Bachelor of Arts in International Relations

The Bachelor of Arts in International Relations (BA-IR) Program is challenging, stimulating and practical. The three year program aims to introduce students to the broad field of International Relations, its basic concepts, theories and methods, as well as specialized and interdisciplinary fields. Students will be trained in research, analytical, and presentation/communication skills.

The BA-IR Program has been established to cater for the interests of students seeking both a broad scholarly understanding of the way the world works, and/or for those preparing for a variety of employment options related to international careers in government, business, non-government organizations, media and international agencies.

Students come to the Geneva School of Diplomacy from over 45 countries spanning the globe and carry with them a diversity of not only cultures, but also interests, worldviews, experiences and dreams. Such diversity, along with our commitment to exceptional quality and individual attention, are hallmarks of the Geneva School of Diplomacy experience. Download the BA-IR programme handbook 2018-2019 here.


Student Exchange Programs

GSD has several partnerships with prestigious universities worldwide. These partnerships include the possibility for students to do an exchange programme of 1 or 2 semesters abroad. Students can choose between Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), Diplomatic Academy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia and Georgetown University, Washington DC among others.

BA-IR Courses

Please see the BA-IR Programme courses for the Spring semester of 2019 here. Please note that schedules are subjected to changes and you will receive the final course schedule on the first day of your studies.

Our approach

GSD focuses very clearly on preparing individuals for a successful career within management-level positions within the public and private sectors, principally through its combined theoretical and practical approach in our teaching methods.  We therefore offer a unique combination of conceptual courses focused on theory and the development of essential diplomatic skills.

The GSD curriculum is based on 3 main pillars:
1. International Relations
2. International Law
3. International Economics

Theoretical content

We offer a number of courses on specific topics such as:

  • Global Health
  • Disarmament
  • Introduction to International Law
  • International Economics
  • Migration
  • Humanitarian Operations
  • Academic Writing
  • Diplomatic Neighbourhood: Intergovernmental Organisations

Diplomatic skills content:

  • Key Leadership Skills
  • Diplomatic Protocol and Etiquette
  • Political Rhetoric & Discourse Analysis
  • Mediation, Dispute Settlement and Conflict Resolution
  • Policy Scenarios
  • Media Communication & Public Speaking
  • Negotiation Techniques
  • Analytical Thinking Skills
  • Decision-making skills

Student Profile

Nationalities GSD student body:

  • 32% Europe
  • 23% Asia Pacific
  • 17% Africa
  • 16% Americas
  • 12% Middle East

Some statistics on BA student body

  • Average age of bachelor students: 21 years
  • Average languages spoken: 4

Type of high school:

  • 82% private
  • 18% public

Type of originate degree:

  • 30% International Baccaulerate
  • 70% Standard Diploma

Entry requirements

Students are required to have completed any recognised school leaving certificate, the International Baccalaureate Programme, A-Levels, American Placement, French baccalauréat, Maturita, Abitur, etc. to be able to apply for the Bachelor’s Programme. Due to the diversity of applicants, there are other international qualifications that we may accept as equivalent of a university entry level. As the language of instruction is English, you need to submit a proof of your language proficiency. Prospective students may be dispensed from written proof of English language test if they have: 1) Attended an international school where the language of instruction was English. 2) Their mother tongue is English. 3) Passed the admissions interview (in person or facilitated via IT media) resulting in a satisfactory command of the English language by the admissions department. 4) Passed the compulsory motivational essay as part of the application process written in English.

Graduation Requirements

A normal year of full-time study, therefore, earns the student 60 credit points towards the necessary graduation total of 180 credit points (ECTS), achievable in three years. An internship program and other special events/study experiences throughout the academic year are mandatory components of the program.

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