Engage with Policy Makers
Room for Debate
Community of Thinkers
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.

Master of Arts
Master of Arts in International Affairs
Master of Arts in International Studies
Master of International Economics and Finance
Master of Arts in Global Policy
Master of International Public Policy
Doctor of Philosophy
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
    • Requires Mandarin language proficiency
    • Offered only at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center
    • Awarded jointly by SAIS and Nanjing University

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      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

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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>>

            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 Programs

            Cooperative programs at leading European institutions are available for students in the Bologna-based Master of Arts in International Affairs (M.A.I.A.) program. Eligibility for academic credentials depends on the sequencing of coursework.  Please contact SAIS Europe Registrar for more information.


            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