2021 start

Politics, Governance and Public Policy

Department of Politics and International Relations, Faculty of Social Sciences

Gain an in-depth understanding of the relationship between governance and public policymaking. This course is designed to balance state-of-the-art academic research with real-world examples to prepare you for the policymaking world.
Postgraduate politics students reading at desk

Course description

This course explores the complexity of contemporary governance and its effects on the policymaking process.  You will examine the different actors involved in policymaking across a range of regional, national and international settings, and will identify the powers available to such actors to influence policy.  You will also acquire a detailed understanding of the wider political, economic and social considerations that shape the policy process.

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Core modules

  • Analysing the Policy Process
  • Understanding Politics
  • Research and Dissertation Preparation
  • Dissertation in Politics, Governance & Public Policy

Core module descriptions

Optional modules

A range, including:

  • Democratic Governance in the Twenty-first Century: Problems, Innovations and Solutions
  • Politics and Governance of the European Union
  • Policymaking in the Real World
  • Wellbeing in Politics and Policy

Explore more optional modules


  • 1 year full-time
  • 2 years part-time

Entry requirements

We’re looking for outstanding and enthusiastic students for our courses.

You can apply to us with a good degree (first-class or 2:1 honours degree) in a relevant social science, arts and humanities, or related subject.

English language requirements

All of our courses require an overall IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component.

Dr Alasdair Cochrane

Our masters courses are so exciting because you’ll have the opportunity to develop a genuine specialism in your area of study. As researchers it’s a real pleasure to share your latest work—in my case, on the political theory of animal rights—with students who are eager to learn and challenge!

Dr Alasdair Cochrane
Senior Lecturer in the Department of Politics


You can apply for postgraduate study using our Postgraduate Online Application Form. It's a quick and easy process.

Apply now


+44 114 222 1641

The course information set out here may change before you begin, particularly if you are applying significantly in advance of the start date.