About us

Welcome to the Department of International Politics, the first of its kind in the world!

The study of politics and international relations is indispensable for understanding a rapidly changing world. In a time of a climate emergency, global pandemics, political and ideological uncertainty and upheaval, social and economic transformation and increasingly diverse forms of conflict and violence, everyone has a stake in tackling these global challenges. The Department's teaching and research aims to inspire and support students to question, challenge, transform and build confidence in the way they think about politics and international relations.

Aberystwyth is a  vibrant, cosmopolitan bilingual university town, between the rolling Cambrian mountains and the stunning coastline of Cardigan Bay. You’ll be part of a campus university with its own sports centre, a busy Arts Centre; and you’ll be next door to the National Library of Wales, only one of five copyright libraries in the UK.

Why Aberystwyth University?

Aberystwyth University has just been rated the Best University in the UK for Teaching Quality and Student Satisfaction (The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021). Aberystwyth has now been the top university in Wales for student satisfaction for five years in a row, and is now the top in the UK.

Why the Department of International Politics?

  • The world’s first Department of International Politics, established in 1919.
  • We are an outstanding place to study politics and international relations.
  • Top 5 in the UK for overall student satisfaction in politics and international relations (95% in NSS 2021) and our research excellence puts us in the top ten research departments in the UK (REF 2014).
  • Second in the UK for satisfaction with the quality of teaching on the course for the subject of Politics (Guardian Good University Guide 2022).
  • Top 5 in the UK for satisfaction with the quality of the course (4th) and quality of feedback (4th) for the subject of Politics (Guardian Good University Guide 2022).
  • Top 5 in the UK for Teaching Quality (2nd) and Student Experience (3rd) for the subject of Politics, and Top ten for Research Quality (The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021).
  • Second in the UK for Politics and IR for student satisfaction and 7th for research quality (Complete University Guide 2022).
  • Best in Wales and 7th in the UK for research excellence (REF 2014).
  • We inspire and support students to question and challenge the way we think about politics and international relations.
  • Exploring and tackling global challenges, from the local to the planetary level, from diverse perspectives.
  • Module choice and flexibility, so you can tailor your degree to your interests.
  • Networks that stretch across the globe and engage with practitioners.
  • Exciting activities such as our Crisis Games, International Exchanges and Parliamentary Placements.
  • A vibrant, friendly, intellectual community with multiple events taking place throughout the year.

Crisis Games

The Department was the first in the UK to run crisis simulations to connect classroom learning to the real-world complexities of international politics. These are held once a year and are the most popular event in any InterPol student's academic year.

Parliamentary Placement Scheme

The Department operates a prestigious Parliamentary Placement Scheme, enabling you to gain valuable experience working alongside an MP (House of Commons, Westminster) or an AM (Welsh Assembly, Cardiff) for a period of 4-6 weeks during the summer. During this time you will write reports and speeches, undertake research projects, and respond to constituency issues.

International Exchanges

The Department also has links with carefully selected universities in Europe, Asia, North America and Australia offering you an excellent opportunity to expand your academic and social horizons through our international exchange programme, allowing you to spend part of your university experience abroad.

Student Societies

Students also take the lead in the Department. We are home to Interstate, the oldest student-run international politics journal in the United Kingdom, providing a unique opportunity for you to publish your work (particularly advantageous if you wish to progress to postgraduate study) or gain valuable experience working as part of the editorial team. Finally a range of stimulating student societies foster a strong sense of community within the department, offering a programme of political debates, visiting speakers, conferences and workshops, alongside numerous social activities such as an annual ball.

Find out more

Take the time to browse through our webpages and and our brochure find out more about our courses. If you have any questions, please do get in touch via our Contact Us page. At the moment we are running Online Open Days, please do register and chat to staff and students about studying at Aberystwyth University. We hope to resume on campus Open Days when it is safe to do so. When we do please do take the time to come and visit Aberystwyth, so that you can see why we are rated the Best University in the UK for Teaching Quality and Student Satisfaction (Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021), and meet some of the staff and students in person.