Pre-Master's Courses 2019-20: Foundations of Diplomacy

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Oxford Pre-Master’s Course Foundations of Diplomacy 2019/2020

The University of Oxford’s pre-Master’s courses are ideal for graduates and working professionals who would like to prepare for entry to Master’s degree courses at leading universities.

• successfully acclimatise to university life in Britain

What’s a pre-Master’s Course?

• boost your IELTS test score

A pre-Master’s course is one that has been specifically designed for students who need to develop the academic skills and linguistic proficiency for study at postgraduate level in the UK.

How will the Oxford Foundations of Diplomacy pre-Master’s course help me? The Foundations of Diplomacy pre-Master’s course will help you to: • bridge the gap between your undergraduate studies and the requirements of a challenging Master’s course at a top university


• communicate confidently in spoken and written English in a British academic environment • understand the expectations that British university tutors have of graduate students • learn how to participate effectively in seminars, tutorials and meetings • develop superior critical and analytical thinking skills • enhance your ability to negotiate successfully across cultures • significantly improve your research and academic writing skills

What makes an Oxford pre-Master’s course different to other pre-Master’s courses? • You will be studying at one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the world with an unparalleled academic reputation • You will benefit from some of the finest library and study facilities in the world • You will receive an individual weekly tutorial and a high degree of personal attention throughout your course • You will have the opportunity to apply for associate student membership of an Oxford College • You will enjoy access to hundreds of guest lectures by leading academics and distinguished visiting speakers


The Oxford Foundations of Diplomacy Pre-Master’s Course in Overview} Duration

6 months full-time


Cultural and Academic Orientation Week 30 September - 4 October 2019

Michaelmas Term 7 October - 13 December 2019

Hilary Term 13 January – 20 March 2020


You take two modules over two 10-week terms.

Module 1

Diplomacy, Politics & International Relations • Diplomacy in Practice • Diplomatic Simulations • Skills for Public Diplomacy • International Relations • European Integration 1 & 2 • Contemporary European Politics (2000-2020) • Politics and Ideology • Foundations of Public International Law


Module 2

English Language & Literacy • Diplomatic & Professional Communication Skills • Academic Literacy • Critical Thinking Skills • Digital Literacy • Critical Reading • English Grammar • Individual Academic Writing Tutorial • IELTS Practice (optional)

Study Visits You make the following study visits: • Foreign & Commonwealth Office • 3 Diplomatic Missions in London • London-based NGO • Houses of Parliament • Cabinet Office • Vienna (UN, OSCE and Ministry of Foreign Affairs) Full details of course content for each subject can be found at:


Entry requirements

Preparing you for success

Graduate applicants

Graduate success in the UK depends on many factors including a high degree of proficiency in academic English and the mastery of an integrated platform of non-linguistic skills, abilities and knowledge. During your course you will be encouraged to take responsibility for your own learning and will learn how to work effectively in teams.

A strong undergraduate degree in any subject (or equivalent).

Non-traditional applicants We are committed to supporting learners from non-traditional backgrounds to succeed at university and welcome applications from those who have significant work or life experience. In such cases we would require evidence of your motivation, potential, knowledge and ability. If you have any questions regarding your suitability for this course, please email us at or call us on +44 (0)1865 280191

English Language If English is not your first language you are required to provide evidence of your English language proficiency. For this course, we require a minimum overall IELTS score of 6.5 (or equivalent). This requirement may be waived if you have completed a fulltime degree-level course of at least nine months in length which was undertaken at a recognised institution where the medium of instruction and assessment throughout was English.

Exemption from the English language and literacy module We welcome applications from students with native or near native speaker proficiency in English. In such cases, the English Language & Literacy Module is waived and students follow one additional academic course of their choice per term offered by the Central University. Students may choose from a wide range of elective academic courses in international relations, politics, philosophy, law and history. Students who have been exempted from the English Language & Literacy Module must (in addition to the required Academic Module assignments) submit an assignment of 2,500 words per term on their elective academic course. For more information on this option please contact us at

Academic and personal support Whether you are studying overseas for the first time or have already studied in the UK, we offer you a first-rate academic and personal support network to help you to get the most from your time at Oxford. Throughout your course, you will learn about social behaviour, customs and values in the UK and will also explore ways of enhancing your intercultural communication skills.

