Programme, bachelor’s level
180 credits
Malmö daytime 100%
30 August, 2021 - 2 June, 2024
Full tuition fee: 235000 SEK
I have always been interested in how society works and curious about the world around me, so international relations suited me perfectly.

Sofia Andersson, alumni

About the education

World politics is constantly evolving. The conditions for international peace and security are changing. New patterns of cooperation and conflict are developing on regional and global levels. This programme develops your skills in analysing and reflecting upon central issues in current international relations.

After graduation, you will be qualified to work with an array of issues related to international relations, such as foreign policy, international aid, international cooperation, conflict prevention and human rights. Potential employers could be the diplomatic service, local and national administrations, non-governmental organisations and international organisations. This programme also provides a good foundation for further studies at master’s level.

World politics is constantly evolving. The conditions for international peace and security, as well as human security, are changing. New patterns of cooperation and conflict are developing on the regional and the global level. The bachelor's programme in International Relations develops your skills in analysing and reflecting upon central questions in current international relations.

During the programme, you will learn about the current workings of international relations as well as recent key trends. You will also learn about predominant theoretical perspectives and central concepts upon which the international relations discipline rests, and develop your ability to use these for independent analysis.

In addition to compulsory courses, you will also have the opportunity to do an internship or take optional courses in Sweden or abroad. This means you are able to get valuable practical experience in international relations, as well as the possibility to develop and create networks and contacts with relevant organisations. Many of our alumni have interned at embassies, the United Nations and non-governmental organisations.

This programme provides a good foundation for further studies at master's level. You will also be able to work with an array of issues related to international relations, such as foreign policy, international aid, development, international cooperation, conflict prevention and human rights. Potential employers could be the diplomatic service, local and national administrations, non-governmental organisations and international organisations.

At the Department of Global Political Studies, students have the opportunity to do an internship during one of the semesters. Read more about the Internship course.

Admission requirements

Admission requirements

General entry requirements + English B

Merit rating is calculated based on Swedish upper secondary grades achieved, according to specific entry requirement 6/A6.

Selection

Swedish upper secondary grades 66%, Swedish Scholastic Aptitude Test (SweSAT) 34%

The programme which led to work with an EU delegation and then PhD studies

Originally from Germany, Julian Laufs had worked as a development volunteer in Ecuador before studying the International Relations bachelor’s programme at Malmö University.

The programme which led to work with an EU delegation and then PhD studies

Originally from Germany, Julian Laufs had worked as a development volunteer in Ecuador before studying the International Relations bachelor’s programme at Malmö University.

After graduating from the programme in 2017, Julian worked as part of an EU Delegation to Uganda and later got a master’s degree in Organised Crime and Terrorism from University College London, where he is currently finishing his PhD in Security and Crime Science.

Why did you choose the International Relations programme?

One of the main things that attracted me was the structure of the programme, it allowed me to study abroad and complete an internship. I also really liked that there was room for me to focus on the topics that I was interested in most. This allowed me to set a direction for my career quite early and focus on specific policy areas. For me, this was development cooperation and security, but many of my colleagues looked at other issues ranging from global health to multilateral peacebuilding or internet governance.

How would you describe the programme?

The programme at Malmö University really gives you a fantastic foundation to kickstart a career in a range of different fields. You get a really good understanding of how the world works and how to analyse and solve problems. The programme allows you to shape your own career and focus on the fields that interest you most. At the same time, the internship semester gives you the opportunity to gain practical insights and work experience in your chosen field. I found that both the academic knowledge and the practical and analytical skills were highly useful in my professional career.

What was your impressions of Malmö University?

I can honestly say that the years I spent in Malmö were some of the best in my life so far. There were three things I loved especially about the University and the programme I studied. Firstly, not only were the topics international, but also our cohort. We had people from many different countries in the group and I loved the multicultural environment, and the open-mindedness. It made the whole experience so much better. Over the three years, I grew really close to my course mates, and I had the opportunity to form some incredible friendships.

Secondly, during my time there, it really felt like the University and the staff really cared about the students. It was always a very familiar environment and it was easy to approach professors about problems or just to have a chat. The support the University and every single professor I had during my studies offered was absolutely above and beyond.

