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Political Science study options

01 November 2023

If you are studying Political Science and International Relations, you should consider taking a course at each level from one of the subfields. From undergraduate to postgraduate options and scholarships, check out Political Science study options at UC.


Are you interested in making a difference in your community? Understanding New Zealand politics or international problems? What makes good democracy? Public policy challenges like health, the environment, peace, security or human rights? How power and resources are allocated in society to address inequality or help support human and economic development? Religious and ethnic tolerance? Do you want to study these subjects and pursue a career based on your interest?

If so, you should study Political Science and International Relations.

The Department of Political Science and International Relations at UC is recognised for its strength of research, teaching and mentoring networks, field trip teaching, and real-world problem solving.


Undergraduate courses

Political Science and International Relations students should consider taking a course at each level from one of the subfields.

Explore the full list of Political Science and International Relations courses.


Postgraduate courses 

The Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Political Science and International Relations is a research-focused degree consisting of one year of intensive study, working in small classes with enthusiastic lecturers teaching in their specialist fields. It is an opportunity for you to develop skills as an independent researcher capable of moving on to a master's or PhD degree.

It is also excellent preparation for employment as a researcher or analyst. The programme provides opportunities for internships and interaction with politicians and policy makers.

For admission to the Master of Arts (Thesis) programme, you will normally be required to have achieved at least a Second Class First Division BA(Hons) in Political Science and International Relations, or a related subject, with the approval of the Head of Department. 

The department has particular research interests in New Zealand government, nationalism and ethnicity, development, conflict mediation, science and technology policy, the Asia-Pacific region, and security studies.

UC offers a specific master's qualification in Political Science with the Master of Policy and Governance.

UC's Masters in International Relations and Diplomacy is the only degree of its kind in Australasia, arising in response to a growing demand from students for more specialised study of foreign policy and diplomacy. In addition, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade had requested a more focused and practical training in foreign policy-making and international affairs.

The programme is unique in that it offers a multi-disciplinary introduction to the advanced study of foreign policy and international affairs.

There is a field trip to Wellington and input from many experts in the field. Former diplomats assist with delivery of the course as adjunct lecturers while others share their professional expertise as guest speakers at seminars. This gives students a chance to build a professional network within their chosen field of study. 


Scholarships specific to International Relations and Diplomacy can be found on the database. 


UC offers the F A Hayek Scholarship in Economics or Political Science for PhD study.

There are also general scholarships open to applications from POLS students. See the Scholarships webpage for general postgraduate awards and funding opportunities.

Interested in Political Science and International Relations?

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