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Past Questions

  1. Why did you choose the University of Birmingham?

    Winning the prize of the University of the Year 2013-14 of The Times and Sunday Times, the University of Birmingham has not only an excellent reputation within the borders of the UK but also abroad. The University's and the Department of Political Science and International Studies' outstanding capabilities in teaching, research and support for students in educational, financial as well as social matters attracted me most to apply for a Masters degree here. Additionally, to achieve a degree from a British university of a good reputation is a great help in getting the job one is looking for.

  2. How will your degree prepare you for what you want to do afterwards?

    As a prospective journalist I will need extraordinary general knowledge as well as a specialisation that will help me to contrast with the huge number of other journalists. I believe that the combination of my undergraduate studies and my postgraduate programme of International Relations will help me to broaden my general knowledge and understanding of the world in terms of its history, culture and, deriving from that, politics. Furthermore, I think that my specialisation in German foreign policy, seen from an international and British point of view, that I am gaining through my studies in International Relations, will help me to stand out of the crowd of other German journalists. 

  3. Have you joined any clubs or societies, gone on any research trips or done any volunteering?

    Joining one of the various University clubs or societies not only gives you a pleasant change of focus from your studies but also a chance to meet new people and make some local friends. I, for my part, joined the Uni chorus and the mixed SATB chamber choir – good music and nice people! Looking for some other mature students to connect with, I joined the 'Postgraduate and Mature Student Association' (PGMSA), which organises pub evenings and other fun events. Furthermore, I visited some of the lectures of the English for International Students Unit, which I highly recommend, improving my presentation and academic writing skills.

  4. What, for you, are the best things about the course?

    On one hand, the taught Masters program 'International Relations' gives its students a broad-based fundamental knowledge of the subject – what do scholars of International Relations think about globalisation, international institutions and terrorism and what impact did their theories have on international politics? On the other hand, this programme enables students to focus on specific issues and developments in International Relations – you could choose between distinct courses such as 'European Security', 'Terrorism and Political Violence', 'Russian and Ukrainian Politics' and a lot more. Overall, the taught programme of International Relations helps you to set up a perfect combination of basic knowledge of the subject and a personal specialisation.

  5. Do you have anything lined up for once you have completed your degree?

    As a graduate student of History, English Language and Literature as well as International Relations I will have several options as to where and in what area to work. One of my future job prospects has always been to become a journalist for the German public-service broadcast station NDR – a job that combines working on a social level, by talking with people from various backgrounds; an academic level, in presenting complex issues in an understandable way; and finally on a creative level of story-telling. Due to my distinct degrees made in Germany as well as in the UK I hope to get my dream job.

  6. Are there any other courses related to conflict management? Because I want to study it in relation to the situation in Africa.

    Unfortunately, there is no such module like "conflict management" within the postgraduate taught course of International Relations. However, the "Institute for Conflict Co-operation and Security" at the University of Birmingham offers a MSc in Global Cooperation and Security, which focuses on cooperation and conflict transformation. Maybe this could be a course of interest for you? Let me know if I can help you any further.

  7. Hallo Stefanie, ich plane ggf. meinen Master in Sportökonomie an der University of Birmingham zu machen. Neben Birmingham habe ich noch Zusagen von einigen anderen britischen Unis. Sodass ich ab dem 18. Juni einen einwöchigen Trip durch England machen werden, um mir dabei einige Unis anzuschauen. Am 21. Juni wäre ich in Birmingham. Besteht die Möglichkeit sich kurz zu treffen um einige Dinge zu besprechen und Fragen loszuwerden? Vielen Dank für Deine Rückmeldung.


    first things first: Herzlichen Glückwunsch zu all den Zusagen die du bekommen hast! Ich finde, das ist eine sehr gute Idee eine England-Tour zu machen, bevor man sich endgültig für einen Platz entscheidet. Am 21. Juni bin ich in der Stadt und kann mich gerne mit dir treffen. Bitte schreib mir doch eine mail an, dann können wir genaueres absprechen.

