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International Policy (MA)

General

Degree Type
MA - Master of Arts
Undergraduate/Graduate
Graduate
Department(s)
INTLPOLICY
Program Overview

The Ford Dorsey Master's in International Policy (MIP), is an interdisciplinary program devoted to rigorous analysis of international policy issues in diplomacy, governance, cyber and international security, global health, and environmental policy. The program is designed to integrate perspectives from political science, law, economics, history, and other disciplines, while also incorporating research opportunities and a focus on implementation and administration of solutions addressing global problems. The MIP program combines a scholarly focus with practical training designed to prepare students for careers in public service and other settings where they can have an impact on international issues.

The program allows students to specialize in cyber policy and security; energy, natural resources, and the environment; governance and development; or international security. Each of the four areas of specialization is guided by one -or more- major research centers at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford. This collaboration provides MIP students with exposure to cutting-edge research on global policy issues. Established in 1982, the program was endowed as the Ford Dorsey Program in International Policy Studies (IPS) in 2007. 

University requirements for the M.A. degree are described in the "Graduate Degrees" section of this bulletin.

Program Learning Outcomes

The purpose of the master's program is to help students develop content knowledge, analytical and implementation skills, communication skills, and interpersonal skills in preparation for professional careers in international policy and related fields. This is achieved through completion of required courses in the core curriculum and area of specialization, elective courses in primary and related areas, and the capstone course. Students are also encouraged to gain experience through a summer internship and research skills through assistantships with Stanford faculty. Graduates from the Master of Arts in International Policy will demonstrate an advanced understanding of international issues pertaining to governance, security, diplomacy, and other related areas, and will have a depth of knowledge in interpreting and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data.

Advising Expectations

International Policy (MIP) is committed to providing academic advising in support of graduate student scholarly and professional development. When most effective, this advising relationship entails collaborative and sustained engagement by both the adviser and the advisee. As a best practice, advising expectations should be periodically discussed and reviewed to ensure mutual understanding. Both the adviser and the advisee are expected to maintain professionalism and integrity. Graduate students are active contributors to the advising relationship, proactively seeking academic and professional guidance and taking responsibility for informing themselves of policies and degree requirements for their graduate program.

Each student in the MIP program is assigned a faculty adviser as well as a program adviser and a career adviser. The faculty adviser, who is assigned in September of the student's first quarter of matriculation, is identified based on a student's interests and area of specialization. The expectation is that students meet with their faculty advisers on a quarterly basis, at minimum. Please note that it is the student's responsibility to schedule the advising meetings. In addition to the faculty adviser, the program adviser (i.e., MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Services) advises all students in the program by providing guidance and support on degree requirements and progress, academic policy interpretation and enforcement, degree program support, personal support, and other matters as needed. The career adviser (i.e., MIP Career Services and Alumni Affairs Manager) provides support on internships, careers, and professional development.

To expand, faculty advisers guide students in key areas such as exploring academic opportunities and professional pathways, understanding and interpreting the university ecosystem, and identifying ways to pursue one's interests at Stanford. MIP students should view the faculty adviser as an entry point to their interests, and they are actively encouraged to meet broadly with other faculty as well. 

Academic progress and student completion of program requirements and milestones are monitored by MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs. MIP students (including coterminal, dual, and joint degree students) are required to submit a program proposal to the department during spring quarter of their first year of enrollment in the program. This time frame is different from general University policy. The program proposal, which is a formal milestone, establishes a student's individual program of study to meet University and department degree requirements. Students are also required to submit a second program proposal no later than the quarter in which they apply to graduate. This graduation program proposal is also a formal milestone that must be completed in order to graduate. The form is available on the MIP website. Additional information on the Master’s Program Proposal is available in the “Graduate Degrees” section of this bulletin.

Additionally, the program adheres to the advising guidelines and responsibilities listed by the Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education (VPGE) and in the Graduate Academic Policies (GAP).

External Credit Policies

Per University policy, students enrolled in MA programs may not apply external credits towards their degree requirements. The University's general requirements, applicable to all graduate degrees at Stanford, are listed in the "Graduate Degrees" section of this bulletin. In addition, MIP Academic Policies are listed below and highlight degree-specific requirements for the Master of Arts in International Policy. 

Degree Requirements

To earn the M.A. in International Policy, students matriculating in Autumn Quarter 2021 must complete the courses listed below in the curriculum. These requirements include:

  • Core (28 units)

    • All courses must be completed during the first year

  • Area of Specialization (20 units)

    • Two required courses to be completed during the first year

    • Three or more additional courses (see the "Area of Specialization Elective Courses" list on this page for approved options)

  • Customized Electives (23 units​)

    • Elective courses selected by the student to augment the course of study

  • Capstone (9 units)

    • Two-quarter Policy Change Studio course for winter and spring in the second year

    • Capstone Field Research course for spring in the second year

The minimum number of units required to graduate is 80.  

