International Relations (IR) is a very popular discipline among students. To keep up with the interests of students, universities and colleges improve and add new IR courses all the time. On our portals alone, there are over 1,200 Bachelor’s and 1,100 Master’s degrees in International Relations.
But what if you’re only willing to study at a top university? We’ve got you covered! Looking at data from rankings created by Times Higher Education and TopUniversities, the following are the best international relations schools in the world. We've also included the average acceptance rates where available:
1. Best international relations schools in the world – TopUniversities Subject Rankings 2021
- Harvard University, US – 4.6% acceptance rate
- Sciences Po, France – 20% acceptance rate
- University of Oxford, UK – 17.5% acceptance rate
- Princeton University, US – 5.8% acceptance rate
- The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), UK – 8.9% acceptance rate
- University of Cambridge, UK – 21% acceptance rate
- Stanford University, US – 4.3% acceptance rate
- Yale University, US – 6.1% acceptance rate
- The Australian National University, Australia – 35% acceptance rate
- National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore – 5% acceptance rate
View the full QS Rankings by Subject on the official TopUniversities website.
2. Best international relations schools in the world – Times Higher Education Subject Rankings 2022
- University of Oxford, UK
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), US – 6.7% acceptance rate
- Stanford University, US
- Harvard University, US
- Princeton University, US
- University of California, Berkeley, US – 16.3% acceptance rate
- The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), UK
- University of Cambridge, UK
- University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, US – 22.9% acceptance rate
- The University of Chicago, US
See the complete ranking on the official Times Higher Education webpage.
We also recommend these universities that offer International Relations degrees:
- T204773inn University, Estonia – 20-30% acceptance rate
- University of Birmingham, the UK – 79% acceptance rate
- The University of Western Australia, Australia – 38% acceptance rate
- Masaryk University, the Czech Republic – 30-40% acceptance rate
- Karlshochschule International University, Germany
Student reviews of the best international relations schools in the world
Below, we’ve listed several reviews from students who took courses at some of the best international relations schools worldwide. Their experience can help you understand better what’s it like to study at some of the most prestigious universities and colleges abroad.
“Sciences Po is one of the best universities for political science and international relations, not only in France but also on an international scale.
The academic program is unique and challenging, the professors are highly qualified, and the campus life is well animated. The main area that needs improvement is the administration and working towards acquiring more recognition abroad.”
“Yale is a great place to study because it fosters the interdepartmental exchange between scholars of different fields. The opportunities at Yale are immense. Support exists in every fashion. Facilities and resources are unparalleled. Definitely recommend.”
Australia National University
“Studying at ANU paved the way for numerous opportunities: I was able to join many diverse and interesting clubs (e.g. the Quidditch Society) and get involved in interesting electives - for instance, I conducted ethnographic research in Vietnam as an elective in anthropology.”
The London School of Economics and Political Science
“LSE provided me with an exhilarating opportunity to feed my intellectual curiosity and to quench my academic thirst. The research standards were excellent, and the library resources provided by the LSE were limitless.
The teaching was outstanding with leading international experts in my field of interest. I particularly appreciated being surrounded by like-minded students also eager to explore the world of academia. My experience at the LSE was overall an unforgettable one!”