Postgraduate Diploma in
PgDip in Violence, Terrorism and Security Queen's University Belfast
Normally a 2.2 Honours degree (minimum 57%) or above, or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in a Social Sciences, Humanities or Arts subject, or a 2.2 Honours degree (minimum 57%) or above, or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in any subject with relevant professional experience.
Applicants who do not meet this entry requirement may, at the discretion of the relevant programme convenor, be considered for admission on the basis of relevant work experience. Please note that a piece of written work may be requested in this instance.
The University's Recognition of Prior Learning Policy provides guidance on the assessment of experiential learning (RPEL). Please visit http://go.qub.ac.uk/RPLpolicy for more information.
Applicants are advised to apply as early as possible and ideally no later than 11th August 2023 for courses which commence in late September. In the event that any programme receives a high number of applications, the University reserves the right to close the application portal. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Application Portal against the programme application page.
Please note: International applicants will be required to pay a deposit to secure a place on this course.
English Language Requirements
Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required (*taken within the last 2 years).
International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.
If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.
- Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
- Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.
Students take 6 modules across 2 semesters. Students take 3 required core modules in the Autumn semester. Then students take 1 required core module and 2 elective modules in the Spring semester.
- PAI7028 - Violence, Terrorism and Security
- PAI7051 Contemporary Security (Autumn semester requirement)
- HAP7001 Research Design (Autumn semester requirement)
- PAI7007 - Global Terrorism
Elective modules offer the chance to specialise in a particular area of interest, build on foundational knowledge, and develop focused expertise. Student must take two modules from the following list:
- PAI7027 - Conflict Intervention
- PAI7030 - Global Political Economy
- PAI7032 – Gender and Politics
- PAI7050 - Ethnic Conflict and Consensus: the power of institutions
- PAI7058 – From Cold War to Cold Peace: The Transformation of the International Order (1979-1999)
- PHL7057 Social Injustice
- ANT7023 – Anthropology of Conflict
- LAW7815 Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights
- LAW7816 Comparative Human Rights
The potential for further development of regional systems for the protection of human rights will also be examined.
* Please note that this is an indication of the available elective modules in MA in Violence, Terrorism and Security. There may be other modules available to take, and in some years one or two of these may not be available (due to staff sabbatical, etc.).
Learning and Teaching
Classes/modules lectures and tutorials are held at various times throughout the week. There are usually options for afternoon classes/modules.
Subject Specific Understanding
Students will gain in-depth knowledge and understanding of political violence, terrorism, and security across many cases around the world. Students will be familiar with theoretical and empirical issues at different stages in the conflict cycle, including the outbreak, development, and resolution of armed civil conflicts and use of terrorism. Students will gain an understanding of, and be able to critically engage with, the main concepts in these fields (such as “terrorism”, “radicalisation”, “security”, “peace”, etc.), the main theories (such as the causes of terrorism, the dynamics of civil conflict, approaches to counter-terrorism), and some issues and debates (such as the trade-off between security and liberty inherent with some counterterrorism tactics).
Students will also acquire a series of transferable skills that can be applied in a variety of contexts and career pathways.
Upon successful completion of the programme, students will be able to reason critically; apply relevant theoretical concepts; identify and solve problems; analyse and interpret data; demonstrate and exercise independence of thought; work independently; participate constructively in groups; manage their time effectively and work to deadlines.
Students will also be able to retrieve, sift and select information from a variety of sources plan and execute a piece of independent research; devise viable research proposals; apply various different research methodologies and approaches; identify appropriate research techniques relative to overall research design; appreciate, and display an understanding of, comprehensive qualitative and quantitative research design.
Program Tuition Fee
The PgDip in Violence, Terrorism and Security provides you with the essential transferable skills and in-depth knowledge of theories and issues in the areas of violence, security, and terrorism for career development at any stage, from students straight from an undergraduate degree with limited to no prior professional experience to those seeking continued professional development. Our programme enables you to broaden your horizons providing you with a competitive edge in a global graduate market in a wide variety of areas such as the security sector, including intelligence agencies, government agencies and public office, the military, NGOs, academia, businesses and corporations, and the media among many other possibilities.
Some of our graduates now serve in the most senior ranks of a number of National Police Services, and Law Enforcement Agencies, Border and Immigration Control, National Armed Forces including the US Army, US Air Force, British Army and Irish Defence Forces. Graduates also work as senior government policy advisers, in international NGOs and the media.
Queen’s is ranked in the top 140 in the world for graduate prospects (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020).
Employment after the Course
We are proud that many of our graduates have gone to serve in the most senior ranks of a number of National Police Services, and Law Enforcement Agencies, Border and Immigration Control, National Armed Forces including the US Army, US Air Force, US Secret Service, British Army and Irish Defence Forces. Our graduates also work as senior government policy advisers in a variety of different countries, including the State Department in the USA, in international NGOs in diverse parts of the globe including major conflict zones, other graduates have gone into international security consultancy, and many have worked in the media, and others have gone on to successful careers working for international business in a variety of capacities. The MA also provides the research skills and knowledge to carry out a PhD to pursue an academic career, as a number of our graduates have done.
English Language Requirements
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