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International Management and International Relations


Oxford Brookes Business School

This course is accredited by the Chartered Management Institute.

On this unique master's degree you will develop your international management skills. You will do this alongside the study of international relations and the current economic, political and social situation. This will increase your understanding of the global environment in which the business, government and non-governmental organisation (NGO) sectors function.

This course is ideal if you are looking to work within a policy development role, to become a manager in the business, government or NGO sectors or are seeking to study further.

You may also be interested to have a look at our International Management and International Human Resource Management courses. 

If you don't meet the entry requirements for our degrees, or if you would like more preparation before you start, you can take one of our pathway programmes.


Please come to our Postgraduate Open Day or Master's Online Information Session

Available start dates

September 2019 / September 2020

Teaching location

Headington Campus

Course length

  • Full time: 12 months
  • Part time: 2 years

For full application details, please see the 'How to apply / Entry requirements' section.

This course is suitable for individuals from a variety of educational backgrounds, who may have no previous work experience, wanting to further their knowledge and understanding of business and management to support their career aspirations.

The course is designed to be highly flexible to accommodate students with interests in a variety of different subject areas/roles/sectors.

Our student cohorts are made up of many nationalities and students will benefit from working with staff and peers with varied experiences and perspectives.

Staff teaching on this programme come from a variety of academic and non-academic backgrounds which generates a comprehensive and diverse learning experience.

Students benefit from varied opportunities for business/industry exposure such as company visits, field trips, guest lectures, student projects.

A key element of our teaching and learning ethos is that theory must, at all times, be linked to practice through workshops and seminars, company visits, external speakers and assessment. The programme frequently invites professionals to visit and deliver guest lectures to provide students with practical insights to the world of business and management and to discuss trends and challenges in specific industries. Speakers typically hold the position of managing director. Over the last few semesters we have welcomed speakers from Harley-Davidson, the RAF, the UN, Barclays Bank, and Taylor Wimpey.


As a student at Oxford Brookes Business School you will also benefit from the following:

  • Employability: You will develop an understanding of decision making and business communications in different cultural environments around the world, providing a base from which to develop an internationally-focused career. You will also gain practical experience by working on a live international consultancy project for a commercial or not-for-profit organisation. You will have the opportunity to go on field trips to study organisations in other countries. The International Relations Department provides specialised training in the key theories and concepts of advanced International Relations, including the application of these to real world cases and issues.
  • Ranking: We're ranked in the top 25% for business, management and marketing subjects in the Guardian University League Table 2019, giving recognition to the quality of our teaching and learning experience.
  • Teaching and Learning: Oxford Brookes University Business School offers a great environment for studying International Management and International Relations. We have a track record of excellence in teaching, learning and research and you will be supported in your studies and beyond. Oxford Brookes University Business School received the top award from the Higher Education Funding Council for England to become a Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning
  • Experiences: On this course you can choose to participate in an international trip to Budapest, Hungary. Here you will meet successful industry professionals, visit companies, earn credits towards your degree and also take in some sightseeing.
  • Student support: As a student you will be assigned to an Academic Adviser who will provide both academic and personal support. Student Support Co-ordinators provide guidance for your course and university-wide administrative issues. They organise a range of events to help you adjust to postgraduate study and are able to help you get advice about any issues you may have during your studies.
  • Oxford Location: Oxford offers everything you could want as a student and more. As one of the world's great centres of learning, it is a bustling and stunning cosmopolitan city full of history and beautiful buildings. Located just over an hour from the hub of business life in London with easy access to international airports, you'll be at the heart of the UK's most successful economic region. Oxford will provide you with a host of learning and employment opportunities with a range of internships and graduate jobs available.
  • Professional Accreditation: This course is dual accredited by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) which is dedicated to promoting the highest standards in management and leadership excellence.

For more information about postgraduate study at the Business School, come to one of our Business School Open Days, or visit our web pages.

Professional accreditation

This programme is accredited by CMI, the Chartered Management Institute - the outstanding chartered professional body in management (http://www.managers.org.uk/)

This accreditation is not only a hallmark of excellence but also provides you with considerable benefits. For example, as a student member, you can access online content, networking events, company visits, online seminars and mentoring.