Students who matriculated prior to Autumn Quarter 2021-22 should review their degree requirements by visiting the University's Archived Bulletins. These requirements pertain only to new students, coterminal students, or joint/dual degree students who matriculated into MIP in Spring Quarter 2020-21 or later.

Curriculum

Course List

Units

Core Courses

28

course

International Policy Speaker Series

1

course

Leading Effective Teams

2

course

Research Methods and Policy Applications I

5

course

Research Methods and Policy Applications II

5

course

The Global Economy

5

course

Foreign Policy Decision-Making in International Relations

5

course

Policy Problem-Solving in the Real World

5

Area of Specialization

20

Two required courses

Three or more additional courses from the approved electives list

Customized Electives

23

International Policy related courses; 100-level or above only

Capstone

9

course

Policy Change Studio (x2)

4

course

Capstone Field Research

1

Total Units

80

Core Courses

All core courses must be completed during the first year of the program. The only exception is for coterm, dual, or joint degree students who have conflicts with courses in their other degree program. In this instance, prior approval from MIP is required to move a core course to the second year. Note the additional guidance on first-year core courses:

  • course and course are a sequenced series in autumn and winter of the first year.

  • Students are required to enroll in course, course, and course for Autumn Quarter.  

  • Students are required to enroll in course for Winter Quarter.

  • Students are required to enroll in course, course, and course for Spring Quarter.

Capstone

Students enroll in course for both Winter Quarter and Spring Quarter of the second year of the program. Additionally, students enroll in course , which is the field research component, for Spring Quarter of the second year of the program.

Customized Electives

Students are permitted to take a wide range of courses in order to augment their area of interest. The purpose of the customized electives is to provide students the opportunity to explore the many academic offerings across campus and to give them the ability to tailor their courses in a suitable manner. These courses must be related to international policy, broadly understood.

Students may choose to enroll in additional courses in their area of specialization or build their own course of study. Options include but are not limited to: enrolling in area studies courses; pursuing a certificate program (e.g., Computational Social Science Certificate); enrolling in language courses; informally completing a second area of specialization; or combining a diverse set of courses to supplement their academic focus. Please note that courses below 100-level and activity units do not count towards graduate degrees.

Area of Specialization

The Ford Dorsey Master's in International Policy (MIP) offers four areas of specialization:

  • Cyber Policy and Security (CYBER)

  • Energy, Natural Resources, and the Environment (ENRE)

  • Governance and Development (GOVDEV)

  • International Security (ISEC)

Students are required to choose one area of specialization and complete at least five courses within the specialization for a minimum of 20 total units. Each area of specialization has two required courses, which must be taken during the first year. Additionally, each area of specialization has a list of approved elective courses from which at least three additional courses must be completed.  The list of specialization elective courses is available below in this document. 

Area of Specialization Required Course

Units

Cyber Policy and Security

course

Hack Lab

3

course

Fundamentals of Cyber Policy and Security

4-5

Energy, Natural Resources, and the Environment

Complete two of the following courses

course

Understanding Energy

3-5

course

Energy Markets and Policy

3

course

Empirical Methods in Sustainable Development

3-5

Governance and Development

course

Development Economics

5

course

Comparative Political Economy of Development

3

International Security

course

Contemporary Issues in International Security

4

course

Technology, Innovation and Great Power Competition

4

Area of Specialization Selection

Matriculated students will see their area of specialization listed in Axess based on the subplan they selected when applying for admission. MIP will ask students to update their area of specialization prior to Autumn Quarter of their first year of the program. This information will be used in the process to identify faculty advisors.

Please note that students may change their area of specialization through the end of the first academic year with approval from MIP. If a student would like to change the area of specialization (aka subplan), it must be approved by the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs.

Any approved change to one's area of specialization will require the student to submit the Declaration or Change to a Field of Study for Graduate Students (Subplan change) e-Form in Axess in order to process the change to the academic plan.

Area of Specialization Course Planning

The two required courses must be completed during the first year of the program unless there are unavoidable conflicts. Approval to complete a required specialization course during the second year of the program must be obtained from the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs.

There are no exemptions permitted for the required courses. However, coterm students who have already completed a required specialization course as part of their undergraduate degree program should discuss alternative options with MIP in order to avoid duplication.

As a reminder, all courses must be taken for a letter grade. Additionally, courses numbered below 100 do not count towards graduate degrees. 

Area of Specialization Course Petition Process

During Autumn Quarter and Spring Quarter, MIP will accept petitions to incorporate additional courses into the approved electives. The process will allow students to submit courses for review by MIP leadership and the subject-matter faculty leaders for the respective specialization(s). For each review period, the timeline for the submission of petitions will be provided in writing.

The process requires students to submit detailed course information, including syllabi and a rationale for inclusion. 

