Politics, International Studies and Philosophy

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Key Programme Information

Entry Year


Programme length

3 year(s)


History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics


Research Strategies

The School has a strong international reputation for innovative research, across a wide range of specialist research strengths. In each of these, important and pioneering work has been published by members of staff and major projects of research are ongoing. In addition, the School is committed to the supervision of high-quality research students in all areas of politics, philosophy and international politics and to enhancing its vibrant postgraduate research culture.

Research Strengths

The research interests of the School and the expertise of its staff include:

  • Contemporary Irish Political History
  • Governance and Public Policy, with a particular emphasis on European Union politics, public opinion, gender studies, governance.
  • Security, Terrorism and International Relations
  • Philosophy, with a particular emphasis on metaphysics, philosophy of mind,  logic,  epistemology, moral and political philosophy
  • Political Theory, particularly green political thought, post-structuralism, democratic political theory and the politics of recognition.

Entry Requirements

The minimum academic requirement for admission to a research degree programme is normally an Upper Second Class Honours degree from a UK or ROI HE provider, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University. Further information can be obtained by contacting the School.

International Qualifications

For information on international qualification equivalents please select Your Country from the list on our International Students website.

Additional Information for International Students

International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required.

*Taken within the last 2 years.

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see:

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this programme, our partner INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability to entry to this programme. Please click the links below for more information:

  • English for University Study - an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
  • Pre-sessional English - a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English

How To Apply

Applicants for Postgraduate programmes are strongly advised to carefully read the important information and follow the steps set out here before submitting their application via the Postgraduate Direct Applications Portal.

If you have queries on course content please contact the school representative below.

Caroline Cullen 
Postgraduate Secretary School of History, Anthropology, Politics and Philosophy
Tel: 028 9097 1149

How To Apply

Career Prospects

PhD and MPhil graduates from our School have taken up careers in a variety of spheres. Many have gained lecturing or postdoctoral research positions at Universities and Research Institutes in the UK, Ireland, Europe and America. We also have graduates now working in local and regional government, the Electoral Commission, the media, and for international humanitarian NGOs and charities.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

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Special Features

The School has over 60 full-time academics,  In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, over 65 per cent of the School's research in its various subject areas was judged to be 'world-leading' or 'internationally excellent', thus confirming the School's position as one of the leading centres in the UK for world-class research in history, anthropology, philosophy and politics.

The School runs a bespoke training programme, including a series of employability talks on 'Pathways out of the PhD: Academic and Non-Academic Futures', which aims to guide you the process of choosing your future career path and making the most of the new research skills you have acquired.

Staff in the School are involved in editing a range of leading, high profile, internationally-recognised journals and book series, including  International Political Sociology, Environmental Politics, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, and the Ashgate Rethinking Political and International Theory monograph series.

The thriving research culture of the School can be experienced in a variety of ways: through visits and talks from internationally renowned academics and practioners, conferences and workshops, and the staff seminar series, which students are actively involved in. A range of reading groups, including staff and students, offer the opportunity to read and discuss more widely around your subject.

Fees & Funding

There is a range of funding and scholarship options available to those considering study at Queen's.

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For tuition fee information see //

PhD Funded Studentships
We offer fully funded studentships to outstanding postgraduate researchers across our three faculties and five Doctoral Training Centres. Find PhD funding opportunities.

A number of funding opportunities for PhD research are available in the School. These include:

  1. DEL PhD Studentship awards – the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (AHSS) invites applications every year for these awards which are funded by Northern Ireland’s Department of Education and Learning. Any subject area of AHSS is eligible as long as you meet the other criteria.
  2. Northern Bridge Studentships – specific opportunities for ‘Humanities Facing’ subject areas which include, but are not limited to, Philosophy, Political Theory, Political History, Diplomatic History, Cultural Studies, Aesthetics and Politics.
  3. Leverhulme Interdisciplinary Network on Cybersecurity and Society (LINCS) – funds PhD studentships in the cross-disciplinary study of cybersecurity and society.

Information on these awards can be found via the school website

For further fees and funding information available via the University, please see the University's Graduate School website.

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Politics, International Studies and Philosophy

School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics
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Queen's University Belfast
Belfast BT7 1NN

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Postgraduate Experience

The Graduate School

Our dedicated hub for postgraduate students, providing state-of-the-art facilities for study, and high-quality training and development programmes within a diverse interdisciplinary community.

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Leading Cyber Security Expert Delivers Annual Queen’s and KPMG Lecture

23/10/2017 - Queen’s Management School and the Chief Executives’ Club at Queen’s University Belfast recently hosted leading Cyber Security expert, Mr Ciaran Martin, Chief Executive of the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).