Carnegie Mellon University

MS IRP Curriculum

The MS IRP is a two-year full-time program with a required internship in the summer between the first and second years.  Students may take a maximum of 54 units per semester and a minimum of 36 units per semester. Part-time options are available only after consultation with the department.

Curriculum (186 units)

 Core Courses (96 units)

Students must complete all of the following core courses.

  •  84-701 Regression Analysis for Political Science I (12 units)
  • 84-702 Regression Analysis for Political Science II (12 units)
  • 84-710 Thesis Proposal Tutorial (6 units)
  • 84-711 Process Tracing, Counterfactuals, Archival Analysis, and Interviews (6 units)
  • 84-720 International Security Graduate Seminar (12 units)
  • 84-721 American Politics Graduate Seminar (12 units)
  • 84-722 Comparative Political Institutions Graduate Seminar (12 units)
  • 84-725 International Organizations and International Law Graduate Seminar (12 units)
  • CIRP Policy Forum Seminar (12 units total, 3 units per semester)

 Internship (84-705): (0 units)

Students are required to complete a summer internship in a related field between the first and second year of the program.  The internship will allow students to synthesize the program’s studies in the context of practical and hands-on experiential learning opportunities.  IPS has dedicated staff to support students in all aspects of the internship process. 

Thesis (84-799): (18 units)

Students must complete a ggraduate-level thesis paper (84-799) in the final semester. Please view the Thesis Proposal Guidelines for further details.

Concentration Courses (72 units)

Students must complete one course in each of the four concentration areas (48 units), plus an additional two courses (24 units) in chosen concentration.

International Relations
  • 84-611 International Development: Theory and Praxis
  • 84-622 Nonviolent Conflict and Revolution
  • 84-623 War and Peace in the Contemporary Middle East
  • 84-662 Diplomacy and Statecraft
  • 84-669 Decision Science for International Relations
  • 84-610 International Political Economy
International Security
  • 84-605 The Future of Warfare
  • 84-614 International and Subnational Security  
  • 84-670 Global Nuclear Politics
  • 84-672 Space and National Security
  • 84-673 Emerging Technologies and the Law
  • 84-680 Grand Strategy in the United States
  • 84-686 The Privatization of Force
  • 84-687 Technology and Policy of Cyber War
  • 84-688 Concepts of War and Cyber War
  • 84-689 Terrorism and Insurgency
  • 84-690 Social Media, Technology, and Conflict
Comparative Politics
  • 84-608 Political Economy of Latin America
  • 84-615 Contemporary Debates in Human Rights
  • 84-621 Autocrats and Democrats
  • 84-624 The Future of Democracy
  • 84-663 Comparative Legal Systems
  • 84-664 Comparative Presidential Behavior: Leadership, Personality, and Decision Making
American Politics
  • 84-609 Political Behavior
  • 84-619 U.S. Foreign Policy and Interventions in World Affairs
  • 84-625 Contemporary American Foreign Policy
  • 84-602 Judicial Politics and Behavior
  • 84-666 The American Presidency
  • 84-693 Legislative Decision Making: US Congress