The criteria for inclusion will include a review of a course's substantive fit within the specialization; rationale submitted by the student; recency and consistency of offering; graduate offering (i.e., course number generally 200-level and above); letter grade option (except GSB/LAW/SoM); and teaching evaluations. Of note, skills-based courses are generally considered Customized Electives, which is a separate degree requirement.

Courses that are approved will be added to the list of specialization electives in this document. Students may retroactively apply a course towards their specialization if it is approved via petition after they have completed it.

Area of Specialization Elective Courses

Units

Cyber Policy and Security

course

Censorship and Propaganda

4-5

course

Programming Methodology

3-5

course

Computers, Ethics, and Public Policy

4

course

Ethics, Public Policy, and Technological Change

5

course

Cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies

3

course

Data for Sustainable Development

3-5

course

The Social & Economic Impact of Artificial Intelligence

1

course

Tech Policy, Innovation, and Startup Ecosystems: Silicon Valley, Japan and Comparative Perspectives

3

course

Digital Risk: From Cyber to Autonomy

2

course

AI and Rule of Law: A Global Perspective

2-3

course

Technology and National Security: Past, Present, and Future

3-4

course

Technology & Public Purpose: Practical Solutions for Innovation's Public Dilemmas

4-5

course

Psychology, Influence, and Propaganda

4

course

Research Topics in Technology and National Security

1-3

course

Research Seminar on Cybersecurity: Automotive Safety, Security, and Privacy

2-4

course

DigiChina Newsroom: Explaining Chinese Tech Policy

1-3

course

Current Topics in Technology Platform Policy

1-2

course

Online Open Source Investigation

3-4

course

Cyber Law: International and Domestic Legal Frameworks for Cyber Policy

2

course

Free Speech, Democracy and the Internet

2-3

course

Foundations of Internet Speech Platform Regulation

3

course

Data: Privacy, Property and Security

3

course

Confronting Misinformation Online: Law and Policy

2

course

Governing Artificial Intelligence: Law, Policy, and Institutions

3

course

Regulating Artificial Intelligence

3

course

Regulating Internet Speech Platforms

2-3

course

Antitrust and the Challenges of Competition in Digital Markets

3

course

"Hacking for Defense": Solving National Security issues with the Lean Launchpad

3-4

Energy, Natural Resources, and the Environment

course

Understanding Energy

3-5

course

Understanding Energy - Essentials

3-4

course

Shaping the Future of the Bay Area

3-5

course

Shaping the Future of the Bay Area

3-5

course

Global Infrastructure Projects Seminar

1-2

course

Sustainable Finance and Investment Seminar

1

course

Air Pollution and Global Warming: History, Science, and Solutions

3

course

Water and Sanitation in Developing Countries

1-3

course

Adaptation to Sea Level Rise and Extreme Weather Events

3

course

Electricity Economics

3

course

Data for Sustainable Development

3-5

course

Economic, Legal, and Political Analysis of Climate-Change Policy

5

course

Feeding Nine Billion

4-5

course

World Food Economy

5

course

Human Society and Environmental Change

4

course

Biology and Global Change

4

course

Environmental Governance

3

course

Environmental Economics and Policy

5

course

Natural Resource and Energy Economics

2-5

course

Energy Infrastructure, Technology and Economics

3

course

Climate Law and Policy

3

course

Energy Law

3

course

Environmental Decision-Making and Risk Perception

1-3

course

Biosphere-Atmosphere Interactions

3-4

course

Energy Markets and Policy

3

course

Infrastructure & Power in the Global South

4-5

course

Managing Nuclear Waste: Technical, Political and Organizational Challenges

3

course

Climate Politics: Science and Global Governance

3-4

course

Empirical Methods in Sustainable Development

3-5

course

International Environmental Governance

3-4

course

Business, Social Responsibility, and Human Rights

3

course

Policy Practicum: Assessing the Impact of China's Global Infrastructure Spending on Climate Change

2-3

course

Energy Law

3

course

Environmental Law and Policy

3

course

Natural Resources Law and Policy

3

course

The Business of Water

2

course

Climate: Politics, Finance, and Infrastructure

2-3

course

International Negotiation: Solving Intractable Conflict

3

course

Energy and Environmental Policy Analysis

3

course

Environmental Governance and Climate Resilience

3

Governance and Development

course

Designing Research-Based Interventions to Solve Global Health Problems

3-4

course

Water and Sanitation in Developing Countries

1-3

course

Digital Civil Society

3

course

Data for Sustainable Development

3-5

course

Topics in Writing & Rhetoric: Introduction to Environmental Justice: Race, Class, Gender and Place