But you are also eligible to earn a CMI professional qualification: the level 7 degree in Strategic Management and Leadership once you have earned your MSc degree.

CMI (Chartered Management Institute) is the only chartered professional body in the UK dedicated to promoting the highest standards in management and leadership excellence, with an international presence.

The degree you are studying is dual accredited by CMI – a CMI accreditation means you graduate with your degree AND a CMI professional qualification and there’s no extra study involved. This option is only available to students who become members of the CMI while studying at Brookes. For more information visit their website here.

  • 75% of employers say that students should pursue professional qualifications to evidence the practical skills they require.
  • If you decide to become a member of CMI – your membership will support your studies and development through a range of resources and activities such as mentoring.
  • This makes you stand out to employers and boosts your career opportunities making you more employable.
  • You can earn a level 7 (Masters level) professional degree issued by the CMI without any extra work – if you successfully earn your Brookes MSc degree.

Compulsory modules

Please see the course structure chart.

International Organisations:

This examines a range of international organisations and their different purposes. Your studies will focus on multi-national companies, small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs), the European Union and other similar organisations such as the UN. These institutions influence and relate to the operations of global businesses. You will look at the political, economic and social environments in which international organisations function and the challenges they face. Leading business executives and subject experts are invited in to speak to you.

International Relations in Theory and Practice:

This module provides students with an advanced investigation into theoretical approaches in the discipline of International Relations, as well as an overview of contemporary debates. The module aims to establish a clear understanding of the role and purpose of theory and its relation to substantive issues in international relations.

Research Methods:

This module will prepare you to undertake effective research drawing upon a range of secondary and primary data sources in preparation for your coursework. You will be introduced to a range of tools required for research including methodological issues, data collection techniques and study skills. This module prepares you for completing high quality, systematic business and management research.

Global Political Economy:

This module examines the emerging global political economy through the vantage point of competing theoretical perspectives and the evolution of these perspectives, resulting from theoretical debates and the progressive encounter with empirical developments. Different theories reveal different aspects and dimensions of the global political economy and they will thus be used to present key historical developments and contemporary issues of the global political economic order.

Business Strategy:

In this module you will be introduced to key ideas in business strategy and will develop an understanding and ability to evaluate key strategic decisions. You will consider the wider economic environment and explore why strategy is important. This will help you to understand how organisations make strategic decisions through the processes of analysis, choice, responsible and ethical management and leadership. You will examine how these decisions impact on the wider environment of the organisation and how strategy is implemented.

Corporate Social Responsibility:

You will develop your understanding of approaches to solving problems when governing in the corporate sector. Your studies will consider current issues and consider the social implications of governance. You will also focus on the impact of globalisation on international management practices. You will be equipped with the knowledge to enhance management decisions involving ethical choices. Finally, you will consider your assumptions about the role of managers and organisations in a complex and challenging context through the exploration of contemporary issues in CSR. You can choose between taking a Consultancy Project module or the International Management in Practice: Study Trip module

Leading and Managing: International Perspective:

This will develop your international management and leadership skills, introducing you to key management issues which are illustrated by case studies. It will improve your cross-cultural awareness and enhance your effectiveness when working with an international organisation.

You can choose between taking a Consultancy Project module or the International Management in Practice: Study Trip module

  • Consultancy Project:
    You will gain practical international project experience by working in a cross-cultural team on a real problem for a client organisation. You will develop problem solving and communication skills as well as the ability to work in cross-cultural teams. Your team will work virtually, face-to-face and with help from tutors.
  • International Management in Practice: Study Trip:
    The purpose of this 10 credit optional Study Trip Module is to give you a hands-on, intensive experience with ideas and practices in international management and international relations through visiting multinational enterprises and international organisations during the international study trip. You meet with leaders of global firms and international organisations, receive presentations from global academic experts, and tour facilities. The programme includes presentations from local and international executives, managers and academics.

This module is included in your programme fees, but you are responsible for paying for all travel and accommodation related costs (including the visa fee) and some meals. You will be provided with additional details and costs regarding the trip by December, in order to inform decision making. Please do not add this module to your programme until you have received all relevant information about the trip.