    Take care, Stefanie

  8. Hi Stefanie, do you have any advice on financing, scholarships and of course finding the right accommodation? I have been offered a place in River Basin Management with the Environment MSc and have the feeling I am losing track from all of the information you get on the internet. Thanks for offering your help!

    Yes, there are a lot of things to think about at the beginning of every new university course one takes. But I can assure you - it is worth to think about them as early as possible. If you are looking for other postgraduate mentors for Environmental Sciences in particular, have a look at the mentor webpage and you will find Pallavi and Sophie among them. You can find a list of all available university scholarships as well as university accommodations online. However, if you prefer to live in a private and less expensive accommodation, I suggest you have a look at private platforms, such as spareroom, easy roommate, or rightmove.

  9. Hello Stefanie. Thanks for your time in advance. How would you suggest going about finding private accommodation? I've been living in Norwich for the past year, and have realized that folks don't tend to get to know their potential flat mates in advance. Is there a platform (e.g. like that you could recommend for the Birmingham area? And where would you advise to live?

    Hi, there are several private platforms to look for a private accommodation, such as spareroom, easy roommate, or rightmove. They are quite similar to but do not only accompany student flats but also shared flats with full-time working people from all kinds of backgrounds. I found the house I am living in on and am really happy to not have chosen the rather expensive and less cared for houses that the guild of students is recommending. These are also the houses of which the residents often do not know who is going to move in next. However, my opinion is of course subjective - there are a lot of people who are happy with living in university accommodations or university conveyed houses. Which areas to look for when choosing private accommodations depends on the life-style one has. The north-western parts of Selly Oak and the district of Bournbrook are nearest to the university and mainly accommodated by students. Hence you will find a lot of shops and pubs at the Bristol Rd as well as a lot of people going out every night. The other parts of Selly Oak, however, are rather quiet and well connected. I live myself in Selly Oak at the boarder towards Weoley Castle and like it very much! Other nice districts I would/could recommend are Selly Park, Moseley, Stirchley, Bournville, and Harborne. It is always good to look out for good bus and train connections as well :)

    I hope that helps. Take care, Stefanie

    P.S.: in case you speak German - which I suppose from you knowing - you can also write me in German :)

  10. Hallo Stefanie, ich habe mich an mehreren Unis für ein MA in International Relations in UK beworben. Aufgrund meine Backgrounds in Finance hätte ich allerdings nicht gedacht überhaupt eine Zusage zu erhalten. Nun habe ich die Option neben Birmingham auch in Exeter und Lancaster zu studieren. Ich tu mich leider schwer mit der Entscheidung. Kannst du mir sagen, welche 'Fachrichtung' du genommen hast (Security, Terrorism and Political Violence...)? Zudem wüsste ich gerne wie der Study trip nach Brüssel zur Nato und anderen Institutionen war? Bist du mit den Professoren und der Uni zufrieden? Sry, für die vielen Fragen. Ich freue mich schon sehr von dir zu hören. Danke und viele Grüße.

    Hallo Isabell,

    zunächst einmal, herzlichen Glückwunsch für die Zusagen aus Birmingham, Exeter, unf Lancaster! Tatsächlich ist es so, das britische Unis gerne Masterplätze für International Relations an Leute mit einem Management oder Business Hintergrund vergeben. Das liegt daran, dass gerade ein ökonomischer und betriebswirtschaftlicher Hintergrund von großem Vorteil ist, wenn es um Globalisierungsfragen geht.

