation meeting (see FAQ General Question 5).  Please note that it is not permitted to ask for a particular academic adviser.

Your academic adviser will maintain an overview of your academic progress over the course of the year, and offer initial advice on the writing of the 10,000-word Dissertation.

Arrangements for meeting your academic adviser on a regular basis will be explained at your first meeting with him/her. As noted above, MSc IPE/IPE Research students self-select their academic adviser by means of choosing their IR450 seminar group, and MSc IRT/IR Research students self-select their academic adviser by means of choosing their IR436 seminar group.  For MSc IR students, although you may not request a particular academic adviser, if the relationship proves unsatisfactory, it is entirely proper for you to approach the relevant Programme Director (or, if your academic adviser is the Programme Director, the Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning)) to request a transfer. In seeking such a transfer, requests for a specific academic adviser are not permitted.

Note: If MSc IPE/IPE Research students or MSc IRT/IR Research students find that the relationship with their academic advisers proves unsatisfactory, the matter should also be discussed with the MSc IPE/IPE Research Programme Director or the Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning), but any change would involve a move to a different IR450 or IR436 seminar group.

4.  How will I sign up for my compulsory course/s?

As you will have noted from the Graduate Prospectus when you applied to the School, you will be required to take the following compulsory courses:

MSc IR:  IR410 - International Politics

MSc IR Research: IR436 Theories of International Relations and MY4M1.MY4M2 Foundations of Social Research, (Quantitative Analysis, Fundamentals of Research Design, Qualitative Research: Interview, Text and Image). As an adjunct to MY4M1.MY4M2, MSc IR Research students are also recommended to attend IR501 International Relations Research Methods.

MSc IPE and MSc IPE Research: IR450 - International Political Economy

MSc IPE Research: MY4MI/MY4M2 Foundations of Social Research, (Quantitative Analysis, Fundamentals of Research Design, Qualitative Research: Interview, Text and Image).

Sciences Po-LSE Double Degree in Affaires Internationales and IR/IPE (SPDD): Students will select either the MSc IR or MSc IPE for their second year of study.

MSc IRT: IR436 Theories of International Relations

You will be asked to sign up for a seminar group in your compulsory course on Friday 25 September 2015.  Further details will be provided at your orientation meeting.

5.  How will I choose and sign up for my optional courses? Is there restricted access to any courses?

As an incoming International Relations Department postgraduate student, you should check the Graduate Admissions website during the summer for a link to information regarding your network log-in and email access, which will be via the School's 'LSE For You' (LfY). You will be given access to the School's computer network in the run-up to the beginning of the new session, probably in early September, and we suggest that you look at the online Calendar 2015/16 which lists all courses on offer and provides a 'Course Guide' for each. The Course Guide gives a brief description of the syllabus and teaching arrangements. You will also be able to access 2014/15 reading lists and/or, when they are ready, 2015/16 reading lists via the School's virtual learning environment called 'Moodle'. 

From 10.00 on Monday 21 September 2015 you will have access to the School's Graduate Course Choice software for 'browsing' purposes.  From 10.00 on Friday 25 September 2015, i.e. the second day of term, you will also have access to the School's online Course Selection software, which will enable you to register for your preferred option courses and which your Academic Adviser will be able to view and approve online. Registering for an optional course does NOT, however, mean that you have been automatically accepted for it.  This will be the decision of the Course Coordinator.  To enable the Course Coordinator to make the judgement, you should click through to the seminar sign-up section which is linked to the course registration software.  Here you should complete the 'Statement Box' indicating why you wish to take the course.  You are allowed to register an interest in up to four optional courses.  We ask you to indicate whether the chosen course is your first, second, third or fourth choice.  Failure to do so may lead the Course Coordinator to give priority to those who have indicated their order of preference.

Choosing your optional courses can be stressful and we would like to reassure you that the Department makes every effort to offer sufficient numbers of seminar groups in a given subject to ensure that we do not have to turn away IRD students who wish to take an IR option listed on their MSc degree programme regulations.  However, there are some courses with a limited number of places.  As a result, the Department cannot guarantee access to all courses.

Everything will be explained fully at our orientation meetings on Thursday 24 and Friday 25 September 2015.

Please see Question 6 below to see which courses will NOT be on offer in 2015/16.