Optional modules

Critical Approaches to Terrorism:

This module will examine how we think about and study terrorism. It will critically consider debates about how terrorism has assumed the significance it seems to possess, how we define and understand terrorism, as well as thinking about the nature of the threat that terrorism poses. The causes of terrorism and the gender politics of terrorism will also be assessed. The module will debate questions around whether states can be terrorists and reflect on the main ways in which states and others seek to counter terrorism. In each of these topics, the aim will be to take a critical approach, to try to think beyond mainstream and conventional answers to some of the issues listed above.

Capitalism: Crisis and World Order:

This module looks at the changing nature of the global political economy from the origins of capitalism to the present day. It explores the hallmarks of key epochs in this period as well as specific issues related to these, including the nature of state power, changing labour relations, the role of finance and the evolution of the global trading system. It also explores contemporary issues such as the financial crisis and the future of global governance.

Dilemmas of International Ethics:

This module surveys the main traditions and theories of international ethics and asks what guidance they may or may not provide in thinking through important ethical dilemmas in contemporary world politics. Ethical controversies in world politics examined in the module include: humanitarian intervention; global economic inequality; global environmental justice; nuclear proliferation and disarmament. With each controversy studied, students will be asked to think about what global responsibilities state and non-state actors have, if any, in connection with the issue. It is the aim of the module to explore the impact of ideas, norms and values in a diverse world and how normative thinking in relation to world politics impacts our day-to-day lives.

Global Civil Society:

The module is grounded in debates that have emerged within International Relations since the end of the Cold War. The rise of transnational policy issues has illustrated the limitations of a state-centric approach towards IR. Concentrating on understanding 'globalisation from below', this module investigates what kind of a role civil society can play in global politics. Furthermore, as many social, political and economic changes have brought into question the nature of citizenship in contemporary world politics, the possibility of the emergence of post-national forms of citizenship is raised. The module introduces key conceptual and theoretical debates surrounding global civil society and global citizenship and through focusing on a number of more concrete illustrations and case studies, asks to what extent can global politics be transformed and democratised by global civil society actors.

Global Politics and the Environment:

This module offers a critical, interdisciplinary investigation into the way in which the tensions brought about by the ecological crisis have been addressed globally, looking at institutional, conceptual, ideological, socio-cultural and political economic facets. It analyses our understanding of global environmental issues in relation to international political thought. It examines the role and efficacy of international regimes as management solutions to global environmental problems. It situates the global environmental crisis within wider structures of modernity bringing in political theoretical and global sociological perspectives. It further analyses the political economy of the environment, and examines the dynamics of global environmental governance and resistance.

International Development:

Since the end of the Cold War one of the key dynamics in world politics, namely the gap between rich and poor, has come into sharper focus. This module examines both the theory and practice of the international politics of development. The first half of the module looks at key theoretical debates and how these have related to practice. Various contemporary issues in development are then explored to illustrate the theoretical debates. These will include the Third World Debt Crisis, fair trade, development assistance, sustainable development and the resource curse thesis.

International Energy Security:

This module examines the complex and inter-linked relationship between energy, security and international politics. Students enter the subject through a critical reading of the concept of energy security and are encouraged to disaggregate the concept and apply it at different levels of analysis (security of demand, security of supply, physical security, individual security etc.) Students will have the opportunity to critically evaluate the concept across several themes and relationships within the energy-politics nexus including: the relationships between energy and authoritarianism, conflict, foreign policy and global governance. Focusing mostly on the international politics of oil and gas, the module will address these themes through an engagement with a range of theoretical perspectives and literature related to international relations, foreign policy analysis, political economy and security studies and will do so through a close reading of several case-studies including: Russia, Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus, the United States, China, Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Postcolonial Perspectives: Security, Violence and Resistance:

This module sheds light on questions of security, violence and resistance from a postcolonial perspective. It explores how phenomena such as terrorism, migration, violent conflict and racism, as well as political responses to these phenomena, can only be understood in relation to past colonial contexts, including the inscription of racial identities and material exploitation that these contexts entailed. The module discusses how contemporary notions such as 'Islamic extremism', the 'oppressed Muslim woman' or the 'developing/Third world' are used to elevate Western societies to a status of cultural and political superiority. This gives legitimacy to strategies such as the waging of war to defend 'our' way of life, and the pacification and 'development' of other societies; however, it also gives rise to violent as well as non-violent resistances. The module aims to provide space for an in-depth reading of some central texts of postcolonial theory, but even more so for exploring their relation to a variety of practical political and cultural sites around questions of security, violence and resistance.