4

course

Data for Sustainable Development

3-5

course

Korea and the World

3

course

Labor Economics I

2-5

course

Economics of Education in the Global Economy

5

course

Creating and Scaling High Potential Ventures in Developing Economies

2

course

Business and Governments: Power and Engagement in the 21st Century World

2

course

Infrastructure & Power in the Global South

4-5

course

Trade and Development

3-5

course

New Generation International Trade Policy and Trade Agreements

3

course

Microeconomics for Policy

4-5

course

Economic Policy Analysis for Policymakers

4-5

course

Economics of Corruption

3-5

course

Political Mobilization and Democratic Breakthroughs

3-5

course

Tech Policy, Innovation, and Startup Ecosystems: Silicon Valley, Japan and Comparative Perspectives

3

course

Current Issues in Southeast Asia

4

course

Finance, Corporations, and Society

4

course

Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law

3-5

course

Understanding Russia: Its Power and Purpose in a New Global Order

5

course

Social Movements in the Post Spring Arab World

4

course

State responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in the Arab world

3

course

American Foreign Policy: Interests, Values, and Process

5

course

U.S. Policy toward Northeast Asia

4

course

AI and Rule of Law: A Global Perspective

2-3

course

Technology & Public Purpose: Practical Solutions for Innovation's Public Dilemmas

4-5

course

Empirical Methods in Sustainable Development

3-5

course

Transitional Justice, Human Rights, and International Criminal Tribunals

3-5

course

Global Poverty and the Law

3

course

Practical Approaches to Global Health Research

1-3

course

Theories of Change in Global Health

3-4

course

Free Speech, Democracy and the Internet

2-3

course

International Law

4

course

Law of Democracy

3

course

State Building and the Rule of Law Seminar

3

course

Policy Practicum: Human Rights & International Justice

3-5

course

International Human rights

3

course

Transitional Justice

3

course

Business, Social Responsibility, and Human Rights

3

course

Governing Artificial Intelligence: Law, Policy, and Institutions

3

course

The Future of the European Union: Challenges and Opportunities

5

course

Natural Resources Law and Policy

3

course

Law and Ethics of War

2

course

Global Biodesign: Medical Technology in an International Context

1

course

Foundations of Political Economy

4

course

Political Development Economics

3

course

Governing the Global Economy

5

course

Comparative Democratic Development

5

course

The Politics of Inequality

5

course

Law and the New Political Economy

3-5

course

Governance and Poverty

3-5

course

Latin American Politics

3-5

course

Grad Seminar on Middle Eastern Politics

3-5

course

Economic Policy Analysis for Policymakers

4-5

course

China Under Mao

5

course

Chinese Politics and Society

3-5

course

Formation of Impact Ventures

3

course

Impact: Taking Social Innovation to Scale

3

course

Assessing High Impact Business Models in Emerging Markets

2

International Security

course

Taiwan's Democratic Evolution

3-5

course

Korea and the World

3

course

Presidents and Foreign Policy in Modern History

5

course

Infrastructure & Power in the Global South

4-5

course

Bodies, Technologies, and Natures in Africa

4-5

course

A New Cold War? Great Power Relations in the 21st Century

2

course

The Future of Global Cooperation

3-4

course

Politics of Data: Algorithmic Culture, Big Data, and Information Waste

4-5

course

Current Issues in Southeast Asia

4

course

Understanding Russia: Its Power and Purpose in a New Global Order

5

course

Foreign Policy Decision Making in Comparative Perspective

3-5

course

Presidential Decision Making in Wartime

3

course

Social Movements in the Post Spring Arab World

3

course

U.S. Policy toward Northeast Asia

4

course

Asia-Pacific Transformation

4

course

China's Foreign Policies: Objectives, Instruments, and Impacts

4

course

Verification for 21st Century Arms Control Treaties

3

course

International Conflict Resolution

2

course

Technology and National Security: Past, Present, and Future

3-4

course

Technology & Public Purpose: Practical Solutions for Innovation's Public Dilemmas

4-5

course

Managing Nuclear Waste: Technical, Political and Organizational Challenges

3

course

Empirical Methods in Sustainable Development

3-5

course

Transitional Justice, Human Rights, and International Criminal Tribunals

3-5

course

American and Chinese Approaches to Managing Global Challenges

2

course

International Law

4

course

Policy Practicum: Human Rights & International Justice

3-5

course

International Criminal Law and Its Enforcement

3

course

International Human rights

3

course

Human trafficking: Law and Policy

3

course

Transitional Justice

3

course

Business, Social Responsibility, and Human Rights

3

course

Law and Ethics of War

2

course

Foreign Affairs and the Constitution

2

course

Negotiation

3

course

International Negotiation: Solving Intractable Conflict

3

course

"Hacking for Defense": Solving National Security issues with the Lean Launchpad

3-4

course

Politics of Insurgency, Terrorism and Civil War

5

course

Nuclear Politics

3-5

course

Challenges and Dilemmas in American Foreign Policy

5

course

Chinese Politics

3-5

course

Political Economy of Reform in China

3-5

course

Chinese Politics and Society

3-5

course

Nations and Nationalism

3-5

MIP Academic Policies

The University's general requirements, applicable to all graduate degrees at Stanford, are listed in the "Graduate Degrees" section of this bulletin. Please review university requirements and policies carefully. In addition, the MIP-specific academic policies are listed below. 

