Credit Hours
Concentration Options


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  • In-Person
  • Online
  • Hybrid

M.A. in International Relations at St. Mary’s

The Master of Arts in International Relations uses a cross-disciplinary approach to analyze global events and human development. By integrating history, political science, anthropology, sociology and economics, professors help students develop a comprehensive cross-cultural approach to studying international issues.

The International Relations graduate program helps students explore how global, regional and domestic factors affect relations between countries, businesses, activists, communities and international organizations.

  • Top Ranked Program

    The St. Mary’s University Master of Arts in International Relations program was listed on GradReports’ 25 Best Master’s in International Relations Degrees in 2020. GradReports bases the rankings on alumni earnings in the first year after graduation.

  • Degree Plans

    St. Mary’s offers two graduate program formats: on-campus or online.

    The program offers two concentrations:

    • Sustainable Development and Conflict Transformation
    • Security Policy

    If a student is deployed or moves out of the area while enrolled in the on-campus program, he/she may transfer to the online program, which provides students with the flexibility needed to accommodate their changing lives.

    On-campus students can also pursue:

  • Course Highlights

    The program emphasizes clarity in communication and prepares students to serve as mediators between people from different countries.

    Sample courses:

    • International Political Economy
    • Conflict Transformation and Peace Studies
    • Sustainable Development
    • Inter-American Security Issues
    • Theories on the Causes of War

    Find course descriptions and requirements:

  • Concentrations

    Students who pursue the Master of Arts in International Relations can choose a concentration to focus on. Learn more about each path.

    Available on-campus and online

    Security Policy is an interdisciplinary examination and analysis of national and international security issues. Course content integrates perspectives from the areas of economics, history and political science. Issues range from nuclear proliferation and conventional arms trade to narco-trafficking, trade imbalances, environmental conflict and race/ethnic/gender/religious issues.

    Security Policy

    Available on-campus and online

    This focus area is premised on the notion that international development and the consolidation of peace in post-conflict settings are interrelated and mutually constitutive. Emphasis is placed on the study of human security, peace building and a culturally-sensitive approach to holistic development.

    Sustainable Development and Conflict Transformation

Summer Study Tours

This holistic approach to international relations is further strengthened by internship opportunities and international study tours, creating a dynamic educational experience that is truly transformational in nature.

International Relations students can participate in faculty-led international field studies. Studying abroad enables students to apply theoretical knowledge pertaining to conflict transformation, social justice and human security. Students can earn up to six hours of graduate credit.

Joint Degree Program

The joint J.D./M.A. in International Relations program provides an opportunity for law students to explore the complex nature of a globalized world. 

This program is of particular interest to law students seeking to practice in firms or organizations with clients involved in international law, immigration and refugee affairs, international business and trade, international non-governmental organizations, and governments.

Median annual earningsfor United States ForeignService Officers
Academic Programs at St. Mary’s
Student-to-Faculty Ratio

  • Teaching at a university like St. Mary’s enables you to get to know students as human beings, not numbers.

    — Larry Hufford, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of International Relations

What can I do with a degree in International Relations?

  • Hands-On Experience with Internships

    Students can intern within the United States or abroad for up to six semester hours of elective credit. Internships may be with governmental, non-governmental or private sector organizations.

    Online students should contact the program director to determine if an internship is possible.

    Examples of our students’ previous internships:

    • Federal public service sector
    • U.S. Department of Defense
    • U.S. Department of State
    • Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) in the United States and abroad
    • Private sector
    • Intergovernmental organizations
  • Access Valuable Career Opportunities

    Graduates make a difference in a wide variety of career paths in government, nonprofit organizations, development agencies, global businesses and cultural institutions.

    Students graduate with an understanding of major cultural, economic, historical, political and social themes and are prepared to work in a variety of sectors, including:

    • Private sector
    • Public sector
    • Not-for-profit sector
    • International organizations
    • Education

Where Our Alumni Have Worked

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Learn More

We’re eager to hear from you and answer any questions you have! Feel free to reach out to learn more about St. Mary’s University.

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