International Politics

KU Leuven

12 months
3500 EUR/year
938 EUR/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The KU Leuven’s Master of Science in International Politics is a one-year Master’s programme that empowers students to gain critical insight into today’s key issues in world politics. The programme is designed to provide students with rigorous research and analytical skills and prepares them for careers in NGOs, research organisations, and political institutions in the EU and around the world.

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The Master of International Politics (MIP) aims to provide students with the theoretical and methodological skills necessary to study governance in a globalizing world. With an explicit focus on international politics, the programme is geared towards students who are interested in international diplomacy, peace processes, conflict management, global environmental politics, and international political economy. It also offers specialised courses on regional political developments in Europe, China, Russia, Eurasia and the Middle East.

The MIP programme offers students the opportunity to study at one of Europe's oldest and most well-established universities and offers them the opportunity to engage in international affairs at all levels. The programme is both promoted and supported by the Faculty of Social Sciences and rejoice regular interaction with developments in and outside political institutions in Brussels. 


The programme is taught by international academics who are passionate about their field of expertise and are at the forefront of current research in political science and international relations. 

The programme offers a variety of teaching methods, strengthening communication and professional skills: interactive class discussions, group work, presentations, guest lectures and study visits.

Interactive courses taught by international academics

The MIP programme is taught by international academics who are specialists in their area, passionate about their subjects, and at the forefront of current research in political science and international relations. They aim to give an interdisciplinary approach towards governance in a globalizing world. In addition, the programme frequently hosts practitioners and international policy makers as guest lecturers. 

In most coursesn class discussions and questions are encouraged, requiring you to prepare for lectures in advance. Group work and/or presentations are part of the teaching method, requiring significant work outside of class. Throughout the year you will work on your dissertation.

Learning outcomes

During the Master of International Politics students will develop three complementary roles:

  • As an expert, students will have the cognitive capacities and analytical skills to make a comparative study of political actors, structures and processes on a national, European and international level. 
  • As a researcher, students will be able to independently transform a complex problem into research questions, a research design and prepare a complete empirical cycle to formulate an answer for each research question, using the appropriate methods of social sciences.
  • As a political analyst, students will have insight in the political order and the structures and processes through which policy is formed and can critically analyse the political processes of power acquisition in which different actors and institutions are involved.

Career perspectives

Graduated students of the Master of International Politics will have access to a wide range of employment pathways across various sectors, including the private, governmental and non-governmental sectors at the national, European and international levels. They will be able to compete for a career in academia or as a policy or decision maker in the political arena. They will have the necessary skills to work as a regional expert, UN consultant, an employee in a non-profit organisation, programme coordinator, policy adviser, researcher, diplomat or journalist.​

Questions about student life in Belgium, life at KU Leuven or more information about a specific course? Chat with our students: www.kuleuven/be/chatwithourstudents.

Programme Structure

Core Course
  • International Politics in the 21st Century: Challenges, Approaches and Method
Compulsory Courses
  • Global Politics and Diplomacy
  • International Political Economy
  • Peace Research and Conflict Management
  • Global Environmental Politics

Regional Specialisation Courses

  • European Foreign Policy
  • China and Global Politcs
  • Russia and Eurasia in the Global Context
  • The Middle East and Europe

Elective Courses

  • European Foreign Policy
  • Political Developments in East and Central Europe
  • Current Issues in European Politics, Policy and Government
  • Development Cooperation
  • Development Economics
  • Human Rights and Rule of Law in Europe and the World
  • The Middle East and Europe
  • Russia and Eurasia in the Global Context
  • Public International Law, including Discussion Sessions
  • China and Global Politics
  • Trade Dimensions of EU Policies
Master’s Thesis

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 12 months

Start dates & application deadlines


IELTS or TOEFL needed




On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA Your GPA, or Grade Point Average, is a number that indicates how well or how high you scored in your courses on average. Usually a GPA scales between 1.0 and 4.0, however different countries and universities can have different grading systems.
GMAT admission requirements GMAT The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a test intended to assess certain analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal, and reading skills in written English for use in admission to a graduate management program, such as an MBA. GMAT contains 4 sections - Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative and Verbal. The score has a range from 200 - 800.

English requirements

IELTS admission requirements IELTS The International English Language Test System (IELTS) tests your English-language proficiency on a scale of 1 – 9. The score refers to the combined average score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading).
7 (required)
TOEFL admission requirements TOEFL® IBT The TOEFL iBT® is given online through the internet at desiganated testing site. The test measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The score refers to the total score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading), each subject has a range of 0 - 30.
100 (required)
PTE Academic admission requirements PTE Academic PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) is a language test that enables students to demonstrate their writing, listening, speaking, and reading skills when applying to study in English. The score refers to a total score which ranges between 10 and 90.

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Applicants should hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree in the field of Political Science. Holders of a bachelor’s or master’s degree in other disciplines can be admitted on the condition that they can provide evidence of their experience in the study and/or practice of International Politics.
  • Applicants should provide a description of the content of the methodology courses followed during previous studies and a research paper which includes a discussion of the scientific literature and the applied methodology.
  • All applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit the results of a language proficiency test.
For more information, please visit the homepage of the programme.

Tuition Fee

  • International

    3500 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 3500 EUR for the full programme and a duration of 12 months.
  • EU/EEA

    938 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 938 EUR for the full programme and a duration of 12 months.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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International Politics
KU Leuven