    Ich selbst habe keinen Schwerpunkt gewählt und mich in allen Bereichen einmal ausprobiert. In dem Fall nennt sich der Master dann einfach nur M.A. International Relations. Die student trips zum Hauptsitz der EU nach Brüssel, zum UN-Model nach New York und dem NATO-Model nach Washington habe ich aus Kosten- und Zeitgründen leider nicht mitnehmen können, aber meine besten Freunde waren unter jeweils einem der drei trips und sehr begeistert! Insbesondere einen Platz für die UN- und NATO-models zu ergattern, macht sich nicht nur im Lebenslauf sehr gut sonder auch um wichtige Kontakte zu knüpfen. Mit dem Lehrpersonal bin ich sehr zufrieden! Natürlich habe ich auch von anderen Studenten von dem ein oder anderen schwarzen Schaf gehört, aber die gibt es an jeder Uni. Meine Dozenten waren immer sehr hilfsbereit und sind im speziellen Masterstudenten besonders aufgeschlossen. Zudem hat das POLSIS Institut gleich mehrere Koryphäen in entsprechenden Fachgebieten vorzuweisen, und mehrere Alumni in hohen Regierungs und IO-Posten. Alles in allem, hat der M.A. IR einen sehr guten Ruf in Großbritannien und abroad. Ich bin eigentlich nur durch Zufall in den IR Master gerutscht und sehr froh mich nun damit auf dem internationalen Arbeitsmarkt gut behaupten zu können.

    Ich hoffe, ich konnte dir in deiner Entscheidung soweit weiterhelfen. Am besten ist es immer, sich vom Bauchgefühl und den Hauptfragen leiten zu lassen: Wie und wo will ich jetzt und später leben und welche Uni passt bzw. brauche ich dafür ;)

    Liebe Grüße, Stefanie

  11. Hallo Stefanie, ich habe doch nochmal eine Frage. Und zwar würde mich interessieren, wieviele Module ich eigentlich im ersten und zweiten Semester wählen kann. Auf der Homepage steht 40 Credits. Das wäre aber, sollte ich mich für das Modul "European Security" entscheiden, nur ein Modul? Zudem scheint es dann so, als hätte ich dieses Modul das erste und zweite Semester? Danke für deine Mühe :-) Liebe Grüße.


    Das mit den Modulen ist leichter als ich es gleich zu erklären versuche ;) Zum einen gibt es keine Semester sondern Trimester, das heißt das Studium ist nicht zwei- sondern dreigeteilt - das autumn term läuft von September bis Dezember, das spring term von Januar bis März und das summer term von April bis Juni. In den ersten zwei terms wirst du deine Kurse besuchen, im summer term deine Prüfungen schreiben und im Sommer dann deine Masterarbeit bearbeiten. Je nachdem für welchen Schwerpunkt du dich entscheidest (z.Bsp. Gender, Peacekeeping, Diplomacy, etc. oder aber International Relations im allgemeinen) wirst du eine mehr oder weniger unterschiedliche Auswahl von Kursen haben. Alle IR Masterstudiengänge, unabhängig vom Schwerpunkt, haben gemein, dass es einen obligatorischen Kurs von 40 Credit points gibt, einen weiteren wählbaren Kurs von ebenfalls 40 Credits points, und schließlich die Wahl zwischen einem weiteren 40 Credit points Kurs oder aber zwei 20 Credit Points Kursen. Diese Kurse werden auf die ersten zwei terms verteilt, wobei die 40 Credit points Kurse über beide terms laufen und die 20 points Kurse nur ein term über. Das sieht dann in etwa so aus: Variante A (40+40+40 = drei Kurse über zwei terms); Variante B (40+40+20+20= zwei Kurse über zwei terms und zwei Kurse je ein term). Du kannst dich also entscheiden, ob du neben den zwei großen Kursen, die beide terms laufen, noch einen weiteren großen zwei-termigen belegen möchtest, oder aber auf Vielfalt setzt und lieber zwei kleine Kurse besuchst, die jeweils nur ein term laufen. Ich persönlich habe mich für zweitere Variante entschieden und neben den beiden zwei-termigen 40 credit Kursen (International Relations Theory + Globalisation and Governance) noch zwei ein-termige 20 Credit Kurse besucht (Global Environmental Governance + Germany's Foreign Policy since the End of the Cold War). In deinem Fall wäre also der Kurs European Security eine Wahl für den dritten großen 40 Credit point Kurs entsprechend der Variante A. Übrigens eine sehr gute Wahl, sollte Derek Averre den Kurs abermals leiten - er ist wirklich gut!