 

6. Are there any courses not running in 2015/16?

In 2015/16, the following courses will NOT be on offer:

  • IR431 (H) European Union Policy Making in a Global Context
  • IR437 (H) Post-Colonial Perspectives in International Relations
  • IR453 (H) Global Business in International Relations
  • IR460 Comparative Political Economy
  • IR462 (H) Introduction to International Political Theory
  • IR463 (H) International Political Theory of Humanitarian Intervention
  • IR465 The International Politics of Culture and Religion
  • IR467 (H) International Political Economy of the Environment
  • IR482 Russia and Eurasia: Foreign and Security Policies
  • IR515 Political Economy of International Finance

7.  How do I find out when and where lectures and seminars are held?

Timetabling is undertaken by the School rather than by Departments and the Module Timetable is available on-line shortly before teaching begins (see LSE Teaching and Timetabling). Timetable clashes are kept to a minimum but are sometimes inevitable because of the number of optional courses offered across the School. You are therefore advised to make your final course selection only after having checked carefully the scheduling of relevant lectures and seminars in the Module Timetable.

See also FAQ General Question 13

8.  What is the difference between the MSc IR and the MSc IR Research programmes? Is it possible to change from one to the other?

There are two MSc programmes. The MSc International Relations is an advanced, academic study of the subject.  It is suitable if you plan to progress to a career that might have an international focus. The MSc International Relations Research is designed as a preparation for research work, particularly those considering going on to do a PhD, and includes compulsory Methodology courses.

The majority of students will be taking the MSc International Relations programme, comprising a compulsory paper in International Politics, a compulsory 10,000-word Dissertation and two papers which can be chosen from a number of subjects, details of which are listed in the MSc IR section of the Graduate Prospectus and in the School's online Graduate Handbook (see MSc International Relations Programme Regulations).

Students taking the MSc International Relations Research programme will be required to take the following subjects: Theories of International Relations, Foundations of Social Research (Quantitative Analysis, Fundamentals of Research Design , Qualitative Research), one paper which can be chosen from a number of subjects, details of which are listed in the MSc IR section of the Graduate Prospectus and in the School's online Graduate Handbook (see MSc International Relations (Research) Programme Regulations) and a compulsory 10,000-word Dissertation.

Transfers between the MSc IR and MSc IR Research programmes are only allowed in exceptional circumstances.

Transfers from either of the two versions of the MSc IR to either of the two versions of the MSc International Political Economy (IPE) at the beginning of the session are only allowed in exceptional circumstances.

9 .  What is the difference between the MSc IPE and the MSc IPE Research programmes? Is it possible to change from one to the other?

There are two MSc programmes. The International Political Economy (IPE) is an advanced academic study of the subject and would be suitable if you plan to progress to a career that might have an international focus.  The International Political Economy (IPE) Research is designed as a preparation for research work, particularly those considering going on to do a PhD, and includes compulsory Methodology courses.

The majority of students will be taking the MSc IPE programme comprising a compulsory paper in International Political Economy, a compulsory Dissertation and two papers which can be chosen from a number of subjects, details of which are listed in the MSc IPE section of the Graduate Prospectus and on the Programme Regulations webpage. In addition, there are other courses offered in the School especially by the Departments of Economics, Economic History and Law, which may appeal to you and for which you may be considered eligible by your academic adviser and the Department concerned.

Students taking the MSc IPE Research programme are required to take the following subjects: International Political Economy, Foundations of Social Research (Quantitative Analysis, Fundamentals of Research Design, Qualitative Research), one optional paper, and the Dissertation - see the Programme Regulations webpage.

It may be possible, depending on your choice of options, to change programmes up to the end of the first term of the course.

Transfers from either of the two versions of the MSc IPE to either of the two versions of the MSc International Relations (IR) at the beginning of the session are only allowed in exceptional circumstances.

10.  What guidance is provided on course reading?

Each course has its own detailed reading list, which is available on Moodle, which is a web-based location bringing together a range of resources, including course information and reading lists, discussion boards and online quizzes. Some teachers make additional course materials available via Moodle.

11. How are the reading lists for IRD courses structured?

The IRD's teaching philosophy places great emphasis on independent study and student initiative. The reading lists provided by course teachers are intended as guides: some courses will flag 'essential' or 'required' readings for a particular topic.  These will often have hyperlinks that will take you to e-versions of the readings.  In addition reading lists will highlight 'recommended' or 'further' reading (works considered to be of use or interest with respect to a particular topic). These provide a wider range of readings that you can draw on in making seminar presentations or in writing essays. Ultimately, you are responsible for ensuring that you have read widely and deeply enough to be able to contribute to seminar discussions and to write essays. You are expected to select readings from the reading list and your own research which you judge to be appropriate for the topic at hand.

