Academics

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Learn from the Best
Challenging Curriculum

Proximity to power and access to thought leaders create rich academic and professional opportunities.

Each day at SAIS something happens that can improve the world. Come visit one of our classes. We have saved you a seat.

Join a community of diverse individuals of vision, intellect and creativity with a common commitment to positive change.

The school’s respected faculty of scholars and practitioners bring unparalleled insight and experience to the classroom.

Students choose courses that combine high academic standards with application to their policy interests.

Welcome
Master of Arts
Master of Arts in International Affairs
Master of Arts in International Studies
Master of Arts in Global Risk
Master of International Economics and Finance
Master of Arts in Global Policy
Master of International Public Policy
Doctor of Philosophy
HNC Certificate
HNC Certificate/SAIS MA
Dual-Degree and Cooperative Programs
Certificate and Non-Degree Programs
Executive Training
Other Programs
Washington, D.C.
Bologna, Italy
Nanjing, China

Global Presence, International Perspective

Our unique interdisciplinary education provides the theoretical insight and practical tools required for a successful career in today's global environment. A presence on three continents and a network of partnerships with leading global educational institutions set SAIS apart. SAIS students combine the study of international economics with key policy areas of global concern that span the world's pivotal regions. Our curriculum is complemented by a specialized, practical language proficiency program. SAIS produces innovative thinkers and problem-solvers, equipped to deal with global challenges in any context around the world.

 

Master of Arts

This two-year program for full-time students is the cornerstone of the SAIS experience. About half of all entering M.A. students spend a year at SAIS Europe and a year in Washington, while the other half spend both years in Washington. Students who are proficient in Mandarin may pursue the HNC Certificate/SAIS M.A. by completing two semesters in Nanjing to receive a certificate in Chinese and American Studies, combined with two to three semesters in the M.A. program in Washington.

The academic program is the same for both groups of students and consists of interdisciplinary course work in international relations, economics, quantitative reasoning and languages.
At a Glance
  • Emphasizes international economics, global themes world regions and languages
  • Offers study in Washington, SAIS Europe and Nanjing
  • Allows dual-degree options with other premier institutions
 

Master of Arts in International Affairs

Offered in Bologna, this is a two-year research-oriented degree program. Students submit a thesis instead of taking two of the non-language courses normally required for the M.A. degree. Master’s students from European partner universities can study for one year in their home program and for one year at SAIS Bologna, obtaining the M.A.I.A. plus a master’s from their home university.
At a Glance
  • Offered only at SAIS Bologna
  • Entails course work as well as thesis research and defense
  • Students must take courses or demonstrate competence in Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Int'l Trade and Monetary Theory
  • Other courses are chosen from approximately 75 courses offered at SAIS Europe each year
  • Foreign language proficiency required

     

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    Master of Arts in International Studies

    Offered at the Hopkins- Nanjing Center (HNC), this two-year program is the only master’s degree fully accredited in both China and the United States. Students complete course work and a thesis in Chinese, culminating in a degree jointly awarded by SAIS and Nanjing University. Mandarin proficiency required.
    At a Glance
    • Prior Chinese proficiency at the intermediate to advanced level required
    • Offered only at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center
    • Awarded jointly by SAIS and Nanjing University

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      Master of Arts in Global Risk

      Offered at SAIS Europe in Bologna, Italy this 13-month, cohort-based program builds on the core strengths of SAIS in multi-disciplinary analysis by introducing students to the broad array of concepts and tools from the social sciences that are necessary to undertake sophisticated political and economic risk analysis. The SAIS MGR will produce a graduate who understands the details of risk analysis, possesses professional quantitative skills, and is able to apply these tools to policy problems or investment decisions as they are affected by political events.   

      At a Glance
      • Courses are taught by SAIS faculty, renowned for their interdisciplinary approach to the study of economics, politics and history, as well as recent innovative work in the field of risk and uncertainty.
      • Students complete a capstone project in the form of a client-based professional practicum or original thesis.
      • MGR students benefit from SAIS Europe’s international community with classmates from over 40 countries. 
      • Accepting applications for Fall 2016 cohort (early decision 1 November, regular decision 7 January)

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      Risk and uncertainty are unavoidable components of decision-making. The MGR offers a unique opportunity to acquire both the theoretical framework and the practical tools for international careers in the management of uncertainty. This degree program draws on all the strengths of SAIS as a global institution, including its research-active faculty, outstanding career services and international alumni network.
      Filippo Taddei, PhD
      Academic Director, MGR
      Director, Bologna Institute for Policy Research, SAIS Europe

      Master of Arts in International Economics and Finance

      This 11-month, full-time program prepares students to understand advanced economic theories, develop quantitative skills and analyze current international economic issues.  Students move through the program in a cohort format and focus on how international trade and finance shape economic performance. Further, students develop their own perspectives by interacting one-on-one with world renowned scholars while specializing in either Macroeconomics/International Finance or in International Trade/Development.
      At a Glance
      • Full-time program, completed in less than one year
      • Specialize in Macroeconomics/International Finance or International Trade/Development
      • Students can add additional international affairs courses

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        Master of Arts in Global Policy 

        The 16-month Global Policy Program (GPP), designed specifically for highly-motivated, experienced professionals, is ideal for candidates seeking a deeper understanding of the social, economic and political issues influencing policy decisions, while continuing to work full-time. Studying with world-class scholars and practitioners, students gain the skills and knowledge required for success in our rapidly transforming world. 