Lastly, of course, I have to talk about the incredible location. Malmö is such a fantastic place, especially for students. The city is gorgeous and offers so much cultural and natural beauty. Being so close to the sea is also fantastic and the beach and the sauna at Ribersborg are beautiful. I have lived in many different places in the past years, but I never felt so quickly at home as I did in Malmö.

How would you say the programme prepares you for a career within research?

The real value of the programme lies within the wealth of transferable skills you gain during the three years. You learn how to approach and analyse new and unfamiliar problems and how to solve complex issues. These are skills that are valuable for any job. In addition, the programme teaches you how to think and work academically. I realised only later, when comparing myself to students at other universities, what a great job our professors at Malmö University actually did. While the programme might not be as heavy on specific quantitative or qualitative methods per se, it teaches you how to think academically in the first place, which is something absolutely invaluable in any career.

Do you have any advice for someone who is looking to apply to the programme?

Go for it! The programme is a great opportunity to start a career and even if you don’t know yet which field you want to work in, you will get the opportunity to explore different topics and find your niche. Also, the programme is really what you make of it. My biggest advice would be to get involved at the University, speak with your colleagues, form friendships and lasting connections. Be active and most importantly, enjoy the incredible journey ahead of you.

From Washington DC to Malmö University to an internship with a political consultancy

After graduating from the International Relations programme, Aleksandra Daynova chose to continue her studies with the goal of working with risk analysis. Today, she is pursuing a master’s in Security Risk Management at the University of Copenhagen while also doing an internship at a political...

From Washington DC to Malmö University to an internship with a political consultancy

After graduating from the International Relations programme, Aleksandra Daynova chose to continue her studies with the goal of working with risk analysis. Today, she is pursuing a master’s in Security Risk Management at the University of Copenhagen while also doing an internship at a political consultancy company.

It was during her experience working as an au pair in Washington DC that Aleksandra got interested in politics and international affairs. Originally from Bulgaria, she moved to Sweden to study the International Relations bachelor’s programme. 

How would you describe the programme?

It helped me gain a systemic understanding of world affairs. Firstly, on a theoretical level through learning about the major debates between scholars in a historical context; secondly, with the abundant discussions of empirical cases that helped us to place the theoretical debates into practical terms. The programme also gave me skills in terms of learning how to ask the right research questions, how to conduct research, and how to write at an academic level.

The programme was also great preparation for my master's studies. I utilise my knowledge of theories and empirical cases from most of my bachelor’s classes, especially from my classes in Security Studies and In-Depth Studies in Global Politics.

Learning how to conduct research in an effective and time-sensitive way is useful to me on a day-to-day basis in my position as a junior advisor. In my work, I need to be ready to provide research and analyses of various political topics, which my background knowledge from IR enables me to do.

What did you like most about the programme?

What I liked most was the depth of knowledge about world politics it provided me with. I especially liked the critical theoretical approaches to teaching International Relations, with the emphasis on feminist, environmental, and postcolonial theories. I also really appreciated all practical aspects of the programme such as doing EU negotiation simulations and the opportunity to participate in the Model NATO summit.

What was your impressions of Malmö University?

I had a great experience at Malmö University! I really enjoyed how many other international students there were. I found that there were many opportunities to meet people with similar interests at events such as the ones organized by the Student Association of Foreign Affairs. The library and Niagara buildings are also beautiful places to study in, with a view of the sea and the Turning Torso.

What are your plans for the future?

I am aiming to work as an analyst advising companies on either sustainability or technology risks, as those are the two aspects of risk management that I find the most timely and interesting. My goal is to advise in the context of compliance with EU and global regulations, as well as general ways to be more resilient as an organisation in the face of technological disruption and environmental crises. 

Do you have any advice for someone who is looking to apply to the programme?

If you are already glued to world news and are curious about history in general, this programme is a great way to put those interests into a potential career path. 

Don’t worry too much about being perfect at academic writing right away — it comes with a lot of practice and constructive feedback. I wish someone had told me that, it would have saved me some stressful evenings! 

Study groups are the best, both for learning how to give and receive feedback, and for fika (coffee and pastry) breaks!

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