About the program

The Master of International Relations program is an innovative, forward-looking program that is attuned to the dynamics of the globalizing world and its multiple diplomatic channels. Students enrolled in the program will gain a solid grounding in contemporary, theoretical and cultural issues. Graduates from the program could seek to further their careers in diplomacy, international trade, government and business through an enhanced understanding of regional and global politics, development, strategic decision making, sociology and economy.

The Master of International Relations program is designed for students who are wishing to expand upon their existing global career or studies. It will equip graduates with the critical thinking skills and strategic development required to expand their global careers.

View the Master of International Relations - Program Structure and Sequencing.

The Master of International Relations comprises 12 subjects, as follows:

Foundation subjects (8)

Students must choose one (1) of the following options (6):

Option 1
Option 2

Option 3

Teaching methodology

Bond University’s teaching methodology involves a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, examinations, projects, presentations, assignments, computer labs and industry projects.

Available research topics for dissertation / portfolio

The Faculty of Society & Design has highly skilled academic staff who can provide supervision to students in the following research areas:

  • ASEAN and Southeast Asian Regionalism
  • Australian Foreign Policy and Diplomacy
  • China's Foreign Policy
  • China's Defence Policy
  • Chinese Strategic Culture
  • Chinese Strategy and PLA Military Modernisation
  • Conduct of Future Warfare [Transformation of defence policy in the 21st Century]
  • Diplomacy, Theory and Practice [including sports-diplomacy]
  • Dynamics and International Relations of Greater Central Asia
  • East West Diplomatic Culture and Practice
  • Futures Studies and International Relations
  • Global Political Economy and Global Development
  • Historical International Relations Systems
  • International Relations Theory
  • Middle and Great Power Theory [Australia, South Korea, India and China]
  • North Korean Politics, Foreign Policy and Diplomacy
  • Pandemics and National/International Security
  • Politically Motivated Violence and Terrorism
  • Popular Geopolitics
  • Public Diplomacy - Theory and Practice
  • Space Policy, Strategic Competition and International Security
  • South Asian International Relations
  • The United Nations

Academic entry requirements

Completion of an Australian Qualifications Framework Level 7 Bachelor degree from an approved institution in either international relations, political science, political studies, global studies, humanities/arts, law or business studies.

Please contact the Office of Future Students for further information.

English language proficiency requirements

As tuition is delivered in English, all students will be required to provide documented evidence of the required level of proficiency in the English language. Read more detailed information on English Language Proficiency Requirements for university study.

Credit for prior study

Subject credits may be awarded for previous studies. To apply for credits, you will need to submit academic transcripts including detailed subject outlines/course descriptions for each relevant subject and/or certified copies of testamurs to the Office of Future Students. Please refer to how to apply for credit for more information

Key dates

Bond University calendar

How to apply

In order to apply for study at Bond University, you will need to complete the Online Application Form. To find out more about the application process please refer to How to Apply.

Meet Our Academics

Dr. Caitlin Byrne is senior lecturer of International Relations at Bond University, Gold Coast. Her teaching and research interests include contemporary and public diplomacy, with a special focus on Australia in the Asia-Pacific region, Korea and China. Dr. Byrne is a former research fellow of the University of Southern California's Centre for Public Diplomacy (CPD) and is currently associated with the Australian Studies program at Sun-Yat Sen University, Guangzhou. Her research is published in a range of journals including the Hague Journal of Diplomacy, the Australian Journal of International Affairs, Sport in Society, Exchange: Journal on Public Diplomacy and CPD Perspectives.

Prior to joining Bond University, Dr. Byrne held a range of management and policy roles across government, including with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (1993-2001) and the Queensland Government's Office for Women (2003-2005). She has led major social policy and legislative reform projects including the implementation of Queensland's Adoption Act 2011, and conducted change management projects in the private and community sectors. Dr. Byrne consults on occasion, and is currently working with DFAT in the development of an Australian global alumni engagement strategy. Dr. Byrne is deeply engaged in Queensland's international policy community, including the Australian Institute of International Affairs and has been recently appointed to the Fulbright Selection Committee for Queensland.

