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Global Ethics & Human Values MA

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Our Global Ethics and Human Values MA is the most wide-ranging and philosophical programme in its field, allowing you to study the most pressing ethical issues of our time, from globalisation and climate change to war, terrorism, poverty, inequality, justice and human rights.

Key benefits

  • A wide-ranging programme covering challenging contemporary philosophical topics and urgent ethical issues.

  • Taught by distinguished academic staff whose areas of expertise include a very wide range of topics in ethics and political philosophy.

  • Based in the heart of London, close to the Houses of Parliament, the Royal Courts of Justice, multinational corporate headquarters and international NGOs.

  • Open to students from law, the humanities and social sciences as well as those with relevant work experience.

  • Generous scholarships are available to support the brightest and best students.

Key information

Application status Open

Duration One year FT, two years PT, September to September.

Study mode Full-time, Part-time

Credit value UK 180/ECTS 90

Course intake 17 (FT)

Course leaders Professor Leif Wenar

Further details

Course contact for further information

Postgraduate Admissions Team, King’s College London 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

Faculty The Dickson Poon School of Law



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Course detail


Our Global Ethics & Human Values programme will encourage and develop your thinking about the complex theoretical and practical issues confronting the world, and equip you with the analytical skills to address those issues with philosophical rigour. It draws extensively on branches of philosophy, politics and international relations and will introduce you to a wide range of ideas, concepts and problems within those areas.

You will examine theoretical perspectives within ethics, such as deontology, consequentialism and virtue, and explore how these perspectives can be used to understand important and emotive issues such as religious and political conflict, nationalism, abortion, sexual perversion. You will also study the works and insights of major political philosophers to consider how concepts such as liberty or equality have been interpreted to shape the world we live in.

Our course is equally suited for students with a background in philosophy, politics, economics, history or social sciences, or those already working in government, international aid or NGOs, or in corporate social responsibility in the commercial sector.

You will study three compulsory modules and choose three optional modules. In the first semester, you will be exposed to a range of philosophical approaches within epistemology, ethics and political philosophy, which will be applied to relevant topics in a globalising world. In the second semester, you will be asked to apply the philosophical techniques and conceptual frameworks of the first semester to various global issues, ranging from terrorism to environmental concerns, human rights, world poverty and international justice.

In the final months of the course, you will choose a global issue of special interest to you and research it to write a 12,000-15,000-word dissertation.

Course format and assessment

All modules are run as seminars, with a mixture of formal presentation by the instructor and active discussion among members of the seminar. Instructors are also available outside of seminars, and during the dissertation phase students will have personal guidance from a specific instructor.

Full time

There will be 6-8 hours of lectures, seminars and feedback per week. Students are expected to spend 32-34 hours per week engaed in self-study.

Part time

There will be 4-6 hours of lectures, seminars and feedback per week. Students are expected to spend 14-16 hours per week engaged in self-study.


You will be assessed through a combination of examinations and an extended essay.  The required modules are assessed together by one 3-hour exam. The optional modules are assessed by a 3,000 word essay. The exception is the Internship module which candidates are assessed by a proposal, a short journal and a 4,000 word project.


Year 1

Required Modules
  • Ethics (20 credits)
  • Contemporary Political Philosophy (20 credits)
  • Ideological Conflict, Belief and Philosophy (20 credits)
  • Dissertation – Global Ethics and Human Values (60 Credits)
Optional Modules
Choose modules to a total of 60 credits from a list that may include:

  • Human Responsibility for the World and its Future (15 Credits)
  • International Justice (15 Credits)
  • Culture (15 Credits)
  • Conflict: its Origins, Ethics and Containment (30 Credits)
  • Human Rights (15 Credits)
  • Citizenship (30 Credits)
  • Internship (15 Credits)*

*Unlike other modules the Internship module is assessed by a proposal, a short journal and a 4,000-word project.

Entry requirements & how to apply

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

We expect a 2:1 undergraduate degree (or international equivalent) in a relevant discipline, such as philosophy, politics, law, economics, history, or social science. 

Relevant professional qualification and experience will also be considered.

Application procedure

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

Personal statement and supporting information

For information on how to apply to King's, the application process, personal statements or any other FAQ's, please visit the FAQ page.

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: £9,450 p.a. (2017/18)*
  • Full time overseas fees: £18,420 p.a. (2017/18)*
  • Part time UK fees: £4,725 p.a. (2017/18)*
  • Part time overseas fees: £9,210 p.a. (2017/18)*

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.

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


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.

If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

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

Further information coming soon.

Career destinations

Our programme has broadened students' awareness of global issues. Many of our graduates have gone on to do research degrees and work for governmental and non-governmental organisations.


Next steps

View our postgraduate guide

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

Download guide

View online

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Page last modified on 16 May 2017.