Independent learning skills From day one, we will teach you how to think independently. You will learn how to: • prioritise tasks and structure your own learning • make optimal use of your time and resources • identify your preferred learning style • reflect positively on your learning

Critical and analytical thinking skills We will introduce you to the expectations of graduate work in the UK by helping you practise and develop your critical and analytical thinking skills to enable you to: • find and evaluate reliable sources of evidence • develop a questioning approach to your reading • evaluate differing viewpoints objectively • recognise assumptions • identify flaws in an argument • develop effective analysis and argument

Academic reading and writing skills We will help you develop and improve your academic reading skills in order to help you approach the different types of texts you read in the most efficient and effective manner. During your weekly individual academic literacy tutorials you will learn how to plan and write well-constructed academic essays.



Timetables A typical day starts at 9.15 a.m. and ends at 3.30 p.m. during which you take up to three 90-minute classes. You also benefit from small study groups and individual weekly academic writing tutorials, as well as guest lectures. The timetables below are for illustrative purposes only.

Michaelmas Term 2019




Academic Literacy

Diplomatic and Professional Communication Skills

10.45am 11.15am



English Grammar

Critical Reading

Digital Literacy

Critical Thinking

Break Diplomacy in Practice

Individual Tutorial

12.45pm 2.00pm


Lunch International Relations

EU Integration

Politics and Ideology

Public Diplomacy






Academic Literacy

Diplomatic and Professional Communication Skills

English Grammar

Digital Literacy

Individual Tutorial

Critical Reading

Public International Law

EU Integration

Hilary Term 2020

9.15am 10.45am 11.15am

Break Diplomacy in Practice

Critical Thinking

12.45pm 2.00pm


IELTS Practice Lunch

Diplomatic Simulations

European Politics


Assessment You are assessed throughout your course on a blend of classwork (including short written tasks and presentations) and longer essays. On successful course completion, you will be awarded a University of Oxford Certificate of Course Completion.

English Language & Literacy Module • Academic Literacy • Diplomatic Communication Skills • Critical Reading • English Grammar • Critical Thinking • IELTS Test Practice (Optional)

Michaelmas Term 2019 – 7 October – 13 December Academic & Diplomatic Practice Module • Diplomacy in Practice • Skills for Public Diplomacy • International Relations • Politics & Ideology • EU Integration I Assessment 2 x 2,000-word essays 1 x 1,500-word essay 1 each of: Non-paper, Memo, Telegram, Speaking note English Language & Literacy Module • Academic Literacy • Diplomatic Communication Skills • Critical Reading • Digital Literacy • Critical Thinking • English Grammar • Individual Tutorial Assessment: Work totalling no more than 3,000 words

Hilary Term 2020 - 13 January – 20 March Academic & Diplomatic Practice Module • Diplomacy in Practice • Diplomatic Simulations • Contemporary European Politics (2000-2020) • Foundations of Public International Law

Assessment: Work totalling no more than 3,000 words

Additional Academic Module Students who have been exempted from the English Language & Literacy Module must (in addition to the above academic assignments) submit assignments on their elective academic courses. Michaelmas Term: One additional essay of 2,500 words. Hilary Term: One additional essay of 2,500 words.

Feedback During your course you will benefit from a high degree of written and oral feedback on both formatively and summatively assessed work. Each essay that you write will be assessed and marked by an academic tutor who will provide you with a detailed written report on your performance and will identify areas for improvement. Your personal academic literacy tutor will also comment on your written English for each end-of-term essay and, during your weekly tutorials, will help you develop a personalised study plan to help you improve your academic writing skills. You will also have formal individual end-of-term meetings with the course director to discuss your academic progress and development. Importantly, you will have the opportunity to arrange private appointments with the course director throughout the year to talk about your progress or future plans. At the end of each term you will receive a personalised written tutor report on your performance in each course.

