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International Relations, Ph.D.

  • Application Deadline
  • 48 months
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The International Relations programme from Bilkent University purpose is to develop the skills of doctoral candidates in international political analysis and to increase their capacity to conduct research on theoretical issues, international security studies, strategic studies, comparative foreign policy, international political economy, regional integration, global environmental problems, international law, peacekeeping and conflict resolution as well as area studies such as the European Union, the Balkans, Russia, the Middle East, Central Asia and the Caucasus. 

The program is reserved for a limited number of students who are qualified and committed to spend several years conducting intensive research. The program is particularly suitable for students who wish to pursue an academic career.

Degree Requirements

Students accepted to this program must complete at least 26 credit hours of course work. Students may take elective courses from other departments in accordance with IR Ph.D. curriculum requirements. 

A cumulative grade point average of at least 3.00 must be maintained for the totality of Ph.D. coursework. A paper based on the candidate's thesis must be accepted or published in a reputable journal before the dissertation can be defended. 

The doctoral program must be completed in at most 12 semesters.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity Full-time
    • Full-time duration 48 months
    • Duration description

      The doctoral program must be completed in at most 12 semesters.

  • Credits
    26 alternative credits

    Students accepted to this program must complete at least 26 credit hours of course work. 

  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus

Programme Structure

Areas of research included:

  • Theoretical issues
  • International security studies
  • Strategic studies
  • Comparative foreign policy
  • International political economy

English Language Requirements

  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL iBT ® measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The test has four sections (reading, listening, speaking, and writing), each with a score range of 0-30, for a total score range of 0-120.

  • Minimum required score:


    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

Academic Requirements

  • Ph.D.: 307 (verbal and quantitative total). GRE scores are valid for 5 years.

    This programme accepts GRE® scores. However, it does not provide a recommended score range.

    The GRE® General Test is a widely administered admissions test that measures the skills needed in today's graduate and business school programs worldwide. The GRE® General Test contains three sections - Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing. Three scores are reported: a Verbal Reasoning score on a 130 - 170 score scale in one-point increments, a Quantitative Reasoning score on a 130 - 170 score scale in one-point increments, and an Analytical Writing score on a 0 - 6 score scale in half-point increments.

General Requirements

  • Proof of Degree: PhD: graduate degree (if already obtained)
  • Transcripts: PhD: undergraduate & graduate transcripts (most recent one available at the time of application)
  • Statement of Purpose: PhD: 2-3 pages in English (about research interests)
  • Letters of Recommendation: 3 (mailed in a sealed envelope to the Department of International Relations)
  • Other: PhD: 1) A sample essay in English (e.g. research paper, MA thesis chapter, 25 pages max.) 2) CV

Tuition Fee

  • International

    14500 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 14500 USD per year and a duration of 48 months.
  • National

    6617 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 6617 USD per year and a duration of 48 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.
  • National: 37,120 TL per year.

Living costs for Ankara

  • 1600 - 2350 TRY/month
    Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Scholarships for International Students

  • Prospective students who apply for financial assistance are evaluated according to their high school grades, their national and/or international exam scores, their program choices, and other relevant academic criteria.
  • Qualified applicants are offered partial or full tuition waiver scholarships. Tuition waiver scholarships are awarded at five levels, ranging from 20% to 100% in increments of 20%. Accommodation scholarships may be available for a limited number of top students who are on full tuition waiver scholarship.

Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.


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