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Diplomacy Graduate Degree Program Options

A Master of Arts or Master of Science in Diplomacy may include a focus in international relations or law, with a strong concentration in communication. Careers in this field include corporate communications or public diplomacy officer.

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Essential Information

Diplomacy is the art of strategic communication, often thought of as an official act of communication between two governments. In a global economy, private companies have found a need for diplomats, too. In addition to coursework, these programs may include an internship, thesis and comprehensive exam, and some programs require students to master a foreign language. Most programs require one or two years to complete, and are often available online.


Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • American Government
  • International Relations, General

Graduate Degree in Diplomacy

Most programs require applicants have a bachelor's degree in diplomacy, political science or international relations. Some programs accept degrees in communications, public relations or a social science. Applicants should have advanced level coursework in a foreign language or be able to prove proficiency. Classes in economics are recommended as well as historical conflicts, including military strategy and resolution. Students also study modern diplomatic theory and its private sector application. Students might choose a focus such as conflict management or negotiation. Most participants complete an internship abroad or in the United States. Some programs require the completion of a thesis project or a comprehensive examination in addition to coursework that could include:

  • Types of terrorism and the responses to them
  • Cross-cultural issues
  • Economics and law
  • Military intervention
  • Human rights
  • Impact of technology on modern diplomacy

Popular Career Options

Many graduates pursue careers with the U.S. State Department and work in foreign countries in various positions. However, there are employment opportunities with domestic government agencies. There are also career opportunities with private corporations domestically and abroad. Some careers include:

  • Public diplomacy officer
  • Senior executive
  • Corporate communications officer
  • Public affairs officer
  • Senior policy maker

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn't provide information for diplomats; however, it does provide information for the closely related field of political scientist. These workers are projected to decline by 2 percent from 2014 to 2024. The mean annual wages for these workers were $103,210 in 2015.

Graduate programs in diplomacy can lead to a variety of careers both domestically and abroad. These programs, which typically last one or two years, cover topics like human rights, cross-cultural issues, and the impact of modern technology on diplomacy.

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