Degree Progress and Academic Standing

MIP students must maintain a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA to remain in good academic standing. Similarly, a 3.0 cumulative GPA is required for conferral of the M.A. degree. Failure to remain in good academic standing, either due to falling below the 3.0 GPA threshold or not making sufficient degree progress will result in being placed on academic probation (which could ultimately result in dismissal from the university). Students should always proactively seek guidance from the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs if they find themselves in this situation.

Please review the Bulletin for details on Minimum Progress Requirements for Graduate Students.

Grade Policies

Students should familiarize themselves with the General University Grading Systems.

All courses applied towards degree requirements for the M.A. in International Policy must be taken for a letter grade. The only exceptions are:

  • course (only offered as Satisfactory/No Credit).

  • course (only offered as Satisfactory/No Credit).

  • Courses offered for 1-2 units that do not have a letter grade option.

    • No more than eight non-INTLPOL credit/no credit units may be applied towards the degree requirements

  • Law School, School of Medicine, or Graduate School of Business courses for which a letter grade is not an available option.

    • Note that some of the courses offered by the professional schools use their native grading systems only.

    • Pre-approval is required from MIP in order to count a non-letter grade course from Law, Medicine, or Business towards the MIP degree.

  • If a student wishes to apply a credit/no credit course towards the area of specialization elective units, prior approval from MIP is required.  Credit will not be granted retroactively.

Incomplete (I) Grade

Students who receive an incomplete grade (denoted as "I") are required to complete the course on a shorter timeline than University policy. The following completion schedule applies:

  • Autumn and Winter Quarters: Incomplete grades must be completed no later than June 30 of the same academic year. 

  • Spring Quarter: Incomplete grades must be completed no later than August 30 of the same academic year.

  • Summer Quarter: Incomplete grades must be completed no later than December 30 of the same calendar year.

Students are also responsible for coordinating the completion of the course with the instructor(s) as well as keeping the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs apprised of progress.

Students who have three or more incomplete grades (denoted as "I"), or who have incomplete grades in multiple quarters, will be placed on academic probation unless there is a rationale due to personal or health reasons that is accompanied by documentation from Counseling and Psychological Services, the Office of Accessible Education, or Vaden Health Center.  

Courses

A maximum of 20 undergraduate units can be applied towards the MIP degree, i.e., courses numbered between 100-199.  The exceptions are History and Political Science, which list undergraduate courses at the 100 and 200-level. Per University policy, courses numbered below 100 do not count towards graduate degrees. Activity courses, e.g., Tennis or Weightlifting, do not apply towards the MIP degree requirements.

Language Courses

Units from language courses may only be applied towards the 23 units of Customized Electives. Since students cannot apply language courses below the 100-level towards the MIP degree requirements, they should discuss options with the Stanford Language Center, including enrolling in a graduate-level section with the course number 395 (e.g., course).

English proficiency courses for international students do not count towards the MIP degree requirements. 

Students should also confirm their language course enrollment with the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs sufficiently in advance of the Final Study List deadline for a given quarter.  

Directed Readings

Students may arrange a directed reading course to be applied towards the Areas of Specialization or Customized Electives if the current course offerings do not meet particular research or study needs. Directed readings are independent study projects students may undertake with Stanford faculty members.

Once the student has identified a faculty member to oversee the course of study the student must submit a Directed Reading Proposal for review by the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs. Directed reading proposals must be submitted as soon as they are finalized and no later than Friday of the second week of the quarter. MIP will review the directed reading proposal and render a decision no later than two days prior to the Final Study List Deadline. If approved, the MIP academic services team will create a section number for the specific instructor so the student can enroll in the course. The course is listed as INTLPOL299: Directed Reading and the section number corresponds to the instructor (e.g., INTLPOL 299 - 02 (Stoner, Kathryn)). 

There are important restrictions for directed readings:

  • Students can apply a maximum of 15 units of directed reading towards the MIP degree requirements.

    • This includes a maximum of 10 units that can be applied towards the Area of Specialization. 

    • The balance can also be applied towards the Customized Electives.

  • Students may receive credit for a maximum of five units per directed reading.

  • Students must receive a letter grade for the directed reading.

Practical Training

Students may obtain an internship in a relevant research or industrial activity to enhance their professional experience consistent with their degree program and area of specialization. For those who need to enroll in a curricular practical training course as part of the internship, they may apply by submitting the MIP CPT Proposal on the program website no later than the second Friday of the academic quarter. Proposals will be reviewed by the MIP academic and student services team as well as the career services staff. If approved, students may enroll in INTLPOL 298: Practical Training (Section 02) for 1-3 units. Students may apply up to three units of practical training towards the Customized Electives only.  