12. What is the method of assessment for MSc students in the IRD?

The Department uses a wide variety of assessment mechanisms to assess your achievement of learning outcomes at both the individual course level and the programme as a whole.   Assessment can be formative essays, seminar presentations, assessed essays, written exams, and/or dissertations.

Different forms of assessment are linked to the material covered in a particular course and its learning outcomes.  In some cases, this will take the form of an unseen exam at the end of the year.  These encourage you to develop the ability to synthesize a significant amount of material, developing concise, effective arguments in your own voice.  Exams develop the ability to write and argue concisely, a set of transferable skills that will prove valuable whatever career path you choose.

In other cases, this will take the form of summative assessed essays or a dissertation.  These require you to pursue guided independent research, formulating your own research questions and developing your own ideas and arguments, marshalling the relevant evidence to sustain your argument.  This form of assessment offers a greater reward for originality and creativity than in an unseen exam.

In each case, the nature of the assessment is linked to the particular learning outcomes for that course – as well as developing transferable skills that you will draw on and make use of after completing your degree.

All of these forms of assessment are complemented by formative assessment.  These usually are short essays (about 2,000 words in length).  These essays are marked but the marks don’t count towards your final degree.

Formative work allows you the opportunity to explore and experiment in developing your ideas and arguments, importantly to make and learn from mistakes, without the adverse consequences of the work counting towards your final grade.  They provide the basis for detailed feedback on how far you have come in terms of the learning objectives of an individual course.  And, whether a course makes use of unseen exams and/or assessed coursework, formative assessment allows you to develop ideas and arguments that you will make use of in formal assessment.

The combination of these methods within individual courses and across the degree as a whole is designed to provide feedback to you on your learning, help you improve your academic performance and develop transferable skills.   It also allows the Department to gauge your achievements – what you have learned, what you know, your critical analytical skills - and assists the Department and School in making decisions on final degree classification.

As part of the degree programme, all MSc students must write a 10,000-word Dissertation. A core part of the Department's academic philosophy at the Master's level is that the Dissertation is to be researched and written by you, working independently and unaided. This means that academic advisers and other LSE staff must not read drafts of your work. However, they provide initial guidance regarding the selection of a suitable topic and provide verbal comments on short outlines of 4-5 pages and respond to reasonable enquiries related to your Dissertation. Further information about the Dissertation is provided at a meeting during the Michaelmas Term.

13. Can you tell me more about the 10,000-word Dissertation?  

The Dissertation is a 10,000 word long piece of independent work that makes a contribution to ongoing debates in the study of international political economy (MSc IPE/ MSc IPE Research), international relations (MSc IR/MSc IR Research) or international relations theory (MSc IRT). Within the dissertation, students apply the knowledge they have acquired in their taught courses to the investigation of a particular problem or question in depth. The Dissertation need not necessarily be an account of primary fieldwork or archival research. It may draw on either primary or secondary source material. However, it must demonstrate:

  • an ability to formulate a clear research question or topic and to organize it in a coherent, logical and clear way within the constraints of the 10,000 word limit and the submission deadline.
  • an ability to employ relevant theoretical literature in a critical and sophisticated manner and to show how the argument of the Dissertation relates to this literature;
  • an ability to marshal evidence, of a logical-theoretical and/or an empirical kind, in support of the arguments of the Dissertation;
  • an ability to produce work of a scholarly standard as to literary presentation, clarity, accuracy in point of spelling, punctuation and grammar.

Producing the dissertation is a process with various stages.

  • The first part of the process is the identification and refinement of your research problem or question. This involves surveying relevant literature and working out, in discussion with your academic adviser (or other relevant experts in the department), how to turn what may be a rather broad interest into a manageable topic. The topic and scope of the Dissertation is subject to the approval of the student's academic adviser, and you will be given an opportunity to meet with your academic adviser specifically to discuss this once the session has got underway.
  • The second part of the process, about which you should also consult with your academic adviser (or other relevant experts in the department), involves mapping out the relevant sources on which you are going to draw (primary or secondary) and planning your research accordingly.
  • The third part of the process involves doing the research.
  • And the fourth part of the process, which proceeds in parallel with the third, involves working out your argument, on the basis of your research, and writing it up as a finished piece of work.

A core part of the Department's academic philosophy at the Master's level is that the Dissertation is to be researched and written (the third and fourth parts of the process) by you, working independently and unaided. This means that academic advisers and other LSE staff must not read drafts of your work.

