Master in Religious Studies with PhD in International Relations

The combined M.A. in Religious Studies /Ph.D. in International Relations program allows qualified graduate students to pursue both degrees simultaneously. Students must fulfill the requirements for both programs, and up to 36 credits completed as part of the MA in Religious Studies will be counted toward the 75 credit PhD in International Relations.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must meet the following minimum requirements to be considered for admission:

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher education (or equivalent)
  • Minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale for the last two years of undergraduate work and/or a GPA of 3.5 on any previous graduate work
  • International graduate student applicants whose native language is not English and who have not obtained a degree from an English-speaking academic institution are required to submit a score for the TOEFL or for the IELTS. A total score of 90 on the internet-based TOEFL (equivalent to 575 on the paper-based version) is required.

Admission Procedure

Applicants must submit an application to the PhD in International Relations with a sub-plan for a MA in Religious Studies. This designation will appear in the menu of programs in the graduate application. The application must be submitted by January 15 in the year in which they wish to begin their studies.

The following documents must be submitted and will be reviewed by the Admissions Committees from both units.

The following must be submitted as part of the on-line application:

  • Online application and application fee
  • Official transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate coursework
  • Official GRE scores
  • Official TOEFL scores, if applicable
  • A statement of research interests, including reasons for seeking the MA/ PhD, future career goals, and a summary of scholarly preparation for this program
  • Three letters of reference from academic sources or others able to judge academic abilities and potential; and curriculum vitae

Masters of Arts in Religious Studies Degree Requirements (36 credits)

  • REL 6935 Seminar in Sacred Sources
  • REL 6013 Modern Analysis of Religion
  • REL 5038 Advanced Fieldwork in Religious Studies
  • REL 6971 Thesis or 6 additional hours of elective credits
  • INR 5615 Research Design in International Relations
  • INR 5609 Contemporary Dynamics of International Relations
  • INR 6706 Political Economy of International Relations
  • 12 credit hours of electives approved by Program Director

Students who choose the thesis exit option must include at least one International Relations faculty member, though the majority must be from Religious Studies.

Doctor of Philosophy in International Relations Degree Requirements

Students will begin study towards the Ph.D. in International Relations immediately following their satisfactory completion of MA in Religious Studies requirements. A minimum of 39 credits beyond the MA in Religious Studies will be necessary to satisfy the requirements of the PhD Program in International Relations.

Degree Requirements beyond the MA in Religious Studies are the following:

9 Core Course credits:

  • GEO 6473 Space, Place and Identity
  • INR 6604 International Relations Theory I
  • INR 6608 Contemporary International Relations Theory

12 Major Field credits in either:

  • Global Institutions and Issues,
  • Comparative Area Studies,
  • Foreign Policy and Security Studies, or
  • International Law.

9 Minor Field credits in either:

  • A second field from the above major field list, or
  • A field offered within another PhD program at FIU (with approval of the Graduate Director), or
  • A petition field (with approval of the Graduate Director).

Elective Credits:

  • Elective credits necessary to bring total credits earned beyond the MA in Religious Studies to a minimum of 24.

Comprehensive Exams:

  • Once students have achieved 60 credits, they must sit for written examination on the core sequence of their fields

Students in the Ph.D. program who who have satisfied all other requirements for the M.A. apart from the exit requirement (i.e all coursework and the foreign language competency) are eligible to receive an M.A. degree. Passing the doctoral comprehensive examinations serves as equivalent to the M.A. comprehensive examination. Ph.D. students who have satisfied these requirements should consult with the Graduate Program Director about the necessary paperwork and procedures to receive the M.A. degree in the course of their Ph.D. studies.

Dissertation Credits:

  • 15 credits of dissertation research.

For more information please contact:

PIR Graduate Program Office Associate - Maria Elena Gil
International Relations Graduate Program Director - Susanne Zwingel
Religious Studies Graduate Program Director - Oren B Stier