    Ich hoffe, ich konnte dir weiterhelfen und habe dich nicht verwirrt ;) Liebe Grüße, Stefanie

  12. Hello Stefanie! :) I have a question concerning your Masters program in Political Theory. Are your Master programmes separated from the bachelor ones so that students will actually have their own separate modules on a Masters level or can the modules also mix with those from similar bachelor programs? And how many students do you usually have per year in the MA program Political Theory? As I am applying as a European student from Germany I am not quite familiar with the organisation and structure of the one year Master degrees you offer in England.

    Hi, I am studying International Relations, not Political Theory. Sorry, I cannot help you any further with that particular Masters course. However, in regard to International Relations, there are different seminars for undergraduates (bachelor students) and postgraduates (Masters students) respectively. As far as I experienced, those seminars are not mixed. In my year (2014/15) there have been approximately 100 students of IR, but I cannot tell for sure, this is only my guess of how many people I saw in our compulsory introduction class :) However, there is a variety of seminars with group sizes from up to thirty students to only two students, depending on the seminar's popularity. Overall, there are no overcrowded seminar rooms or lecture theatres as occasionally experienced at German universities.

  13. As a German, can I be eligible to have any financial support while in UK? Please direct me on how to apply if yes.

    Hello and yes you can apply for a number of financial support for educational purposes, no matter where you study. There is a list of all available scholarships of the University of Birmingham online and a list of all available UK educational scholarships for EU residents on the webpage of the European Funding Guide. Additionally, if you are German, you can also apply for an Auslands-BAFöG, a Studienkredit of the KFW (which is the one with the best conditions), and of course for German scholarships such as the ones promoted by the DAAD. However, I am afraid, most of the application procedures for educational scholarships for the academic year 2015/16 will have ended months ago. Therefore, considering the other named options may help.

  14. Thank you for your candid and professional responses. They help a lot! Is it advisable to come to Birmingham with my car?

    Thanks for the compliment! I try my best. A car can be quite useful depending on one's lifestyle and the distance to public transport and supermarkets. Additionally, it can be cheaper to travel by car than by train or bus, if you decide to go to less touristic places and to divide costs with friends. However, you would have to look for parking situations at home and in the areas you go to. Overall, one can easily get along in Birmingham walking, by bike or by public transport. To have a car in Birmingham can be useful but is not necessary.

  15. Hello Stefanie, thank you very much for contacting me. I feel honoured to have been offered a Master place the University of Birmingham for Global Cooperation and Security. I am contacting you now, because I saw that you are a German student like me. I have a question about the living expenses in Birmingham and your personal opinion about the university and accommodation there? Also, do you have an idea if and where I could apply for a scholarship? I would highly appreciate if you would find some time to answer my questions. Thank you!

    Hi, congratulations on being offered a Masters course in global cooperation and security at the UoB! I am happy to have chosen to study here at this university. Both, the city and uni, are internationally focused and I am happy enough to have met lovely people from all over the world and with all kind of backgrounds. Actually, this turned up to be one of the things of my time here that I value most! In regard to the accommodation: there are several sorts of housing, prices and districts in Birmingham. You can find a list of university accommodations online. However, if you prefer to live in a private, less expensive, and more quiet accommodation, I suggest you have a look at housing platforms, such as spareroom, easy roommate, or rightmove. There is a list of all available university scholarships on the uni webpage and a list of all available UK educational scholarships for EU residents on the webpage of the European Funding Guide. Additionally, if you are German, you can also apply for an Auslands-BAFöG, a Studienkredit of the KFW (which is the one with the best conditions), and of course for German scholarships such as the ones promoted by the DAAD. However, I am afraid, most of the application procedures for educational scholarships for the academic year 2015/16 will have ended months ago. Considering other named options could help. The Living Expenses, in comparison to north-east Germany where I come from, are rather high. Expect the rent to be a minimum of around 300,- Pounds a month (including bills) and some groceries, especially fresh ones, to be more expensive than in German supermarkets. Additionally, you will have to keep in mind the rather bad currency exchange rate. I advise you to look for reasonable transfer services in advance - for example such as Transferwise.