Violence and Peacebuilding:

This module investigates the occurrence of violence during peace processes. It asks why violence continues despite the ceasefire, how it affects peace processes, and what are the implications for its management? The first part of the module achieves a conceptualisation of violence, peace and peace processes, while the second part of the module examines the sources and manifestations of violence after war. Uniquely, this module gives students the opportunity to examine the relationships between different 'types' of violence and the existence of a 'culture of violence'. Examples will be taken from contemporary peace processes. In the end, students should be able to critically analyse the causes and manifestations of violence in the context of a peace process and be able to make recommendations for its management.

Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Accreditation: This course is accredited by CMI – CMI accreditation means that this professional chartered body in management recognises the strengths of the programme and the quality it adds to educate successful and capable graduates in Business and Management. As an added value, if you decide to become a member of the CMI, you have the option to graduate with your degree and gain a professional CMI qualification (Level 7 in Strategic Management and Leadership) and there's no extra study involved. This membership also provides you with benefits. For example, student members can access online content, networking events, company visits, online seminars and mentoring.

A CMI Induction event will be held so you can find out about the CMI qualification and membership and choose whether you would like to qualify and join. If you do choose to become a member of the CMI and gain the Level 7 CMI qualification you will need to pay a non-refundable fee, which was £289 in 2018 and includes one-year membership of the CMI.

As we review our courses regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you choose from may vary from the list shown above.

Teaching and learning

Much of the teaching on the course takes the form of interactive workshops, but there are also lectures from staff and visiting speakers. Lectures, discussions, role-play exercises and seminars are linked with selected case studies and assessments to strengthen your practical analysis and decision-making skills. You will have the opportunity to develop your skills in working as part of a team through structured group assignments.

Teaching staff at the Business School are researchers and/or come from an industry background with an in-depth practical experience of business and management issues. Visiting speakers from business, industry, consultancies and research bodies provide further input. Research is fundamental to the International Relations Department and you will be taught by a team of research-active scholars who are all specialists and publish in their areas of expertise.

Approach to assessment

Each module is assessed using a range of different methods including examinations, assignments, individual or group reports and group presentations. This range of assessments will help you to develop the analytical and presentational that employers within different organisations look for.

Specialist facilities

Oxford Brookes Business School has now moved to its new home at our Headington Campus. The university’s Headington Campus have undergone a £30m refurbishment to provide a new home for the Business School, which consists of a lecture theatre, teaching rooms, social learning space and a café. There is a new modern hall for teaching and special events like graduation.

This new home will help us to collaborate even more closely with university colleagues in other departments. It also provides a new Main Hall and a vibrant gateway into the Headington Campus. With these innovative spaces, students and staff can interact and collaborate in first-class facilities.

The Headington Campus is also home to the new John Henry Brookes Building, being the most significant project in the history of Oxford Brookes University. Set at the heart of our Headington campus, it has been designed for the future of higher education and has transformed the experiences of our students and the entire University community. The John Henry Brookes Building brings together the library and essential support services that offer academic, careers and international student advice. Find out more about the John Henry Brookes Building.

The majority of our student halls are close to the Headington Campus.

Field trips

We offer an International Business in Practice Study Trip module. The purpose of this study trip is to give postgraduate students a hands-on, intensive experience with the ideas and practices of global business. The programme will include presentations from local management executives and experts. Students will have direct interaction with management executives and practices through site visits to major corporations and agencies.

This study trip is voluntary and all costs associated with the trip will need to be funded by you. It is not linked to university assessments in any way. If you successfully complete this module you will have the following non-credit bearing module recorded on your transcript: P58335 International Business in Practice: Study Trip.