However, you will be given detailed guidance on preparing and writing your Dissertation during Michaelmas Term 2015. You are politely requested to wait until that time to pursue any questions you may have related to this matter.

14.  Are there any rules regarding word-processing or handwriting essays?  

Although essays during the year should be word-processed, final examinations are hand-written. Legibility is, of course, vitally important. Your academic adviser may also recommend that you undertake additional study in writing English, using the facilities of the School's Language Centre. 

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Answers for first-year Research Students (MPhil/PhD)

 

FAQ announcement
PLEASE NOTE: These FAQs are updated in May or June of each year, when arrangements for the coming academic session have been finalised.

 

1. Who is in charge of the research programme?

The MPhil and PhD programmes are overseen by the Doctoral Programme Director (DPD), Dr Tarak Barkawi.

You are politely requested not to contact the DPD before your arrival. If you have an urgent enquiry which cannot wait until the orientation meeting, where much will be explained, you should instead email Ms Gabrielle To at g.to@lse.ac.uk or telephone her on 020 7955 7561. However, it would be appreciated if such enquiries could be kept to a minimum. Matters related to your registration/payment of fees should be directed to the Student Services Centre.

2. Are there any deadlines for applications for MPhil/PhD?

All applicants for MPhil/PhD who wish to be considered for School Scholarships for entry in MT 2016, need to apply by 11 January, 2016

Self funded applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by 11 January, 2016, but applications will be accepted throughout the academic year.

3.  When is the orientation meeting?  Is it important to attend?

The International Relations Department will be holding an orientation meeting for new MPhil students on Friday 25 September 2015 (see General FAQ 5 above), where you will meet Professor Chris Hughes, Head of the IR Dept, and Dr Tarak Barkawi, Deputy Head of Department (Research) and DPD, and Mr Mark Hoffman, Deputy Head of Department (Teaching and Learning). 

It is important to attend your orientation meeting as the structure of your course and administrative arrangements will be explained at this time. If you are unable to attend the meeting please contact Ms Gabrielle To at g.to@lse.ac.uk, or telephone her on 020 7955 7561 to make alternative arrangements. 

4.  What kind of supervision will I receive?

The relationship between research student and supervisor is of key importance for research students. It is also one of the most rewarding aspects of teaching and research for supervisors.  It is the supervisor who will advise what further course of study may be needed and it is the supervisor who will advise on reading, sources of documentation and the development of a research design and framework for the thesis.  The supervisor will also read and comment upon draft chapters etc, and recommend such additional seminars, workshops, learned societies etc that the student may wish to attend.  Your supervisor will also be in contact with the members of your Research Panel when you have your interview in the Summer Term, where your progress will be reviewed.  

5.  What kind of research training will I receive?

The basic aim of training is to equip a research student in IR to design, research and write a professional doctorate within a maximum of four years (full-time registration). In its own turn the doctorate and associated training should enable a person to go on to further research and/or to become an academic in the field, familiar with all its major areas and methodologies.

Students selected to join the Department to pursue MPhil/PhD degrees will have been chosen on the basis of their previous qualifications in International Relations and cognate subjects. As a First-Year Research Student your research training needs will be discussed with your supervisor and a training programme will be approved by the Director of Doctoral Programmes. All first-year research students are required to attend (i) the Department's Research Methods Training Seminar (IR501), which meets weekly for two terms, covering first epistemological and theoretical issues, and then ethical and practical questions, and (ii) the International Relations Design Workshop (IR509). If you have not already taken a Research track Masters degree you will need to attend the Teaching and Learning Centre's course Authoring a PhD and Developing as a Researcher. The Library also runs a series of seminars on Information Skills. You are also encouraged to attend Department of Methodology courses.

All research students, regardless of year, are expected to attend at least one of the thematic workshops offered by the Department, details of which will be provided at your orientation meeting. These include international theory; foreign policy analysis; security, conflict and peace studies; international institutions; political economy and public policy; North-South relations; European international politics; and workshops on Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. Note that not all of these workshops run every year. You are also expected to attend any other relevant Department of  Methodology courses.

6.  Can you tell me more about Research Panels?

The Department holds Research Panels (RPs) for MPhil and PhD students during weeks 2-5 of the Summer Term. The Panel, which does not include your supervisor, will normally comprise at least one member of staff with cognate research interests. RP meetings normally take about thirty minutes and the membership of the RP will normally be the same in Year Two as in Year One, although this cannot be guaranteed.