Professional Admission and Memberships

  • Australian Institute of International Affairs
  • International Studies Association

Dr. Rosita Dellios has been at Bond University since it opened in 1989. She is also a founding member of the Centre for East-West Cultural and Economic Studies. She lectures and writes on the themes of Chinese defence policy and philosophy, geopolitics, concepts for world order and future trends in global politics. 

Her research interests are: China's defence policy, foreign policy and philosophy; the history of imperial China's relations with Southeast Asian kingdoms and early concepts of region. As of 2013, Rosita has published one book on China's defence strategy; co-edited a book on Confucian humanism; co-authored a book on China's quest for global order, published more than 30 book chapters and journal articles (some co-authored); and presented numerous conference papers.

Professional Admission and Memberships

  • International Institute for Strategic Studies, London
  • International Studies Association, USA

Dr. R. James Ferguson's teaching areas include international relations, regionalism, and globalisation. He is the Director of the Centre for East-West Cultural and Economic Studies within the Faculty of Society and Design.

Dr. Ferguson conducts research and publishes in the areas of Asian, Eurasia, European and Australasian International Relations, Eurasian studies, Chinese cultural systems, human and comprehensive security, Islamic governance, and regional organisations. Research has included an emphasis on international regimes, China's view of regional and global order, and emerging patterns of governance for orbital space. Recently, Dr. Ferguson has co-authored the book, China's Quest for Global Order: From Peaceful Rise to Harmonious World, forthcoming from Lexington Books (2012).

He is a member of the International Studies Association (ISA), the refereed International Institute for Strategic Studies (the IISS, London), the International Institute of Development Studies (IIDS) and for several years served as a Council member of the Australian Institute of International Affairs (Queensland). He regularly presents at conferences in Southeast Asia, China, Japan, India, Europe and Australia. He has received grants and fellowships from a number of sources including the ARC, Ford-IDSS, Bond University, and the Visiting Researchers Program, run by the Institute of Liberal Arts, Walailak University (Thailand).

Professional Admission and Memberships

  • Editor, The Culture Mandala and the Research Papers of the Centre for East-West Cultural and Economic Studies
  • Member, International Studies Association and the International Institute for Strategic Studies (London)
  • Member, International Institue for Strategic Studies (IISS, London)

Dr. Jonathan H. Ping is a scholar in the fields of global political economy, international relations and comparative politics. He is a graduate of the University of Melbourne and received his PhD from the University of Adelaide. He specialises in the study of statecraft. In this area he has developed the first unifying theory of the middle power concept --hybridisation theory-- as presented in his book Middle Power Statecraft. His most recent book Chinese Engagements focuses on the great power, China. His current research focus is on middle power statecraft theory, great power statecraft theory and a theory of the nature of hegemony in and from Asia. 

Dr. Ping has research affiliations with universities globally. He is a Director of the East Asia Security Symposium and Conference held annually at the China Foreign Affairs University, Beijing. He has worked and undertaken research for government and non-government sectors. Dr. Ping teaches courses on Global Political Economy, Global Development and South Asia at Bond University. He engages regularly with the public through newspaper articles, television and radio commentary and presents at seminars and conferences. 

Dr. Stuart Murray is an Associate Professor in International Relations at Bond University where he teaches Diplomacy: Theory and Practice, Terrorism, Introduction to International Relations and Politically Motivated Violence. His main research interest is in the theory and practice of diplomacy. He has over fifty-five peer-to-peer publications in this area, is an Associate Editor of the journal Diplomacy & Foreign Policy (Brill Publishers), and is responsible for creating several new fields of research. Of these, Secret Diplomacy and Sports Diplomacy are perhaps the best known. In terms of the latter, he has advised several governments – most recently the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade – and more than a few non-state actors, such as the Australian Grand Prix Corporation. As a result of these endeavours, Stuart was made a Fellow at Edinburgh University’s Academy of Sport, the world’s leading think tank concerning sport, international relations, diplomacy, society and culture. Stuart is a world leader in translating academic theory into practice, as well as in terms of inter-disciplinary research. The main driving force of his latest project – the anthropology of diplomacy – is to become the first Diplomatic Studies scholar to explore inter-group relations before the dawn of so-called civilisation