• EU Integration II Assessment 2 x 3,000-word essays 1 x viva voce examination 1 x diplomatic presentation



Associate Student Membership of Kellogg College (optional) The University of Oxford has no central campus but is made up of over 38 colleges and halls spread across the city centre and beyond. These colleges are at the heart of Oxford’s reputation as one of the best universities in the world and make it a very special place in which to study and live. As a Foundations of Diplomacy pre-Master’s student you have the opportunity to apply for associate student membership of Kellogg College which will enable you to enjoy the benefits of belonging to both a world-class university and to one of Oxford’s most international graduate colleges. It will enable you to engage on a daily basis with students, staff and college guests from many academic disciplines from all over the world and from all walks of life. You will have the opportunity to dine informally in college at lunchtime and to participate in formal dinners. You may also attend special guest lectures, seminars, concerts and charity events. Kellogg College offers you a wide range of facilities including: • Common room • 24 hour-a day library

• Dining hall • ‘The Hub’ Café

• Bar Much of your socialising in Kellogg will revolve around the Middle Common Room (MCR). The MCR has a student committee which arranges an enormous number of events and activities throughout the year for members. These appear on a ‘Term Card’ which usually takes the form of a calendar detailing all the activities, events and campaigns which students may enjoy such as: • Exchange dinners with other Oxford colleges • Quiz nights • Bops (college parties) • Career networking events • Black tie balls • Wine tastings • Sports competitions • Short book club • Murder mystery night • Garden parties • Film nights • Fundraising events

European study visit to Vienna At the end of Michaelmas Term 2019, students will participate in a three-day European field trip to Vienna and will visit a number of international agencies. There is no additional fee for this visit which includes airport transfers (UK and Austria), flights, bed and breakfast accommodation, lunches in Vienna and excursions and entrance fees. Students are responsible for arranging their own travel insurance, any visa costs, personal spending money and evening meals. The schedule is subject to change, but typically includes:

Day 1 Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) • Meeting of the Permanent Council • Presentations by OSCE research staff British Embassy • Bilateral relations between the UK and Austria/The Embassy’s work with the UN • Meeting with British Ambassador Evening • Traditional Austrian ‘Gasthaus’ Dinner (optional)

Day 2 Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs • Meeting with the Political Director United Nations • Guided Tour • Presentation by UN staff Evening • Opera at the Wienerstaatsoper

For a flavour of what you might expect, visit Kellogg’s MCR website at: Please note that requests for associate student membership of Kellogg College must be made at the time of application. Associate student membership of Kellogg College will incur an additional fee of approximately £2,300 for the academic year 2019-20.



Accommodation Oxford offers students a wide variety of accommodation options which can include: • College (in-college and in properties across Oxford) • University (single rooms and flats) • Private (flat-share, flats and houses)

Private The Oxford University Graduate Accommodation Office has a helpful website offering private accommodation advice, as well as a private accommodation search engine. lookingforaccommodation/private/

College We are, unfortunately, unable to guarantee college accommodation for successful applicants since colleges must prioritise the allocation of rooms to their matriculated students. The annual room allocation process takes place in early September, so application for college accommodation is not possible before September 1. If you would like to be placed on our register for college accommodation, please contact the course administrator at who will make an application on your behalf. lookingforaccommodation/properties/ You may wish to consult the University’s guide to renting private accommodation in Oxford which is available under the ‘Related links’ tab at: graduateaccommodation/private/ The Oxford University Student Union has produced a helpful ‘Living Out Guide’ which can be downloaded at: www.

Costs Please note that: • the outcome of your application will not normally be known until mid-September • college accommodation may either be in the college itself or in a property elsewhere in Oxford • you may receive an offer of college accommodation in a college with which you do not have associate membership status


For 2019-20, you should budget £220 (approx.) per week for accommodation and £140 (approx.) per week for food, transport and entertainment. Accommodation costs will, of course, vary depending on the type of accommodation you choose. Please note that accommodation costs are not included in course and college associate membership fees.