    I hope I could answer you questions sufficiently. If there is anything else I can help you with, let me know. All the best, Stefanie

  16. Hi Stefanie, which university accommodation would you recommend? I would prefer a private and quite room/apartment, which is close to the campus. Thank you for your help.

    Hello and thank you for your question. The University of Birmingham provides a number of university accommodations for postgraduate students. All of them are in a descent distance to the main campus (5-10 minutes walk). They range from shared flats with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities, en suite rooms with shared kitchen facilities to single studio flats. For a list of accommodation types, photos and videos have a look at the given link above. Since I have been living in private accommodation I can not recommend you a particular accommodation village. However, friends of mine have been living in all three villages, in Selly Oak, the Vale, as well as in Pritchatt's, and have been happy there so far. :)

  17. Hello Stefanie, when are the modules for the following semester known? Can the schedule be found online? Thanks for your help.

    Hello and thank you for your question, alist of modules is listed among the course overview online. However, that list can change due to the availability of staff. You will get an updated list of seminars, their schedules and assignments respectively during the Welcome Week, before the autumn term starts. I hope this is of any help to you. I wish you all the best for your start at the University of Birmingham :)

  18. Hello Stefanie, I will start my International Masters in September and would like to know whether there are usually assignments for students during winter break. If so, are study materials easily available online? I would like to book a flight home for Christmas and don't know if I should spend time in Bham after lectures will have ended in December in order to work on assignments. Second, will there be exams at the end of each term or only at the end of the year? Thanks in advance for your reply.

    Hello and thank you for your question. The numbers, dates and kinds of assignments vary from seminar to seminar. Typical assignments are for example presentations, essays, research papers, book reviews and, of course, exams. While all exams will be taken during the summer term, the dates and number of the other assignments will vary. For example, within one seminar you could be asked to give a presentation in the autumn term, write an essay in the spring term and an exam in the summer term. You will get an overview of all available seminars, their schedules and assignments in the week before you begin your winter term. So, to answer your question, it is likely that you will be asked to hand in a written assignment at the end of the autumn term and after lectures, which is normally due to the first or second week of January. I have had to hand in an essay at that time of the year myself and was dealing very well with visiting my family in Germany over Christmas and New Year's Eve. If you do not work out some literature in advance you can still access nearly all articles and the most important books online. To work on an assignment is, no matter where you are, a question of time management and discipline ;) I hope this is helpful. Have a lovely time in Birmingham and make the most of it.

  19. Hello Stefanie! I have a technical question regarding the entry requirements to the International Relations MA. I cannot find on the website the English language requirements. Which are the TOEFL/IELTS grades I need to enter the course? Thanks.

    Hello there. The English language requirements for the entry of international students are listed on the website of the UoB Postgraduate entry requirements. Overall, you will either need a language certificate, such as the TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson or Cambridge certificate, or one of the listed alternative qualifications, such as the German Abitur (which was introduced only this year). You can find the relevant minimum scores for all the language certificates and alternative qualifications when you click on the green plus symbol further down the page and look for the requirements for social sciences. I hope this is of some help to you. All the best for your start in Birmingham.

  20. Hi Stefanie, I have a question concerning the term times. Which day is the last day of this winter term/exam period? Since my insurance needs this information because it is a day specific payment, it would be nice to know. Thanks for your help!

    Hello. The teaching and learning period of the Autumn Term 2015 starts September 28th and ends December 11th. However, assignment deadlines can reach out to the start of the Spring Term 2016 which is at January 11th. You can find more important university dates at the uni website. All the best!

