Skip to main content Skip to navigation

MA in US Foreign Policy

What are the main sources of US foreign policy making? What is the balance between power and principle in US foreign policy? What are the main threats to US national security and how are they confronted? Why is the US fighting international terrorism and can it ever be defeated?

As a leading global power, the United States and its foreign affairs have a significant impact upon international relations, both in terms of policy and academic scholarship.

This significance has grown in the years since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 and the subsequent “war on terror” in ways that have been reflected in the development of the academic literature and in the increased level of interest in the subject area. With a high concentration of US Foreign Policy experts among PAIS academics, the department is in a unique position to bring cutting-edge, in-depth knowledge and discussion to postgraduate study in this field.

Programme content

This programme focuses on US foreign policy in the context of national security as well as wider aspects of the country’s foreign policy and its impact in the areas of the economy, international relations, and particularly security. Some of the questions you will tackle include:

  • What are the main sources of US foreign policy making?
  • What is the balance between power and principle in US foreign policy?
  • How important is domestic politics in the making of US foreign policy?
  • What are the main threats to US national security and how are they confronted?
  • Why is the US fighting a "war on terror" and can it ever be won?
  • To what degree do economic imperatives drive US foreign policy?
  • What is the utility of US military force after Iraq and Afghanistan?
  • To what extent should US security policy address issues such as poverty and environmental change?
  • Is the US in relative decline as a world power?

All of our MA programmes are worth 180 CATS (credits) in total. As part of this course, you will be required to take one core module (40 CATS). You’ll then have the freedom to select 2-4 modules (80 CATS) that appeal to you from our extensive range of optional modules. If you pass the taught modules, you will move on to the second phase of the MA programme and complete a dissertation of 10,000 words (60 CATS).

Further information

About the course

Programme Director:
Georg Löfflmann

Entry requirements

PG modules