Doctoral Program

The Nunn School International Affair's Ph.D. program provides an unparalleled opportunity for students with backgrounds in either politics or science and technology to deepen their understanding of international affairs through the advanced study of sub-fields such as international relations theory, international security, international political economy, comparative politics, and methods for social scientific research.

The Ph.D. program is a four to six-year program designed to adapt to the interests and needs of students who intend to enter professional careers requiring or who plan to work in academia. The program emphasizes both traditional theoretical knowledge of international relations and strategic planning and analysis. The program includes 21 semester hours of required core seminars in:

  • Empirical research methods
  • International Relations theory
  • International Security policy
  • Comparative Politics
  • International Political Economy
  • Ph.D. Proseminar
  • Science, Technology, and International Affairs I and II

Students are also required to complete the Institute-mandated 9-credit hour minor concentration outside of the field.

As part of the coursework, students are required to demonstrate foreign language familiarity through two years of coursework during undergraduate or graduate studies and passing a translation exercise. Students can either opt to have a third year of language or take a year of advanced methods. Students are required to pass two qualification exams and successfully defend a paper related to a science and technology topic before they can advance to candidacy.

Ph.D. students may also complete elective coursework through cross-registration at any of the nineteen public and private colleges, universities, and other higher learning institutions that comprise the Atlanta Regional Consortium for Higher Education (ARCHE). This opportunity provides considerable flexibility in tailoring individual studies to achieve specific career objectives.

Program Benefits

 

Flexibility

The doctoral program prepares students not only for academia but also in the nonprofit, government, and private sectors. Our alums now work at the National Nuclear Security Administration, Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy, and as professors.

 

Interdisciplinary

The program's interdisciplinary nature allows students to take courses in science, technology, engineering, business, and design to meet post-graduation plans. Related courses taken in these disciplines can be counted towards the required 9-credit hour minor.

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