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Arms Control & International Security MA

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Students will learn about historical arms control challenges, such as negotiation of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, along with contemporary arms control issues as they relate to international security, to include the Iran Nuclear Deal, U.S.-Russia arms control, and disarmament verification. Along with subject matter expertise, students will develop transferable analytic and research skills in a dynamic and rigorous intellectual environment.

Key Benefits:

  • Enhance your knowledge of arms control and its role in international security
  • Develop transferable analytic and research skills
  • Merge theoretical concepts with practical application, including guest lectures and teaching from arms control practitioners

Key information

Application status Open

Duration 1 year Full time, September to September; 2 year Part Time

Study mode Full-time, Part-time

Credit value UK 180

Course leaders Professor Wyn Bowen and Dr Heather Williams

Further details

Course contact for further information

Course contact for further information
Postgraduate Admissions Team, Admissions Office tel: +44 (0) 20 7848 7000 fax: +44 (0) 20 7848 7200

Course contact form Postgraduate admissions

Awarding institution King's College London

DepartmentDefence Studies Department,Department of War Studies



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Course detail


The MA in Arms Control is a joint programme with the Departments of War Studies and Defence Studies at King’s College London. The goal of the programme is to enhance knowledge of a broad range of subjects relevant to arms control and international security.  The programme is available to both full- and part-time students, and is available as an MA, Diploma, or Certificate. Core modules include: (1) History and Politics of Arms Control, (2) Verification Concepts and Technologies, and (3) Arms Control Case Studies. Modules will be conducted in intensive week-long sessions so as to accommodate professional students. Each module will be highly interactive with a combination of lectures, seminars, and group discussion, and include formative assessment. Student performance will be assessed in an essay for each module, and MA students will be required to write an individual research dissertation.

Course purpose

Ideally, this programme will train the next generation of arms control practitioners and experts by building their expertise in the fundamentals and history of arms control, while also exposing them to practical issues and challenges, such as verification.

Course format and assessment

Students typically take core modules in the first year of study (60 credits) and optional modules in the second year (60 credits). Students will begin planning and reading for the dissertation (60 credits) in the first year of study, with write up taking place in the second year.


Year 1

Required Modules
  • The History and Politics of Arms Control (20 credits) 
  • Verification Concepts and Technologies (20 credits) 
  • Arms Control Case Studies (20 credits) 
  • Dissertation (60 credits) 
Optional Modules

Entry requirements & how to apply

Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements.

General entry advice

1st class or good 2:1 undergraduate degree (65% or above in the UK marking system) in a social science or other related subject.

As a guideline for those with USA undergraduate qualifications, we are usually looking for a CGPA of above 3.5. Applicants with qualifications from other countries are welcomed, with further guidance available at

Application procedure

Applications must be made online using King’s online application portal and a non-refundable application fee of £50 applies.

All applications are assessed by a committee of academic tutors. This process takes on average eight weeks.

Personal statement and supporting information

Please provide a personal statement explaining why you are interested in this particular programme, and outlining any relevant experience you have. If there are any anomalies in your academic record, please use the personal statement to explain related extenuating circumstances.

Application closing date

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible.  Our first application deadline was the 31st March 2017.  Applications will remain open if places are available and programmes will be closed as soon as they are full.  For programmes with spaces remaining, no further applications will be accepted from non-EU (Overseas) nationals after 30th July 2017 or from UK/ EU nationals after 3rd September 2017.

Help and support

If you don't have a suitable qualification for direct entry to a UK university, or if English isn't your first language, our academic preparation courses can help you get ready for study in the UK.

Preparation courses

Fees and funding

  • Full time UK fees: £3,650 (PG Cert 2017/18)*, £7,300 (PG Dip 2017/18*), £10,950 (MSc 2017/18)* per year
  • Full time overseas fees: £6,500 (PG cert 2017/18)*, £13,100 (PG Dip 2017/18*), £19,650 (MSc 2017/18)* per year
  • Part time UK fees: n/a
  • Part time overseas fees: n/a

*These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

Please note: Current regulations allow some students to pay UK tuition fees on the basis of their EU citizenship or residency. Until these eligibility criteria are changed, the EU tuition fee will remain the same as the UK tuition fee. 


When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

The UK/EU deposit is £500.

The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

  • If you receive an offer on or before 31st March 2017, payment is due by 30th April 2017.
  • If you receive an offer between 1st April 2017 and 30th June 2017, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer between 1st July 2017 and 31st July 2017, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer on or after 1st August 2017, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

Additional costs/expenses

In addition to the costs above, you can also expect to pay for: 

  • Books if you choose to buy your own copies 
  • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions 
  • Library fees and fines 
  • Personal photocopies 
  • Printing course handouts 
  • Society membership fees 
  • Stationery 
  • Graduation costs
  • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses 

 Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.

Career prospects

Although this is a new programme, other King’s MA students in similar fields have gone on to work at top global think tanks, in government, or to pursue PhDs in a relevant field.


Next steps

View our postgraduate guide

Learn more about postgraduate degree programmes at King's. Download or view our guide in PDF format.

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Sound like the course for you?

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Page last modified on 16 May 2017.