  21. Hallo Stefanie, ich komme auch aus Deutschland und habe eine Conditional Offer für den Master International Relations erhalten. Leider kann ich mir das Studium ohne ein Stipendium nicht leisten. Ich hatte mich für ein POLSIS MA bursary beworben und mir wurde mitgeteilt, dass ich auf einer reserve short list platziert wurde. In der E-Mail heißt es die Universität wird mich im April benachrichtigen, falls erfolgreiche Kandidaten ihre bursaries ablehnen und mir eins davon anbieten. Weißt du wie gut die Chancen stehen, dass bursaries verfügbar werden? Ich würde mich auch freuen zu hören, wie du deinen Master finanziert hast und, ob du noch weitere Tipps zur Finanzierung hast. Danke und liebe Grüße.


    first things first, Herzlichen Glückwunsch zur Studienplatz-Zusage! Wie genau es um die Chancen steht, eine der begehrten bursaries zu bekommen, weiß ich leider nicht. Ich habe mir meine Zeit hier mit vier verschiedenenn Ressourcen finanziert. 1.) Auslands-BAföG: der Satz für den Lebensunterhalt in England ist viel höher als der für Deutschland. Ergo stehen die Chancen auf eine Förderung sehr gut, auch wenn die Eltern mehr als durchschnittlich verdienen. So habe ich beispielsweise kein BAföG-Zuschuss in Deutschland, dafür aber für meinen Master in England bekommen. Unterstützt wird man in den monatlichen Lebensunterhaltskosten, den Studiengebühren, den Reisekosten, etc. Wie viel Geld es am Ende ist, hängt mitunter davon ab, wie viel Vermögen und Einkommen du und deine Eltern haben. 2.) KfW-Studienkredit: Dieser Kredit hat sehr gute Zins- und Tilgungs-Konditionen. Ausgezahlt wird in verschiedenen Varianten. Mit diesem habe ich mir die Hälfte der Studiengebühren und einen großen Teil meiner monatlichen Unterhaltskosten finanziert. 3.) Nebenjobs: Neben und vor allen in der Zeit nach der Abgabe der Masterarbeit, konnte ich mir ein wenig Geld mit Studentenjobs dazu verdienen. Ich selbst habe abwechselnd für eine catering agency (TCS), als postgraduate mentor und in einem Schokoladengeschäft im shopping centre gearbeitet. Freunde von mir haben für die Uni selbst gearbeitet. Studentenjobs findet man relativ leicht und sie sind flexibel. 4.) last but not least, durch meine Familie. Ohne die zusätzliche finanzielle Hilfe meiner Eltern hätte ich es mit Sicherheit schwerer gehabt. Ansonsten wirf einfach mal ein paar Blicke ins Internet, ob und wer noch Stipendien für dieses Jahr anbietet. Manchmal findet man doch noch etwas. Wenn du jetzt schon ein wenig Geld zur Seite legen oder erarbeiten kannst, würde ich es dir auf jeden Fall empfehlen, damit sich die ein oder andere Pufferzeit oder Anschaffung finanzieren lässt ;)

    Ich weiß, es ist alles ziemlich viel Information und Arbeit auf einmal. Das kann einschüchternd sein, aber glaube mir, es lohnt sich, in einem anderen Land den Master zu studieren und zwangsweise zu lernen, die Welt mit mehr als nur einer Sichtweise zu verstehen.

    Liebe Grüße, Stefanie

  22. Dear, Stefani. I graduated from State Islamic University (UIN) Syarif Hidayatullah Jakarta majoring in International Relations in 2015. I have a plan to continue my Masters degree at the University of Birmingham. I have researched through the website regarding my interest major. I have some questions related to International Relations major: 1. My passion since I was in undergraduate degree is in Southeast Asian Studies, Islamic Global Politics and Diplomacy. Some of the subjects which are offered by Birmingham University are actually suitable for my interests. But, if I want to deepen my knowledge about Southeast Asian Studies especially about ASEAN, which major should I refer to? Since I found no subject related to ASEAN in this major? 2. If I would like to get Letter of Acceptance (LoA), what documents should I submit and who should I send them to? I am looking forward to your reply.