        Students move through the program in a cohort format, and classes meet on alternating Fridays and Saturdays. The curriculum includes four residencies, simulated or real world experiences, designed to maximize learning in a fast-paced and stimulating learning environment. The GPP curriculum is carefully designed to support students in integrating the knowledge gained in the classroom into their professional careers. 

        At a Glance
        • Designed for highly-motivated, fully-employed, working professionals
        • Delivered via a convenient, alternating Friday and Saturday schedule
        • Culminates with an international residency, where students travel abroad as a cohort to address a current global policy challenge
        • Accepting applications for Fall 2015 at the SAIS Washington, D.C. campus

        Request a Brochure

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        Master of International Public Policy

        This flexible, full-time degree is designed for experienced professionals who wish to develop advanced analytical and leadership skills. Studying under world-class scholars and practitioners, students customize their course of study from an array of functional, regional, and economic course topics to advance their expertise and position themselves for continued professional success.
        At a Glance
        • Designed for experienced professionals with at least seven years of relevant work experience
        • Completed full-time over one academic year
        • Offered at the SAIS DC and SAIS Europe Campuses

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          Doctor of Philosophy

          This full-time program is for individuals who hold a Master and seek to become scholars as well as practitioners in international relations. Each Ph.D. candidate works with a faculty adviser to design a unique academic and research plan to prepare for their dissertation. Students develop a comprehensive understanding of qualitative and quantitative analytic skills, international relations, economics, and regional studies.
          At a Glance
          • Each Ph.D. student works with a faculty adviser to plan a comprehensive curriculum
          • Curriculum emphasizes qualitative and quantitative analytic skills
          • Program requires passing three comprehensive exams
          • Students write and defend a prospectus and dissertation

            Learn more about the Ph.D. program>>

            HNC Certificate

            The Hopkins-Nanjing Center (HNC) awards a graduate certificate in Chinese and American Studies to international students who attend the HNC for one academic year and take a minimum of six academic courses in Chinese. Many choose to take additional classes each semester in English, resulting in a mix of international and Chinese students in a given class.

            At a Glance

            • Prior Chinese proficiency at the intermediate to advanced level required
            • Offered only at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center
            • Awarded jointly by SAIS and Nanjing University

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            HNC Certificate/SAIS MA

            Students who meet admissions requirements for both the HNC and SAIS complete two semesters in Nanjing and receive a Certificate in Chinese and American Studies, followed by two to three semesters at SAIS's Washington M.A. program. Through these joint programs, students can apply their regional and linguistic skills to the broader study of international relations or business. Note: An offer of admission to either the Hopkins-Nanjing Center or to SAIS does not constitute admission to the other institution.

            At a Glance

            • Prior Chinese proficiency at the intermediate to advanced level required
            • Emphasizes international economics, global themes world regions and languages
            • Combined study in both Nanjing and Washington, DC

            Learn more

            Dual-Degree and Cooperative Programs

            To enhance their graduate education and professional opportunities, some SAIS students pursue dual-degree or cooperative programs in business, law, public administration, public health, public policy, and international diplomacy. SAIS offers partnerships with leading graduate schools in the United States and around the globe.  Students may create an ad hoc dual-degree program of study (non-formal program) with other prominent universities. Proposals for ad hoc dual-degrees are possible, but must be approved by the Office of Academic Affairs. NOTE: Only top-ranked professional schools will be considered for ad-hoc dual-degrees. To be admitted to any of the dual-degree programs, students must apply to, and be accepted by, both schools independently.  To start your SAIS Master of Arts application click here.

            For those accepted to a dual-degree program, SAIS reduces the number of required courses from 16 to 12 in recognition of course work taken at another approved school. Students in the dual-degree program receive a quarter/semester of advanced standing at each school, allowing them to complete the two degrees in one year less than traditionally required.

            Voices of SAIS

             

            Dual-Degree Options

            Global Business

            Global Health
            International Law
            International Relations
            Public Policy

             


            Cooperative Degree Programs

            SAIS Europe offers cooperative two-year degree programs with leading European universities for students in the Bologna-based Master of Arts in International Affairs (M.A.I.A) program. Students may begin their course of study at either institution, earning a Diploma or Master’s degree from both. Cooperative degree candidates satisfy SAIS Europe’s prerequisites in economics and languages and write an original 20,000 word thesis. Students apply to both institutions. Please contact the SAIS Europe Admissions Office for more information.

