Skip to main content

Peace and Development Studies MA

Course Details


Duration: 1 Year Full-Time OR 2 Years Part-Time

Faculty: Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Course Type: Taught

Fees: For Information on Fees, see section below.


Dr. Scott Fitzsimmons
Apply Now

Read instructions on how to apply

Brief Description

This programme introduces students to key debates about conflict resolution, peacebuilding and processes of economic and political development. A prime objective of the course is to provide individuals with expertise in peacebuilding and development issues and to provide informed and committed personnel to contribute effectively in these areas at a professional level.

In this MA or Graduate Diploma in Peace and Development Studies, students investigate debates about the origins and nature of conflict and explore a range of approaches to conflict resolution. Contemporary cases of conflict and responses to these are examined, as are the connections between peacebuilding and development. Students further examine theories of economic and political development and explore contemporary strategies and practices of development. A prime objective of the course is to provide individuals with expertise in peacebuilding and development issues and to provide informed and committed personnel to contribute effectively in these areas at a professional level.

Autumn Semester Spring Semester Summer
  • Graduate Seminar in Development;
  • Graduate Research Methods;
  • One elective module
  • Graduate Seminar in Peacebuilding
  • Research Methods (progressing dissertation)
  • Two elective modules
  • Dissertation

Graduate Seminar in Contemporary Political Theory; Graduate Seminar in International Relations; Graduate Seminar in Institutions and Policies of the EU; Public Administration Theory & Practice; Graduate Seminar in International Co-operation and Conflict; Graduate Seminar in European Governance; Representative Democracy in Europe; Global Justice; Feminist Perspectives in Conflict and Development Issues; International Political Economy; Comparative Climate Policy and Politics.

Content of modules can be found by using the search option on the book of modules.

Normally, a primary degree in a relevant discipline with First or Second Class Honours or an approved equivalent qualification (Primary Degree: Level 8 - National Qualifications Authority of Ireland).

What to include with your application

  • Qualification transcripts and certificates
  • English language qualification if English is not your first language
  • Certified English translations of your transcripts/certificates where the originals are in a language other than English.
  • A copy of your birth certificate (long document)


English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of either prior successful completion of a degree qualification taught through the medium of English or meet one of the criteria below (no longer than two years prior to application):

Acceptable English Language qualifications include the following:

  • Matriculation examinations from European countries where English is presented as a subject and an acceptable level is achieved
  • Irish Leaving Certificate English –Ordinary Level Grade D or above
  • TOEFL – 580 (paper based) or 90 (internet based)
  • IELTS – Minimum score of 6.5 with no less than 6 in any one component.
  • English Test for English and Academic Purposes (ETAPP) – Grade C1
  • GCE ‘O’ level English Language/GCSE English Language – Grade C or above
  • Cambridge Assessment English –Certificate of Proficiency in English - Grade C / Certificate in Advanced English Grade B
  • GCE Examination Boards – Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations – Grade C / Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate – School Certificate Pass 1-6 / University of London Entrance and School Examinations Council – School Certificate Pass 1-6

Results in examinations other than those listed above may also be accepted as meeting our English language requirements. Contact the International Education Division for advice.


click here

For information on funding and scholarships please click here.

Career Prospects

The course prepares students from diverse backgrounds for a career in or further research on international affairs, conflict management and resolution, peace operations, humanitarian assistance, development aid and related areas.

Graduate Testimonials

Anne-Marie Callan, Graduate of the MA Peace and Development studies and currently Chargé d’Affaires, Embassy of Ireland, Sierra Leone “The MA is an excellent course because students benefit from taught modules on politics, peace and conflict and development and can pursue an area of research that is of interest in a supportive environment. The course is well recognised and is relevant for employment in a range of development positions.”

Ruth Feeney, Graduate of the MA in Peace and Development studies and currently Programme Support Officer, Crisis Prevention and Recovery Unit, UNDP, South Sudan “The background the MA programme has given me is invaluable to my ability to work where I am today.”