Strategic Studies MSc at Aberdeen

Strategic Studies MSc at Aberdeen
2023-01-25

The MSc Strategic Studies programme provides you with the ability to scrutinise real-world security issues which challenge governments, conflict, armed services, peace, international organizations, and business globally. The programme intends to equip you with a range of advanced theoretical and operational understanding of the characteristics, practice, and profound effects of the use of force by states and non-state actors at a regional (especially Asian) and global level. The programme is multidisciplinary, attracting a diverse international cohort. 

See example: Chinese Security Issues Audiogram

Banner for the Strategic Studies program

Strategy is notoriously tricky. Most strategies fail, most of the time. However logical the connection of means, ways, and ends may be on paper, it is notoriously hard to achieve. Why is this so? This programme will address these questions and more. You will learn about the contribution of strategy as a mechanism for the application of power and coercion, addressing the nature of strategy, causes of war, deterrence, arms control, terrorism-counterterrorism, Chinese security issues, religion and conflict, and the impact of emerging technology (AI, cyber, drones, hypersonics, etc.) on strategic affairs, and much more.

The course considers the historical background and context that has shaped key developments in strategic affairs from domestic, international, political-psychological, and strategic-cultural standpoints. Students will learn about these issues from Western and non-Western (especially China) perspectives.

Sample Strategic Studies Lecture

Why Study Strategic Studies?

  • The programme scrutinises salient, real-world security issues which challenge governments, armed services, international organisations, and business around the world.

  • MSc Strategic Studies has produced graduates of high repute with excellent career prospects for over thirty years, with a network of alumni internationally.

  • There are plenty of Strategic Studies Alumni from Aberdeen around the world and the student body is international with many countries represented.

  • An MSc in Strategic Studies provides you with a strong methodology and knowledge to interpret situations that present in a wide range of areas of work globally.

  • This programme will arm you with many transferable skills; critical for the competitive working environment including oral communications skills, written communications skills, critical analysis, problem-solving, teamwork skills (e.g., negotiation, persuasion, decision-making, leadership), IT skills, and working independently (e.g., establishing and prioritising objectives, working to deadlines).

  • This programme encourages collaboration with course experts who have experience of public policy, government departments, and international organisations (e.g., NATO, EU, UN, and think-tanks), or working as advisers to government (including in the UK, the US, EU, and East Asia).

  • PIR hosts an exciting range of events, including research seminars with world-renowned guest speakers, international policy, academic conferences, and other global policy-focussed forums.

  • The programme will allow you to gain exciting opportunities in a range of internships, fellowship, and other kinds of work experience.

  • MSc Strategic Studies conducts a range of cutting-edge specialist research in collaboration Centre of Conflict and Security Studies.

  • The interdisciplinary nature of the programme creates exiting collaboration opportunities with other departments across the university including Business, Geography, Law, and Computer Science.

How you'll study:

You will enjoy a diverse and friendly style of teaching throughout our programme. These unique ways of learning will develop skills valued by employers, including independent learning and research, group work, presentation skills and project work.

Possible career opportunities include:

  • Military Officers

  • Intelligence Analysts

  • Political Analysts

  • University Lecturers

  • Journalists

  • Law enforcement Officers

  • Senior Associates

  • Freedom of Information Officers

  • Senior Research Officers

Related programmes:

Strategic Studies and International Law 

Strategic Studies and Management

Strategic Studies and Energy Security

Programme coordinators:

Dr James Johnson 

Dr Dimitrios Anagnostakis

Published by The School of Social Science, University of Aberdeen

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