            • Institut d’études politiques de Lille (Sciences Po Lille, France)
              Students who are pursuing their first year of study for the Master’s cycle at Lille can apply to SAIS Europe in Bologna for a second year of study. Upon successful completion of their second year at SAIS Europe, students will earn both a Master’s degree from Sciences Po and Master of Arts in International Affairs (M.A.I.A.) from SAIS. Students who begin at SAIS Europe will earn the Bologna Diploma and then go on to pursue a Master’s at Sciences Po Lille. 
            • Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, Austria
              Students who begin the program in Vienna can apply to spend their second year of study in Bologna at SAIS Europe. Upon successful completion of study, students earn a M.A.I.A from SAIS. Students who begin their first year of study at SAIS Europe can spend their second year at the Diplomatic Academy. Upon successful completion of their second year in Vienna, students earn both a Master of Advanced International Studies (M.A.I.S.) from the Diplomatic Academy and a Bologna Diploma. 
            • University of Leiden, the Netherlands
              Students who are pursuing their first year of Master’s study at Leiden can apply to SAIS Europe in Bologna for a second year of study. Upon successful completion of their second year at SAIS Europe, students will earn both a Master of Arts in International Relations (Humanities) from the University of Leiden and a M.A.I.A. from SAIS. Students who begin at SAIS Europe will earn the Bologna Diploma and then go on to pursue a M.A. in International Relations at the University of Leiden. 
            • University of Bologna, Italy
              SAIS Europe offers four, two-year cooperative degree programs with the University of Bologna at campuses in Bologna, Forlì and Rimini.

              Facoltà di Scienze Politiche, Bologna and Forlì
              Students who begin the program at the University of Bologna and complete their second year at SAIS Europe earn both a Laurea Magistrale in Relazioni Internazionali (RILM) and an M.A.I.A. from SAIS. Those who begin at University of Bologna, Forlì  and complete their second year at SAIS Europe earn both a Laurea Magistrale in Scienze Internazionali e Diplomatiche (SID) and an M.A.I.A. from SAIS.  Students who complete their first year of study at SAIS Europe earn the Bologna Diploma and then pursue either the RILM or SID at the University of Bologna.

              Resource Economics and Sustainable Development of the School of Economics,   Management and Statistics, Rimini
              Students who begin the program at the University of Bologna, Rimini and complete their second year at SAIS Europe earn both  a Laurea Magistrale in Economics and Market Policy and a MAIA from SAIS. Students who complete their first year of study at SAIS Europe earn the Bologna Diploma and then pursue the Laurea Magistrale in Economics and Market Policy at the University of Bologna, Rimini.

              School of Economics, Management and Statistics, Bologna
              Students who begin the program at the University of Bologna and complete their second year at SAIS Europe earn both earn a Laurea Magistrale in Economics and a MAIA from SAIS. Students who complete their first year of study at SAIS Europe and second year at the University of Bologna will earn both the M.A.I.A. degree from SAIS and the Laurea Magistrale in Economics from the University of Bologna.

             

            Certificate and Non-Degree Programs

            SAIS offers a number of certificate and non-degree programs for individuals looking to improve their knowledge of international relations or international development who aren't looking for a full-time degree program or who are looking to augment their current credentials. 

            Click here to learn more about Part Time and Non-Degree Programs>>

            Click here to learn more about Certificate Programs offered at SAIS>>

            Executive Education

            SAIS professors and practitioners are thought leaders in the fields of international development, international economics and international relations. Partner with SAIS Executive Education to develop customized programs and seminars to address the complex global challenges and issues specific to your organization.
            At a Glance
            • Custom programs can vary in topic, duration and location
            • Taught by internationally recognized scholars and practitioners
            • Programs can be customized to include site visits relevant to course topics
            • Clients around the world include educational institutions, embassies, governments, NGOs, nonprofits, private companies and public institutions
            • Participants can benefit from SAIS locations in Washington, D.C.; Bologna, Italy; and Nanjing, China

            Learn more about Executive Education programs>>

            Other Programs

            Beyond our core academic degrees, SAIS offers several other opportunities for graduate students and professionals seeking to advance their knowledge of international issues or develop new areas of interest. We offer a variety of unique programs at our three global campuses, including certificates, diplomas, part-time and summer course work, and executive training. Pursue one of these options today to gain your career-building edge.
            At A Glance
            • Includes options for study on three continents
            • Offers programs for academics and working professionals
            • Provides a range of opportunities for developing a distinct professional advantage

             

            Other Programs in Bologna, Italy