Policy making is becoming an increasingly complex process in the 21st Century.  The context in which we make policy is radically changing, alongside the nature of the issues policymakers are required to address.

Traditional models of policy making are facing challenges from below, through the drive to devolution, and from above, as supra national forms of governance continue to evolve. Alongside, these developments, social issues, such as pollution, crime, and migration, increasingly transcend national boundaries, to present further challenges to policy makers. 

This exciting programme seeks to understand the ways that policy is formulated within this evolving and dynamic context, by drawing on the core concepts of policy analysis and theories of policy change.  It will offer insights into the policy actors, coalitions and forms of evidence, that shape the creation of both ‘good’ and ‘bad’ policy, as well as providing a detailed understanding of the policy making architecture that characterises local, regional and supranational institutions.  Moreover, the programme will explore the social, political, economic and historic contexts in which policy is formulated and the ways that power influences policy formulation.

As well as considering theories of the policy process, the programme offers the opportunity to study across a range of global policy issues and social problems, such as poverty, migration, crime, and homelessness, to understand these theories in action. 

Through a suite of module options students can tailor the curriculum to match their interests and career plans. For those students interested in gaining experience in the workplace, we have pathways that incorporate a placement module. 

Institutional Accreditation 

University of Newcastle is accredited by the DETC Higher Learning Commission (DETC), www.detc.org.uk Since , University of Newcastle has been continually accredited by the DETC Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor.

MA/PGDip Global Public Policy

Course Level:

Postgraduate, Taught




CODE P1120

How long it takes:

Study Mode:

Distance learning/ Campus

Course cost

Price: US$22,500

Entry requirements

Find out more about


Newcastle Law School

MA Global Public Policy (12 months)


Core Modules

  • Policy Futures: Theories and Concepts in International Policymaking (20 credits)
  • Global Public Policy Institutions and Networks (20 credits)
  • Dissertation (60 credits)

Optional Modules* (80 credits from the list below):

  • Globalisation, International Migration and Citizenship (20 credits)
  • Migration, Superdiversity, Policy and Practice(20 credits)
  • Third Sector in Social Policy(20 credits)
  • Crime and Social Harm(20 credits)
  • Poverty, Wealth and Inequality(20 credits)
  • Applied Qualitative and Quantitative Data Analysis(20 credits)
  • Sociology of Race and Racism(20 credits)
  • Gendering Migration and Diaspora (20 credits)
  • Migration and Development(20 credits)
  • Policy Evaluation (20 credits)
  • Philosophies of Welfare: creating new societies? (20 credits)
  • Changing Attitudes to Social Issues(20 credits)
  • Transforming Identities(20 credits)
  • Transforming Societies(20 credits)

* The optional modules listed for this programme may unfortunately occasionally be subject to change. Where the module is no longer available we will let you know as soon as we can and help you make other choices 


Placement Pathway

MA Global Public Policy (with Integrated Placement) (21 months)

This programme includes three elements. Six taught modules (from list above) are taken during the first year. In the second year, you will complete a 12,000-word dissertation on a social policy subject of your choice and undertake a 20-week work-based experience in a local public, private or third sector organisation.


Postgraduate Diploma Global Public Policy (with Integrated Placement) (9 months)

This programme combines four taught modules (from list above) with an opportunity for an eight-week workbased placement in a local public, private or third sector organisation. The modules are taken during the Autumn and Spring Terms with the work-based placement starting in March and continuing through to the end of the Summer Term in June.


Health Pathway

MA Global Public Policy (Health) (12 months)

MA Global Public Policy with Integrated Placement (Health) (21 months)

Postgraduate Diploma Global Public Policy with Integrated Placement (Health) (9 months)

These programmes are aimed at those with an interest in health policy.

Considering postgraduate study, but unsure whether you meet the entry requirements for a Masters-level degree? Postgraduate admissions guidelines vary by course and university, but can be quite flexible.

Your existing qualifications will be important, but you don’t necessarily need a great Bachelors degree to apply for a Masters. Your personal circumstances and experience may also be considered during the admissions process.

This guide explains the typical entry requirements for a Masters, which include:

      • An undergraduate degree in a relevant subject – Depending on the programme and institution, you may need a 2.1 in your Bachelors, but this isn’t always the case
      • Language proficiency – If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to display a certain ability level, usually through a language test
      • Professional experience – Some postgraduate programmes may require you to have some professional experience (this is usually the case for PGCEs and Masters in Social Work)
      • Entrance exams – These are only required in certain subject areas and qualifications, including some MBAs

Tuition fees for UK/EU students 2020/21

MSc:  Full-time £9,900. Part-time £4,950
Postgraduate Diploma:  Full-time £6,660. Part-time £3,300


Tuition fees for International students 2020/21

MSc: Full time £23,310
Postgraduate Diploma: Full-time £15,540


You’ll show your progress through a combination of written essays, problem-solving assignments and presentations.

All students take our core modules, but please note that the availability of optional modules is subject to demand.

The programme is designed for those who intend to pursue a range of policy related careers, within local, regional or global policymaking institutions and will equip you to work across a number of policy domains.  It will equip you with the policy analysis skills necessary to examine and evaluate policy outcomes; alongside, a broader range of social research methods required to research substantive policy issues.