The Military College of South Carolina
give online buttongive online button apply now buttonapply now button

Master of Arts in International Politics and Military Affairs

A graduate program offered on-site or online

Why This Program is Relevant in Today's Economy

The Master of Arts degree program in International Politics and Military Affairs (IPMA) is designed to meet the needs of the US military and federal governmental agencies as well as international governmental and non-governmental organizations, multinational business enterprises, and others interested in gaining greater knowledge about the field of international politics.

International affairs professionals enrolled in this program will gain a broader understanding of the increasingly complex political, economic, and social issues that transcend national boundaries. Students will learn about theoretical and policy issues affected by international politics and culture, the ideas and values that influence the behavior of state and non-state actors, and leadership principles needed to wrestle with everyday political and organizational life. Students will also hone critical thinking, analytical, leadership, and communication skills needed to successfully foster transnational relationships in an increasingly globalized environment.

What makes The Citadel's IPMA Program Unique?

Unlike traditional graduate programs that take a theoretical and conceptual track in preparing students for further academic research, The Citadel IPMA program takes a nuts-and-bolts approach to develop international affairs professionals with the practical skills needed to pursue careers as military officers, policy analysts, foreign service officers, international civil servants, and business leaders as well as positions related to economic development, nation building, and humanitarian affairs. By combining current theory, research, and experience, the program provides intellectually rigorous coursework that emphasizes key skills related to analytical writing and research as well as statesmanship, critical thinking, and general international sophistication.

Quotation mark graphic for student testimonials

As a mid-career officer in the US military, I find The Citadel's Graduate IPMA program to be extraordinary. I chose this program due to the expertise of the faculty, relevance to my career, and institutional values of Honor-Duty-Respect. The knowledge and skills I have obtained here will translate immediately to my profession and help to provide policy and decision makers with an advanced level of analysis and understanding.

The professionalism and worldly experience of the professors and staff is truly remarkable and their dedication to delivering world-class education and support to the students is unmatched. By design, the IPMA program provides a 'nuts and bolts' practical approach to international affairs while also grounding students in relevant theory and practices. While immensely challenging at times, the course design is not overwhelming and places students in a proximal zone of development allowing for maximal retention of information. The Citadel's IPMA program continues to exceed my expectations.

Brett H.
Active Duty Military

Admission Requirements

  1. Complete and submit a graduate application form online, along with the non-refundable application fee, to The Citadel Graduate College (CGC), Bond Hall Room 101.
  2. Provide a written statement of purpose setting forth your intentions, goals, and preparation for graduate study in our department.
  3. Official transcripts of the baccalaureate degree and any graduate coursework delivered directly from the accredited college or university attended. 
  4. All students who are residents of the United States must successfully complete either the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT).
  5. Provide at least two academic letters of recommendation that address their ability to undertake coursework at the graduate level.
  6. Non-native English speakers must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (ToEFL) and provide those scores

The minimum for the GRE is a verbal and quantitative combination of 290. The minimum for the MAT is a score of 396. Students who score between 283-289 on the GRE or 380-395 on the MAT may apply for provisional status. Upon completion of the first eight hours of degree coursework, with a minimum GPA of 3.50, the student’s provisional status will change to regular admission status. Admission tests must be current within five (5) years of application, and official scores must be sent directly to the CGC office at the request of the student.

Admission to the Master of Arts in International Politics and Military Affairs program is a competitive process in which only a certain number of seats are available. The college has a right and responsibility to accept the best qualified persons, taking into account candidates’ scholastic and professional achievement along with their aptitude for graduate study and experience.


Required Core (6 hours)
PSCI 500 Social Science Seminar
PSCI 501 Research Methods in Social Sciences

Electives (30 hours)

PSCI 510 Special Topics or Service Leaning

PSCI 562 East Asian Affairs

563 South Asian Affairs

PSCI 564 US Foreign Policy

PSCI 565 International Politics

PSCI 566 International Political Economy

PSCI 567 Global Democracy

PSCI 568 US Foreign Policy

PSCI 569 National Security Policy

PSCI 571 Comparative Politics

PSCI 572 International Organization

PSCI 573 Political Theory

PSCI 574 Global Issues

PSCI 575 US Foreign Policy Leadership

PSCI 576 International Law

PSCI 577 Conflict Studies

CRMJ 581 Intelligence Research and Analysis

 Course Descriptions


In addition to completing coursework, students in the degree program will be required either to prepare a written master’s thesis or to complete a guided internship, which may include appropriate service in the military (such as in areas related to intelligence or civil affairs), the United States Peace Corps, or a select business or organization.

Written theses will be graded by at least two members of the Political Science faculty and one grader from another department.

Students undergoing guided internships for credit must compile an electronic portfolio of materials that document the learning objectives of the program. This includes in-class assignments, work-related assignments from the internship, and group assignments and other projects utilizing established critical thinking, communication, and ethics rubrics for course evaluation. The portfolio is designed to demonstrate fulfillment of student learning outcomes for each course in the program. Students will also be asked to complete a reflective assignment based on the portfolio, which summarizes the student's perception of knowledge, skills, and attitudes related to international politics and military affairs. The portfolio must be completed at least four weeks prior to program completion and will be evaluated by the graduate program director, at least one member of the graduate faculty, and one faculty member for another academic department.

Quotation mark graphic for student testimonials

I have learned more about foreign policy and international relations than I ever expected.  Each week we study something new and much of it is very contemporary.  American foreign policy is being revealed every day with a new administration in office.



My professors have been tough, but fair and each one has encouraged me to excel.  This program is not for faint-hearted. It involves a lot of work, but since my goal on graduation is writing in the field of national security, this program should prepare me for that challenge.

Dewey Wise

For a complete list of admission and program requirements,
please refer to The Citadel Graduate College's website or The Citadel Graduate College Course Catalog.


Back to Top