    I am very sorry that this answer took me this long but I have been on holidays and only came back yesterday.

    First of all, thank you for your question. I am happy that you are interested in studying a Masters in International Relations at the University of Birmingham. To answer your question, you will find optional lectures and seminars with a focus on South Asian Politics as well as on the AESAN in all of the different pathways of the Master in International Relations that you can study at the UoB. Even more, one of those pathways is in "International Relations - Contemporary Asia Pacific" which is concentrating in your field of interest. Regarding a letter of acceptance, you will have to follow the application procedures that are listed in the University application system with which you also will need to register with.

    I hope this information is of any help. Let me know if I can help you any further. I wish you all the best of luck for your application and studies.

    Best Regards, Stefanie

  23. Hi Stefanie! I am an EU student from France and I have a few questions I would like to ask you. First, would you have any advice on scholarships? I went on the 'Postgraduate funding database' page and couldn’t find any scholarship that matched my level of study, subject and country of origin. Moreover, do you think it is possible to work part-time while being a full-time student? Do you know approximately how much a student who works part-time earns every month? How many hours of classes would we have a day? Thank you so much for your kind help!

    Thank you for your question. I am sorry to hear that you could not find any appropriate scholarships or funding schemes at UoB's Postgraduate Funding Database. However, I would highly encourage you to get in contact with the School of Government and Society as well as with the Department for Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS) who will be able to give you further advice and contacts regarding respective scholarships and funding for the Master of International Relations. Furthermore, it is a good start to have a look into different independent scholarship databases that are dedicated to university courses in the UK, such as The European Funding Guide. Just have a scroll through Google's respective search results pages. Regarding the time management of part-time work and full-time study, I think that it is definitely possible. However, it will depend on your work-load at uni which can be channelled by selecting seminars with a work amount that you think fits you and your work plans. Always keep in mind though that your duties at uni are more important than your working schedule and try to balance them out accordingly. The pay for part-time student work is usually the minimum wage which will differ in regards of age and start of employment. The number of seminars you will have vary from course to course and, of course, your own choice of additional seminars. While I was studying my Masters in International Relations 2014/15 I had about four seminars a week. That might sound like a low number at first but again, the work load might be high and varies accordingly. I hope these answers are of some help to you. Please feel free to come back to me if any further questions arise.

  24. Hi Stefanie, what according to you are qualities or skills one should have in order to successfully complete the MA International Relations programme at the UoB? And how can someone with a completely unrelated academic background prepare for the course before commencement?

    You are well equipped to start studying the MA International Relations course at UoB if you manage to research for relevant information, understand it's structure and argumentation, are able to summarise it in written and oral form and develop an own point of view about a topic. Ideally you would be already able to use a source's argument to underline and strengthen your own argumentation in a neat and coherent way in essays and presentations. But don't worry if you feel not too confident about some of the named points. Studying a Master programme means learning and improving those research skills.

    I believe that all courses in the humanities department are related to each other in one way or another. I studied history and English before starting to study International Relations and was able to apply most of my research skills learnt during my Bachelor studies in my Master. However, for a smooth start in IR I advise to get familiar with the biggest schools of thought like realism, liberalism, colonialism, feminism, etc. Just get an idea of what they are about so you have a good orientation of this big field and before you need to dive into detail when starting your Master. Best way to do so is to grab an Introduction to International Relations.

  25. Would you recommend staying at the University accommodation or rent a flat privately?

    That really depends on your budget and your lifestyle. I personally preferred sharing a house with someone who had a similar work-sleep pattern like me. In my case that was a working professional with early nights at weekdays. University accommodations tend to be busier, louder and not necessarily cheaper. However, that of course depends on your flatmates, neighbours and living standards. The advantages of University accommodation are that they tend to be close to the campus and offer additional opportunities to live and engage in a student community.