At the end of the quarter, a three-page final report must be supplied documenting work done and relevance to the degree program. This course meets the requirements for Curricular Practical Training for students on F-1 visas. 

Graduate Student Milestones

Program Proposal

Students must submit an MIP Master's Degree Program Proposal during Spring Quarter of the first year of study. Submission of the Program Proposal requires scheduling a 30-minute advising session with the MIP Academic Services Team to review degree progress during the first year and outline course work that needs to be completed in future quarters in order to graduate. The University requires students to have a program proposal on file with the degree program. Failure to complete this milestone will result in an enrollment hold being placed on the student’s account. See "Graduate Advising" on the Catalog page for additional information. 

Graduation Program Proposal

Students must apply to graduate in Axess. Please see the Stanford Academic Calendar for deadlines. Additionally, students must submit a second MIP Master's Degree Program Proposal (aka Graduation Program Proposal) before or during the quarter in which they have applied to graduate. The deadline to submit the proposal is the second week of the intended graduation quarter. Failure to submit this milestone will result in the denial of the application to graduate. See "Graduate Advising Expectations" on the Catalog page for additional information. 

Joint Degree Programs

Up to a maximum of 45 units, or one year, of the University residency requirement can be credited toward both graduate degree programs (i.e., the joint degree may require up to 45 fewer units than the sum of the individual degree unit requirements). For example, an M.A./M.P.P. has a three-year residency requirement, one year less than what is required for the separate degrees. The reduced requirement recognizes the subject matter overlap between the fields comprising the joint degree.

Juris Doctor and Master of Arts in International Policy (J.D./M.A.)

Students may choose to pursue a joint J.D./M.A. in International Policy degree. The joint degree program combines the strengths of the Law School and MIP.

Academic Policies

The joint J.D. requires 111 units and the M.A. in International Policy requires 54 units. Joint students must complete the MIP core curriculum (28 units), area of specialization (17 units), and capstone (9 units). 

Students who originate their studies in the Stanford Law School may complete the required statistics sequence in Law instead of completing the INTLPOL sequence although it is not advisable. Note that there is generally one statistical course in Law instead of the two-course sequence in INTLPOL, and it does not sufficiently cover topics important for the MIP capstone course, so students who proceed with this option may be at a disadvantage. Approval from MIP is required to pursue this sequence. Any additional units that students need to complete would fall into the area of specialization. Additionally, the customized electives are not required for joint J.D. students who first matriculate at the Law School; in some instances, they may not be required for students who matriculate into MIP.  

How to Apply

Prospective students interested in this joint degree program may apply concurrently to both the Stanford Law School (SLS) and MIP. Two separate application forms are required and applicants must submit LSAT scores to the Law School and GRE scores to MIP. Note that test scores may not be required during pandemic-affected application cycles. Please review the SLS website as well as the MIP Admissions section in the Catalog for details.

Students already enrolled at the SLS may apply to the joint J.D./M.A. in International Policy program no later than the end of the second year of Law School. Applications are due no later than Tuesday, January 11, 2022 by 11:59 pm PST. The MIP program makes admissions decisions based on the student's original application materials, which the student must have sent from the School of Law to MIP.

Submission of the following is also required for consideration:

  • Statement of Purpose (2-3 pages, double-spaced)

  • Resume/CV

  • Stanford Transcript (unofficial or official)

  • Intended Area of Specialization

  • Law School Joint Degree Petition (details available on the SLS Joint Degree Application Process webpage)

  • LSAT scores are sufficient (GRE scores are not required)

If a student is admitted and elects to add the joint degree program, the following additional materials will be required:

  • Graduate Program Authorization Petition (submitted via Axess)

  • Tuition Agreement for Students with Multiple Programs (available for on the eForms portal on Axess)

For further information, see the "Joint Degree Programs" section of this bulletin, the University Registrar's site, and the SLS' Joint and Cooperative Degree Programs website.

Master of Public Policy and Master of Arts in International Policy (M.P.P./M.A.)

The M.P.P./M.A. in International Policy joint degree program allows students to pursue study in both the Public Policy and International Policy (MIP) programs in three academic years of residence. Students that participate in this program gain depth of knowledge in both international and domestic policy issues.

Academic Policies

A joint degree is regarded by the University as distinct from either of its component degrees, and requirements for the joint degree differ from the sum of the requirements for the individual degrees. Joint students must complete 90 units for the M.P.P. and 80 units for the M.A. in International Policy. Up to a maximum of 45 units, or one year, of the University residency requirement can be credited toward both graduate degree programs (i.e., the joint degree requirements may contain up to 45 units less than the sum of the individual degree unit requirements). The M.P.P./M.A. in International Policy has a three-year residency requirement, one year less than the sum of the requirements for the separate degrees. This recognizes that there is a subject matter overlap between the fields comprising the joint degree.