Whilst the destination and therefore precise costs vary from year to year, as an example, the programme fee of the study trip to Boston USA in July 2019 was £1580, which included 7 nights’ accommodation in the Boston area, insurance, the company visits (e.g. Facebook, Dunkin Brands, Trip Advisor, Microsoft, Bank of America), group transportation for all activities and some of the meals, but excluded for example International airfare, Visa application fee (if relevant), dinners and activities during your free time.

We also run a study trip to Chengdu, China.

If you choose the study trip, you will be provided with additional details regarding the trip (which runs in July) by March, in order to inform decision making, ahead of the trip in July.

Programme changes

On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.

Tuition fees

Home/EU - full time fee: 2019/20: £8,490 2020/21: £9,000

Home/EU - part time fee: 2019/20: £5,200 2020/21: £4,500

International - full time: 2019/20: £14,880 2020/21: £15,400

Where part time fees are quoted this is for the first year only. Fees will increase by up to 4% each year.

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed in the 'This course in detail' window above.

Questions about fees?
Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088

Funding and scholarships

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second class honours degree (2:2) in any academic discipline, or equivalent overseas degree from a recognised institution or equivalent professional or other qualification.

Applicants who possess a diploma rather than a good degree may be eligible for entry provided they have compensatory work experience and can demonstrate career development.

The MSc in International Management and International Relations attracts students from a wide range of backgrounds and nationalities. Applications are welcome from those in work and seeking continuing professional development.

Entry will also be subject to two satisfactory references (one of these must be an academic reference).

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you will need to satisfy the university's English language requirements:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 (with a minimum of 6.0 in reading and writing and 5.5 in listening and speaking).
  • If you have completed your undergraduate degree in the UK (at least one full year of study) you will automatically meet our English language requirements.

Please also see the university's standard English language requirements

English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the university's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

International applications

Preparation courses for International and EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you to meet the entry requirements for this course and also familiarise you with university life. You may also be able to apply for one student visa to cover both courses.

  • If you need to take a pre-master's course to help you to meet both the English language and academic entry requirements for your master's course, you can take our two year master’s course. This course combine the pre-master's diploma and your master's in one application. You can apply for one visa for the two years of study.
  • If you need to improve your English language, we have pre-sessional English language courses available to help you to meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s.

If you are studying outside the UK, for more details about your specific country entry requirements, translated information, local contacts and programmes within your country, please have a look at our country pages.

How to apply

Please contact Business School enquiries if you need help with your application or require any further information.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

How this course helps you develop

  • You will develop core international management skills as well as gaining an in-depth understanding of the complex international relations environment and contemporary issues facing organisations and society.
  • You will be studying in Oxford which is a centre of intellectual debate, seminars and public lectures and access to the world-renowned Bodleian library.
  • You will have the opportunity to study from a range of elective choices with academics who are actively researching at the forefront of these subjects.
  • Your understanding and skills in cross-cultural management will be greatly enhanced as well as your management skills of leadership and business management.


Reflecting the uniqueness of the course, you will be well positioned to follow a career in international relations, policy development or a management career within international commercial, third sector, NGO organisations. The course helps you to develop expertise to launch into specialist careers in teaching, law and the media.

How Brookes supports postgraduate students

We take great pride in the personal, academic and career development support provided to our postgraduate students. Our student support co-ordinators ensure that whatever problem you may have it is addressed rapidly.

Our dedicated careers centre provides advice and workshops to help develop the key skills needed to develop your career and get the right job. The programme lead and all academic staff provide open office hours so that you can walk in without an appointment to discuss academic or personal concerns. A dedicated team of postgraduate programme administrators ensures efficient and effective support of students, delivered in a friendly and approachable manner.

Supporting your learning

From academic advisers and support co-ordinators to specialist subject librarians and other learning support staff, we want to ensure that you get the best out of your studies.

Research areas and clusters

Related to this subject there are two research clusters in the International Centre for Coaching and Mentoring Studies and the Centre for Diversity Policy Research and Practice.

Research clusters