Foundations of Diplomacy pre-Master’s Course 2019-20 Your Questions Answered Below are responses to a number of the most frequently asked questions. Please also visit our website at https://www. where you’ll find the answers to many more.

What level is the course? The course is pitched at final year UK undergraduate degree level.

Where will my classes be held? Your classes will be held in the University of Oxford Department for Continuing Education. This is located at Rewley House in Wellington Square.

Where do your students come from? Our pre-Master’s students come from many different countries and backgrounds. Some are recent graduates, others are mature professionals who have chosen to return to university or to study at university for the first time.

Where are former pre-Master’s course students studying in 2018-19? • University of Oxford – 4 students • University of Cambridge – 2 students • University College London – 2 students • King’s College London – 1 student • London School of Economics – 1 student • University of Edinburgh – 1 student • University of Sheffield – 1 student • University of Chicago – 1 student • University of Toronto – 1 student • ETH Zurich – 1 student

How many contact hours will I have each week? You should expect a maximum of 15 contact hours each week.

What is included in the course fees? All course tuition, course books and study materials, cultural field trips and weekday morning refreshments (tea/coffee).

May I pay for the course in instalments? Yes. Please contact the course administrator for details.


What type of visa do I need? We regret that we are unable to provide advice on individual visa applications. You are advised to consult your closest British Embassy, Consulate or High Commission for the most up-to-date advice. You may also contact the University’s Student Information and Advisory Service at

Can I visit the Department and talk to someone about the course? Yes. If you’d like to see our facilities for yourself and to ask us any questions, we’d be delighted to welcome you at most times throughout the year. Please contact us at to arrange a visit.

Can I take the course if I don’t have a first degree? We welcome applications from those who have significant work or life experience and who may not hold an undergraduate degree. In such cases we would require evidence of your motivation, potential, knowledge and ability. If you have any questions regarding your suitability for this course, please email us at or call us on +44 (0)1865 280191.

How long will it take for the outcome of my application to be known? After reviewing your application documentation, we’ll let you know whether you’re invited to the next stage of the selection process, an informal 30-minute Skype interview. You should expect to learn the outcome of your application within seven working days of your interview.

What type of certificate will I receive? Students who successfully complete the course will be awarded a University of Oxford certificate of course completion.

Does this course guarantee entry to an Oxford Master’s degree course? You should note that successful completion of the pre-Master’s course does not guarantee progression to Master’s degree courses at Oxford (or at any other university) for which separate application is necessary.

If I apply for a college associate membership, can I choose any Oxford college? No. If your application for a place on the pre-Master’s course is successful, we will approach Kellogg College on your behalf with a request for associate student membership.


How to Apply To apply for a place on the Foundations of Diplomacy Course, download and complete the course application form at Email your completed form to with the following attachments:

Course Dates 2019-20 Academic Orientation 30 September – 4 October Michaelmas Term 7 October - 13 December Hilary Term 13 January – 20 March

• Personal statement (500 words max) • Copy of passport pages indicating citizenship • Copy of your university transcript(s) • Digital photo (head shot)

Application deadline You may submit your application at any time during the year. The application deadline is 31 July 2019.

• IELTS (Academic) Test certificate (or equivalent ) if required • Name, affiliation and email address of an academic or professional referee

Fees* £15,500


Course fee

English language test waiver

£2,300 (approx.) College associate membership fee (optional)

To request a waiver, write a brief statement giving the reasons for your request and upload it to your application in lieu of an English language test certificate.

*Please note that your course and college fees DO NOT include accommodation or meals.


For more information on our courses, please visit our website at

Contact us +44 (0)1865 280191 Pre-Master’s Courses Department for Continuing Education University of Oxford 1 Wellington Square Oxford OX1 2JA United Kingdom

Photography Š Darrell Godliman