The Public Policy Program strives to encourage an intellectual, professional, and social community among its students. For this reason, joint degree students are strongly encouraged to devote one year of full-time study at Stanford entirely to the Public Policy Program, rather than spacing Public Policy courses throughout their graduate careers. 

How to Apply

Admission to the joint degree program requires admission to and matriculation in MIP as well as consent of that program. MIP students should consult the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs to express interest. Prospective applicants to Stanford should contact the MIP Recruitment and Admissions Manager.

Applications for graduate study in Public Policy are only accepted from:

  1. students currently enrolled in any Stanford graduate or undergraduate degree program

  2. from external applicants seeking a joint degree, or

  3. from Stanford alumni who have graduated within the past five years.

To be considered for matriculation beginning in Autumn Quarter 2022-23, all application materials must be submitted by early April 2022 (details available on the Public Policy website).  Please contact Public Policy directly if you are interested in applying since it sets its own application deadlines and processes.  

External applicants for joint degrees must apply to the department or school offering the other graduate degree (i.e., Ph.D., M.D., M.A., M.S., M.B.A., or J.D.), indicating an interest in the joint degree program; applicants admitted to the other degree program are then evaluated for admission to the M.P.P. or M.A. program.  Applicants who are admitted to MIP may apply once they have received admission to the program but prior to matriculation in autumn quarter. They may also apply during the first or second year of the MIP program.

Details on the joint degree curriculum can be found on the Public Policy website.

For further information, see the "Joint Degree Programs" section of this bulletin and the University Registrar's site.

Dual Degree Programs

Students who have attended Stanford for at least one term and are currently enrolled may apply to add a second degree program. The first step in the process is to consult with the primary degree program as well as the secondary degree program to which the student is considering submitting an application. Admissions and application requirements vary by graduate program. If a secondary degree program admits a student then she/he/they must submit a Graduate Program Authorization Petition to add the new degree program that will be pursued concurrently with the existing program.

It is important that the attempt to add degree programs be made while the student is enrolled. Otherwise, a new Application for Graduate Admission must be submitted and an application fee paid. Similarly, enrollment must be continuous if a new degree program is added after completion of an existing program. Summer quarter enrollment is optional for students who intend to begin a new degree program in the Autumn quarter, provided that they have been enrolled the prior Spring quarter.

Graduate Program Authorization Petitions are filed electronically in Axess and approved by the current and the new department. In addition, petitions from international students are routed to the Bechtel International Center for review. Upon all approvals, the student's record automatically updates with the requested changes.

MIP offers two dual degree programs that feature a more formalized course of study.

Master of Business Administration and Master of Arts in International Policy (M.B.A./M.A.)

The dual degree is designed for students who want to work at the intersection of business and the state both in the U.S. and abroad. Prospective students interested in this dual degree program may apply concurrently to both the Stanford Graduate School of Business and the MIP program. Two separate applications are required and applicants must submit GRE scores with each application.

Academic Policies 

Completing this combined course of study requires approximately three academic years, depending on the student's background and quantitative preparation. Admissions processes for both programs are completely independent of each other and units from courses can only be applied to one degree or the other, not both. Students enrolled in this dual degree program are required to complete 90 units for the M.B.A. and 54 units for the M.A. in International Policy. Please contact the MBA Program office and MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs for details.

How to Apply

Students enrolled at the Stanford Graduate School of Business may apply to the M.B.A./M.A. in International Policy dual degree program no later than the end of the first year. The MIP program has one annual application deadline by which applications are due no later than 11:59 pm PST on Tuesday, January 11, 2022. Applicants from the Graduate School of Business must request to have their original application sent to MIP for review. Additionally, submission of the following is required for consideration:

If admitted, a student who wishes to matriculate must also submit the following: 

  • Graduate Program Authorization Petition (submitted via Axess)

  • Tuition Agreement for Students with Multiple Programs (available for on the eForms portal on Axess)

Master of Science in Environment and Resources and Master of Arts in International Policy (M.S./M.A.)

The dual degree with the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources (E-IPER) provides MIP students the opportunity to deepen their understanding of the science, technology and engineering that underlies current environmental problems. This understanding, integrated with their professional education in International Policy, provides a unique lens for future leaders and innovators to influence and solve the world’s most challenging environmental and sustainability problems.   

For the dual degree, students must meet the University's minimum requirements for their M.A. degree and also complete an additional 45 units for the M.S. in Environment and Resources. Completion of the M.S. typically requires at least three quarters of study in addition to the time required for the student's M.A. degree. For additional information, see the E-IPER website.

Academic Policies

Dual degree students must meet the University’s minimum requirements for both the M.S. and M.A.; course units may not be counted towards both degrees. The M.S. in Environment and Resources requires a minimum of 45 units while the M.A. in International Policy requires a minimum of 80 units. In general, students will likely complete the dual degree program in nine academic quarters, however, there are uncommon instances in which it may be possible to complete it in as few as seven. The M.S. degree can be conferred separately from the M.A., however it may be beneficial to maintain both careers in order to transfer courses between the two programs.

