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Are you a current student who is considering or has declared a Maxwell major and wants to learn more about our accelerated bachelor’s to master's options? Register to receive information about admission events, resources and deadlines, or email us to make an appointment with a graduate admission counselor.

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All regular requirements for the student’s undergraduate major along with the minimum 120 credit hours necessary to meet College of Arts and Sciences and Maxwell requirements must be satisfied.

The M.A. in international relations degree requires 40 credits, as outlined on the M.A. in international relations curriculum page. However, up to four courses (12 credit hours) can be counted towards both the bachelor’s and the M.A.I.R. degrees. Please consult the Syracuse University Course Catalog for complete program requirements and offerings.

Any 500-, 600- or 700-level PAI course is eligible for dual credit.

Sample Plan of Study

Below is a sample plan of study that allows a student to complete the B.A. and M.A. in international relations degrees in five years. The plan assumes that a student will complete 12 credit hours that will count towards both the bachelor’s and M.A. in international relations degrees during their fourth year. Which courses are taken in year five depends on which courses are selected during year four. 

The sample plan of study below lays out one potential path, others are possible. Students who arrive at Syracuse University with substantial AP credit may be able to complete both degrees in four years.

Year Four

Students take four PAI courses at the 500-, 600-, or 700-level that would count for both degrees.

Summer Between Years Four and Five

Students fulfill the M.A. in international relations program’s internship requirement by taking a 3-credit internship in Washington, D.C., or one of the Maxwell School’s global partner sites.

Year Five Fall and Spring

During the fall and spring semesters, students take 24 graduate credit hours including courses that satisfy competency requirements of the M.A. in international relations. Students also participate the M.A. in international relations degree’s 1-credit capstone experience. Students may opt to do one of these during their semester in Washington, D.C.  Students are eligible to graduate at the end of the spring semester of year five.

Accelerated B.A./M.A. in International Relations Application Checklist and Deadlines

Application Deadline

The application deadline for the accelerated B.A./M.A. in international relations is March 1 of the year prior to completion of a bachelor’s (typically your junior year). For example, students who intend to complete the B.A. degree requirements in spring 2025 should apply by March 1, 2024.

Application Criteria

Student applications that show evidence of sufficient preparation in writing skills and quantitative analysis will have a greater chance of being admitted to the program. The preferred way to demonstrate this competence is by completing a “writing intensive” course and a course that requires quantitative analysis with a grade of B or better prior to applying.  Examples of such courses include, but are not limited to, MAX 123, MAX 132 and MAX 201.

Application Materials

  • Completed graduate application
  • Personal statement
  • Résumé (preferred) or CV
  • Three letters of recommendation:  at least two from current or former professors; at least one from someone in your Maxwell academic department (e.g., an advisor, professor or program director)
  • Transcripts from any coursework taken outside of Syracuse University: Unofficial transcripts may be submitted with the application; however, if admitted, official transcripts will be required in order to enroll.
  • Not required: application fee, GRE, TOEFL

Financial Aid

Students are considered for merit-based financial aid upon completion of their undergraduate program. Support may come in the form of:

  • Scholarships
  • Federal and state loans and grants
  • Part-time employment

To be considered for merit-based financial assistance from Syracuse University, simply check the appropriate box on your application for admission.

Public Administration and International Affairs Department
215 Eggers Hall