In Year One, you will be required to submit an outline of your proposed thesis and one complete chapter to your RP members before the meeting. Prior to doing this, your supervisor will have read and given feedback on your work and you should indicate to your RP whether the chapter is in draft or finished form. At the meeting, you will be asked to make any additional verbal comments which you may wish to add to the written work you have already submitted. Members of the RP will then discuss the progress and orientation of your work, encourage your progress, identify any problems that may have arisen and suggest further initiatives that may be taken, by you or the Department, to assist your progress. However, where the Panel and your supervisor doubt that completion of a successful thesis is likely within a reasonable period, they may take the view that registration should not be renewed. A decision may be made then and there or you may be asked to submit an additional piece of work by a specified deadline before the start of your second year so that the RP and your supervisor can make a final judgement.

In Year Two, you will be required to submit two further chapters which show evidence of doctoral quality and the RP and your supervisor will then decide whether to give permission for your upgrade from MPhil to PhD. In cases of unsatisfactory progress, upgrading and/or continued registration may be made conditional upon completion of further written work of an appropriate standard. Students may also be required to attend a further Research Panel meeting.

As a new MPhil student, you are automatically required to attend a RP at the end of your first and second years. Thereafter your supervisor will monitor your progress and discuss with you whether it would be beneficial for you to attend Panels in subsequent years.

7. How do I find out when and where lecture, seminar and research workshops are held?

Timetabling is undertaken by the School rather than by Departments and the Module Timetable is available online (see LSE Teaching and Timetables) shortly before teaching begins.

8. How should I organise my research?

It will help to organise your work if, amongst other things, you construct a timeline of proposed work. Like everything else to do with a PhD, you will want to revise this every few months, as new avenues of research open up or new distractions tempt you to divert. Nevertheless, a plan of work helps to cut down on dead time, and to keep in view that you are going to finish your PhD within a defined time limit.

Year One 

  • Define topic in more detail, define research hypotheses, draft first chapter.
  • Research training, wider studies on social science research, theoretical approaches.
  • Preliminary investigation of sources for research - availability, access.
  • Regular meetings with supervisor - three per term.

At the end of first year: Research Panel. Key point for gaining permission to re-register for Year Two. Also, to check that you now have a clear and well-defined research theme, hypotheses, and plan for future research, and that your supervisor and Research Panel members are happy with your outline and draft introduction.

Year Two/Years Two-Three

  • Detailed research, including field research if needed.
  • Test out approach on audiences, through graduate workshops, conference papers, etc.
  • Draft further chapters as research proceeds.
  • Maintain contact with supervisor, 2 meetings a term, emails if away.
  • Participate in research workshops, departmental seminar, etc.

At the end of second year: Research Panel. Key point for gaining permission to upgrade to full PhD status; to check that you have made substantial progress, including at least two chapters in draft in addition to the outline and one complete chapter written in Year One. You will not be upgraded to full PhD status unless you satisfy the Panel and your supervisor that you are well advanced both in research and writing at the appropriate level.

Year Three/Year Four

  • Complete first draft, allowing 3-6 months for revision and submission.
  • Supervisor will read and comment on full draft, and approve for submission for exam.
  • Further presentations to conferences, articles for publication?
  • Plan postdoctoral moves: next career stages.

At the end of third year: Research Panel, if thought necessary by your supervisor. To check progress towards completion, including timetable for submission.

Variables in time plan: need to learn an additional language? Extended field research abroad? Part-time teaching in second and third years? Involvement in Millennium?

9. When will I be able to transfer from MPhil to PhD registration?

Students are normally upgraded from MPhil status to the PhD degree by their Research Panel and their supervisor at the end of their second year. Please see FAQ No 6 above for further details.

10. Does the Department provide any special facilities for research students?

There are three IR research student study rooms with IT facilities located within the Department.  Further details will be provided on your arrival.

11.  Can I teach an undergraduate class in the Department?

Yes.  All IR research students entering their second or subsequent years of registration are eligible to apply for teaching.  Further details will be provided on your arrival.

12. What happens if I wish to change my research topic substantially?

Unfortunately we cannot guarantee suitable supervision in this case. However, the School will always make every effort to accommodate you.

13. Will I be supported to attend conferences during my MPhil/PhD?

In each of your four years of study, the IR Department will underwrite to the value of up to 75% of the cost of attending one overseas conference (such as the ISA Conference in North America) or one UK-based conference, up to an agreed maximum in any given year. Approval of requests for more than one grant will be at the discretion of the Head of Department and the availability of funds. 

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