How to Apply

Students pursuing the dual degree must obtain approval from MIP and E-IPER to ensure their dual MS Program Plan meets the curricular expectations of both programs. As a first step, MIP students should plan to discuss their interest with the MIP Assistant Director for Academic and Student Affairs. They should also plan to meet with the E-IPER Joint M.S. Student Services Officer.

Applications from first-year MIP students are due annually to E-IPER in Winter Quarter.  In exceptional cases, second-year MIP students may apply to E-IPER. These students must demonstrate their interest in, and commitment to, the M.S. degree by completing or enrolling in a minimum of nine units of E-IPER related coursework by the time of their application. This minimum requirement does not guarantee admission. The application deadline is January 31, 2022 for the 2021-22 Academic Year. 

For application information, see the Admissions page on the E-IPER website.


Coterminal Master's Program

Undergraduates at Stanford may apply for admission to the coterminal master's program in International Policy when they have earned a minimum of 120 units toward graduation, including Advanced Placement and transfer credit, and no later than the quarter prior to the expected completion of their undergraduate degree. MIP has one application deadline per year in early January for matriculation in Autumn Quarter of the same calendar year.  

Students must submit the Coterminal Online Application. Applications must be filed together with supporting materials by 11:59 pm on Tuesday, January 11, 2022.

In addition to the web-based application, coterminal applicants must submit the following supporting materials:

  • Two letters of recommendation from University instructors

  • Academic writing sample (7-15 pages; double-spaced; may be a portion of a paper)

  • Statement of purpose focusing on relevant personal, academic, and career plans and goals

  • Resume/CV

  • Stanford transcript (unofficial will suffice)

Note: The GRE exam is not required for coterminal applicants to the MIP program.

MIP Coterm Degree Requirements

To earn the M.A. in International Policy, coterm students matriculating in Autumn Quarter 2022 must complete the courses listed in the curriculum below. These requirements include:

  • Core courses (28 units)

  • Area of specialization (17 units); including:

    • Two required courses

    • Two or more additional courses (see the "Area of Specialization Elective Courses" list above for approved options)

  • Capstone courses (9 units)

The minimum number of units required for a coterm in MIP to graduate is 54.

University Coterminal Requirements

Coterminal master’s degree candidates are expected to complete all master’s degree requirements as described in this bulletin. University requirements for the coterminal master’s degree are described in the “Coterminal Master’s Program” section. University requirements for the master’s degree are described in the "Graduate Degrees" section of this bulletin.

After accepting admission to this coterminal master’s degree program, students may request transfer of courses from the undergraduate to the graduate career to satisfy requirements for the master’s degree. Transfer of courses to the graduate career requires review and approval of both the undergraduate and graduate programs on a case-by-case basis.

In this master’s program, courses taken three quarters prior to the first graduate quarter, or later, are eligible for consideration for transfer to the graduate career. No courses taken prior to the first quarter of the sophomore year may be used to meet master’s degree requirements.

Course transfers are not possible after the bachelor’s degree has been conferred.

The University requires that the graduate advisor be assigned in the student’s first graduate quarter even though the undergraduate career may still be open. The University also requires that the Master’s Degree Program Proposal be completed by the student and approved by the department by the end of the student’s first graduate quarter.

Exchange Program

Stanford MIP-Vienna School of International Studies Academic Exchange

The Stanford MIP-Vienna School of International Studies Academic Exchange is an Autumn Quarter exchange program between the Ford Dorsey Master's in International Policy and the Diplomatische Akademie Wien – Vienna School of International Studies (DA). Two second-year students from each institution are selected by application to receive fellowships to spend Autumn Quarter in an academic exchange at the other institution where they take courses as full-time students, pursue extracurricular activities, and participate in the academic life of the host institution.

MIP students participating in the exchange program must complete all requirements listed in the M.A. curriculum. However, the minimum number of Stanford units required to graduate will be 65. In addition to the minimum requirement of 65 units, students must complete, at minimum, the equivalent of 15 units (4 or more full-time courses) at the DA. MIP students selected for the exchange must submit their list of chosen DA courses to the MIP academic services team for approval, no later than the end of the first week of classes in autumn.

Students who are considering applying to the academic exchange program should assess how the courses taken at the DA will fit into their degree requirements. They should also consider the impact of spending one quarter away from Stanford.

While on exchange at the DA, MIP students' status will be listed as active but they are not considered enrolled at Stanford. In addition, MIP students receive an academic transcript from the DA for Autumn Quarter. Hence, there is no reference to the exchange on the Stanford transcript.

For further information, please see the Stanford-Vienna Academic Exchange section of the MIP website.